How to care for your hair this Holi

It is an irony that the efforts we make through the year to keep our skin and hair looking healthy and beautiful, are forgotten on Holi. Dr Sonal Shah of Richfeel Trichology Centre, talks about the side effects of synthetic colours used during Holi and shares tips to prevent hair damage.

Harmful toxins

Holi colours, both dry and liquid, strip your hair off its natural sheen and lustrous quality, making it dry and frizzy. This causes permanent damage to your scalp resulting in hair loss and dandruff.

The synthetic colours available in the market comprise of toxic components such as lead oxide, engine oil, diesel, chromium iodine and copper sulphate which lead to rashes on the skin, allergies, pigmentation, frizzy hair and eye irritation. In extreme cases, it can cause serious skin diseases and clogging of hair cuticles resulting in severe hair damage.


Follow these simple precautions to enjoy Holi:

1. Avoid synthetic colours and powdered dyes. Instead opt for skin-friendly vegetable or natural colours.

2. Apply a thick layer of moisturizer, petroleum jelly or coconut oil on your face and other exposed parts to prevent dyes and colours from coming into direct contact with your skin.

3. Oil your hair and scalp with olive, coconut or castor oil. Add a few drops of lemon juice to prevent dandruff and infection triggered by the chemical colours.

4. Wrap a bandanna around your head to prevent direct contact with the colours.

5. A mixture of jojoba and rosemary oil can also be applied to make the right base for your hair and prevent the harmful colours from settling down.

Natural colours

Dry rose petals and petals of other flowers can be powdered and used as dry colour (gulal). They are safe and good for the scalp. The use of natural colours made with vegetables and fruits should be encouraged.

Image: Flickr Creativecommons Facemepls

Dr Sonal Shah

Dr Shah is India’s first certified trichologist. She will answer your questions on hair and scalp care in an exclusive chat on March 18 at 2 p.m. IST. Post your questions here!