Have you ever experienced the discomfort of an allergic reaction? Usually they’re itchy, often embarrassing, and sometimes painful or even scary—allergic reactions are rarely on people’s to-do lists. What you will find on those lists are things like “get my roots dyed,” “go blonde for the summer,” or “get Kim Kardashian’s hairstyle.” The trouble with this is that using chemical hair dyes can lead to more than just split ends. These products can cause severe allergic reactions including swelling and possibly chemical burns.
Natural News discusses the danger of chemical hair dye, and discusses an article featured in the Daily Mail in the United Kingdom about two young women who were unlucky when it came to home hair coloring kits. Louise Henson, a 22 year old bartender, wanted to look like her favorite celebrity from the TV show X Factor, Cheryl Cole. She selected GarnierNutrisse’s ‘caramel golden light brown.” What she got was very different than golden highlights.
Henson told Daily Mail that within two hours of applying the hair dye “my face was burning, my scalp felt so sore and my eyes were excruciatingly itchy. My whole face was really tight and I couldn’t move it to smile.” She was taken to the hospital and received steroid injections to help reduce the swelling. Doctors told her that the chemicals in the hair dye were to blame for her allergic reaction, and that she couldn’t use hair dyes again because the reaction may be even more severe in the future. When describing her horrible situation to Daily Mail, Henson said, “It was like I had a severe facial deformity, it was humiliating. It took a week before my face began getting back to normal.”
The second young woman in the Daily Mail article is Zoe Vernon. The 24 year old said that it was as if she had been severely burned in a fire. Her face was covered in burns and ‘weeping blisters.’ Doctors identified a chemical called para-phenylenediamine (PPD) as the responsible agent for her allergic reaction. PPD is a petroleum-based coloring dye, and Zoe is attempting to get products containing this chemical banned.
Natural News promoted the use of organic and natural alternatives since “most conventional hair and personal care products contain dangerous and largely untested chemicals like PPD that can cause severe reactions, and even permanent health problems.” They also reported that the United States Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states that PPD should never come into direct contact with the eyes or skin, and that “exposure to PPD can cause irritation of the pharynx and larynx, bronchial asthma, and sensitization dermatitis.”
Natural hair dye gently colors your hair because it is free of ammonia, parabens (preservative chemicals) and alcohol. Not only does this protect you from allergic reactions but it protects your hair as well, and can even help to keep it nourished since it doesn’t damage the hair. Just like those popular and dangerous chemical dyes it comes in a variety of colors, so there are no excuses for risking your health.