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Is Pubic Hair Dye Safe?

Posted Mar 14 2013 2:01am

Post image for Is Pubic Hair Dye Safe?

MS asks…I know you’ve written about hair coloring before but are there any products safe for coloring pubic hair? (The old phrase “do the curtains match the drapes” comes to mind.)

The Beauty Brains respond:

One does need to be careful when dying hair “down there” because of the potential for irritation. For example, one common hair dye ingredient PPD ( p-Phenylenediamine) is known to cause contact dermatitis.  Nonetheless, there are a number of products that specialize in coloring pubic hair. The most popular is probably the “Betty Beauty” line. Why is Betty safer than regular hair dyes? In a response on their FAQ page they state “Betty does NOT contain PPD or ammonia.”  However, upon reviewing their ingredient lists we saw that two of their products actually do contain PPD. Needless to say we were confused.

We contacted a representative of the company and found out that SOME colors (the black, brown and auburn) DO contain PPD but they contain “the lowest % of PPD than other dyes currently on the market.”  This is mentioned else where on the website (but not the FAQ page) so thanks to  Nancy Jarecki of Betty Beauty for clearing that up for us. We wish more companies were so responsive!

PPD is typically used in hair dyes at approximately 0.15 – 0.30%. Less is better when it comes to irritation but the lower the amount of PPD, the lighter the color.  In other words, the tradeoff is that lower levels of PPD should mean less potential for contact dermatitis but they also mean that you’ll be less likely to match darker shades. That could be a big problem for the hair on your scalp but it’s probably less of an issue for pubic hair which rarely sees the light of day (unless you’re Sarah Bellum, that is.)

One additional note: if you ever have had a reaction to a PPD containing hair dye you may have become sensitized. Once sensitized, it takes a very small amount to trigger another reaction. So using any PPD (even one like this one with a lower level) is probably ill -advised.

If you’re hell bent on making sure the carpeting matches the drapes (and if it’s important to have natural looking darker colors) then the Betty Beauty line looks like your best alternative.  If anyone in the Beauty Brains community has other ideas on how to color pubic hair , leave a comment and share your experience. (But, please, no pictures.)

Aqua/Water/Eau, Dicetyl Phosphate, Ceteth 10 Phosphate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Steareth 2, Oleyl Alcohol, PPG 5 Ceteth 20, Cocamide DEA, Mineral Oil (Paraffinum Liquidum), Parfum/Fragrance, Glycerin, PPG 5 Ceteth 10 Phosphate, Oleth 5 (Phosphate), Dioleyl (Phosphate), Hydroxyethyl Behenamidopropyl Dimonium Chloride, Ethanolamine, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Erythorbic Acid, Sodium Sulfate, Propylene Glycol, Prunus Serotina (Wild Cherry) Bark Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Extract, Sambucus Nigra (Elderberry) Flower Extract, Symphytum Officinale (Comfrey) Leaf Extract, Juglans Nigra (Black Walnut) Leaf extract, Lawsonia Inermis (Henna) Extract, Benzyl Benzoate, Benzyl Salicylate, Butylphenyl Methlyproprional, Citronellol, Geraniol, Linalool, P Phenylenediamine, 4 Amino 2 Hydroxytoluene, M Aminophenol, 4 Amino M Cresol, Caramel, Basic Red 76, Hydrogen Peroxide, Ceteareth 20, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cocamidopropylamine Oxide, Simethicone, PPG 5 Ceteth 20, Tetrasodium EDTA, Phosphoric Acid

Aqua/Water/Eau, Cetearyl Alcohol, Dicetyl Phosphate, Cetheth-10 Phosphate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Steareth 2, Oleyl Alcohol, PPG 5 Ceteth 20, Cocamide DEA, Mineral Oil (Paraffinum Liquidum), Parfum/Fragrance, Glycerin, Laureth 2, PPG 5 Ceteth 10 Phosphate, Oleth 5 Phosphate, Dioleyl Phosphate, Ethanolamine, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Propylene Glycol, Prunus Serotina (Wild Cherry) Bark Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Extract, Sambucus Nigra (Elderberry) Flower Extract, Symphytum Officinale (Comfrey) Leaf Extract, Juglans Nigra (Black Walnut) Leaf extract, Lawsonia Inermis (Henna) Extract, Benzyl Benzoate, Benzyl Salicylate, Butylphenyl Methlyproprional, Citronellol, Geraniol, Linalool, Violet 2 External, Disperse Violet 1, Acid Violet 43, Basic Blue 99, Basic Brown 16, Hydrogen Peroxide, Ceteareth 20, Cocamidopropylamine Oxide, Simethicone, Tetrasodium EDTA, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Persulfate, Mineral Oil (Paraffinum Liquidum), Ammonium Persulfate, Acrylates/C10 30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Sodium Metasilicate, Sodium Silicate, Sodium Persulfate, Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate, Petrolatum, Magnesium Stearate, Silica, Polyethylene, Oleth 3, Sodium Magnesium Silicate, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Rasmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Oil, Thioctic (Alpha Lipoic) Acid, Titanium Dioxide, Tribehenin, Calcium Behenate

Image credit: http://farm1.staticflickr.com

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