Medically the review by Cynthia Cobb, DNP, APRN, WHNP-BC, FAANP — created by Corey Whelan — update on in march 1, 2019

Overview

Hair coloring assets contain plenty of ingredients that have the right to irritate the skin and also cause allergy reactions. Most situations of allergic contact dermatitis stemming indigenous exposure to hair dye are caused by one ingredient referred to as paraphenylenediamine (PPD).

PPD is a chemical that’s additionally found in short-term tattoo ink, press ink, and gasoline. In boxed hair dye, PPD generally comes in its own bottle, add by an oxidizer.

When both are combined together, PPD becomes partly oxidized. This is when it’s most likely to cause allergic reaction in civilization who are sensitive to it.


There’s a difference between a sensitivity and an allergy come PPD or other hair dye ingredients. A sensitivity may reason contact dermatitis symptoms, such as burning and also stinging or red, dry skin.

If you’re allergic to hair dye, your symptoms can variety from mild to serious. Symptoms might occur instantly or take approximately 48 hrs to manifest.

Hair dye allergy symptoms include:

stinging or burn sensation ~ above the scalp, face, or neckblisters or weltsitching or ede of the scalp and faceswollen eyelids, lips, hands, or feetan angry, red rash everywhere on the body

Occasionally, a hair dye allergy will cause anaphylaxis to occur. This rare reaction is a clinical emergency and can be fatal. Symptom of anaphylaxis might include:

skin reactions such as stinging, burning, swelling, and also rashesswelling the the throat and tonguetrouble breathingfaintingnauseavomiting

If you or someone you know shows up to be going right into anaphylactic shock, call 911 or obtain to an emergency room immediately.


There room a number of methods girlfriend can try to treat your symptoms at home. Shot one of these options:

If you have an immediate, soft reaction to the dye, to wash it turn off immediately and also thoroughly with warmth water and mild soap or mild shampoo. Apply a equipment of potassium permanganate come the affected area. This can help fully oxidize PPD. PPD only reasons allergic reactions as soon as it’s in a partially oxidized state.Treat contact dermatitis symptoms, such as skin rashes or itching, through an over-the-counter, topical corticosteroid skin cream. These have the right to be supplied on the face, neck, and other components of the body, yet should no be used close to or in the eye or mouth. Usage shampoos containing object corticosteroids, such as Clobex, on your scalp. Use hydrogen peroxide. The a gentle antiseptic and also may aid calm the skin and also reduce irritation and also blistering.

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If your symptoms nothing improve, or if they gain worse or reason you distress that interferes v your capability to function, call your physician immediately.

You may be able to get relief indigenous prescription-strength corticosteroids. These are accessible in many forms, including creams, lotions, eye drops, ear drops, and pills.


Hair dyes containing the most PPD space the most most likely to cause allergic reactions. Hair dye brand names can be deceiving, due to the fact that some encompass words favor “natural” or “herbal” on their boxes.

The only method to know what’s really inside is to check out the ingredients label. Common terms come look the end for include:

phenylenediamineparaphenylenediaminePPDPPDAp-diaminobenzenep-phenylenediamine 4-phenylenediamine4-aminoaniline1,4-diaminobenzene1,4-benzenediamine

Black and dark brown dye colors might contain the biggest concentration of PPD. You must avoid them if you’re sensitive or allergic to PPD.

PPD is no the only chemical that can reason allergic reactions. Part people additionally get call allergic dermatitis or various other symptoms from ingredients such as ammonia, resorcinol, and also peroxide.


If you desire to stop the widest selection of allergens, among the many natural species of hair dye to usage is henna. Make certain that you use only pure henna as others often have PPD added.

Other choices can incorporate indigo and vegetable-based dyes and also semi-permanent dyes that have been certified by one independent laboratory to be complimentary of chemical additives.

See more: Best Way To Clean Sterling Silver Jewlery, How To Care For Sterling Silver Jewelry


You can come to be allergic come a product or problem at any time, also if you’ve used it before. That’s why it’s essential to carry out a patch test before using hair dye, even if it’s a tried-and-true brand.

If you have an allergy reaction come hair dye, also mildly, prevent using the product completely. You may have a more severe reaction with included use together your system becomes sensitized come the chemical.

If you use black temporary tattoos, you might be exposed to additional amounts that PPD. This can additionally sensitize your system, make you an ext vulnerable come an allergic reaction come hair dye.

People who room sensitive to PPD may likewise be allergic to other substances. These encompass anesthetics, such together benzocaine and procaine. Make certain to educate your doctor, dentist, and also anyone that works on your hair about any allergies you have actually or suspect you have.


Allergic reaction to hair dye can take place at any kind of time. The ingredient many often connected with hair dye allergy is PPD. Examine labels to identify if your brand has PPD or any kind of other substance that might cause an allergic reaction. If so, consider switching come a much more natural hair dye, such together henna.


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Medically reviewed by Cynthia Cobb, DNP, APRN, WHNP-BC, FAANP — written by Corey Whelan — update on march 1, 2019