Is Ammonia-Free Hair Color the Best Choice?

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As much as we love the endless options that hair color can give us, there can be drawbacks. The truth is, hair color just really isn’t all that great for your hair and your body. That’s why hair color that’s ammonia-free has always caught our attention. But is it really that much better for you? 

“[Ammonia-free] may not actually be worse, but it is equally as harmful,” says celebrity colorist and owner of Juan Juan Salon in Beverly Hills, CA, Jennifer J. That’s because it still contains other chemicals, like peroxide, to activate the color when it is mixed together. However, “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,” Jennifer J explains.

If you want to keep your hair in the best condition possible, your best bet is semi-permanent vegetable color or a low-ammonia permanent color. That being said, if you’re trying to hide grey hair, ammonia-rich hair color is the most effective way to cover it.

While the hair color you choose does matter, there are a few other ways to get the best (and safest) results like not dying your hair at home. “The best color to use is always professional grade that’s in the hands of the professional and from a manufacturer who continues to work with research and development,” says celebrity hair stylist and owner of SLASH Salon in Santa Monica, CA, Carla Ross. If you want to safely color your hair while you're pregnant, you should also see a professional. 

The good news is that new and less-damaging hair color products are always being created. If you're dealing with any ammonia-related scalp issues, you'll want to read this surprising way to stop scalp irritation caused by hair dye.

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