An image of 4 women, all with bright-colored hair

Coloring Your Hair with Hepatitis C 

Having hepatitis C does not prevent you from getting your hair colored or permed. However, before you get any type of process on your hair, think it through. I was afraid of so many things and did a lot of research. Here are some facts to consider before coloring your hair with Hep C.

Safety issues

I found all kinds of evidence to support the serious consequences of hair color. Some studies link it with cancer. While reading about the way it can penetrate your skin, or get into your system, I got all freaked out. Remember, I treated on the old long-term hepatitis C treatment that lasted a year. We lost our hair on that stuff. I ended up wearing a wig for a while, so coloring didn’t even matter at that point. Everyone has to choose what is right for themselves. If you are in doubt, ask your doctor for personal advice for your level of health.

How about liver health

If you just found out you have the virus, there may be no need to worry at all. However, if you have any stage of cirrhosis, you might want to take some steps to protect your liver.

Where to go

If you go to a salon, it’s much easier. No fuss, no muss. However, the quality of air may be very poor. Some places simply do not have enough ventilation. If they are doing fake nails in there as well, the room could be full on toxic fumes. That’s why I colored at home. I ran a fan while applying my color to pull the odor away from me. Then I moved to a larger room with a ceiling fan and the back door cracked to let fresh air in. With end-stage liver disease, I took every precaution.

What to use

Some people use hair color from the health food store. These contain henna, or other natural ingredients. Most of them don’t contain chemicals or dyes. They didn’t work for me. I have dark hair and needed really good coverage for gray. I chose one brand and stuck to it. I did allow my roots to grow out (a lot) between colorings. Then I would use a spray to cover them. That way I could go 8 to 10 weeks without doing a total color job.

Learning to chill

I read an article about people who colored their hair bright neon after getting cancer. It was a way to feel better about themselves. Sometimes friends would get their hair colored in solidarity. It helped me to put things into perspective when I realized that the battle against hep C was a hard one.

Eventually, I came to understand that a deadly virus was breeding in my liver. Some of my body’s functions were not that strong because of ascites, hepatic encephalopathy, and varices. I wanted to feel good while getting ready for treatment. Looking good was a big part of feeling good. I personally think that coloring your hair with hepatitis C can be part of your overall look better, feel better, get cured plan.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The HepatitisC.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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