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Hair Dye Allergy

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Hair Dye Allergy

The hair dye is widely used and now it has been incresing in many parts of the world. Many people among the world are using hair dye earlier and more frequent in an attempt to maintain a more youthful appearance.
The chemical substance called Para Phenylene Diamine (PPD) is widely used as a permanent hair dye. This chemical is also used in textile or fur dyes , dark coloured cosmetics, temperory tattoos ,printing inks , black rubber , oils , greases and gasoline.
The hair dye is using by many peoples because it gives a natural look , hair can be shampooed without becoming decoloured and perming to achieve waves or curls and more over the colour is permanent.

CAUSES OF HAIR DYE ALLERGY The chemical PPD — Para Phenylene Diamine is the most likely cause of the reaction.  PPD is found more than 2/3 rd of permanent dyes and it is very effective in penetrating the hair shaft and follicle , it also binds to protein in the skin. That’s why the allergic reaction is quite common. ManyEuropean countries have banned this chemical.
The other two chemicals that are known to cause allergy are Cobalt ,found in brown hair dyes and glyceryl thioglycolate.


  • In mild cases there is dermatitis to the upper eyelid or the rims of the eye.
  • In severe cases   there may be swelling of scalp and face with marked flacky red rashes with itching.
  • In  more severe cases may result in Urticaria and in some cases anaphylaxis.
  • People working as a hairdresser , film developers  may develop dermatitis on their hands.
  • Dermatitis on the hands may spread to the arms and upper chest.
  • Usually the symptoms appears  within 2-3 days after the usage of hair dye. However it may lasts for many days to weeks.

DIAGNOSIS OF HAIR DYE ALLERGY Clinically assessement and history is very important in making diagnosis.
The presentation of the lesions especially on the periphery area suggests hair dye reaction.
The diagnosis of the hair dye allergy is made with the use of a patch test , using a standard panel such as the T.R.U.E. Test or  the other panel that includes PPD.


  • The main treatment is to avoid the chemical that causes allergy .
  • By knowing that which chemical is reacting the person can use another one hair dye , which doesn’t contain this chemical.
  • When a person feels there may be reaction of dye and feels symptoms of that then wash out it immediately with soap less shampoos. 
  • Use antiseptic lotion for hairs for few days
  • The treatment is same as mentioned in Allergic Contact Dermatitis and Eczemas
  • Herbal oils and lotions are very effective for the skin to get rid as well for the preacutions.

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