Is it OK to use hair dye during pregnancy?
Answer From Yvonne Butler Tobah, M.D.
Theoretically, your skin only absorbs a limited amount of hair dye and other hair grooming and styling products. However, if your skin is infected or irritated, or if there is a break in your skin, you may absorb more of the chemicals in hair dye than usual. Still, research on the use of hair dye during pregnancy is limited.
These chemicals aren't generally thought to pose harm to a developing baby. However, given the lack of available evidence, you might consider postponing any chemical hair treatments until after you deliver.
If you choose to dye your hair during pregnancy, consider these general safety precautions from the Food and Drug Administration:
- Follow package directions carefully.
- Wear gloves when applying hair dye.
- Leave the dye on your hair no longer than directed.
- Rinse your scalp thoroughly after using hair dye.
Ask your health care provider for guidance if you're concerned about the safety of your hair products and hair dye during pregnancy.
Aug. 18, 2020
Yvonne Butler Tobah, M.D.
See more Expert Answers
- Quach P, et al. A systematic review of the risk factors associated with the onset and progression of primary brain tumours. NeuroToxicology. 2017;62:1.
- Hair dye and hair relaxers. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/forconsumers/byaudience/forwomen/ucm118527.htm. Accessed April 24, 2014.
- Gavazzoni G. Hair cosmetics: An overview. International Journal of Trichology. 2015;7:2.
- Butler Tobah, Y, MD (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. June 3, 2017.