As we work to cut through the crap that’s out there about personal care and beauty products, we figured it’s time to discuss the very important topic of hair dye.
What’s So Wrong With Hair Dye?
Actually, there’s quite a bit wrong with hair dyes
- According to the National Cancer Institute there are over 5,000 chemicals used in hair colors including lead, formaldehyde, amonia, PPDs (para-phenylenediamines), and more.
- Many of these chemicals are banned in Europe.
- The FDA does not regulate hair dye products in the United States.
- You’re rubbing these products, filled with chemicals often unknown to you, into your scalp. Your skin is porous and absorbs EVERYTHING you put on it and sends it directly into your blood stream.
- You’re also inhaling the fumes many of these chemicals release as they work to color your hair.
- Then, what isn’t absorbed by your body is washed down the drain and released into the air where it contaminates our waterways and is absorbed by animals, the soil, and, eventually, returned to us all in the form of a polluted planet.
- Hair dyes are frequently tested on animals. If you must color your locks, seek out a cruelty free option. Cruelty Free doesn’t mean Chemical Free though!
- Because of the lack of regulation, even so called “natural hair dyes” often have questionable ingredients. The fact is there’s no way to make the color stay on your hair without the use of fairly harsh chemicals. Some hair color formulas are a bit better than others, but there is no all natural safe hair color…..not even henna.
The REAL Deal On Henna
Sorry to burst this little bubble, but Henna is not always a totally natural or safe hair color option either. While “pure” henna is safer than the toxin containing dyes, henna often contains heavy metals. These metals can alter the color, create brassy tones and even cause breakage if you use another type of color on top of it. In some cases manufacturers also include additives, toxic ingredients and color stabilizers. Don’t trade in your silver highlights for “real” metallic ones unless you know what you are doing and what you’re using. If you desire to use henna make sure to seek a reputable manufacturer that assures you it has no added salts or harmful metals. And keep in mind, if you use progressive hair color AFTER henna, your hair could break off so proceed with caution no matter what you opt for.
If you can’t kick the hair dye, including the henna, see our tips for safer hair coloring below.
Truly the best option as far as hair coloring goes is to not use any at all, ever. When you go grey, embrace it. Grey hair is very beautiful – It’s full of silvery threads of wisdom. Easier said then done…..we get that!
Unfortunately, grey hair, like other physical symbols of age, isn’t exactly prized in our culture. There are several folks here at No Bull Beauty who are grey or greying – and they look fabulous! But there are a few others who enjoy mixing up their hair color, and, who feel its best for them to keep the grey away, at least for now. Here’s what they do to make dyeing their hair as safe as possible….
No Bull Tips for SafER Hair Coloring
To make coloring your hair as safe as possible, find products or salons that use dyes with the least chemicals possible. Also, do your research. Know what questions to ask your beautician and/or what chemicals to look for on labels.
Also, when coloring your hair, be sure NOT to massage the product, even Henna, into the scalp. Apply the hair dye to the shaft of the hair only. Remember, your skin is the largest organ of your body! It’s also one of the main pathways into the body. As a result, you’ve got to use caution not to permeate it with toxins – like those often found in hair dye.
Yes, your roots may show a bit, but, they will soon enough anyway, and, more importantly, if you keep the product away from direct contact with your scalp you can minimize the absorption of the chemicals into your body. Your hair shaft will always absorb some of the chemicals, plus, like we said, the fumes you’re inhaling are super funky too. But, avoiding contact between your skin and the hair dye is one of the best ways to reduce your risk from these products.
All this being said AVOID using toxic hair dye while pregnant or nursing – Even if you follow these tips for safer hair coloring!
As you can see there’s just no way to safely color your hair. You can make it safer as we mentioned, but, it’s never going to be truly safe for you or the planet. So be sure you’re not taken in by the hype of “safe hair color”! If you must color your hair for one reason or another, the best, most honest advice we can give is to know what you’re getting into, research your options, and use our No Bull tips for safer hair coloring to avoid as much of the crap in hair dye as possible.