If you're like many women, bleaching, dying, or highlighting
your hair may be a regular part of your beauty regime.
And if you're like most pregnant women, you probably have
some hesitation or even a fear about continuing to color your hair while
baby is in tow!
Although research into the effects of hair coloring on
baby's health are still somewhat limited,many experts now contend the dyes
are most likely safe and that women needn't be afraid to color their world
That said, don't be surprised if your doctor still suggests
you approach hair coloring with caution. Because the dye is absorbed through
the scalp and into the body (it can be identified in urine) some medical
experts are hesitant to give carte blanche to hair coloring during all
Often, many physicians advise holding off coloring hair
with permanent dyes during the first trimester when your baby is undergoing
important neurological developments. Coloring can then be resumed in the
second or third trimester.
If you color your hair at home, look for products with
the fewest number of chemicals and always work in a well-ventilated room,
wearing gloves while handling the mixture. If you have your hair done in
a salon, request the first appointment in the morning on their least busy
day - when you are least likely to suffer excessive chemical exposure.
Hair Coloring Alternatives
If you don't want to take a chance on coloring your whole
head of hair, you may want to consider adding highlights - a great way
of accenting your color and bringing light to the face, not to mention
a little pregnancy glow!
Because this process involves applying the chemicals one-half
to one-inch from your roots, they don't ever touch your scalp. So, they
can't get into your blood stream - which is safe for you and baby. You
can also easily allow 8 weeks or more between appointments - minimizing
If you colored your hair before pregnancy, and want to
ease up on treatments until after baby is born, look for a semi-permanent
dye, containing low or no ammonia, and low or no peroxide. These generally
contain fewer harmful chemicals, and work well to blend the different colors
of your hair, making "roots" appear less obvious. What can also help: Color
enhancing shampoos, designed to deposit temporary color so they can significantly
extend the time between hair colorings.
Finally, you can also try a "hair mascara" - tubes filled
with temporary color and topped off with a thick mascara-like wand. Because
they only coat the outside layer of your hair and don't get anywhere near
your scalp, they are very safe to use. The wands are also faster, easier
and safer than spray on temporary color -with no fumes to inhale - so they
can work great to touch up roots.
Natural Hair Coloring Recipes from PamperingMom.com
To make your own ultra safe, all natural hair tints, try
· For red highlights or to enhance red hair : ½
cup of beet juice mixed with ½ cup of carrot juice . Mix together,
pour on damp hair, and let sit for one hour before washing out. If you
spend that hour sitting in direct sunlight, the effects will be even more
· For blonde highlights : Mix 1 cup of lemon juice
with 3 cups of chamomile tea that has been brewed, cooled, and strained.
Pour over damp hair and let sit for one hour - again sunlight will enhance
the properties of the color. Wash out and follow with a conditioner. For
significant blonde color use daily for up to three weeks.
· For brunette hair : Prepare strong black coffee
or tea. After washing hair, pour the mixture through hair 15 times, re-rinsing
using the same liquid. ( You can do this by placing a large pasta or soup
pot in the sink to catch the rinse, then pour into a large jar for the
next rinse). On the final rinse through, leave on hair for 15 minutes,
then rinse with clear water.
A word about perming and straightening your pregnant hair
While there is little in the way of scientific information
on the safety of perming or relaxing your hair during pregnancy, perhaps
the most convincing evidence against the their use comes directly from
hairdressers. Most say that because pregnancy hormones frequently interfere
with, or even change, the way your hair reacts to perm or relaxing solutions,
you could easily end up with a look that is quite opposite of what you
expected. Hair can get frizzy or straight instead of curly, or kinky and
frizzy instead of straight. So forgo the perm or straightening for now
- and opt for a style that's easy to manage without the extra chemical
About the Author
Colette Bouchez is the author of "Your Perfectly Pampered
Pregnancy: Health, Beauty and Lifestyle Advice for the Modern Mother To
Be" and director of http://www.PamperingMom.com