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Last updated: October 08, 2021

COVID-19: Can It Cause Allergic Reactions To Haircolor?

allergic reaction rash from hair color after having COVID-19
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Screenshot from the BBC

UK Stylists Notice Clients Who Had COVID-19 Are Developing Allergies To Haircolor

Besides causing hair loss, stylists are noticing another symptom in their clients who have had COVID-19—sudden allergic reactions to haircolor.


UK stylists are reporting clients developing rashes and burns in response to haircolor even if the clients have never had allergic reactions before, according to the BBC. One UK woman and her stylist told the BBC that despite using the same haircolor for a decade, she developed a reaction after a required patch test.


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UK woman had an allergic reaction to haircolor after having COVID-19
Screenshot from the BBC


“I thought, oh it’s a little bit of an extra faff, having to come into the salon and wait 48 hours when all I wanted to do is get my hair colored,” Gemma told the BBC. ‘However, thank goodness [my stylist] put that policy in place.”


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The day after her patch test, Gemma felt a “really hot, burning sensation” behind her ear, which worsened “to the point where it had taken layers of skin” from behind her ear, she told the BBC. Gemma had COVID-19 in January.


Gemma’s stylist, Stacey Klein, owner of Major Extensions in Owestry, Shropshire, began compulsory patch testing as required by the UK trade board for stylists, the National Hair & Beauty Federation. Stacey said she put the policy in place after hearing about other clients having allergic reactions.


RELATED: Download COVID-19 waivers, client health questionnaires and cleaning checklists


UK stylist noticing allergic reactions to hair color after COVID-19
Major Extensions owner Stacey Klein (right) with client Gemma. Screenshot from the BBC


“I was picking up and seeing a lot of reports from stylists and salon owners saying that people were having these new reactions that weren’t having them before, so it really alerted me that something is going on here,” she told the BBC.



“One of the things [COVID-19] seems to be able to do is to reprogram and tune up and tune down different parts of the immune system,” Danny Altmann, a professor of immunology at Imperial College in London, told the BBC. Scientists at the college are researching how the disease affects the immune system.


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