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Hair Dye During Pregnancy: Is It OK to Color My Hair During Pregnancy

Table of Contents

Hair Dye During Pregnancy

Table of Contents

Pregnancy gives beautiful, luscious, glossy, and voluminous hair to most women. Giving their hair those fiery locks is what every woman thinks of, pregnant or not. The decision is simple when you don’t have a little human growing inside you.

So, when can you dye your hair during pregnancy? As per the American Pregnancy Organisation, multiple research, although limited, shows that the level of chemicals in both semi and permanent dyes are fairly harmless.

P.S.: Permanent hair dyes have stronger chemicals.

But the bottom line is, these dyes are pretty safe to use during pregnancy. Also, only a small amount of hair dye is absorbed by the skin so nothing is reaching the fetus.

Now that’s wonderful news for a woman who is looking to get some hair dye during pregnancy! Also, know that most hair treatments are safe during pregnancy if you take the recommended precautions and inform your stylist about the baby in advance.

Here are some more facts that answer the question, “Is hair dye safe during pregnancy?”


We want you to know every risk involved in dyeing your hair pre or post-pregnancy. A 2018 research showed that women who dyed their hair pre-pregnancy have a higher chance of having a baby with low weight. However, this research does not specify how many times these women dyed their hair or what kind of hair dye they used.

Being exposed to chemicals during pregnancy is another factor that can affect the health of your unborn baby. A 2015 meta-analysis suggested that cosmetologists and hairdressers have a slightly higher chance of

  • Going through preterm labor
  • Taking longer to conceive
  • Giving birth to babies too small for their gestational age
  • Pregnancy loss
  • Giving birth to babies with low weight

BUT, this doesn’t mean every woman in that field WILL have such pregnancy risks. There are other factors that contribute to such issues such as

  • Working conditions
  • Ventilation
  • Exposure to certain chemicals
  • Working hours

So, how do you make sure you are safe while getting hair dye during pregnancy? The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends a patch test to rule out any allergic reactions you may have to hair dyes. Here’s how you can do that:

  • Apply a small amount of your preferred hair dye behind your ear or on your inner elbow.
  • Wait for 48 hours.
  • Check if you have a rash past this timeline.

Hair Dye During Pregnancy: What Should You Keep in Mind?

Here’s what you should keep in mind for dyeing your hair during pregnancy:

1) Avoid Hair Dye During Pregnancy in Your First Trimester

Your pregnancy hormones may want you to do a lot of things in your first trimester of pregnancy, including eating things you’ve hated before and perhaps, an irresistible urge of getting your hair dyed. This is the time when the growth of your baby is typically in the spurt. Their organs begin to take shape, their muscle cords begin to form, and nail beds and hair follicles begin to develop in full flow.

Amidst all this, even though hair dye chemicals may not be absorbed by your body, it’s better not to take a risk. We agree that your hair follicles may also be growing like wildfire, exposing greys sooner than earlier, given your pregnancy hormones. But the National Health Service (NHS) suggests that you wait at least until the second trimester before you dye for this new chapter to settle in.

2) Get The Hair Dye During Pregnancy Done By a Reliable Stylist

You may have been visiting a relatively cheaper, cost-effective stylist in your pre-pregnancy days. Now that you are carrying a baby, the priority should be to look for services that are reliable and not just cheap. Opt for safe stylists and safe services.

For example, instead of getting your regular root touch-ups or a root-to-tip color change, you may perhaps get a safer service like highlight or lowlights, frosting, and streaking. This is because a root touch-up or a roots-to-tip color change opens up your pores and the chemicals are then soaked into the scalp, potentially entering your bloodstream.

In a highlight or other similar services, the color is just painted directly onto your hair, and hence, there’s no risk of chemical absorption or chemical entering your bloodstream. An established and professional stylist will be able to recommend to you what’s best for you and your baby.

3) Look for Gentle Hair Dye During Pregnancy

As important as it is to find a reliable stylist and a safe service, it is equally important to pay attention to the color of your hair dyes. Resort to gentle hair colors like a peroxide-free or an ammonia-free dye. Vegetable and henna dyes or even homemade DIY semi-permanent colors are considered safe for application during pregnancy.  Also, look for brands and types of colors that are good to use

4) Keep Yourself Ventilated and Covered While Getting a Hair Dye During Pregnancy

Regardless of whether you dye your hair at a salon or at home, you should always make sure that you seat yourself in a ventilated area and keep your hair covered.

Here’s why: The chemicals in hair dyes might release highly toxic fumes unsafe for inhalation by pregnant women. By covering your head after application and by sitting in a well-ventilated area, you can safely rule out that possibility.

Moreover, in case you are dyeing on your own, it is also recommended to wear gloves before the application and thoroughly wash your hair to ensure there’s no product left on your hair or scalp.

5) Take a Strand Test Before You Hair Dye During Pregnancy

At home or in a salon, before you go all-in and dye your hair, always make sure to first conduct a strand test- even if you are using a dye that you have been loyal to in your pre-pregnancy days. We recommend a strand test because your pregnancy hormones may react differently to a dye and apart from causing harm you may even get a color that you did not sign up for.

Note: If you are dyeing your hair yourself, remember to take these FDA-recommended precautions to prevent any risks to you and your baby:

  • Read all the instructions on the package.
  • Always wear gloves before touching the dyes.
  • Let the dye settle in your hair only for the minimum amount of time.
  • Make sure the space you choose to begin your hair dyeing session has proper ventilation.
  • Once the dye has been applied, rinse your scalp well.
  • Never dye your eyelashes or eyebrows (this will cause blindness or other serious vision injuries).
  • Do not mix two different hair dyes.
  • Do not brush or scratch your scalp for 3 days before getting a hair dye.
  • If your scalp is damaged, irritated, or sunburned, let it heal before dyeing.
  • Wait at least 14 days after bleaching or perming your hair before dyeing it.

Remember that pregnancy can change your whole body dynamics. It will react differently to things than when you were not pregnant. For instance, dyeing your hair during pregnancy can make your hair

  • React differently to the color
  • React differently to perming
  • Become more absorbent than before
  • Become frizzy and unpredictable

Final Thoughts: What are Some of The Best Hair Dyes During Pregnancy?

Here are some of the recommended hair dyes to use during pregnancy-

As you may have guessed while some of these are permanent dyes, some only work as semi-permanent treatments (like the herbal dye). The dyes are recommended based on the overall reviews on Amazon. Many women have suggested these dyes work rather beautifully and are marked OK to use.

However, if you happen to experience a chemical reaction like itchiness, redness, or inflammation, reach out to your doctor immediately. Always also follow the manufacturer-provided information guidelines and do not leave the dye for more than the recommended time duration.

Excited to welcome your baby? Do not forget to take care of yourself first.


A happy momma = always a happy baby!

Have you been using another dye or have suggestions for the momma community? Please let us know in the comment section below!

Hair Dye During Pregnancy FAQs

1) Is hair dye safe during pregnancy?

Yes! Hair dye is safe during pregnancy. With just a few adjustments (as pointed out in the blog post above), it should be ok for you to apply hair dye during pregnancy.

2) Can I dye my hair during pregnancy with a cap on?

When you dye your hair with a cap, you will essentially be pulling your hair through a cap and then applying color. Though this is a less common method, it is considered safe for practice during pregnancy as the cap covers the scalp.

3) When can you dye your hair during pregnancy?

You may choose to dye your hair as and when required during pregnancy, but with the preventive measures kept in check.

4) Is it OK to get a piercing while pregnant?

As a pregnant woman, you can expect your immunity to be weaker than in pre-pregnancy days, making a mother more vulnerable to infections. Hence, though a piercing during pregnancy may be safe, the following infection due to the piercing may pose a risk to the mother and the baby.

5) Can pregnancy hormones affect hair coloring?

Hormones during pregnancy can majorly influence the final resulting hair color post-application. You may be using a dye that looked a certain way post-application pre-pregnancy, however, due to your pregnancy hormones, the same color may come out differently during pregnancy. Hence, it is always recommended to run a strand patch test to ensure your hormones do not adversely affect the final result.

6. How long do you have to wait to dye your hair when pregnant?

Most medical experts recommend waiting at least till the end of your first trimester to dye your hair. Specifically, wait till the 14th week to dye your hair.

7. What if I dyed my hair during the first trimester?

Most research states that the chemicals in hair dyes are not toxic and can be safely used during pregnancy. What’s dangerous is when a small amount of dye is absorbed by the scalp or skin and reaches the fetus. The first trimester months are extremely vulnerable stages which is why it is advised to wait till you are 14 weeks pregnant.


On behalf of the editorial team at Parenthoodbliss, we follow strict reporting guidelines and only use credible sources, along with peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and highly respected health organizations. To learn about how we maintain content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial policy.

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