Should I wait to get my hair done following the Covid-19 vaccine?

Just a day after reopening, some Irish salons received cancellations after there was talk of a correlation between hair coloring and allergic reactions for those who received the Covid-19 vaccine.

Bridget Haren, former president of the Hairdressers Association of Ireland and owner of an Ennis-based salon, told RTÉ yesterday that the manufacturing and insurance companies she works with have introduced mandatory skin tests because “people have had allergic reactions “.

“Our insurance companies, our manufacturing companies have changed things like skin testing. We would always have done skin tests before, but now it’s mandatory, you have to have a skin test, ”Haren told Morning Ireland.

“Within two weeks of the injection they say don’t get your hair colored just because we’re looking at what’s going on overseas and we’re seeing the indications that it’s got.”

We asked Danielle Kennedy, Managing Director of The Collective by Lloyds and President of the Irish Hairdressers Federation, for more information on the topic.

When have we talked about people reacting to hair coloring after vaccination?

“We started talking about it in March in the Irish Hairdressers’ Federation. We thought we needed to do a patch test if people got a vaccine because that was the talk coming from Europe and the UK. Uni There was a lot of confusion.

“They were looking to introduce policies like skin testing because their salons opened earlier than us. But they ultimately did not implement these policies because there was not enough evidence to suggest it.

“At the office this morning, I was talking to our administrator and there were lounges ringing to say people were canceling appointments. It’s just important to clarify this as much as possible so that people can make their own decisions. ”

So do I have to wait two weeks for my hair to be colored after receiving the vaccine?

“In the end, there was no legislation on it. There is not enough evidence to support it. Initially the discussion lasted about two weeks, then it was ‘recently’ but there are no official guidelines and there is not enough data to support anything about it, ”Kennedy says.

The Irish Hairdressing and Beauty Industry Confederation has also not been made aware of any data to support the claims.

“To date, the HABIC has not seen and is not aware of any evidence to support or confirm the rumors regarding the need to wait two weeks after vaccination against COVID-19 before obtaining a staining service. or treatment, ”said a spokesperson.

What should I do if I am afraid of having a reaction?

“For customers, we would say if you’ve recently had a vaccine or if you’ve had Covid you should check with your doctor [before getting a colour]”says Kennedy.

“What we are seeing and what I see in my own salon is that most doctors say everything is fine. Some doctors advise people on the matter, but it is not for the salons to decide. doctor deals with case by case on the basis of what they want to recommend.

“I’ve had a few people asking about this in my living rooms over the past week and I’ve said the same to them. If anyone has any concerns I tell them to see their doctor and so far I have not had anyone whose doctor said not to come. Anyone who wants a skin test can get one. There is nothing wrong with doing a patch test.

The HABIC gives a similar recommendation. “[We] In general, recommend that clients come to the salon for an allergy alert test before any treatment. Allergy warning tests, also known as patches or skin tests, are the standard and best practice in the hairdressing and beauty industry.

“Customers may be asked to come to the salon for a patch test in accordance with product manufacturers’ guidelines and salon insurance policies, this varies by brand and salon to salon. other. The protocol is standard and is best practice across the industry and is a preventative measure to help protect clients from reactions.

“If a client has additional concerns regarding the Covid-19 vaccination, it is recommended that the client seek the advice of a healthcare professional and also undergo a skin test before going to their appointment. for a treatment or a service. “

What should I do if I own a salon?

“Our official advice to salon owners to check with their insurance company if they have any color requirements or additional vaccine testing advice,” Kennedy said on behalf of the Irish Federation of Hairdressers.

“From what we can see, most don’t have any additional requirements. Their advice is just to follow the manufacturers guidelines. I can’t say 100% won’t have any requirements, but this seems to be the most I have seen.

“I would tell people to check with their manufacturers, because most insurance policies require you to follow your manufacturers’ guidelines.

“Again, it seems most don’t have additional guidelines for skin tests and vaccines, but that depends on the manufacturer.”

Could my reaction be from a canned dye rather than the vaccine?

“This seems to be where a lot of the confusion lies. Because a lot of people walked out of the salon, a lot of people need to have a new skin test anyway because they used canned dyes. The vaccine is a separate issue, but there seems to be a bit of confusion between the two.

“It’s okay to have a skin test anyway. If you have any concerns before your visit, take a new skin test. A lot of people will need it anyway.

The HABIC highlights how long it has been since people went to hairdressers for advice.

“Reactions can arise for a variety of reasons. Clients have been away from salons for at least 20 weeks in 2021 and in many cases even longer. Many clients had their last appointment in December or before the second lockdown in October. It is important that customers attend a patch test if requested to do so. “

What’s your final tip for salon owners who receive cancellations?

“We’re just telling people to check with their insurers if they have any additional requirements, to check with the color companies and manufacturers to see if they have any additional requirements outside of your normal skin testing procedures, and so on. ‘they don’t have any, it’s up to the client to check with their doctor if they have specific advice about them, ”explains Kennedy.