The smart, safe guide to hair color
To keep your hair happy and healthy
Coloring your strands is commonplace today but you should know that there is always a risk of hair damage whenever any type of chemical is applied. The risk of hair color damage is highest when the wrong level of peroxide is used. Over-processing and over-treating hair is the leading reason for hair to lose its shine and texture.
For instance, constantly changing your hair color or opting for very drastic color changes can ruin your hair quality. Therefore, it’s very important that you use shampoos and conditioners specifically meant for colored hair. Such shampoos and conditioners are designed to seal the hair cuticles that open up during the coloring process.
In India mehendi is widely used to color strands. I find that mehendi—by itself or added to other things like tea and coffee—can be quite tricky. If you apply it to straight hair, it can make it glossy and silky but on wavy hair, it has the opposite effect. It can over coat strands, drying out hair and, making it dull and drab.
For hair that shows the occasional gray strands, I would recommend using amla or Indian gooseberry. Soak an amlaovernight in an iron vessel. By the morning the amla will turn black. Grind it to a paste and apply on hair. Leave on for twenty minutes and wash off. This is an excellent remedy for treating premature graying.
Argan oil is is the best remedy to tame frizzy locks. This oil has a very light viscosity and therefore penetrates hair shafts easily. In fact, it is the only oil that contains Omega 3, an excellent restorative both for the skin and the hair.
I am often asked whether ammonia-free hair colors are better than those containing ammonia. If we can use ammonia, a common ingredient in bleaches, on the face then why should it be harmful on the hair? Most permanent hair colors today uses hydrogen peroxide as a developer. The peroxide opens the cuticle to allow the color to penetrate cuticles, lightening the hair’s color level depending on the strength of the peroxide formulation. Ideally, the percentage of peroxide should not exceed six percent of the formula. Remember to use a moisturizing conditioner after applying a stronger hair color.
Instead, I would like people to be aware of the Paraphenylenediamine (PPD) content in the hair dye they are using This has been called the allergen of the Year by The American Dermatologists Society. It is also used in temporary tattoos and can cause severe allergic reactions in children. PPD is a coal tar dye derived from petroleum