How can you tell if a woman is pregnant? Aside from the obvious distended belly, her hair roots might give her away. That’s because many women steer clear of hair coloring out of fear that the chemicals could cause harm to the developing fetus.
But there’s no need to let grays take over when everything from acne eruptions to flat feet are already making you feel less than glamorous. Here’s how to safely color your hair during pregnancy.
1. Choose a natural, vegetable-based, semi-permanent dye. Evidence that hair coloring of any kind will harm your developing baby isn’t well-established, even in animal studies. But, to be completely safe, stick with products that are all natural””which means no synthetic chemical compounds (such as p-phenylenediamine, dihydroxybenzene or aminophenol.) The brand Light Mountain uses 100% premium henna, an all-natural ingredient women have been using for thousands of years to lighten, brighten or darken their locks.
2. DIY? Don’t forget gloves. Hair dye absorbed through your skin while applying the product is a bigger risk than what the product might do to your hair shaft, so keep protect those hands!
3. Skip the scalp. The real concern with hair coloring is that chemicals could be absorbed into your bloodstream through your skin and might impact infant development. So avoid single-process treatments and go for highlights instead.
4. Wait till the second trimester. To play it super-safe, wait until the baby is one-third cooked, when the developing fetus is less vulnerable.
If you’re still anxious about hair coloring, let your true colors shine and find other ways to feel fabulous, whether it’s an adorable pixie cut, a new lipstick or propping up your feet and letting the daddy-to-be paint your piggies.
Jorie Mark is Vitacost.com’s Director of Marketing Communications and mom to three kids, ages 3 to 10.