Dangerous ingredient in your shampoo causing hair loss

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You should choose your shampoo and conditioner with great care because many products contain a potentially dangerous chemical known as methylisothiazolinone (MIT) that can cause hair loss.

Never pick the first shampoo and conditioner you spot in the shops – the cheaper option isn’t always the best option, you have to be really careful when it comes to selecting hair products.

MIT is a preservative often added to cosmetic products and household cleaning agents to prevent the overgrowth of bacteria, viruses, yeasts and moulds, and up to 10 percent of the UK population are thought to be suffering from allergic reactions due to MIT allergy.

MIT is a cause of allergic contact dermatitis – an inflammatory skin reaction that takes place in the skin or scalp and can cause hair loss.

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Dr. Lee said: “MIT is often present in shampoo and conditioner, but because these products are rinse-off, they are not in direct contact with the skin for very long, so serious scalp allergies are rare.

“It is not uncommon, however, for MIT containing products to cause irritation of mucous membranes such as the eyes, nose or mouth.”

If your body recognises MIT as a foreign substance, it makes specific (IgE) antibodies to the MIT allergen, at the site of skin contact.

Dr Lee explained: “In acute dermatitis, the skin looks red, swollen and often blistered, it can feel hot, itchy and burning and sometimes the blisters burst.

“If dermatitis becomes chronic, there may be recurrent bouts of dry, itchy skin, or soreness.

“MIT allergy has been reported to cause acute scalp dermatitis, acute eyelid dermatitis, and dermatitis of the face, neck and upper back.

“If it is used in the genital area, MIT may cause skin rashes on the genital area, buttocks and around the anus – including nappy rash in babies. Allergy to MIT is likely to be detectable by skin patch testing.”

Read the label and find out the product ingredients to see whether your shampoo or conditioner contains MIT.