Claim for an Allergic Reaction to Hair Dye

Can you tell me if it is possible to make a claim for an allergic reaction to hair dye? I suffered a severe reaction to the product and have been ill for days with allergic contact dermatitis.

In order to make a claim for an allergic reaction to hair dye you must be able to establish and prove that your allergic reaction developed due to negligence of a third party. If you applied the hair dye yourself, a claim for compensation for allergic contact dermatitis from hair dye is likely to be complicated and you will need to speak with a personal injury solicitor about your case find out if a claim is possible.

Hair dye contains a number of chemicals which are known to cause allergic reactions, although it is a substance called paraphenylenediamine (PPD) that is most commonly associated with a severe reaction to hair dye. This compound is involved in more than two thirds of cases.

The European Union has introduced legislation covering the use of PPD in hair dyes. It is not illegal, but concentrations of this potentially harmful substance have now been limited to 6%. For some countries this European directive was not sufficient and PPD bans have been introduced, although no such ban has yet been introduced in Ireland.

If you purchased hair dye in a shop in Ireland which contained a higher concentration of PPD than is allowable by law, a claim for an allergic reaction to hair dye may be possible against the store where the item was purchased for supplying a banned product.

Even if the product packaging states a legal concentration of this substance, you should retain the bottle. It is possible that a claim could be made against the manufacturer if the concentration was higher than stated on the packaging. If you no longer have the product it does not necessarily mean that you will not be able to make a claim for allergic contact dermatitis from hair dye, although your case is likely to be more complicated.

If you suffered a severe reaction to hair dye in a salon, a claim is likely to be more straightforward. Beauty salon claims for allergic reactions can be made for the failure of the staff to either advise you of the health risks from hair dye, or if a skin patch test was not performed. The skin patch test should have been completed at least 24 hours before the application of the hair dye, with 48 hours being preferable. This length of time is required to check for an allergic response. If insufficient time had been allowed to check for an allergy, this would be classed as negligence and a claim would be possible.

There are a number of procedures which must be completed to ensure that beauty salon claims for allergic reactions can be made. Even if the staff or manager was aware of your allergic reaction prior to you leaving a salon, a report must be made in writing in the salon’s accident book. You should also arrange for a friend or family member to take photographs of the severity of your allergic response. Your medical records will be used as proof of injury, although photographs are important in a claim for a severe reaction to hair dye in a salon.

Regardless of the circumstances of your allergic contact dermatitis from hair dye, it is essential that you seek a medical examination for your condition and thereafter legal advice from a solicitor as soon as possible.



This is an Information site only – if you feel you have a potential claim, you should discuss your situation with a solicitor registered with the Law Society of Ireland.