There is a long list of items that fall under, “Can not do while pregnant,” some are widely known, others not so much. Alcohol? Definitely not. Lunch meat? Nope. Getting a tattoo? Risky. And, while most professionals agree on what not to do while pregnant, there are some activities that experts don’t always agree on. One of those activities? Dying your hair in the first trimester.
As always, please consult with your healthcare team prior to participating in any activities that may be risky to you or your baby.
Can you dye your hair in the first trimester of pregnancy?
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, “Most experts think that using hair dye during pregnancy is not toxic for your fetus.” They note, however, that permanent, semi-permanent and temporary hair dye do contain chemicals. But, “Studies on animals show that high doses of these chemicals do not cause serious birth defects. Also, only a small amount of chemicals from hair dye is absorbed through the scalp.”
Some experts argue that you should wait until the second trimester to dye your hair as the first trimester is a time of intense growth and development for the fetus where major organs and systems are forming.
If you do decide to dye your hair during your first trimester, or any time in your pregnancy for that matter, special care should be taken. This includes:
Be in a well-ventilated area. If you’re in a salon, tell them you are pregnant and ask to take a walk outside if the smell is too intense. If you’re doing your own hair at home, make sure to open windows and turn on bathroom fans.
Wear gloves. Avoid getting the dye on any additional parts of your body that might cause unnecessary exposure to chemicals in the dye.
Be aware of skin conditions. Pregnancy can increase the sensitivity of your skin. If you already get irritation when using hair dye, it will likely be worse during pregnancy. If you don’t usually have any skin irritation, don’t be surprised if your skin reacts differently during pregnancy.
What our expert has to say…
We asked labor and delivery nurse, Ashley Sousa, the expert that leads our Childbirth 101 on-demand class, what her thoughts on the matter were.
“When it comes to caring for yourself during pregnancy, everyone has different comfort levels,” says Ashley. “Some of us may feel comfortable dying our hair during pregnancy while others don’t want to take the risk — and that’s ok! After you’ve done your own research, make a decision that feels most comfortable to you. If you have eczema, psoriasis, or have breaks in your skin you should talk with your provider as those tiny areas may absorb more chemicals than usual. Following the above recommendations are encouraged as well!”
No matter what you decide when it comes to coloring your hair, one thing is for sure: you’ll want to prepare for baby’s arrival. Our on-demand class bundle, The Expecting Bundle, gives you our Childbirth 101 class AND our Baby 101 class to help you feel confident and ready when it comes time to give birth to and bring your baby home. Check it out here.