Mango Hair Design re open news and hair colour allergy patch tests

Until we get some definite news re the end of lockdown or partial lifting on restrictions, I can’t set a date for reopening Mango Hair.

What I can say for definite is that, following guidelines from the Freelance Hair Association all clients will need to be allergy patch tested before I can do any colour service. This applies to highlights too.

Patch tests are necessary as hair dyes can contain ingredients that may irritate your skin or cause an allergic reaction.

Some people are more prone to skin reactions than others with skin becoming red, dry and possibly inflamed when a particular substance comes into contact with their skin.

The substance may either be an irritant, directly damaging the skin, or an allergen, triggering an allergic reaction that affects the skin. An allergic reaction occurs because a person’s immune system becomes hypersensitive to certain substances, one of which is PPD’s in hair dye.

The first time a person is exposed to an allergen, they do not usually experience a reaction. It often takes time for the immune system to build up a sensitivity to the substance.

This is important to note as many still think that if they’re not allergic, as they haven’t previously shown signs of sensitivity, or had an allergic reaction to the PPD in hair colour, that they never will and don’t need an allergy test!

Not true!

What can happen is the immune system learns to recognise and remember the allergen. As it does so, it starts making antibodies to attack it when exposure occurs each time the allergen is used.  This is sensitivity and can worsen each time the skin comes into contain with hair colour (PPD).

Patch test

You’ll come into the salon and I’ll do a patch test for you either as part of a colour consultation and/or a cut and blow dry appointment or you can pop in just for the patch test.

Following manufacturer’s guidelines, the test needs to be untouched for a minimum of 45 minutes but I will explain the procedure to you when you have the test done.

If you develop any irritation, redness, swelling, blistering or feel unwell after the patch test, I won’t be able to use that product on your hair.

There are other colours that I use and I will also do a patch test for those too. Sometimes, we can do highlights where the colour doesn’t touch the scalp if you’ve shown a reaction to a patch test although I’m very cautious with this as product may touch the skin with highlights too.

Signs and symptoms of a hair dye reaction

Reactions to PPD can range from mild irritation in the scalp to an allergic reaction that can potentially trigger serious symptoms throughout the body.

Mild irritation

If you’re mildly irritated by PPD, you may find that your scalp, neck, forehead, ears or eyelids become irritated and inflamed after using hair dye.

The skin exposed to the PPD may become red, swollen, blistered, dry, thickened and cracked. You may feel a burning or stinging sensation.

Symptoms will usually appear within 48 hours, although strong irritants may cause your skin to react immediately.

Allergic reaction

If you’re allergic to PPD, your scalp and face may feel itchy and start to swell.

PPD may also trigger symptoms throughout your body, such as itching, a nettle rash and generally feeling ill.

These symptoms may not develop until hours, or even days, later.

A severe allergic reaction that develops within minutes is called anaphylaxis or “anaphylactic shock”.

Signs of anaphylaxis include:

itchy skin or a raised, red skin rash

  • swollen eyes, lips, hands and feet – the eyelids can swell so much that the eyes close
  • feeling lightheaded or faint
  • swelling of the mouth, throat or tongue, which can cause breathing and swallowing difficulties
  • wheezing
  • tummy pain, nausea and vomiting
  • collapsing and becoming unconscious

Not pleasant at all and could lead to death!!

Patch tests are always necessary for all new colour clients and at other times too such as a longer than normal period between regular colours or a change of product/formula used.

Due to the need to do these patch tests I won’t be able to do any colour service until you’ve had the test and waited the 48 hours. With this in mind, I’ll be booking clients who don’t want colour and just doing cut & blow dries and cuts only initially for the first few days.

Thanks for reading and I’ll be posting about hair treatments in the next blog next Friday ????

Anything hair related you’d like me to cover, email me

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