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How To Do Allergy Test For Hair Dye

What If I Already Have Colour Do I Still Need One

How to do a hair allergy and Hair Strand Test before Dying Bleaching

If you have not had a colour service at our salon within the last six months then you will need to have an allergy test. Although you may never have had an adverse reaction before, the colour formulations can change over time and so can your skins sensitivity.

We have heard of many cases where people have developed a reaction to hair dye. Its very unlikely, but just because youve had colour before, doesnt mean you will not have a reaction.

What Are The Alternatives

If you are allergic to hair dyes, then you should try using natural hair colors as far as possible. Stay away from permanent hair dyes and use vegetable based temporary dyes instead. Mehndi is another natural ingredient that you can use to color your hair and keep it healthy as an added advantage. There are some commercial hair dyes that claim to use natural ingredients in their making. Such hair dyes can be a bit messy and may take a little longer to do their work, but they do not cause allergy in your skin and are safer for you to use. As with any hair dye, however, you should still put a little on a patch of skin first to ensure you wont have a bad reaction if you put it all over your scalp.

The Importance Of Skin Testing Prior To Hair Colouring

It is important that all our clients undergo a simple colour sensitivity test at least 48 hours prior to their first time colour application, or if they have not had colour with us for more than three months.Skin testing is here to protect you.Just pop into the salon and ask for a skin test. Our receptionist will perform it for you and it only takes a few minutes. Read on to find out why this is an essential part of our hair colouring process.

Why is it so important to undergo skin testing before hair colouring?

Even if you have been dying your hair for years and have never had a reaction before, we cannot do a colour service without a skin test. Some people suffer reactions all of a sudden. You can develop a sensitivity at any time in your life.

What does it mean to be hypersensitive?

Hypersensitivity can be quite common.It is an over-reaction of the immune system to what is known as an invading hapten, such as PPD. Haptens have the ability to provoke an immune response that brings about such dramatic changes in the bodys tissues .In extremely severe cases, reactions can be life-threatening and these allergic reactions can develop at any time.

Why do we recommend skin testing?

Even if you have been dying your hair for years and have never had a reaction before, we highly recommend a skin test. Some people suffer reactions all of a sudden. You can develop a sensitivity at any time in your life.

Why does the skin test have to be 48 hours before hair dye application?

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Ive Had A Hair Colour Before Do I Need A Skin Test

If you have a hair colour regularly in one of our Northampton salons, then you wont need another skin test. If you change your colour, or havent had a hair colour for a while, you will need to have another skin test. Remember, anyone can become allergic to a hair colour at any time, particularly if youve recently changed medication, fallen pregnant, or contracted a virus, so it doesnt matter if you have had that hair colour applied before. You will still need the test to make sure you will be safe.

Symptoms Of Hair Dye Allergy


As said earlier, hair dye allergy symptoms could be mild or severe. In some cases, the type of symptom will depend on the amount of hair dye applied. Furthermore, the symptoms may take more than 48 hours to show.

Below are the main hair dye allergy symptoms to watch out for.

Mild Irritation

After applying the hair dye, you may notice mild irritation in the area you applied the dye. This could be on your scalp, ears, forehead, and neck.

In some cases, the skin would become red, swollen, and blistered. You may also notice a sensation .

Allergic Reaction

Allergic reactions to PPD include itching and swelling. In some cases, the symptoms will not only appear in the area the hair dye was applied or after the body.

Allergic reactions could develop hours after use or even days.

If you have any of the reactions below, then youâre allergic to PPD

  • Itching, irritation, and rash

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How To Remove Hair Color With Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse

What creamer is to coffee, apple cider vinegar is to hair. You dont necessarily need it, but once you try it, its likely you wont go back!

Apart from alleviating a dry scalp, controlling frizz, removing dulling residue from hard water, eliminating product buildup, detangling, adding shine and reducing hair loss, it also strips hair dye.


  • For longer hair, 1/2 tablespoon in one cup of water is a good ratio.
  • Once you shampoo your hair, pour this concoction over and then rinse with plain water.
  • While it does not remove permanent hair color, it can change the shade or lighten the color. You may have to do it a few times to get results.

Hair Dye Allergy Causing Symptoms Of Dermatitis

Dermatitis is the commonest symptom which occurs as an allergic reaction to hair dye. A persons risk of developing this condition increases with the usage of hair dye. Dermatitis is characterized by inflammation, redness, itchiness and swelling of the skin around the eyelids, hair line, ears, neck or beard. An individual who develops sensitivity to PPD will commonly experience symptoms after 10 days of the first usage of hair dye. Subsequent use or exposure to hair dye will produce a reaction in about 6 to 72 hours.

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How Is A Skin Test Carried Out

This is what will happen before your hair colouring appointment:

  • Arrange to pop into the salon of your choice for your skin test. It will take less than five minutes.
  • We will apply a dab of hair colour to your skin, usually behind your ear.
  • Leave the colour on for 48 hours and monitor your skin carefully to see if you have any reactions. Be aware of any itching, burning sensations, or redness around the area.

Ingredients In Hair Dye That Contribute To Allergic Reaction

How To Perform a Skin Allergy Test with Color& Co

The common chemical in hair dye responsible for most dye allergy cases is Para-phenylenediamine .

However, it is not the only chemical that can contribute to allergy others do have a hand in the reaction.

Dont be scared yet dermatologists and other field experts confirmed that PPD or other dye ingredients are more or less harmful.

Their percentage composition in the dye and the ability of the scalp to resist the adverse effects is what matters.

Thats why the strand test is essential or, let me say, compulsory. Also, applying hair dyeing a few inches away from your scalp can be the best way to do it.

According to Wikipedia, PPD can come with different names.

  • Benzene-1,4-diamine

theres any hair dye at the stores or supermarket that doesnt contain PPD because it gives hair the desired color after exposure to air.

It would be best to have a proper guide, caution, technique, common sense, and quality dye with PPD in its appropriate measure .

Update: Some hair dyes do not contain PPD. Henna, for example, is a natural hair dye from India. The thing there is that these natural hair dyes do not give out all the colors we need.

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How To Calm Down Allergy To Hair Dye

To relieve mild reactions,

First, wash off the dye with warm water and mild shampoo. Next, apply moisturizers and steroid creams to the affected area to reduce inflammation.

These creams will help deal with issues like itching, swelling, and irritation. In cases, where the symptoms are severe, it is best to report to your doctor for immediate treatment.

Some people may develop a rare severe reaction which will cause anaphylaxis, a rare medical condition characterized by swelling in the throat and tongue, difficulty breathing and fainting.

In such cases, immediate medical help should be sought as anaphylaxis can be fatal.

Other Ways To Treat Hair Dye Allergies

  • Another way to get treat hair allergy symptoms is to use a solution of potassium permanganate. Applying a solution of potassium permanganate to the affected area will fully oxidize PPD. PPD causes allergic reaction due to its partially oxidized state, when it is fully oxidized, it is completely safe to use.
  • Washing hair with shampoos containing topical corticosteroids
  • Taking an oral antihistamine to help reduce irritation, itching, and inflammation.

How To Remove Color From Hair With Dish Soap

Just like how dish soap effortlessly breaks up oil on dishes, it will perform similarly on your hair. The only caveat with this approach is to beware of desert-dry locks.

Use it just like a shampoo. But remember, youll have to do many washes with this method before color fades out.

Since this method is extremely drying, you will need a good dose of hydration and conditioning every time.


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Also Check: How To Sleep Better With Allergies

Questions I Asked Myself

After shaving off everything , I washed his scalp very well with water and shampoo. While doing this, some questions popped into my head, and I was like:

  • This isnt the first time he dyed his hair why now?
  • What brand of hair dye made him lose hair, plus the reactions within a few hours?
  • Is it permanent, semi-permanent, or temporary dye that was used on his hair?
  • What is an allergic reaction to hair dye?

Many more questions kept coming in, but no answer came. So I quickly decided to research why this happened, causes, and treatments. Now, this was what I found.

I discovered that he was not the only person that is allergic to hair dye that month. Many people in forums cried and vowed never to dye their hair again, while some sought help and alternatives.

How Do You Get Rid Of An Allergic Reaction To Hair Dye

The Importance of Patch Testing in your Salon

According to the ancient principles of Ayurveda, your body is composed of three vital energies or doshas: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Each individual is governed by one or two prominent doshas. Being aware of them can help you tap the root cause of why hair dye allergies are a common occurrence with certain hair types.

Here are some of the easiest ways to deal with hair dye allergies:

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The Importance Of A Skin Test Before A Hair Colouring Appointment

Its essential you get a skin test before a hair colouring appointment. This is to make sure you arent allergic to any of the products we are going to be using on your hair, so that we know you will be completely safe when your hair colour is applied. Anybody can be allergic to a colour, and in the most severe cases, an allergic reaction to hair dye can result in hospitalisation or even death.

If we didnt carry out skin tests, we wouldnt be complying with our duty of care to our clients. All salons must carry out skin tests before a colour is applied and if they dont offer you one, alarm bells should be ringing it is a basic health and safety requirement. If you ever colour your hair at home, you should also make sure you carry out a skin test before applying the colour.

How To Avoid Hair Dye Allergy

Patch Test is the simplest way to find out if you are allergic to the hair dye. It is important to follow the instructions of patch test with the leaflet provided with the hair dye.

Generally the patch test comprises of applying a small sample of the solution containing the mixture of the developer and the dye behind the ear or to the inner elbow. Let the application sit for 48 to 72 hours to see if there are any symptoms. If no symptoms are produced, then the hair dye is considered safe for use.

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This Section Explains About The Skin Allergy Test Which Is An Essential Procedure Before Applying Hair Colors

A skin allergy testï¼is the test that checks whether you are allergic to the hair color.

Even a person who has used hair color for many times in the past without any irritation has a chance of having irritation due to constitution changeï¼etc. Be sure to conduct the skin allergy test two days before coloring hairï¼every time. When conducting take the following procedure.

The skin allergy test is the most effective method to check the potential of allergic reaction by hair color. There is no alternative to the skin allergy test at the present time. To judge the conditionï¼it is necessary to check the immediate-type reaction that occurs after short time from starting the test and the delayed-type reaction that occurs after long time from starting the test. To achieve thatï¼it is necessary to check the test part twice in totalï¼after 30 minutes and after 48 hours. Follow the instruction leaflet and be sure to conduct the skin allergic test 48 hours before coloring hair every time.

In case any irritation occursï¼immediately see a dermatologist. The longer it takes to get appropriate medical attentionï¼the longer it takes to treat the symptoms. It is important to get medical treatment as soon as possible.

What Should I Do If I React To An Allergy Alert Test

HAIR COLOR ALLERGY ALLERGIES everything you need to know plus how to do a patch test

If you react to the allergy alert test, do not go ahead and colour your hair, even with a product you may have used before. Contact the manufacturer . If you have reacted to the allergy alert test, the company will help you and your doctor organise diagnostic patch-testing with a dermatologist. This will identify which ingredient led to the reaction. You must not use any product containing that ingredient in future, even from another manufacturer.

Because of the possibility that people who react to the hair dye paraphenylene diamine could react to other, similar, hair dyes, all the products with dyes in this family will be labelled ‘contains phenylene diamines’.

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I Using Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse To Remove Hair Dye

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Processing Time: 20 minutes


  • To make an apple cider vinegar rinse to remove hair dye, you need two cups of boiling water and two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar.
  • Mix the apple cider vinegar with the boiling water and let it sit for 15 minutes.
  • Allow the mixture to cool down.
  • After shampooing and rinsing your hair, pour the apple cider vinegar mixture all over it and let it soak for 10-20 minutes to remove the hair dye.

How Often Can You Do This: 1-2 times a week.

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Chemicals Commonly Used In Hair Dyes

Go to a nearby drugstore and have a look at the ingredient list of any of the hair dye products available there. You will be shocked at looking at the names of all the things that you would never want to put on your skin. In addition to the fragrances, EDTA, parabens and propylene glycol, there are other things that are commonly used in the making of hair dyes, including sodium sulfite, ammonia, hydrogen peroxide, etidronic acid, cydomethicone, paraphenylenediamine, behentrmonium chloride, simethicone and many other long and scary names.

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What Causes Allergy To Hair Dye

Hair dyes, like many other products, contain a number of chemicals that can irritate your skin. One of the main culprits is Paraphenylenediamine or PPD. This chemical is responsible for giving you long-lasting hair color that seems to appear more natural, when used on hair.

PPD is mainly used in dark hair dyes. It has a reputation of being an allergen for those with sensitive skin or some dry skin conditions. On application, PPD becomes oxidized. This is what causes the allergic reactions. The reaction usually tends to fade away once PPD is fully oxidized.

Some people may only experience skin irritation while for some others, it may get more serious. Contact dermatitis is not an uncommon symptom of this allergic reaction. This may even develop into hives and in some very rare cases, anaphylaxis.

Did You Know?

  • PPD is found in tattoo ink, gasoline, dark cosmetic products and printer ink also.

Q: I Am Allergic To Hair Dye What Can I Use To Cover Grey Hair

Hair Dye Causes Woman

Henna is an excellent alternative to cover grey hair if you are allergic to the dye.

Finally, we have thoroughly discussed the allergic reaction to hair dye, the precautions, and its quick remedies.

Now I would love to hear from you

Which remedy are you going to try out?

Or maybe you have something different to tell us on this topic.

Either way, do let us know by leaving a comment below right now.

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Tips Before You Dye Your Hair

Hair color sold to consumers is intended to be as user-friendly as possible. Thanks to clear instructions and all the supplies you need in one kit, most people are able to use the products with ease. But are you really getting the best results out of your at-home hair color? You don’t have to be a professional colorist to dye your hair — just a few simple tips can help keep your hair healthy-looking and give you salon-worthy results from an at-home color job.


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