This month as I’m covering reducing chemical exposure in beauty products, it would make sense for me to cover dying your hair. In this post I’m going to write about two things, one being the safety of colouring your hair and the other my review of the lovely Spoilt Hair salon I frequent.
I can confirm this is a subject area that I’m well qualified to discuss with you as I’ve been colouring my hair since I was around sixteen. Shock horror – yes I know, back then think home bleach jobs and purple and blue streaks. Eeek.
Note: previously I have had requests for photos of same, unfortunately it would appear I don’t have any from that time period, what a shame…
I’ll be completely honest with you, up until a little while ago it was one area of my life I elected to…well… kinda ignore my “low toxin – avoid chemicals” approach. I just wanted my hair the colour I wanted – and that was that. I always pondered on the fact I should probably cut down or think of alternatives but I never did anything about it!
Fast forward late last year and my fabulous hairdresser Elsa from Spoilt Hair Retreat suggested I try their organic range of hair colours. Why I hadn’t thought of this before I’m not sure…
Anyway let’s get into the details!
Firstly – what is the risk in using hair dye?
This is one topic that is a very grey area (cue boom-tish sounds). I’ve found limited research; none of which is conclusive or indicates any definite risks or links.
The Cancer Council of Australia list hair dye as an “inferred risk” only, meaning the evidence of potential carcinogens has come from laboratory studies on animals only and so the risk to humans has not been proven.
The American Cancer society tells a similar story, stating “It’s not clear how much personal hair dye use might raise cancer risk, if at all.”
Suspect ingredients (aside from the usual list!) in hair dyes can include ammonia (or it’s replacement ethanolamine), p-phenylindiamine (pPD) (and it’s replacement PTD) and resorcinol. Whilst not proven to cause cancer, they are known irritants and can cause allergic reactions.
So what does this mean?
Well just because something hasn’t been proven to be carcinogenic doesn’t mean it isn’t. It also doesn’t mean those ingredients wont cause you other issues. But as there is no clear evidence to suggest hair dyes cause cancer – I feel this is an area you really need to think about your approach in general to chemicals and make a decision based on that fact.
As I mentioned given I have always coloured my hair I’d be a hypocrite to say don’t do it! For me, now that I’m trying to really focus on reducing my chemical exposure I feel I would prefer to take a “safer”, more natural option if there is one. Hence we are here now!
So then what is Organic hair colour? What do you use now?
As we know , just because a product is labelled organic or natural it doesn’t mean it is so. Naturally you must do your own research into a product or salon. At Spoilt, they use ZenzTherapy Alternative Colour, which is free from ammonia, p-phenylindiamine and resorcinol and contains no synthetic perfumes. The brand has a large range of colours which I’ve been very happy with.
Does organic hair colour give a good result compared to normal colour?
Elsa has written about the organic hair dye debate on the Spoilt blog (check it out for some great hair care, styling & other life altering tips) and is much better placed to answer the question. I can tell you however, I’ve been very, very happy with the result! I love the range of colours and how they look in my hair. My hair even feels softer since using these dyes, which is a good thing!
So who is Spoilt Hair Retreat and why should I visit?
I thought you’d never ask! For those of you in Perth, Spoilt Hair Retreat is located in Wembley. The salon has a lovely relaxed vibe (can be hard to find in a salon yes?), great refreshments (champagne on Wednesday night, yes please!), very reasonable prices and an awesome team of ladies to look after you. I’ve been visiting them for many, many years for my regular colour and cut and for styling for special occasions (they also do make up too if you need!).
In conclusion – if you’re concerned about your exposure to chemicals, but still want to get your locks coloured, try an organic alternative. If you’re in Perth – you know where I recommend you visit :)
So where do you stand on hair colours? Have you used an organic colour?