Not to do a skin test before i dye my hair

(88 Posts)
Goawaybob Sun 01-Apr-12 15:30:59

Not so much as AIBU more, Am i mad?

Ive dyed my hair loads of times - can't remember what colour it is now blush but sick of the roots, so going back to brunette, not blonde.

Hands up who just goes ahead and dyes? Ive never done a skin test and its always been ok.

I recently heard of a young girl having an allergic reaction who died sad It seems the cosmetic companies have ramped up their warnings but is it just to cover their arses or are people more likely in todays age of pollutants and raised allergen levels more likely to react?

AnyFucker Sun 01-Apr-12 15:31:54

I never bother

after 20 years, it ain't gonna kill me

God I've never done them...I didn't think anyone actually did!

tabulahrasa Sun 01-Apr-12 15:32:29

I never bother either

I would after reading all the recent horror stories in the press!

Infact, I have gone for Lush Henna this time, as recommended on Mumsnet.

heyannie Sun 01-Apr-12 15:34:59

Brunette dyes are worse than blonde for allergic reactions, and you are more likely to have a reaction the more you use them, not the other way round. The likelihood of a reaction may be slim, but you can't complain if you don't do a skin test and then have a face like a balloon. I think reactions are probably more common than we might imagine, even if it's just a bit of itching or weeping sores rather than death.

garlicbutter Sun 01-Apr-12 15:37:17

I never do, either. But I am irresponsible in many ways.

Think you should do skin test and strand test if you're using a new colour on top of bleached.

But I wouldn't.

fedupofnamechanging Sun 01-Apr-12 15:37:18

I would test, especially if you are using the brunette dyes.

It's entirely possible that you could use the same brand for years and be fine, but one day have an allergic reaction - it's just not worth the risk, for the sake of a little skin test.

PurpleRomanesco Sun 01-Apr-12 15:38:38

I've had my hair every colour of the rainbow since I was 14 and never tested.

HOWEVER! I am silly. If anyone reading this has never dyed their hair before I suggest doing so.

McHappyPants2012 Sun 01-Apr-12 15:39:58

I never have, if the manufactors put a little sachet for testing I would, but it would mean buying 2 boxes One for the test and one for the dying

nobutyeahbut Sun 01-Apr-12 15:40:48

Not if you've used it before - i never do but i use the same one all the time.

My hair dresser refused to dye mine even though she's done it for years without reaction. Apparently you can get some kind of chemical build up over the years that can set off a reaction even if you've always been fine before so YABU. Why take the risk?

MrsKittyFane Sun 01-Apr-12 15:41:32

I should test because it always comes out darker than on the packet! Only looks the right colour after a week or so ( semi perm ) !

Coconutty Sun 01-Apr-12 15:41:58

I never do, cant be arsed.

AnyFucker Sun 01-Apr-12 15:42:38

I cross the street

I use tampons

I fly in aeroplanes

you gotta live dangerously smile

Goawaybob Sun 01-Apr-12 15:42:53

Thats kind of where im at karma - ive not used brunnette before and i have had an allergic reaction once before that hospitalised me, never worked out what it was too, we think it was quorn mince

Goawaybob Sun 01-Apr-12 15:43:28

Ah you see, i never fly and i dont use tampons either

heyannie Sun 01-Apr-12 15:43:50

McHappyPants yes it annoys me that I am somehow supposed to open up and mix enough hair dye for a skin and strand test in the right proportions and then keep the rest for after 48 hours when I actually do the deed, especially if the dye does not come in a resealable container. It would be good if there was already a test pot in the packet.

I never do because it always says use the mix immediately. So I can't make the mix up test a patch of skin and then leave the mix 24 hours, it'd explode all over my bathroom!

I like what a PP said upthread, if manufacturers wanted more people to test then they'd include a little mini sample especially for testing.

heyannie Sun 01-Apr-12 15:47:11

Oh and I do a patch test but often forget and wash it off in the next shower, so it's probably pointless...But I am always a bit wary of a bad reaction.

If you have a reaction you will not be able to dye your hair at all for a whole - could you live with that?

Goawaybob Sun 01-Apr-12 15:49:07

The dye i am using says just to put the colour solution on the test, not the developer. I think i might just let my greys show and be proud grin

fedupofnamechanging Sun 01-Apr-12 15:50:47

I just squeeze a bit out the bottle onto a plastic spoon and add the same amount of developing solution - I don't mix up the whole dye first.

If you've had an allergic reaction before, then I think you really should test. It is a pita though, when you want to do your hair right this minute.

Bogeyface Sun 01-Apr-12 15:53:33

If you had such a severe reaction before then frankly you would be a bloody fool not to test.

AnyFucker Sun 01-Apr-12 15:53:52

my greys are showing through just now, I am embracing them at the moment smile

Ephiny Sun 01-Apr-12 15:55:52

I would always do the test, not worth the risk of not doing it IMO, especially as it is so quick and simple to do (you don't have to make up the mix for the skin test normally). Even if you've been fine in the past it doesn't mean you will be this time.

Your choice to make though, and I admit the risk of any serious reaction must be very small.

Goawaybob Sun 01-Apr-12 15:58:05

but bogey it wasnt a reaction to hair dye

AF, i would embrace the greys but my roots are awful - blonde hair, dark blonde/brown roots, just looks greasy all the time

Stratters Sun 01-Apr-12 15:59:38

You don't mix to do a test patch, just put a little bit of one part on (can't remember which one). I do the DDs when they want it, I would never do it without a patch test, the more you dye your hair the more likely it is you'll have a reaction.

Also you don't know if they've changed the formula at all, which could be a problem.

AnyFucker Sun 01-Apr-12 16:01:10

why don't hairdessers get you to come in the shop 24 hours before dyeing your hair, so they can do a patch test, hmm ?

givemushypeasachance Sun 01-Apr-12 16:05:08

My logic is if you can develop an allergic reaction the first time, second time or even the 100th time you use a dye when it's always been fine up to that point, then you could do a patch test on a Monday and have no reaction then dye your hair properly on the Wednesday and blow up like a balloon. So hey-ho.

AnyFucker Sun 01-Apr-12 16:06:38

mushy, spot on, dude

Goawaybob Sun 01-Apr-12 16:07:13

AF i think they do, if you are having a all over dye, but not for highlights - i know this becaues i was in the hairdressers once when some woman had an almighty strop because they insisted on doing a skin test - twas funny

tabulahrasa Sun 01-Apr-12 16:07:19

They're supposed to AF.

See if you've had a serious reaction to something before and don't know what it was a reaction to - then I think you should.

AnyFucker Sun 01-Apr-12 16:08:33

no hairdresser I have ever been to has done a patch test 24 hours before

valiumredhead Sun 01-Apr-12 16:09:01

If you have had a reaction before why wouldn't you? confused

AnyFucker Sun 01-Apr-12 16:09:02

mind you, it has been a while smile

tabulahrasa Sun 01-Apr-12 16:11:55

Mine don't either AF, but they make noises about it occasionally

Ephiny Sun 01-Apr-12 16:12:39

I haven't had my hair dyed at the hairdressers, but did ask about it once and was told I'd have to have a patch test before they could do it. Not sure if they only do that the first time though, or every time.

I know it's the obvious argument that if you can have a reaction any time after being fine before, then you could be OK when you do the test but not when you use the dye for real. But it's surely quite unlikely that you'd have developed the allergy within the 24 hours (or whatever short interval) between testing and dyeing, whereas it's somewhat more likely (though of course not very likely!) that it could have happened in the several months since you last dyed your hair.

It's only a small risk of a bad reaction, of course, and we all take risks to make our lives more convenient (driving, tampons, whatever) but if a risk can be avoided or significantly reduced by taking a couple of minutes to do a quick test, I just think I might as well!

bruffin Sun 01-Apr-12 16:14:16

I never have, if the manufactors put a little sachet for testing I would, but it would mean buying 2 boxes One for the test and one for the dying

I used live xxxl last week and they say take a little from each ingredient and mix together and use that for the patch test, you don't need to buy another packet. But I'm with mushy as allergies can appear at anytime so a patch test is pointless really.

calzone Sun 01-Apr-12 16:18:53

My hairdresser rang me on Friday to see if I wanted to have a skin test before I coloured my hair on Saturday.

I told her no but she said she would have to write down that I had had one or her boss would not let me go ahead with it!!

I was fine and am now a lovely brunette!

Rollersara Sun 01-Apr-12 16:25:00

My hairdresser insists and will not colour my hair without one. I, on the other hand, never do!

FondleWithCare Sun 01-Apr-12 17:01:21

I never do them. I was going to a particular hairdresser for around a year when, one day whilst in the process of dying my hair, another hairdresser came over to do a skin test and ask me to sign a piece of paper. Why do it at that point? confused

MrsMagnolia Sun 01-Apr-12 17:46:05

I just take a selection of anti-histamines every time I do mine grin

babybarrister Sun 01-Apr-12 19:57:19 I actually posted about this on AIBU a few weeks and no-one was very interested but actually we all should be ....

Please be careful ladies ( and gents) - yes, an allergic reaction could come at any time, but PPD was listed as one of the top allergens to avoid by the American Dermatologists Asscoiation a few years ago. Any hairdresser worth their salt should certainly offer a patch test.

If you have excema, asthma or other allergies, you should certainly be very careful as it is all bound up sadly in the 'march of the allergens'

I entirely understand and agree re assessing risk, but this allergen has actually been banned, so presumably it is a known risk .....

ChuffMuffin Sun 01-Apr-12 21:21:21

I think they should sell little tiny kits of hair dyes purely for testing on your skin. Maybe for 50p or something. The hair dye I buy says not to use it after it's been mixed for x hours as it goes funny.

I know I should do a skin test, but I can see why people don't bother.

I also don't believe anyone who writes in to women's mags with allergic reactions and says they did the test!

musicmadness Sun 01-Apr-12 21:25:31

I do the test if it is a new dye that I haven't used before, never bother if I'm using my regular one. I'd be more inclined if they would include a separate little bag in the packs for a skin/strand test, rather than having to faff around opening packets of powder that theoretically won't be used for at least 48 hours.

brighthair Sun 01-Apr-12 21:36:43

I am copying and pasting this as my friend wants to spread the word. She is now allergic to a massive amount of things including the dye in jeans and newspaper print

The chemical is called PPD, and is in 99% of hair dye which makes hair DARKER, so if you're bleaching you should be fine. It is banned in at least 5 countries as it is a known killer.

If you have had a henna tattoo, or have any tattoos at all, you are in a VERY high risk category, and could die as a result of having PPD on your skin. If you must dye your hair darker, have TWO patch tests, behind the same ear, 48 hours apart. So patch test, 48hrs, patch test, 48hrs, if there's still no reaction at all, get your hair dyed.

There are four stages of allergic reaction, anaphylactic (sp!?) shock is a Stage 1, I had a Stage 4, and the consultant said had I not got to the hospital when I did, I would have been dead within hours. I had no reaction other than an itchy scalp for the first 24 hours, and then 48 hours later my face started to swell so fast that you could literally watch my eyes swelling shut. My heart beat was erratic and my internal organs shut down to cope with the reaction, and so the doctors couldn't give me adrenaline to combat the swelling, as this would have killed me. Instead I had to have oxygen tubes and a central line in my chest to get drugs into me fast enough to save me and try and stop me suffocating.

I am now out of hospital, but constantly shaking and on serious drugs for the next few months, and am still on constant "ambulance alert" and cannot be out of shouting distance of anyone as this could all happen again at any time. As a result of this reaction I will be allergic to all sorts of new things now - for instance, when I'm in hospital I'm put straight onto heart monitors as my heartbeat is still a bit erratic, and am having allergic reactions to the stickies they use to attach them! My poor skin is going bonkers!

I'm terrified of anything touching my skin that I don't know - so even stupid things like soap are a big deal now. I'm only using organic and natural soaps etc. that I know I've used before, and am having nightmares about not being able to breathe. I constantly feel as though someone has their hands round my throat, and check my face in the mirror all the time to make sure it isn't swelling again. I have two cracking black eyes, bruises all over my arms and legs from the amount of cannulas I've had in to get drugs into my system, and keep falling over like a drunk flamingo.

Please please please be careful - I had this done in a VERY good and well known salon, and to be perfectly honest, they've been absolute crap so I'm planning on taking them and the dye company to court and making sure this never happens to anyone again. I now have a year of drugs, shaking, hospital visits, exhaustion and not being able to just get on my horse and go hunting with my friends.

foreverondiet Sun 01-Apr-12 21:52:53

I agree seems mad to mix a little - need to use dye immediately - they should provide testing pot. Although once my head felt itchy when I put the dye in so I rinsed it out straight away.

Mrsjay Sun 01-Apr-12 22:55:07

I dye my hair and have never done a test , and the hairdressers dont either I did mine on friday hate the colour but it hides the grey it was my emergency dye box i used .

giraffesCantDonateBoneMarrow Sun 01-Apr-12 22:59:42

I just posted about this in health. everytime I get it done at hairdressers it is getting more and more unbearable as it is so itchy.

Did mine today at home so could wash it out when gets itchy and now have rash on my hands.

giraffesCantDonateBoneMarrow Sun 01-Apr-12 23:00:27

Oh and I started dying my hair at 16, never had a problem. Only last year its started to be itchy. And developed asthma and allergies to many things.

ChuffMuffin Sun 01-Apr-12 23:09:39

Following on from Brighthair's post, PPD is also in non-permanent dye.

There's an e-Petition for the banning of PPD. Sign it please grin

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Sun 01-Apr-12 23:20:44

Yabvu, but it's your lookout at the end of the day!
My sister had a totally out of the blue reaction to a hair dye, she ended up in hospital, swollen beyond recognition and getting help to breathe. She was a mess for weeks after. They recommend a Patch test for a reason.

trumpton Sun 01-Apr-12 23:20:58

My DS had a VERY bad reaction to a black hair dye. He will never be able to use a dye again. His scalp blistered so badly that fluid was dripping from his hair and his face was unrecognisable due to swelling. His eyes were swollen shut and his head was like a football. Use an equal amount of the two parts and mix and test. Think ahead and please do a test. He had used dyes for years and had always been alright before. He was ill for weeks.

OlympicEater Sun 01-Apr-12 23:30:40

It is such a pita to have to remember to do a test but some of these accounts are really frightening.

I've been dying my hair for 25 years, and cos I am dark with thick fast growing grey hair I am having to dye my hair every 3/4 weeks shock

Not sure that I should though

Duckypoohs Mon 02-Apr-12 00:18:27

I think hair dye is a sensitiser (or the likely ingredients are) meaning that using it previously is more likely to result in allergic reaction, so you may use it without incidence, the next time, your head will swell up like a balloon. Saying that I don't do the patch test because I am lazy.

It does make my scalp burn and sting, but it has since I started using it, might start doing a patch test though because it really does make sense <kids self>.

Hopandaskip Mon 02-Apr-12 00:22:19

I haven't, not that I dye my hair very often because it is red and looks dyed when dyed IMO (fake redheads are often easy to spot). We have a ton of stupid allergies in our family -- my fun one is pineapple, joy -- but apparently I live dangerously when it comes to hair dye.

Don't tell on me, k?

McFluffster Mon 02-Apr-12 00:33:08

Patch tests are for wimps!

McFluffster Mon 02-Apr-12 00:36:12

Oh God some horrible stories here...

Bogeyface Mon 02-Apr-12 00:41:59

I used to think that McF but not after reading some of the stories on here. I have changed my mind, have you?

SwedishEdith Mon 02-Apr-12 00:44:21

I thought the patch test was pointless as any allergic reaction would only show up when you actually dye your hair - so too late. I read that Guardian article at the time and Sali whatsherface did have a patch test. So, pointless? confused Anyway, she still seems to have jet black hair and never came back and said what she dyes her hair with now.

limitedperiodonly Mon 02-Apr-12 09:31:41

I stripped all the skin off my armpits by using Nair without a patch test.

Despite that I still don't do patch tests. <dim, impatient emoticon>

It was Nair btw. Yes, NAIR. The Agent Orange of depilatories.

AutumnSummers Mon 02-Apr-12 09:50:16

I always do. I change my colour regularly but I'm always aware that my skin changes (As does everyone's over the years) and so do the ingredient in the products.

I've seen too many friends with permenant disfigurements due to them being too lazy flippant about it and ending up with bad scarring. Not for me, thanks!

Goawaybob Mon 02-Apr-12 10:30:55

Thank you for all the lovely replies - Have decided to do skin test (when i can be arsed) as this is a brand ive not used before and a different colour so likely very different chemicals. My allergic reaction in the past was to something unknown that i ate (i think) it just sort of came out of no-where. Very scary though and I am aware that subsequent reactions can be worse so i am not wanting a visit to A&E for the sake of my roots! Normally i would just chuck the stuff on without second thought, but something is telling me not to.

Goawaybob Mon 02-Apr-12 10:42:10

oh, that'l teach me to read the whole thread, i missed page two! Brighthair thankyou - Does anyone want a light brown hair dye? Because im not using it.

1) I suffer from hayfever
2)I have had a severe allergic reaction to god knows what in the past
3) I have tattoos

Fuck that - im a natural mouse and might just embrace my greys, or stick with the blonde! I have dyed my hair darker in the past but im not taking a chance now. I just wish my bloody hair would grow faster because my roots take AGES to grow out.

Goawaybob Mon 02-Apr-12 10:45:08

I know that you wont react to something the first time you encounter it, you have to be sensitised to any allergen as you develop anti-bodies to it in the first, very mild reaction which is why subsequent reactions are more severe - I know this! WHAT WAS A THINKING!! Wonders if i can get a refund!

Goawaybob Mon 02-Apr-12 10:50:25

Just checked the ingredients and it does contain PPD, So that'l be going in the bin then sad

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Mon 02-Apr-12 10:52:11

Sisters reaction was to Bees wax in the dye apparently! Who'd have thunk it!

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Mon 02-Apr-12 11:19:26

I never used to test, used dye often found one I loved so stuck with it for a while until one time I itched and came out in dry itchy blistery weeping patches round my hairline and on my face! never used it again and am more wary now no idea why it suddenly happens but one or two since have left me a bit itchy and spotty at back of neck. would you not think that a safe solution to covering greys would have been found by now.

brighthair Mon 02-Apr-12 16:48:07

I think there are a few dyes that don't have ppd - herbatint is ringing a bell

GoblersKnob Mon 02-Apr-12 17:02:05

Goawaybob, I don't blame you for not using the dye, I won't touch chemical dyes anymore and am strictly a henna girl, just wanted to correct the info in the previous post there is NO increased rish from having a normal tattoo, tattoos do not contain PPD. 'Black Henna' street art tattoos are done with PPD (in the form of black hair dye) and are a completely different thing.

giveitago Mon 02-Apr-12 17:35:23

My mum didn't and ended up in hospital. Twas bad and she missed out on her holiday as he was admitted for a few days.

I would bother with a strand test now. But I'm going grey and doing nothing about it.

AgathaFusty Mon 02-Apr-12 18:01:36

In the face of the stories on here and in the media about people having sudden and serious reactions to hair dye, I can't actually believe that anyone would come on to this thread and advocate not patch testing.

OP - lush henna blocks are brill for covering grey.

cakewench Mon 02-Apr-12 20:15:39

oh, hell. Well I colour my hair, and would prefer to continue to do so as I am not quite at the point where I'll happily embrace my greys. I do wish they're do a little packet for testing in the box, because the only reason I don't test is because it means opening the containers and leaving them open for 48 hours.

I did use Lush henna blocks previously, but doesn't that literally take all day to do properly? It was something I could do easily in pre-children days. I suppose I'll have to look into that again. These stories are terrible. sad

cakewench Mon 02-Apr-12 20:18:34

From the article listed above, btw:

I went to a well-respected salon where a skin test was carried out well in advance and my highly qualified colourist did everything he should. Yet I still found myself, one hour later, in an ambulance with paramedics unsure if I'd even make it to the hospital. The CTPA admits that skin allergy tests are neither conclusive nor infallible.

So, doing a skin test isn't even the answer, though it might alert some cases. basically. sad

GoblersKnob Mon 02-Apr-12 20:20:52

Henna really isn't that bad and so worthwhile, I slapped mine on at about 5.50, yesterday, did dinner, kids baths, stories etc, watched a bit of telly, washed it off at 9.30.

So yes, four hours on but as long as you don't need to go out of the house, it's fine. I find aplication easier too, I used to be quite precious but now just dollop it on, mush it in, wrap in cling film, fleece hat, 15 minutes max.

bettybat Mon 02-Apr-12 20:21:32

I know it's probably really awful but when I see stories in the news about bad reactions to hair dyes, and the person is all "...and I did a patch test, I swear, and it was fine!", I was always think "yeah right, 'course you're going to say that, otherwise the hair dye company will immediately say it was all your fault!"

But then, I didn't know you could do a patch test and be fine, and then two days later have a reaction blush

SwedishEdith Mon 02-Apr-12 20:28:30

I couldn't take 4 hours to do my hair. I need to do it every 3 weeks (I don't, too lazy) so there is no way I could commit to henna. Used to as a teen.

AngryFeet Mon 02-Apr-12 20:30:22

I would have not bothered in the past but I did a patch test when my hairdresser was here to dye my normally blonde hair brown with Loreal dye last year and after 3 mins it was tingling so he wiped it off and within a few hours the skin went red then started peeling off. It was very sore and I imagine it would have been agony on my entire scalp. I have never been allergic to anything in my life before but now I would always do a patch test. I wouldn't use home hair dye but I ask to have a patch test done 72 hours before I have my hair done with the hairdressers now (I did this when I tried somewhere that had PPD free dye). If I am allergic I just do low lights or highlights so nothing touches my scalp. PPD builds up in your system so reactions get worse apparently. I won't be taking any chances personally.

Ticktock1 Mon 02-Apr-12 20:43:28

Yes you should do a skin test, its best to do it behind your ear not on your arm as some brands mention. Just ues a little from each container so you don't waste the whole lot. It needs to be done 48 hrs before you colour your hair, don't do it then wait a week because you could develop a reaction in between.

I am a colourist and there is no way I would colour a guests hair if they had not been in for a test 48 hrs before. We also re test our guests every six months or when ever they have a colour change. There are too many risks involved. But yes a skin test will not always show it up, most of the time it will though.

shivster1980 Mon 02-Apr-12 20:46:23

I never do - 15 years in, alive so far!

DavidBaron Tue 04-Sep-12 11:37:44

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TroublesomeEx Tue 04-Sep-12 11:58:04

My hair has been permanently and continually dyed since I was about 14/15. Oh, except for when pregnant.

I've bleached it and dyed it pretty much every colour Directions has to offer; had it blonde; jet black; and everything in between.

I have done skin tests on occasions but not every time.

Mrsjay Tue 04-Sep-12 12:05:44

I have been dying my hair since I was 15 all sorts of colours never did a skin test ever hair is still in tact

limitedperiodonly Tue 04-Sep-12 12:08:24

I once applied Nair to my armpits and all the skin came off along with the hair. Immac appears not to dissolve my skin but I've only used it on my minge, not my armpits, so that's not a conclusion I've reached under proper scientific tests.

I've never patch-tested dye but the first time I had my lashes tinted the girl did one and told me to come back the next day. She was very responsible but after I realised how easy it was to do it myself I've never been back.

halcyondays Tue 04-Sep-12 13:09:29

I would want to do the patch test. I don't dye my own hair but occasionally I get my hair coloured at the salon at our local tech and they always get you to do a patch test before. I'm surprised that so many people have hairdressers who don't insist on a patch test.

Dawndonna Tue 04-Sep-12 14:33:20

The skin tests always show as fine on me. However, I'm seriously allergic to hair dye and am about to try black henna.
No reaction at all, on my arm or behind my ear, once it's on my scalp it feels like it's on fire, and starts peeling etc. Really not funny.

DavidBaron Wed 05-Sep-12 13:56:37

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