The No Chemical Hair Dye Method: How to Dye your Hair without Toxicity
Dying your hair is fun and can be a big part of your personality – who doesn’t love a whole new you?
However, it can also be hard on the hair, the scalp, and the planet, so at Suvarna we’re passionate advocates for a ‘toxin-free’ approach to colour.
We all know that nothing can be ‘chemical-free’ completely – after all, even water is a chemical!
But this guide focuses on removing the harsh chemicals in ‘box dyes’ or ‘off the shelf’ colours that do myriad harms.
WHY CHOOSE A TOXIC CHEMICAL-FREE HAIR DYE
You might assume that because you can buy it, hair dye is safe. That simply isn’t the case. It’s also not environmentally friendly, in the slightest.
Common ingredients like Ammonia, PPD, Hydrogen Peroxide and Sulphates have all shown serious implications including:
· Reducing scalp health
· Harming Aquatic life
· Allergic reactions
· Hair quality
· Loss of colour over time – leading to early greying
· Single use plastics that can’t be recycled
By choosing a toxic chemical free hair dye, you instantly make a choice to improve both your own and the planet’s health, making your new colour infinitely more beautiful!
WHICH TOXIC CHEMICALS TO AVOID IN HAIR DYE
Hydrogen Peroxide is used to permanently lighten hair, changing the structure of the hair follicle in the process.
It does make your colour take more evenly and last longer, but it also leads to hair loss and may even cause you to go grey early.
Ammonia roughens the hair to help it absorb colour better. It’s seriously strong, giving that ‘hair dye’ smell that makes it hard to tolerate.
It’s extremely allergenic, commonly causes irritation for the scalp and can be found in rivers and ponds across the country. There is a replacement, MEA, but it’s also pretty brutal . Hair treated with either often ends up in a real mess.
Usually found in darker permanent hair colour. It’s very effective at adding darker shades but is so allergenic it is banned in many parts of the world.
Other ingredients to avoid silicones, sulphates, parabens and heavy minerals
SIDE EFFECTS OF USING TOXIC CHEMICALS IN HAIR DYE
The effects to humans of using toxic chemicals may include:
· Contact dermatitis
In more serious cases, there can be extreme swelling, affecting the eyes and face, severe scalp damage and even issues with breathing.
NEVER ever dye your hair with any dye without doing a patch test 72-hours in advance to check for reactions.
HOW TO DYE YOUR HAIR WITHOUT TOXIC CHEMICALS
To avoid using harsh chemicals on your hair, you need to look to nature . Plants have long been used to stain and colour the hair safely.
Modern colour formulations are now much more stable and work with the hair shaft to benefit the hair, instead of harm it.
Some plant-based dyes to choose:
Once the preserve of hippies and herbalists, now, thanks to middle eastern culture which prizes a natural approach to hair-care, Henna has experienced a huge resurgence in popularity.
Sourced from the dried leaves of the henna plant, it is red toned naturally; but you can create a wide shade variety by mixing your Henna with different blending agents. Citrus juice for example can add depth, tea can make the colour cooler and beetroot juice turns the stain bright red.
It works with the hair's natural keratin structures, so is beneficial over time, and stains rather than alters the hair shaft.
It’s hard to remove, though, and Henna results depend on your hair type, length, porosity, and care, so always do a strand test with your mix to be sure of the end result.
Indigo, from the leaves of the indigo plant is the same ingredient used to dye denim. Cleopatra discovered it first and if you’re looking for a darker shade, you’ll love it.
You can mix it with Henna for a richer brown or use it alone for depth. It’s especially beautiful on those with already dark hair to add blue-black lights.
Amla, from the Indian Gooseberry tree is a lovely treatment for the hair, helping to prevent greying and hair loss. When mixed with Henna, it cools the colour down, offering ashy and brown tones.
Cassia is often called ‘neutral’ or ‘colourless’ Henna. It adds beautiful shine to any hair tone, but if applied to blonde or white hair when mixed with lemon juice, it adds golden shimmering lights.
3 TOXIC CHEMICAL FREE DYES WE LOVE
You can choose to buy the above natural hair colours individually, or you can choose a certified organic hair dye, which won’t contain the above toxic chemicals.
Our three favourites include:
It’s Pure Certified Organic Hair Colour
100% natural, Soil Association Certified Organic hair dyes. Made in UK with only certified organic plant ingredients, which are health-giving for your hair.
Explore Its Pure here >
Logona Herbal Hair Colours
Enjoy healthy, glossy hair coloured to a fresh and lively shade using Logona Natural Herbal Hair Dyes. They don't damage your hair but strengthen, condition and make your hair glossier.
The range includes Herbal Hair Colour Powders (12 Shades) or Colour Creams (5 Shades) for easy application.
Sante Natural Hair Colours
100% natural hair colour powder with no chemicals. 9 beautiful shades. With organic henna - enhancing volume and shine.
Explore Sante here >
Read more about our approach to toxic chemicals in cosmetics and skincare here >