Dying hair is not considered much in terms of long-term safety, more so about how long can you go before you drench your hair in paint again. I certainly viewed it this way the few times I’ve dyed my hair and required follow-up maintenance. But times have changed and the collective group of women willing to be educated are aware of the chemicals dangers in existence and on the rise. Last night, I had the responsibility of considering whether I will dye with my mane with Naturint Permanent Hair Color, claiming to be safer than regular dyes (already purchased), or skip the vanity and leave as is, or experiment with Henna dye.
The following article about the risks , although very neutral, had me in a stupefied state.
I don’t dye my hair frequently and I don’t want to anymore. As a matter of fact, I’ve sprouted two “gray” hairs more akin to a silvery snow that I’ve grown fond of. I don’t care to see them go. But from my last ventures into hair color, I have slight discoloration. It’s only visible in the sun from my natural dark brown/black hair, but its there. I was even going to name my two strands of wisdom but if I’m going to darken them out, there is no point in becoming attached.
Growing up, I had an uber-conservative mom when it came to beauty. She never died her hair, barely wore make-up, and other practical fixins considered to be normal in society for a lady. She grew up a poor and humble country girl where these things were not needed for survival. She once told me if I ever dyed my hair, I would not be her daughter. Being raised in Miami where the masses all have the same sun-bleached brain, there was no way I could not join the sheep herd and dye my woolen hair. But the peer pressure and curiosity got the best of me. Against momma’s will, my best friend and a Loreal bottle colored my hair into the color of a rusty trumpet.
Mom remained in smoldering silence when she saw the hot mess. Of course, money had to spent on salvaging my straw mop head. The chemicals must have reached portions of my brain because I can’t remember who footed the rescue bill, but I do know she let me remain her baby girl. As usual, my dear ‘ol momma was right. We just have an innate preference for the natural in my family, whether its the way we were brought up or our indifference to popular opinion. I want my God-given hair to stay as it is. At this point in adolescence, I went back to black.
Naturally, an unwritten ethos from a whimsical spaz is easy to forsake in times if fashion kicks and identity switches. I dyed it for my wedding with some lighter and with some golden tones to catch and glimmer in the sun’s reflection. A year later, I’m back to my natural kick and want it dark again. And I’m apprehensive. Should I leave it and wait a few years until it grows back all dark, or hasten the restoration of balance?
We can’t protect ourselves from all every and all chemicals. “Every year 1700 new chemicals are approved — that’s an average of five a day.” (The Autoimmune Epidemic). We can buy a water filter for our kitchen faucet and still have residual chemicals, or drink bottled water that’s been leaching plastic particles in the overheated truck its being shipped in. I’m doing a full on detox, but when the pain is insufferable I must take some man-tinkered pill. We can use everything organic, but we step outside and we’re breathing smog. But I can make a decision for my next move whether to invite a risk that’s I’m suddenly painfully aware of. Where is the balance?
I was feeling the stress of all the tiny decisions that come with having a hypersensitive, body begging nature to overpower my faulty immune, whilst living in a highly toxic city and society. Considering I was going to dye my hair anyway with regular dye, using a healthier one will not kill me today. Just like we can’t prevent your kids from every stupid decision that comes across their head, like trying to give yourself blond highlights without a pro in the room, I cannot prevent myself from every dirty little compound that might affect me. I’ve learned how to read one more label and to research even deeper before purchasing products that we’re never much of a concern before.
My hair is a solid chestnut brown and is looking pretty healthy. The product itself was great and I would recommend it to anyone who colors their locks regularly and would like a healthier option. But the paranoia I went through about scabbing, follicles rejecting my hair, and a Lupus flare-up: not worth it. Not to mention my friend’s dad was talking to me about cancer half the time. Next time I go with the henna. Or grow it out. I already miss the two little testaments of time that were trying to make a point.