Is Ammonia Bad for Your Hair + Ammonia Free Hair Color Brands: Previously, every girl’s dream was to achieve jet black hair with the right amount of volume. But now, it has become a trend to have colored hair. The colors are not just limited to browns and burgundy, they can be pink, green, yellow, blue, blonde and whatever color you can ever imagine. The bolder the color, the better it looks. But, as usual, with all the good things, comes along bad things as well. So here come the chemicals are known as “hydrogen peroxide” and “ammonia”. Usually, all hair colors have hydrogen peroxide, a colorant and ammonia in it which is why they bleach the hair and impart the respective color to it.
Why is Ammonia Used in Hair Color
The process of coloring:
To impart color to the hair, it has to first be bleached so as to remove the original color of the hair. To bleach, the hair, extremely diluted “hydrogen peroxide” is used. The same compound which is used as a disinfectant at room temperature and is a strong oxidizing agent. Oxidizing agents basically break down the original compound thereby altering the structure of the compound.
Along with this, another compound called ammonia is used so that the hydrogen peroxide can reach the hair shaft. Along with these two compounds, a colorant is used in order to give the desired color to hair and also to stop oxidization from happening further and neutralizing the effect of ammonia and hydrogen peroxide. For some people who have sensitive skin, hair coloring also brings about scalp irritating, itchiness and rashes.
Why is Ammonia Bad for You
Ammonia has a pungent smell and it causes hair to lose its natural moisture, strips off natural oils of the scalp and causes the natural color of the hair to fade.
When the natural color of the hair is bleached out, hair becomes brittle, dull and rough because bleaching penetrates into the hair shaft thereby removing the natural pigment and natural oils present in the hair. This compound enters the shaft and breaks down the pigment that imparts natural color to hair.
For some people who have sensitive skin, hair coloring also brings about scalp irritating, itchiness and rashes.
But we have some good news out there! Research has proven that hair can be colored without the usage of ammonia.
But the sad news is that even though alternates to hydrogen peroxide can be found, the functionality of those alternative compounds won’t change. They will still have the same old bleaching and damaging effect. But the harms of ammonia can be reduced to a great extent. Ammonia free hair colors are now available in the market.
The only disadvantage is that ammonia free hair colors won’t last in the hair as long as those hair colors which had ammonia.
It is very important to know that hair colors which last long and brands claim them to be ammonia free are mostly false. If the color is permanent or long-lasting, it has to contain ammonia or equally strong chemicals like alcohol, ethanol, etc.
A few brands that claim to have ammonia free coloring include the following:
- Schwarzkopf – mild hair color that lasts up to 15 to 20 shampoo depending on the color of the hair
- L’Oreal – ammonia-free hair color which lasts up to 28 shampoos and gives a glossy shine to the hair covering up the grays. It has a delicate smell
- Clairol – gentle and conditioning hair color that lasts up to 28 shampoos and has Aloe Vera in it.
- Garnier – gentle and gives a vibrant shine to the hair,
- Wella Professionals – ammonia free color that lasts up to 10 to 15 shampoos
- Godrej- contains aloe protein and doesn’t make the hair rough, lasts long and doesn’t cause itchiness or irritation in the scalp