This article is designed to give you tips on how to minimize the risk of toxic hair loss from hair dye products, and to effectively research the products you use.
Since writing my article on Toxic Hair Loss from Hair Dye Products, Daisy's story, I've received some very valid questions, and with respect to providing enough information, I felt a simple response wouldn't suffice, so therefore, I decided to write this article on the subject matter for a further look at the dangers of hair dye products, and what you can do to protect yourself from falling victim to toxic hair loss. I'll leave a link at the base of this article for those of you who haven't read Daisy's story, it's a great read with details of the signs to tell you when you are experiencing a toxic incident, which means that all of your hair that hair-dye touches is about to fall off your head, while using hair-dye.
Now that we know the products can be dangerous to your hair, it makes one wonder, are there other dangers that we should be aware of?
I'm not a Doctor, I don't pretend to know all the answers, and when I research, I do go by medical facts. This article is intended in no way as a means to demean any person or product, it is intended as a means of providing information to people of things they have a right to be aware of. At the end of the day, it's up to the reader to decide for themselves, and make their own choices, and if you have been injured at any time, you should seek medical attention, and if you have any concerns about this topic you could discuss it with your Doctor.
What are the toxic ingredients in hair dye?
The main ingredients are: PPD p-phenylene diamine, ammonia, heavy metals, peroxide, pesticides.
Men also can suffer from toxic hair loss.
According to my research, and from the stories I've been hearing since this topic has come to light, men have also suffered from toxic hair-loss. Even on their face, trying to dye their beards. There is some useful information for men on the base of this article, where they can check out the company, and see where it sits on the hazard list, before they put the chemicals on their face.
Exploring the fact about why we use hair dye is important, because as a society, coloring hair is the norm. But why?
Image is everything.
Most of us have a career, or are building one, and we want to look good at the work place, and in most cases it's a necessity. When we look good, we feel good, and we project how we feel about ourselves with confidence, when we carry ourselves throughout our busy lives. We as a society need to look good, for the singles club, to our peers, going out in public. We color our hair, or beard, because we have a right to fight aging, we have the ability to enhance our appearances as we choose. With today's technology, and thanks to those lovely baby boomers, people are staying younger looking up into their 50's now, where people once aged rapidly by the age of 30. The human race will refuse to go backwards, they need, and deserve to look and feel the way they want to. We all do. Women especially would be lost without being able to color their hair. So not coloring hair to most of us is out of the question.
So we need to safely go about coloring our hair, without the metals and peroxide.
Salon hair dye vs Home hair dye.
One thing I need to say, that there are some excellent hair color technicians out there, and talking with them will make you feel a whole lot better about coloring your hair. My stylist swears to me, that if I ever let her color my hair, that she promises to mix the chemicals so low that it won't hurt me. I trust her, as most people are very loyal to their hair stylists, and I believe that she has control over how strong she creates the mix.
Most hair color technicians also frown upon dying your own hair, with a do it yourself kit. The reason being, is that you are using chemicals without proper training on what the chemicals are, and how to use them safely.
There are still risks when dying hair, even at a salon.
That doesn't mean that you aren't at risk of toxic hair loss from hair dye, even at a salon. There have been cases where people have had bad toxic results occurring from the hair coloring treatment, but if you have concerns you can always discuss it with the technician, and request a patch test to be done first, before you trust the chemical over your entire head. The case studies I have looked at, some were determined that it wasn't the die directly, it was the reaction of the dye with the foil.
One pro for Hair Salons.
The one thing that is really good about going to a salon that makes it safer than doing it yourself, is that the technician mixes the chemical. If you go to a stylist that dyes hair quite often, then they have it down to a science, and have used their dye on multiple people.
One con for home hair dye products.
The bad thing about home hair dye is, that the company isn't obligated to test their product prior to selling it. There isn't a requirement to test most beauty products prior to being released on the market. So when you bring it home and use it, technically you are the free test bunny. At least at the salon, the products have been tested.
What to do if you are sensitive to chemicals. Anyone with sensitivity to chemicals should always talk to their stylist, prior to any hair coloring. The technicians studied hair dye, they are the experts, and should be able to tell you about what the best course of action is to changing your hair color. One thing you need to tell them is if you have colored your hair in the past, where, and what you used.
Detox your hair, another great way to safely re-dye your hair.
If you are a regular with hair dying, prior to having your hair dye treatment, a professional hair stylist will clean the chemicals out of your hair first. Giving you a treatment, sort of like a detox for your hair, so that the residual and build up of toxins in your hair won't react to chemicals they are about to put in your hair.
The danger of switching hair dye brands.
There have been cases at salons where people have had their hair fall out, and it's possible that it was because of the switching of hair dye brands. This can occur when you switch from a box of hair dye, to a treatment in a salon. The salon treatments are more concentrated, no doubt a better product, and it won't have the same ingredients as the home dye box. And mixing chemicals of the unknown, is a risk, as it could lead to toxic results.
* Do not despair, there are ways to safely color your hair, and maintain that youthful you, without toxic harm. If you read through some of my hair dye articles, you'll get a better understanding of how to protect yourself from toxic harm.
* In the mean time, there are some products that get a thumbs-up for being on the low end of the hazard scale.
You can use safer methods such as Henna products.
Now there are two sides to that coin. One group of experts say that Henna products are a natural plant, and are toxic free, products. But henna mixed with chemical hair dyes can be fatal. Also, I've read that Henna products are not recommended for pregnant women.
If you have always used a permanent color treatment for your hair, and that's not gonna change, you can protect yourself. Do your research, and be smart about putting toxins in your hair, and check out the hair-dye companies on the link at the base of this article to see which products are the safest.
Take a pre-test every time you are about to use hair dye.
There are some safe products out there, but always do a patch test, and never trust a chemical until you do. Ecocolors, Hybrid or European brands seem to be acceptable, even by salons that cater to cancer patients.
Alternative to using chemicals to dye your hair.
Some salons use infrared technology to open up the hair shaft to absorb color rather than peroxides and ammonias. You'd have to google that with your city, state, and you might find a salon who uses infrared, or you can check your phone book, or you can just start calling around to salons.
This list is according to the Cosmetics Database, link to be provided at the end of this article, if the hair-dye product you are looking for isn't on the list, it most likely will be on their site, and if it's not they would love to hear from you, so they can test it, and add it to their list.
An interesting fact about the hair dye products on the martket today.
400 out of 456 Hair-dye products that were tested for toxic chemicals by this testing lab, are ranked as high hazard, which means they contain toxic ingredients linked to cancer, developmentive and reproductive toxicity, neurotoxicity, immunotoxicity, organ toxicity, not to mention allergies and irritation of the eyes, skin or lungs. As mentioned above, I will give you the link at the base of this article, so you can check out your hair-dye product, and see where it ranks on the safe list.
Daisy's hair dye brand, on the hazard list.
I checked out Daisy's hair-dye product the one that covers grey, and burnt her head, and it ranked number 9 out of 10, 10 being the most hazardous. No wonder her hair fell out, the poor girl. If she was able to check out her product before hand, she NEVER would have touched the stuff.
Another unknown fact, the safest hair dye product is..
Ranking one of the most safest hair dye products on the market, seems to be Light Mountain . I've never heard of them, and I don't know if their product is sold in your area. But if not, requesting your favourite store start stocking it, might be helpful.
Trust yourself first.
As with any products, never trust chemicals, or surveys, always trust yourself. If you plan on using any of these products, make sure you do a pre-test first. It is vital you protect yourself as you are the one who has to live with the consequences.
Here's the hazard list, 1 being the safest, 10 being the most hazardous according to the cosmetic database's lab findings. On their link below they go into detail on how they determine the hazard list, what the hazards are, they list the chemicals and definitions, with great explanations, as well they cover a wide range of cosmetics.
Light Mountain Natural Hair Color and Conditioner, ranks #1. This is for hair color and bleaching.
Rainbow Henna Products, #1.
Sun-In Super Streaks Highlighting Gel, #2
Sun-In Super Streaks Highlighting Gel hair color and bleaching #2
Jolen Creme Bleach hair color and bleaching #2
CVS Cream Bleach hair color and bleaching #2
CVS Cream Bleach With Aloe hair color and bleaching #2
got2b SoBlonde Wanna Be Blonde Highlight Gel hair color and bleaching #2
Andrea Extra Strength Bleach with Powder Accelerator kit hair color and bleaching #2
Youthair Color Comb Black hair color and bleaching #3
Nature's Answer Copper Chestnut, N hair color and bleaching #4
Garnier Color Breaks Kit hair color and bleaching #4
Jerome Russell Temp'ry Natural Color Highlights hair color and bleaching, hair spray #4
Aveda Full Spectrum Deep Permanent Dark Yellow Orange, DYO hair color and bleaching #4
Manic Panic Cream Color Cotton Candy Pink #4
Clairol Herbal Essences Fruit Fusions Hydrating Shampoo for Dry And Damaged Hair (shampoo) #4
Sun-In Super, Spray-In Hair Lightener hair color and bleaching #5
Sun-In Super Spray-In Hair Lightner, Super Blonde rank #5
Nair Lasting Effects Hair Lightening Cream Bleach for Face/Small Body Parts #5
L'Oral Super Blonde Cream Lightening Kit hair color and bleaching #5
Clairol Herbal Essences Fruit Fusions Hydrating Shampoo for Dry And Damaged Hair (shampoo) #5
L'Oral Feria Colour Strands Hair Color - #C75 Golden Spark (Golden Blonde) (hair color and bleaching) #6
L'Oral Feria Hair Color - #52 Dark Amethyst, Burgundy Brown (hair color and bleaching) #7
Clairol Balsam Color Super Rich Permanent Hair Color (hair color and bleaching) #7
Clairol Balsam Color Super Rich Hair Color (hair color and bleaching) #7
Clairol Herbal Essences Fruit Fusions Conditioner, Purifying for Normal to Oily Hair (conditioner) #7
Clairol Nice & Easy Root Touch Up Hair Color Kit, Light Ash Blonde #9A (hair color and bleaching) #8
Clairol Nice 'n Easy Color Gray Solution Permanent Color 3 Black (hair color and bleaching) #8
L'Oral Preference Hair Color - #9.5A Extra Light Ash Blonde (hair color and bleaching) #8
L'Oral Preference Hair Color, Natural Blonde #9 (hair color and bleaching) #8
Clairol Nice 'n Easy Hairpainting Blonde Highlights (hair color and bleaching) #9
L'Oral Couleur Experte Hair Color - #4.3 Spiced Chestnut, Dark Golden Brown - Warm (hair color and bleaching) #9
Clairol Herbal Essences True Intense Hair Color Bleach Blonding for Men XL1 Kit (hair color and bleaching) #9
Clairol Herbal Essences True Intense Permanent Hair Color, Almond Bliss (Light Brown) #56 Kit (hair color and bleaching) #9
Clairol Herbal Essences True Intense Permanent Hair Color, Amber Shimmer (Light Golden Brown) #54 Kit (hair color and bleaching) #9
Clairol Herbal Essences True Intense Permanent Hair Color, Plush Plum (Radiant Burgundy) #48 Kit (hair color and bleaching) #9
Clairol Herbal Essences True Intense Permanent Hair Color, Radiant Ruby (Deep Red) #44 Kit (hair color and bleaching) #10
They have said on the Cosmetics Database that some of these products could be discontinued, or altered in their ingredients, since the testing was done. They also ask you to sign their petition to the government, for the compulsory testing of hair dye, and cosmetic products prior to being released for sale.
One last interesting fact, about L'Oreal Products. Out of the hair dye, and chemical burn cases that I've looked at, L'Oral is one company that takes your health and safety seriously. They aren't one of those companies that will give you lame excuses. They will offer you help, and will be supportive, trying to understand what went wrong with their product.
Here's a recent recall by L'Oral corp, for a hair dye product.
L'Oral has recently recalled one of their products on their own accord.
L'ORAL INITIATES NATIONWIDE RECALL OF L'ORAL PARIS DREAM BLONDE BLEACH AND LIGHTENING CARE KIT DUE TO MISPRINTED DIRECTIONS, New York , NY (January 18, 2008).
For information about this product please see the link below.
L'Oral also doesn't deny that don't test their products prior to selling them in their faq's, so you can check that out, if that is of interest to you, especially if you are pregnant and using hair dye. The question goes like this.
Are your products safe to use during pregnancy or when nursing?
When used properly, L'Oreal's products are safe during pregnancy and while nursing. Although there are no specific safety tests for products during pregnancy and nursing, there is a substantial amount of information supporting the safety of products when used as directed. If you have any concerns, L'Oreal recommends that you consult your Doctor. L'Oreal FAQ's
Here's the link for the Cosmetics Database
Interesting Facts About the Danger of Hair Dye, that you should be aware of.
One of which is that second hand fumes from hair dye can potentially be harmful to your unborn child, and your children.
Daisy's Toxic Hair Loss. Toxic Hair Loss from Hair Dye Products, Daisy's Story.
* And never forget. If you experience a burning, itchy crawly scalp while applying or have hair dye in your hair, rinse it out immediately, you are having a toxic incident or reaction to the dye. Hopefully you caught it before your hair falls out, and if not, contact a poison control centre, or go to the nearest hospital.
Peace and Love.
* This article is written with the sole intention of informational purposes. It is not INTENDED TO PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. The author nor publisher take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading or following the information contained in this information. Any information on the links provided is not the responsibility of, shared opinion of. or is under the influence of the author of this article, or publisher. The publication of this information does not constitute the practice of medicine, and this information does not replace the advice of your physician or other health care provider. Before undertaking any course of treatment, the reader must seek the advice of their physician or other health care provider.