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Can Hair Dye Cause Hair Loss? The Truth Unveiled

One of the most common things I hear relating to hair loss is that it can be caused by dyeing your hair. Many people swear by this and are convinced that if you dye your hair, it’s going to start falling out in clumps, and within a few days you will be bald!

But is this true and can dyeing hair cause hair loss? The short answer is no, but there are considerations to take into account, and there are instances where it can happen and this is what I discuss below.

The Potential Risks of Hair Dye with Hair Health

I want to start by saying that hair dye shouldn’t directly contribute to hair loss. It’s not how the dye works and this is because typically it either coats your hair or only penetrates the cuticles so there is no invasive contact with your follicles or scalp. However, it’s important to look at what dye does to your hair and I have listed the different scenarios below.

Hair breakage

If you want to explore lasting hair restoration and think that dye is contributing to your hair loss, you are most likely misunderstanding this for hair breakage. There is often a correlation and people mistake their hair breaking as their hair falling out.

Hair dye contains chemicals that can damage your hair and weaken it which ultimately leads to the strands breaking off. This happens at varying lengths and it’s why you may notice hair “falling out” when you brush your hair after dyeing.

It’s not falling out as the follicles and routes are intact and new hair will grow in place of the hair that has broken off as a result of the dyeing.

Allergic reactions

The only real instance where hair dye should cause hair loss if if you have an allergic reaction to the dye. Because there are so many different chemicals in the dye, it’s a commonality that people can react badly to it.

Typically, an allergic reaction to hair dye includes inflammation and while in most instances this will just cause discomfort, in more severe cases, the inflammation can penetrate your hair follicles and cause hair loss.

In instances like these, you may want to look at hair restoration techniques from a source like Dr. Yaman’s clinic in Turkey if you have had a severe reaction.

Heavy hair manipulation

Lastly, during a hair dyeing session and immediately afterward there is usually an excess of brushing, heat treatment, and general hair manipulation. This excessive interaction and pressure with your hair in its weakened state because of the dye chemicals can cause more breakages. But again, this shouldn’t be confused with your hair falling out.

How to Minimize the Risk of Hair Damage From Dyeing

Rear view of woman dyeing hair in front of mirror Luckily, there are things you can do to greatly reduce the chance of hair loss from hair dye and hair damage including patch tests, special shampoo, and consideration for how you treat your hair.

Get a patch test

I get that a patch test is an extra hassle, but would you rather spend a little extra time having a patch test, or get your hair colored without one and potentially suffer an intense allergic reaction?

Patch testing involves placing dye on a small sample of your hair and leaving it to see if a reaction occurs. It’s essentially a safeguard to make sure you don’t react badly to the chemicals in the hair dye and is the main way to avoid coloring complications.

Use shampoo with extra nourishment and hydration

Because hair dye weakens your hair it’s important to use shampoos that provide extra nourishment and hydration. By keeping your hair nourished and hydrated, you can somewhat counteract the negative effects of hair dye and reduce the chance of breakages.

Minimize the use of a hair dryer

Heat treatment such as blow drying and using straighteners should be avoided as much as possible with colored hair as the intense heat can increase the rate of breakages. Where possible, let your hair dry naturally!

Hair Dye Shouldn’t Cause Hair Loss, But it Can Cause Hair Damage

So, can dying hair cause hair loss? Not directly. In most instances, the dye only coats your hair strands and shouldn’t penetrate the shaft and follicles and thus it shouldn’t directly cause hair loss.

However, the main exception is if you have an allergic reaction to the hair dye. This can cause severe inflammation and penetrate your scalp and hair follicles which could cause hair loss. This is why patch testing is imperative to make sure your body is compatible with the dye.

It’s also important to consider the potential hair damage that dye can cause. Chemicals in the dye can cause breakage because it weakens your hair strands and they can snap off when combing and blow drying or using other heat tools.