Just because you're pregnant doesn't mean your roots have to start showing—but when it comes to coloring your hair, it's smart to use some caution. "In general, it appears to be safe to color your hair during pregnancy, although there are no scientific studies that have conclusively determined this," says Ashley Roman, MD, an OB-GYN in New York City. There are some things you can do to minimize the potential risks:
- If possible, try not to let the dye touch your scalp
- Consider highlights (the dye solution doesn't come in contact with the scalp and is covered in foil)
- Wait to color your hair until after the first trimester, when baby's organs are forming
During your first trimester, you can alternately try an all-natural hair color, like indigo, black walnut hull powder or even tomato juice. Later in your pregnancy, cut back on chemicals in easy ways by looking for dye with little or no ammonia or peroxide. If you color your own hair, pick the brand with the least number of chemicals on the label, work in a well-ventilated room, don't leave the dye on for longer than necessary and wear gloves to keep the chemicals from passing through your skin. If you go to a salon, ask for the earliest possible appointment to minimize your exposure to chemicals.