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Health tips: hair dye doesn't cause cancer but needs alert

(People's Daily Online)

14:43, September 04, 2012

(People's Daily Overseas Edition)

Recently, the globally renowned hair stylist Vidal Sassoon passed away at the age of 84. According to sources, Sassoon had suffered from leukemia for two years and many people suspect that his death had something to do with the fact that he contacted hair dye for a long period. Does hair dye cause cancer? Can it be used frequently?

Hair dye is not so terrible

Almost all hair dye products in markets and professional hair saloons contain chemical substances and the so-called "natural vegetal hair dye" is usually an advertising trick. P-phenylenediamine is the most effective substance of hair dye. Without it, it is hard to fix the color on the hair.

Then, does p-phenylenediamine cause cancer? The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) once assessed the connection between hair dye and cancer and the results showed that there is no competent proof proving that hair dye causes cancer. Actually, hair dye is like smoking. Although it is not that every smoker will get lung cancer, lung cancer is closely connected with smoking. Similarly, hair dye is indeed harmful to the human body, but it is unclear how and when it harms the body.

Try as much as possible to avoid contact between hair dye and skin of head

If one needs to dye hair, here are some health tips.

1) Choose an accepted product meeting national standards and avoid using counterfeited or inferior products. Do not dye hair frequently. The one who is allergic to hair dye must not dye hair.

2) Try as much as possible to avoid direct contact between hair dye and skin of head.

3) Wash hair several times after dying it in order to reduce the remains of hair dye on hair. While washing hair, do not scratch skin of head.

4) Do not dye hair while you are pregnant, especially in the first three months of pregnancy. Contacting hair dye may cause an abnormality of the child.

5) The one whose has the furuncle, carbuncle, seborrheic dermatitis or skin injury on the face or head, has a low immunity or has just recovered from an illness of any kind had better not dye hair.

Read the Chinese version: 常用染发剂会致癌吗

Source:People's Daily Overseas Edition , author: Yang Xichuan.

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