Is There A Way To Prevent An Allergic Reaction To Hair Dye?

Posted on: 2 December 2018

Dyeing your hair is a fun and easy way to improve your appearance. Because of the number of chemicals they contain, however, hair dyes are a common source of skin allergies. If you really want to change your hair color but your scalp breaks out each time you use a dye product, here are two ways you can get the same result without the medical problems.

Avoid Products with Para-Phenylenediamine

More often than not, people who have a hair dye allergy are actually reacting to a specific ingredient in the dye and not necessarily the whole product itself. As mentioned previously, hair dyes contain a lot of chemicals, but the most common one people are allergic to is para-phenylenediamine. This substance is used to produce the chemical reactions needed to force the hair to absorb the dye color.

According to the experts, para-phenylenediamine can change the genetic material in cells. While this makes it easier to dye hair, the chemical is also known to sensitize skin, leading to allergic reactions. Thus, if you want to avoid a painful breakout on your scalp after getting a dye job, avoid products that contain this chemical.

Chemicals are typically listed on the box, but you can also find a list of ingredients for different dye products online. Be aware that para-phenylenediamine also goes by the names PPDA, phenylenediamine base, and 1.4 benzenediamine. Additionally, a similar chemical similar called para-toluenediamine has also been known to cause allergic reactions. So be on the lookout for this one as well.

Try True Natural Products

Another option for avoiding an allergic reaction when dyeing your hair is to use natural substances. This is not the same as using hair dyes that claim to only be formulated using natural ingredients. Unfortunately, many of these so-called natural dyes contain the same or similar problematic chemicals as regular dyes, so you won't be doing yourself any favors by using them.

However, natural substances—such as lemon juice, coffee, and henna—lets you achieve good results without the use of chemicals that may damage your hair and scalp. For instance, lemon juice is a natural brightener that can help you achieve a lighter hair color with a few applications.

The internet is a great place to look for natural dye recipes, but it's important to manage your expectations. You may not be able to achieve a dramatic change using these products or it may take longer and more steps to get the look you want. Be prepared to invest the time and effort when going this route.

For more information about managing a skin allergy to hair dye, contact an allergy clinic, like The Regional Allergy Asthma & Immunology Center, PC.