Can Children Have Their Hair Dyed

Generally speaking, it is not recommended for children under 16 years of age to use any type of permanent or semi-permanent hair dyes as they contain harsh chemicals. However, certain vegetable-based dyes are available for those aged 12 and over, which are much gentler. It is best to consult a professional hairdresser before using any product on a child’s hair.

How can hair dyeing be harmful for children?

Hair dyes contain a variety of chemicals that can cause allergic reactions, skin irritations, and even long-term health issues. Some of the most common risks of hair dyeing in children include:

Allergic Reactions

Certain ingredients used in the hair dye can cause an allergic reaction when they come into contact with skin or eyes. Allergic reactions may range from mild rashes and hives to more serious conditions such as asthma attacks or anaphylactic shock.

Skin Irritation

Dyeing hair can also cause skin irritation due to the harsh chemicals contained in some dyes. The irritation can be mild, such as redness or itching, but it can also be more severe, resulting in blistering and skin rashes.

Toxic Chemicals

Some dyes contain toxic chemicals that may cause health problems over time, such as cancer or endocrine disruption. For example, the chemical paraphenylenediamine (PPD) is commonly found in hair dyes and has been linked to skin rashes and even respiratory problems.

For these reasons, taking caution when dyeing a child’s hair is important.

dye damage childrens hair

How can dye damage children’s hair?

Dyeing children’s hair can cause significant damage to their locks, including dryness, split ends, and even hair breakage. Chemical dyes often contain harsh ingredients that strip the natural oils away from the scalp and can be difficult to rinse out completely. It may leave a residue on the hair that can cause it to become brittle and prone to splitting or breaking. In some cases, if the dye is overly dark or contains strong coloring agents, it could permanently alter the texture of a child’s hair by causing it to become coarse and unmanageable.

What hair dye is it better to choose for children?

If you’re considering changing your child’s look with hair dye, it is important to take extra caution when choosing the right one.

It is best to choose a product specifically designed for children and does not contain harsh chemicals or dyes. When shopping around, read labels carefully and choose products free from ammonia, peroxide, and PPD (paraphenylenediamine).

Natural, plant-based hair dyes are an excellent option for younger kids because they are gentle on the scalp and don’t contain harsh ingredients.

Look for products labeled as “semi-permanent” or “temporary,” as these typically do not penetrate the hair shaft’s cuticle.

So, ensure that the dye you choose is non-allergenic and gentle on your child’s hair.

Hi, I’m Rita Logsdon!

Founder of GretaBean, certified child development therapist, certified teacher, author, wife to Steve, and mom to our four (wonderful) children. Here you’ll find encouragment, ideas, recipes, activities for kids, organizing tips, and anything else that can make your day a little better! 🙂


Phone: 617-912-3176

3350 Rainy Day Drive
Boston, MA 02110