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how to avoid hair dye allergy

Updated on June 21, 2011

Hair Dye Allergy Symptoms

It is difficult to say how many people suffer form hair dye allergy every year. Anyone who has suffered from hair dye allergy will remember the discomfort suffered for lifetime. The symptoms of hair dye allergy vary from mild to severe. A person allergic to hair dye may exhibit any one or more of the following hair dye allergy symptoms:

  1. Temporary local skin irritation to the place dye is applied
  2. Itching of scalp, neck, forehead, ears and eyelids.
  3. Systemic widespread reaction including severe rashes, general unwellness and anaphylaxis in rare cases.

Besides allergic reactions a person may also suffer from other adverse reactions of hair dye like Hair breakage, discoloration of skin and unexpected result of hair colour.

Hence it is important to know if you are allergic to a particular hair dye before attempting use. It is recommended that hair dye should be tested for allergy every time before use. Patch test is a reliable way to find if you are allergic to hair dye and it can conveniently be carried out at home to avoid hair dye allergy.

Patch test for testing hypersensitivity to hair dye:

Here is how to conduct patch test for hair dyes at home

Step 1: Select appropriate area: The best areas to conduct patch test are inner forearms or skin near to back of the ears, since these skin portions are soft they respond quickly if there is sensitivity. Inner forearm is convenient for self-testing.

Step 2: Clean the selected area: Clean the selected area with alcohol or soap water dry it thoroughly using a clean dry piece of cotton clothe.

Step 3: Prepare small quantity of hair dye: Hair dyes often contain two components dye and oxidiser. Prepare small quantity of hair dye by mixing the two.

Step 4: Apply to Skin: Apply the prepared dye on the clean and dried portion of skin in a circular patch of about 1 cm diameter. Allow it to dry, keep the patch for at least 24 hours and then wash it.

Step 5: After washing the patch from skin look for any indication of allergy like an itching sensation, redness or inflammation. If any symptom of allergy is observed then using hair dye is not recommended as it may give severe allergic reaction on use.

If no inflammation or irritation is present then it may be inferred that low hypersensitivity to hair dye exists and the dye can be used.

Special note: Under no circumstances a hair dye should be used to colour eyelashes or eyebrows as it may cause blindness.


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