Mother left scarred for life after hair dye caused allergic reaction

Mother, 31, is left scarred for life after rash caused by allergic reaction to hair dye spread across her entire body during 15 months of ‘living hell’

  • Tammy Parker warning others about dying their hair without first doing skin test
  • Mother-of-two used Clairol black dye but woke up next day with severe swelling
  • She had a swollen ‘cone-shaped’ head and a rash over her face, neck and chest
  • Ms Parker, from Hull, East Yorks, has been scarred for life but now blames herself

A mother claims to have suffered 15 months of ‘living hell’ as a horrific rash spread over her entire body after a bad reaction to hair dye left her scarred for life.

Tammy Parker, 31, is warning others about the dangers of dying their hair without doing a skin test after she spent a year battling an itchy and painful rash.

The mother-of-two had used the same brand for nine years and thought nothing of touching up her roots with the Clairol Nice ‘N Easy permanent dye.

But the next morning Tammy claims she woke up to a pillow drenched with black dye, a swollen ‘cone-shaped’ head and a rash over her face, neck and chest.


Tammy Parker, 31, is warning others about the dangers of dying their hair without doing a skin test after she spent a year battling an itchy and painful rash

Tammy claims she woke up to a pillow drenched with black dye, a swollen ‘cone-shaped’ head and a rash over her face, neck and chest

While the initial rash cleared up in a week, Tammy says it then spread to her arms, legs and stomach

Doctors later told Tammy that she was suffering an allergic reaction and prescribed antibiotics, steroid tablets, steroid cream and antihistamines.

While the initial rash cleared up in a week, Tammy says it then spread to her arms, legs and stomach.

She’s now been left with permanent scarring due to scratching the rash during the night.

Full-time parent Tammy, from Hull, East Yorkshire, has been forced to chop off eight inches of damaged hair and will never be able to dye it again.

She said: ‘It has been awful. The past 15 months have been a living hell. I can honestly say it has ruined my life.

‘I’m covered in scars and I’ll never be able to dye my hair again. I dyed my hair at the end of January just before a night out.

‘Looking back at a photo from that night now, my head was so swollen it had gone cone-shaped.

‘When I woke up in the morning my pillow was doused in black hair dye. I also had a rash all over my face, the back of my neck and behind my ears.


Full-time parent Tammy, from Hull, East Yorkshire, has been forced to chop off eight inches of damaged hair and will never be able to dye it again (shown right, swelling to Tammy’s face)

Tammy has now been left with permanent scarring due to scratching the rash during the night

‘I knew then I must be having an allergic reaction but it was a Sunday so I couldn’t get a doctor’s appointment until the next morning.

‘It was so itchy I would scratch in the night and wake up bleeding. If you just touched one of the bumps of the rash it would drop off and bleed.

‘I was all swollen and gained weight from the steroids, I felt disgusting and drained of all energy. Parts of that year are just a horrible blur.

‘I spent all of last summer in the blistering heat, wrapped up trying to hide my red skin. I’ve got permanent scars now but I’m trying to accept it.’

After first using the permanent black dye, Tammy noticed a pea-sized lump on her neck and a trip to the doctors confirmed it was a minor allergic reaction and the mum was told to keep an eye on it – but it cleared up in two days.

As she had used the same hair product so many times before, Tammy never even considered the thought the dye could be culprit and used Nice ‘N Easy again at the end of January. 


Tammy, 31, said she will never let her ten-year-old daughter Aimee (pictured) dye her own hair

Doctors later told Tammy that she was suffering an allergic reaction and prescribed antibiotics, steroid tablets, steroid cream and antihistamine

But what should have been a simple touch-up of her roots sparked a 15-month nightmare and Tammy is only just starting to feel herself again.

While Tammy insists she has nobody to blame but herself for the agony she endured, Clairol manufacturers Coty issued a statement.

A spokeswoman for Coty said: ‘The safety of the people who use our products is our first and most important priority so we’re very concerned to hear about Tammy’s experience.

‘Allergic reactions are very rare and hair colourants are extensively researched to ensure they are safe when used as directed.

‘We would appreciate it very much if Tammy would contact us to discuss the matter further.

‘For further information, Clairol has spent decades on research for an alternative to these dyes to reduce this type of risk.

‘We remain committed to making hair colour a safe and enjoyable experience.’

After first using the permanent black dye, Tammy noticed a pea-sized lump on her neck and a trip to the doctors confirmed it was a minor allergic reaction

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