Q: Recently, I am having burning sensation and pain on my scalp when I color my hair. I use semi-permanent hair color and yet I am
experiencing a lot of pain, and it lasts for a few days. What I could do to prevent the pain? I can't
imagine not coloring my gray hair. Thank you so much for your help.
A: STEP ONE: You need to STOP using the product you are using. You appear to have developed sensitivity to something in the color
product that is causing the reaction. As I am sure you know pain is a warning that something is not right with something we are doing.
STEP TWO: See your doctor and explain to him the reaction you are having and allow him to examine
your scalp for damage and scarring from the exposure. Discuss with him your symptoms and allow him to help you make sure there isnít
some other underlying problem that has led to the sensitivity.
STEP THREE: Before you use ANY OTHER hair color product on your hair do a PATCH TEST with that
product first. I recommend using a different brand of semi-permanent hair color than you have been using, mix a small amount of it
(if needed) as directed and apply a small amount of it with a cotton swab just behind your ear. Leave the color formula there for the
normal processing time and wipe it off with a moist cloth. Wait at least 48 hours. If there is any redness, burning, or sign of
irritation in the area where the color was swabbed on, DO NOT use the product.
Semi-permanent hair colors are often formulated with slightly different compositions depending on
the maker. You may be sensitive to an ingredient they have in common, or to one that is specific to a single maker. So, you should
test any of them before you simply apply them. You may also consider switching to a temporary rinse to cover your gray hair. These
only last from shampoo to shampoo, but are generally very gentle. Even so, perform the patch test before you use them.