Pharmacognostic and Phytochemical Study of Hair Dyes Henna in Libyan Market

Nahla Labyad, Safa Aljele


Henna adulteration is getting to rise in the world as the cosmetic desire increased. The study aimed to authentification of the pharmacognostic and phytochemicals profile of three different colors of royal henna hair dyes collected from the Libyan market in comparison to standard (Lawsonia inermis L). The current study carried out to investigate microscopical characters, preliminary phytochemical screening and Thin layer chromatography (TCL) profile of collected royal henna samples to differentiate the authentic henna feature from any adulterants. Such investigation may provide a basis for authentication, standardization, and characterization of a real sample. The study found varied results between the standard and commercial samples. Surprisingly, the red henna showed the existence of plant parts related to the microscopical structure of senna. The brown henna showed the presence of some parts of the real henna plant coupled with a strange plant parts carrying dyes unrelated to the flora of henna, while the black sample was demonstrating few plant structure and the sample was rich with fibrous parts and unknown black particles.  To emphasize the microscopic results, the samples were subjected to chemical analysis using TLC.  The results provide a clear picture of mixing the royal henna with natural and/or synthetic materials. As the phytochemical profile of red, brown and black henna were showed foreign substance not mentioned in the product label. In conclusion, it important to identified and quantify the foreign substance which might put the consumer health to risk.


Pharmacognostic, Libya, Henna, dye, Lawsonia inermis.

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