Q: Do you think hair dyes are safe? I have dark brown hair and have colored it for many years. Should I consider using more natural coloring agents or going grey? ..Curiously Colored
A: The fast answer to the question is that it’s not as dangerous as it used to be, but there are still way too many chemicals in it to use regularly.
A few years ago I was at a seminar with Peter Lamas, well known celebrity hairdresser to the stars. He is quoted “…….And then there was Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, a client for whom I did hair and frequently applied hair dye. Ms. Kennedy died too young from Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma cancer. Her doctors have stated publicly they believe her hair dye probably contributed to causing her cancer. “
According to Martha Stewart, seven out of every ten women use coloring products. Current research says that the darker the hair dye the worse it is for you, due to the amount of tars and ammonia in the dye. The permanent dye is worse than the semi- permanent. The top of your head is very vulnerable to toxins and if the product touches your skin the toxins will be absorbed into your body.
So the alternatives would be to give it up all together, to lighten your color, put in streaks rather than a whole color, go blonde or choose a product that doesn’t have the chemicals in it.
There are some excellent hair technicians out there, so if you go to a salon, talk with your colorist. They do it all day long and should be able to minimize the risk. There are salons that advertise non toxic products so check out their internet pages.
Due to consumer demand, many of the major hair dye companies now offer products that have less toxic, or non-toxic ingredients. Natural food stores such as Whole Foods and The Natural Market have a selection of products to choose from.
If you are a DIYer, then be sure to use caution while dying your hair, wear gloves, don’t overdo the time and check for expiration dates on the box. If the color turns black as soon as you put it on, it’s bad. Don’t breathe in the fumes and use a well ventilated room.
As a final note, there is no federal regulation on hair dye. A recent study showed that 400 out of 456 products tested for toxic chemicals ranked as high hazard, which means they contain toxic ingredients linked to cancer, developmental and reproductive issues, neurotoxicity, organ toxicity, allergies of the eyes, skin or lungs.
Whether you have obvious symptoms or irritation or not, it’s a good idea to find out what’s being put into your body when you are being beautified.
- Saturday, 04 August 2012
- Posted in Categories: : Ask Madalyn