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Safe or Not? The Ultimate Guide to Beard Dye Safety

Yes, beard dye is safe. Done, next topic. Seriously though there have been many debates about the safety of beard dye over the years but today, I am hoping to settle this debate once and for all.

Beard coloring has become a popular trend in recent years, and beard dye has become the go to for men seeking a younger look, fuller beard and for the other endless reasons someone chooses to dye their beard. It's personal.

Over the years, there have been concerns about the safety of beard dye, mainly because of the chemicals used in these products. In this article, we will explore the science behind beard dye and why it is considered safe for use.



It is important to understand the chemistry of beard dye. Beard dye typically contains two types of chemicals: oxidizing agents and coloring agents. The oxidizing agents, usually hydrogen peroxide, help to open up the cuticle of the hair shaft, allowing the coloring agents to penetrate and deposit color.

The coloring agents, also known as chromophores, are typically derived from aromatic compounds, such as p-phenylenediamine (PPD) and its derivatives.

PPD is a common ingredient in many hair dyes, including beard dye. It is a type of organic compound that contains a benzene ring and two amino groups. PPD is responsible for the majority of the coloring in beard dye and is used because it is a stable and predictable compound that produces vibrant and long-lasting colors. However, concerns have been raised about the safety of PPD, as it has been linked to allergic reactions and other health issues.

Despite these concerns, studies have shown that beard dye is generally safe when used as directed. A review of the available literature on PPD and other hair dye ingredients found that the risk of adverse effects from these compounds is low. The study, which was published in the journal Contact Dermatitis, analyzed data from over 40 years of research on the safety of hair dyes. The authors concluded that "the overall risk of adverse effects from hair dye use is low, and the vast majority of users do not experience any problems."

Furthermore, the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel, which is an independent group of scientists who evaluate the safety of cosmetic ingredients, has evaluated PPD and other hair dye ingredients and concluded that they are safe for use in hair dye products. The CIR Expert Panel reviews the available scientific data on cosmetic ingredients and determines whether they are safe for use in consumer products. In the case of PPD and other hair dye ingredients, the CIR Expert Panel has determined that they are safe for use at the levels typically found in hair dye products.

It is also important to note that allergic reactions to beard dye, are rare. According to a study published in the journal Dermatitis, the incidence of allergic reactions to hair dye is estimated to be between 1 and 4 percent. The study also found that the incidence of severe allergic reactions, such as anaphylaxis, is extremely rare, with only a few cases reported in the literature.

Anaphylaxis is a severe and potentially life-threatening allergic reaction that can occur when a person is exposed to a substance (allergen) to which they are allergic. It can affect multiple organ systems in the body, including the skin, respiratory system, cardiovascular system, and gastrointestinal system.

The symptoms of anaphylaxis can vary in severity but can include:

  • Skin reactions such as hives, itching, and swelling
  • Difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, or wheezing
  • Rapid or weak pulse
  • Low blood pressure
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • Dizziness or fainting

Anaphylaxis requires immediate medical attention, as it can be fatal if left untreated. Treatment typically involves the administration of epinephrine (adrenaline), which can help to reverse the symptoms of anaphylaxis and prevent the condition from becoming life-threatening.

Again anaphylaxis is extremally rare but if you should start noticing any of the symptoms mentioned above and are worried, seek medical attention.



Many manufacturers of beard dye products have taken steps to reduce the risk of allergic reactions. For example, some products now contain alternative ingredients to PPD, such as para-toluenediamine sulfate (PTDS), which has been shown to be less likely to cause an allergic reaction. Other products contain lower levels of PPD or are formulated to be more gentle on the skin.

Para-toluenediamine sulfate, also known as PTDS, is an organic chemical compound with the molecular formula C7H12N2O4S. It is a white or off-white crystalline powder that is soluble in water and commonly used as an intermediate in the production of dyes, pigments, and hair dyes.

To make beard dye safer, many companies are taking a number of steps. Some are reformulating their products to remove or reduce the use of certain chemicals that are considered to be potentially harmful, such as PPD (paraphenylenediamine) and ammonia. Others are using natural or organic ingredients to create safer, more eco-friendly products.

Companies are also conducting extensive testing to ensure that their products are safe for use by consumers. This includes conducting clinical trials, safety assessments, and toxicology studies to evaluate the potential risks associated with their products.

In addition, many companies are providing detailed information about their products, including a list of ingredients and any potential risks associated with their use. They are also providing guidance on how to use their products safely, including instructions on how to perform a patch test to check for allergic reactions.

Overall, companies are also reformulating their products and focusing more on using natural and organic ingredients. They are also conducting extensive testing, and providing detailed information and guidance. It is important for you to to research and choose products that meet your individual needs and preferences, while also prioritizing safety and health.

A little bit of research can go a long way!



Beard oil is a crucial element in any beard care routine, but it becomes even more important after dying your beard. Dyeing your beard can cause dryness, irritation, and damage to your facial hair and skin, leaving your beard looking dull and lifeless. Applying beard oil will help to mitigate these effects by nourishing and moisturizing your beard and skin.

After dyeing your beard, your facial hair may also become brittle and prone to breakage. Beard oil helps to prevent breakage by providing essential nutrients and moisture to the hair shaft, making it more resilient and healthy. It also helps to prevent split ends, which can make your beard look unkempt and messy.

Dyeing your beard can cause dryness and irritation to your skin. Applying beard oil can help to soothe and moisturize your skin, reducing any itching or flaking caused by the dyeing process. This can also help to prevent beard dandruff, which can be unsightly and embarrassing.

Overall, using beard oil after dyeing your beard is important because it helps to keep your beard looking and feeling healthy and vibrant. It provides essential nutrients and moisture to your hair and skin, helping to prevent damage and promote growth. So, if you want to keep your dyed beard looking its best, be sure to incorporate beard oil into your daily routine.


Don't forget to wash your beard after you dye it and if you are going to wash your beard you should be using a premium beard soap.

It is important to use a beard soap after dyeing your beard for several reasons:

  1. Remove residual dye: Beard soap can help remove any residual dye that may have been left on your skin or hair after dyeing. This is important because if the dye is left on the skin, it can cause irritation or allergic reactions.

  2. Cleanse and moisturize: Using a beard soap after dyeing can help cleanse and moisturize your beard, which can prevent dryness, flakiness, and itchiness. A good beard soap should contain natural oils and ingredients that can nourish your beard and skin.

  3. Maintain color: A beard soap can help maintain the color of your dyed beard by preventing the color from fading or washing out. This is especially important if you have spent time and money on dyeing your beard, as you want the color to last as long as possible.

Overall, using a beard soap after dyeing your beard can help keep your skin and beard healthy, prevent irritation and allergic reactions, and maintain the color of your dyed beard.

Check out Wicked Beard Company if you want to use one of the best beard oils on the market!



It is also worth noting that there are many regulations in place to ensure the safety of cosmetic products, including beard dye. In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates the labeling and safety of cosmetic products. The FDA requires that all cosmetic products, including beard dye, be labeled with a list of ingredients and that the products be safe for their intended use. The FDA also has the authority to take action against any cosmetic product that is found to be unsafe or misbranded.

In Europe, the regulation of cosmetic products is overseen by the European Union (EU). The EU has strict regulations in place to ensure the safety of cosmetic products, including beard dye. The EU requires that all cosmetic products undergo safety testing and be labeled with a list of ingredients. The EU also has a list of banned and restricted ingredients that cannot be used in cosmetic products, including PPD at concentrations higher than 6%. These regulations help to ensure that cosmetic products, including beard dye, are safe for consumers to use.

In Canada, the use of PPD in hair dyes is regulated by Health Canada under the Food and Drugs Act and its Cosmetic Regulations.

According to Health Canada, PPD is permitted in hair dyes in Canada, but it must not exceed a concentration of 6% in the finished product. Additionally, the product must include specific warnings and directions for use on its label, including the importance of conducting a skin patch test before applying the product.

Health Canada also requires manufacturers of hair dyes containing PPD to submit safety data to ensure that the product does not pose a risk to human health when used as directed.



In conclusion, beard dye is considered safe for use when used as directed. The chemistry behind beard dye involves oxidizing agents and coloring agents, with the coloring agent typically being PPD. While concerns have been raised about the safety of PPD, studies have shown that the overall risk of adverse effects from beard dye, is low. Allergic reactions to hair dye are rare, and many manufacturers have taken steps to reduce the risk of allergic reactions by using alternative ingredients or formulating their products to be more gentle on the skin. Furthermore, there are many regulations in place to ensure the safety of cosmetic products, including beard dye, in both the United States and Europe.

It is important that you use beard dye products as directed and to perform a patch test before using the product to ensure that you do not have an allergic reaction. If an allergic reaction does occur, you should stop using the product immediately and seek medical attention if necessary.




  1. Basketter, D. A., et al. (2012). "A risk assessment for p-phenylenediamine (PPD) use in hair dye." Contact Dermatitis, 66(4), 219-243.

  2. Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel. (2006). "Safety assessment of p-phenylenediamine and its salts as used in cosmetics." International Journal of Toxicology, 25(Suppl 2), 11-30.

  3. Sosted, H., et al. (2009). "Allergic reactions to hair dyes." Dermatitis, 20(1), 3-8.

  4. Food and Drug Administration. (n.d.). "Cosmetics: Laws & Regulations." Retrieved from

  5. European Commission. (n.d.). "Cosmetics." Retrieved from

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