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Is it worth dying for... dyeing your hair?

There are more than 5000 chemicals used in hair dye, some of which can cause cancer. However, there are also many dyes that are safe enough.


According to cosmetic chemists, hair dyes have a worrying downside, which is carcinogenic. Many people often ask the question: Should I dye my hair or not?

In fact, many people accept that they can damage their health just because they don't want to show their real hair. They become brave people before the risk of cancer when they regularly change their hair color.

Possible dangers when dyeing hair

According to experts, this problem depends on the ingredients of the dye, how often you use it and the color you choose. Even your genetics make a difference with regard to toxicity.
First risk :

Come from the dye of your choice. There are more than 5000 chemicals used in hair dye.

In 2004, a nonprofit environmental research and advocacy agency evaluated 117 personal care hair dyes and found about 80 of them contained chemicals that can cause cancer.

However, do not be too pessimistic because according to the development of cosmetic technology, there are many types of dyes that are safe enough to serve beauty needs.

The point is that you have to choose wisely to minimize the amount of chemicals you use on your hair and scalp.

According to the development of cosmetic technology, there are many types of dyes that are safe enough

There are 4 popular types of hair dye:

Permanent Dye : These hair dyes, available at most major brands, are used by about 80% of consumers. They cause lasting chemical changes in the hair shaft.

Permanent dyes contain a mixture of chemicals (the darker the hair dye, the higher the concentration that can cause cancer). Including components such as:

Para-phenylenediamine (PPD) produces significant color changes. For example, going from blonde to brown hair (which has caused cancer in animals in research).

If you're concerned about the cancer risk of hair dye, "reduce the frequency of permanent hair dyes or use natural [PPD-free] hair dyes."

Coal tar : A combination of chemicals that produces a color that lasts longer than natural plant dyes. It also causes cancer in animals according to FDA research.

Therefore, products with coal tar must include a warning that it may cause skin sensitization in some people; Users should follow the instructions provided; This product must not be used to dye eyelashes or eyebrows as doing so may cause blindness.

Hydrogen peroxide : A key ingredient in permanent dyes, stripping your natural color and preparing it for a new shade. Peroxide damages hair and its sulfur smell can sting the eyes.

Ammonia : Makes hair color last longer, but overexposure can cause skin irritation. Most of the more expensive, home-made products, such as L'Oreal and Garnier, are ammonia-free.

Semi-permanent dyes (semi and demi): These hair dyes change color but do not lighten the hair. Semi type lasts about 6-12 washes; The demi lasts about 24-26 washes. Both may contain some of the ingredients found in bleach.

Temporary dyes : Containing water, organic solvents, and some other substances, they coat the hair shaft but do not penetrate it (according to the American Cancer Society). They come in washes, gels, and sprays and usually stick to your hair from 1-2 washes.

Natural dyes: Chemical free and can last up to 6 weeks. However, it covers gray hair that doesn't last long. After only 2-4 weeks, the hair will turn gray again and need to be dyed again.

You should dye your own hair

Second risk : The number of times you dye your hair can increase your risk of cancer

Due to the frequency of using hair dye .

According to a 2001 University of Southern California study, women who dyed their hair with permanent dye once a month for a year or so were twice as likely to develop bladder cancer compared to women who were not able to . non-users,

The risk triples if you've been using permanent dye for 15 years or more, and increases by 50% if you're a new professional stylist or barber who's been working with dye for just one year. It is 5 times more harmful to stylists with more than 10 years of exposure experience.

Bladder cancer is not the only disease to be feared. According to a study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, people who used dark and permanent dye eight or more times a year for at least 25 years had an increased risk of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. (NHL) double. Blond people are not at such a high risk.

The third risk: the user's DNA

Dyeing your hair with natural dyes can also make you more susceptible to bladder cancer if you use permanent dyes, according to a 2011 International Journal of Cancer study.

The key factor is that women quickly release arylamines, which are derivatives of ammonia absorbed through the skin during the dyeing process. Permanent dyes contain more toxic compounds than semi-permanent dyes, the lead author of the former USC research institute had similar findings.

The researchers showed that DNA determines the risk of bladder cancer for women who dye their hair.

The fourth risk: Time to dye your hair

If you started dyeing your hair before 1980, your risk of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma is 40% higher, because previous hair dyes contain chemicals such as aromatic amines, organic compounds that combine with aromatic structures that can harmful to your health. After 1980, this percentage dropped dramatically because of warnings about the chemicals mentioned above and manufacturers removed them from products.

Fifth danger: Pregnancy

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, hair dye is probably safe to use during pregnancy for both mother and fetus because absorption through the skin is minimal.

However, pregnant women should think twice about dyeing their hair, especially with products containing coal tar.

How to dye your hair safely

For the safest results, experts recommend dyeing your hair at home without going to a salon:

Only keep the dye mixture in your hair for the time recommended on the box.

Gloves should be worn when applying the mixture because there are some harmful chemicals in hair dye, to minimize exposure Australia the most.

Try to keep chemicals out of your scalp. Skin contact also increases the risk of an allergic reaction. Using with brush or comb can keep your scalp from coming into contact with dye.

Do not mix different hair dye products. Mixing hair dye products can lead to an adverse reaction.

Clean the scalp with water after dyeing.

Use natural dyes instead of other types.

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