ammonia free hair dye? bad idea right?

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    Before Thanksgiving I had my hair cut very short because of thinning. Have always had very thick hair and didn’t expect this side effect, especially after not loosing any hair on my previous treatments. Right before Christmas my son shaved it for me. The bald spots showing through were causing me too much stress.

    Some people look fantastic going natural without hair. I look freakish. Some people look adorable in hats. I look really dorky. I do have a couple of wigs. My husband and I can’t tell who wears a wig and who doesn’t. Most look really natural.

    Around home often go with nothing on my head. I actually don’t like wearing wigs. I think it goes with my personality of very rarely wearing heals, (preferring Birkenstock), and not being able to wear flip flops because I can’t stand anything between my toes. In public, I always wear a wig. I have one that looks like the style my hair has been. People who don’t know about my hair loss even mention how nice my hair looks.

    As for the hair dye question. My friend (going through chemo) was told to use something like Natural Instincts that didn’t have ammonia or peroxide in it.

    Do whatever you think will make you feel the best.


    Hi all,

    At our hospital we have several cosmostologists that work with the oncology center. They give tips and advice to patients dealing with chemo issues. They even sponsor workshops and make up sessions here. Several people I know have benefitted from their advice and counseling.

    Check with your oncology groups…you may find similar resources.

    Hugs to all dealing with this!



    You know Pam, I’ve had my share of bad things, but I also have a wonderful supportive husband, two beautiful accomplished daughters who don’t mind hanging around their parents. I started running in my mid 40’s and ran my first (and last) marathon in celebration of survival and turning 50.

    All of my cancers were caught early and if the words “lucky” and “you have cancer” can be said in the same sentence, then I guess it applies to me. I am no different then most people. I take the hand I am dealt and try to see the end of the tunnel.

    My heart goes out to your Lauren and your family. She is just too young to be facing this. I am sure you are a great support to her. Remember you need to take care of yourself as well.

    Happy New Year Pam…sending hugs and much love and support!


    Hi Randi,

    Thanks for the kind words about Lauren. I think you make a good point in that you need to choose what will make you comfortable so you can live your life. I don’t think it was such a big deal for Lauren because people stared at her all the time when she had hair and they stare at her when she doesn’t have hair. I always tell her it is because she is pretty and they are admiring her beauty. You make a good point when you said wigs were hot. That is another reason Lauren would not wear a wig. She gets really hot just wearing a hat! Randi, I cannot believe you have been dealt such a rotten hand in getting not one, but three different types of cancer. That is just not fair and I am sorry you have had to go through so much. You are an inspiration in that you keep on fighting no matter what is put in front of you. Wow. Take care and stay strong.

    Love, -Pam


    I went out Lauren’s caring bridge page. What a beauty! …and that smile! You would never know the struggles she must be going through.

    My hair thinned during chemo, but it’s pretty thick and even though it was probably pretty noticeable, I never focused on it except for the clumps that came out. I still had it dyed and cut every 6 weeks. I wish I had had the guts to cut it as short as Lauren’s but I am not as young as she is nor as pretty :)

    My Mom had lung cancer and bought a wig, but never really wore it because it was just too damn hot. But, by doing that and not feeling good about the way she looked, she spent many of her days home and in bed.

    I think how you want to look/feel is a personal decision and you should do what you are comfortable with.



    Some years ago I worked with a lady who had breast cancer, and she had surgery and followup radiation. I’m not sure about any of the details of her treatment, as she never said a word about any of it. She had obviously planned ahead, however. She must have had a wig made early on, and as soon as her hair started to thin, she began wearing it. It wasn’t until years later that most of us even knew she had cancer, and this was a small office of 20 to 30 people, which made it hard to conceal anything. When I was going through chemo a few years ago, my hair thinned, but it never got worse than that, plus most men just don’t care that much. For a woman, it is a completely different deal.


    Hi Lostsoul,

    My Lauren is only 25. So she is close to your age. She had really long, thick hair before chemo. She got it cut in a bob and donated it to Locks of Love. When the bob started getting too thin, she got a pixie cut. The pixie cut then got too thin so she had her boyfriend cut it really short, not shave it. I don’t think you need to shave it. Just cut it really short. Lauren is not embarrassed at all to be almost bald. It is her badge of courage. Personally, Lauren does not care for wigs. She thinks they look fake and can spot one a mile away. That is not to say you won’t feel better in one. It is a personal choice. That is the beauty of it. But since you asked for opinions, we give two votes to cutting your hair really short and leaving it the natural color. You can find a lot of really cute hats and scarves too. That is Lauren’s new thing. Slouchy yarn hats. As for your scalp bothering you, Lauren has an itchy scalp all of the time. She is constantly scratching. On the plus side, she can now get ready in like 20 minutes. She combs her hair with a little spray to hold it down and she is good to go. She still wears full makeup when she goes out and looks beautiful. You can check out picture of her on her caring bridge site. I hoped we have helped in some way. Take care and be proud of the fighter you are against this disease.

    Love, -Pam


    do you find the wigs look noticable? and can i wear then even if i still have some hair but its just short does it look more noticable if i have the hair? and what does it mean when my scalp hurts? like when you wear a ponytail too long kind of but certain spots at a time does that mean its gonna fall more?


    lostsoul…as far as I remember our Kris used to dye her hair without any complications during her chemo treatments. I am interested though to hear what others have to say about this important issue of hair loss and hair coloring.
    There are two things I would like to mention; one is the cold cap
    And the other is the variety of cool looking hats available. I am partial to hats and caps because, they can look so darn cute and come in a variety of shapes and colors.
    Although, I am not undergoing any type of cancer treatment caps and hats have become my answer to “bad hair days.” I have a feeling that your question will receive many answers and suggestions and I can’t wait to read up on it with you.
    All my best wishes,


    My personal opinion is that at your age you could pull off wearing some very hip hats or I would get a wig in some color you never thought of wearing before! Guess I would try to have some fun with it. HA, brings to mind a cruise with my parents some years ago. I found a big straw hat that actually had long blonde hair hanging from the back. I always had short dark hair. My dad didn’t know who I was, it was hysterical. I am sure you will look lovely no matter what you do, not sure about the dye though.


    okay after my 3rd cycle my hair has become very thin im afraid its gonna start becoming patchy or even more thin cause every time i wash it it comes out in about strands of ten all over my head every time i put my hands through it in the shower and for each wash it comes out and i cool dry it on lowand some more comes out. It gets itchy only sometimes but i was told it keeps getting thinner as i go on and sometimes it just hurts instead of being as itchy as it was before. i dont think it will come out completely but just patchy or really really really thin.

    To get to the point lol my hair was dark blonde and before i was diagnosed i dyed it only once almost black so of course right now i have greys coming through here and there my roots which are a different brown from my hair my old highlights from a year ago commign through brassy brown and the colour past my roots also fading brassy brown.

    I kno i know getting better is more imortant than my hair but is it bad to dye hair? it makes me self consious and its not gone enough to shave it (yet). my next appointment is my cat scan my first one. So i dont have to go in to see the doc and i feel stupid going in just to ask her that so i was gonna just leave it but i wanted to see your opinions its gonna keep fading and keep getting thin. Plus im going back home for a few days in the caribbean to be with my sis for a little before my scan. Im going to stay out of the sun as much as i can sun block hat and tunics but it might still fade even more. Im 27 so most of my friends do their nice colours and highlights too and we try to go out once in a while even if just for tea.
    If i use ammonia free hair dye is it still gonna irritate the scalp and make it more likely to fall out more? or if i do cornrows is that gonna make it thinner from the braids too? Do i just suck it up and deal with it and wear hats? I already had to cut my down to my butt hair to my ears on one side (i have a bob cut). But i guess id choose mutli colour thin hair over making any cancer spread. i am open to suggestions. My hairs not enough to shave and im tryin to keep it unless it gets really obviously patchy.

    Im trying to be as healthy as i can i gave up alcohol trying to eat healthy stay away from fumes as much as possible so i know its prob a really bad idea for the hair dye but what do you think?

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