Are you looking for insight on ammonia free hair color and dyes? Learn more on role of ammonia, side effects or dangers of ammonia in dyes, the no ammonia hair dye or the best hair colors without Ammonia and much more.
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What Are Ammonia Free Hair Color and Dyes
Ammonia free, non-ammonia or hair colors and dyes without ammonia refers to a type of hair dye, which do not contain ammonia. As you might know, ammonia is very important and plays various roles in hair dyes.
However, ammonia being one of the harsh chemical with some side effects, most of the leading manufacturers are turning to ammonia-free hair colors. Other than the effects which ammonia might have on your hair, prolonged exposure could have some health consequences.
Is Ammonia in Hair Dye– What Is Its Role
Ammonia, when added to a hair color or dye helps raise the pH, neutralize peroxide and other pigments as well as help open cuticle layer to ensure the hair color you are using can reach or penetrate your hair cortex. In addition, ammonia helps in color development, and it activates peroxide (acts as a catalyst when permanent hair color meets peroxide). Ammonia is particularly important for people who have grey hair since it tends to resist color. You will find hiding the grey root hairs using a hair dye or color particularly very difficult. This is where the use of ammonia becomes very important as you strive to ensure you hair is perfectly dyed.
Although it is a fact that that the cuticle is expanded enough to allow hair color to reach the cortex by ammonia, it has many side effects, which have seen to the surge in the number of companies making ammonia free hair dyes and colors. So what are some of the side effects of ammonia in hair dyes?
Side Effects and Dangers of Ammonia in Hair Colors and Dyes
We have seen that ammonia is very important in ensuring your hair cuticle is opened up for the hair color to reach the cortex. However, it is not without some side effects or dangers. So, what are some of these side effects of ammonia in hair dyes?
Moisture and Protein Loss – As ammonia in the hair color makes the cuticle to swell so as it can reach the cortex, moisture and protein loss in the hair occurs and this will damage your hair.
Raise pH – Ammonia raises the pH to extent it is not easy to return it normal by any physical means once you are through with your hair coloring. This will make the cuticle to remain open and more moisture and proteins will continue being lost.
You Need A lot of Pigment Content – Finally, since ammonia in hair dye will keep the cuticle open, you need to go for a hair dye with high pigment amounts since some will be lost as you rinse your hair. Furthermore, the excessive pigment neutralization (by peroxide ammonia) means higher pigment amounts required.
These are potential side effects of ammonia in hair color and they might affect some people while they do not affect others. They might not necessary affect everyone. You can still use hair dye with ammonia and everything turns out just fine with no hair damages.
Other than the above side effects on ammonia in hair colors and dyes, ammonia is generally a very harsh chemical. Furthermore, some people find the strong odor from ammonia a bit pungent hence will prefer ammonia free hair dyes.
Ammonia Free Hair Color – What they Are and How They Work
If case you seriously suffer from the side effects of ammonia in hair dyes, you need to go for ammonia free hair dyes. As the name suggests, they do not contain ammonia. Instead, other alkaline non-ammonia formulas are used to help swell the cuticle and perform the other roles that ammonia plays.
For instance, most of the ammonia free hair colors have Monoethanolamine (MEA), which has lesser of the above side effects. It is formed from reaction between ammonia and ethylene oxide. However, MEA molecules are about 3.5 times bigger than the size of ammonia and they might not work as effectively as ammonia.
However, if you want a genuinely ammonia free hair dye, you need to consider going for organic hair dyes and those from natural ingredients only. This is the surefire way of ensuring you do not expose your scalp or hair to harsh chemicals including ammonia.
Best Brands without Ammonia – Ammonia Free
We have seen what hair colors without ammonia often use to substitute with ammonia. It is time to mention some of the best ammonia free hair colors in the market. We reviewed a number of products before coming up with the list below, which has top brands you can go for.
- INOA Ammonia-Free Hair Color by L’Oreal Professionnel
- 100% ammonia free Organic Color Systems
- Garnier Olia Ammonia Free Permanent Hair Color
- Ammonia Free Natural Instincts – Clairol Hair Color
- Ammonia-Free Gray Coverage Hair Color – L’Oreal (Non Permanent)
- Chi Ionic Permanent Shine Ammonia-Free Hair Color
- SheaMoisture Moisture-Rich, Ammonia-Free Hair Color System
- Revlon Root Erase by ColorSilk Ammonia-Free Permanent Color
These are some of the best ammonia free hair colors. The above list of best ammonia free or non-ammonia hair color is not all-inclusive. You need to ensure you have done your own independent research on each of the above products, seen reviews it has received, ratings and comments.
However, if you want a truly ammonia free hair color or dye, and not the MEA based, you need to go for Organic Color Systems. It will ensure no damage of cuticle, superior looks, no staining of discomfort of your scalp, etc.
Should I Continue Using Ammonia Based Hair Colors and Dyes?
You are definitely scared having learnt some of the side effects of ammonia in hair dyes and colors. You are wondering whether you should continue using the ammonia based formula or not.
According to Jennifer J. a celebrity colorist Juan Salon in Beverly Hills, some of the ammonia free hair color still contains harmful ingredients such as peroxide to activate the color when they are mixed together. She says, “ammonia-free hair color is usually better for your hair than color with ammonia in it but it really depends on how much ammonia content the specific color line has in it.”
Using low ammonia based permanent hair color or semi permanent vegetable based hair color is still a good bet for people who find ammonia based hair dyes and colors to be working much better.