Colouring regrowth of hair after chemo

patdug Member Posts: 53
edited December 2020 in General discussion
Hello everyone
Thankyou to all the lovely people who provide such valuable information and personal insights/observations re breast cancer. Your words of wisdom published on this online network provided such comfort to me during 2020 when I was undergoing active treatment. I am now on Femara and hope it does its job. This is a very minor issue really in the scheme of things but I have about 1 inch (in the old money!) of head hair regrowth which looks incredibly unsightly (and there seems to be a lot more grey!... Oh well!)  and I was thinking of using a vegetable dye to brighten to a blonde!! Has anyone had any experience with doing this?...I finished chemo in June and Google says to wait about 6-12 months to put colour in however I read vegetable dyes might be safe! Otherwise I will just wear my wig which has been my 'friend' during this year. It's very hot though in the Summer and I am heading North from South East Queensland to a more tropical climate so would love to have the wig off for a while. Any thoughts anyone? I hope you all are having a Super week-end xx warm wishes....


  • Anj_j2020
    Anj_j2020 Member Posts: 22
    edited December 2020
    I'll be needing to know the same thing soon. I've heard that any organic hair dyes are okay, but haven't researched them yet.
    Here's a previous post:

  • Mazbeth
    Mazbeth Member Posts: 194
    Oh I know how you feel! My sister-in-law is a hairdresser and I am constantly asking (probably badgering really 😂) when I can get some colour. I have had some kind of gentle colour put in as to make it blonde is very harsh. She says that I need to be very kind to the new growth.
    I finished chemo in May and I am taking Femara too. My lovely sister-in-law bought me a coloured hair mousse which worked a treat to get me through that first inch of growth phase - it was a lightIsh colour and washes out. I am hoping to get into the serious colour soon!
    There is a book written by John Boyages - Breast Cancer. Taking Control. He is a cancer specialist and he actually recommends that women start dying their hair as soon as it comes back with some gentle dye as it is such a psychological boost. I don’t think it is a minor issue at all - ‘feeling’ good is just so important. After having no hair at all, I am just riding the waves of my crazy regrowth. I have also used Nioxin and another product Bondi Boost to get it to grow - I call them my hair fertilisers! Good luck 😀
  • patdug
    patdug Member Posts: 53
    Thank you so much for your responses..... Your comments and helpful tips have  boosted me up ...the coloured hair mousse might work hey! I'll give it a go. Thank you Mazbeth and also for the book recommendation..... I have been using my wig all year and together with some 'warpaint' I can face the world! LOL! Thanks Anj_j2020 for the link.... you ladies rockl!!
    It is really 'funny' about hair isn't it?...Although academically we are told and prepare for the hair loss...when it actually happens you still need to go through the stages of managing the emotional impact before regrowth and renewal starts..
    It becomes another feeling and issue altogether, separate from the physical toll of chemo and radiation etc...For some its big and for others it is just part of the process...we are all such individuals in this space...Have a lovely Sunday xxxx

  • Sister
    Sister Member Posts: 4,960
    About the hair thing... When it first grew back, I clipped the white fuzz off as it looked so dreadful.  Then I let my hair grow.  It grew back unevenly, lots more grey, and much finer and thinner (probably thanks to the Letrozole).  I coloured it but was never particularly happy with the way the colour held.  Early this year, after the bushfires and before Covid, I thought, "enough".  So, I've been letting the grey take over and because of Covid and so many other women doing the same, no-one has thought it strange.  About 3 weeks ago, I had it cut quite short - a bit of a statement about taking me back.  There's still a little colour left on the ends of my fringe as it is an asymmetric cut but mostly it's grey.  I have been blown away by the compliments I have had on the cut, and believe it or not, the "colour" I have had done!  Embrace your grey, I say!  (When you're ready to, that is.)
  • June1952
    June1952 Member Posts: 1,785
    It is amazing how many women really suit the new grey.
    I was white haired at 20 years of age and my hairdresser says he will give me $50 to go to another hairdresser if I want it coloured.
    PS  I am well past 20 now !!!!
  • Afraser
    Afraser Member Posts: 4,268
    The new grey is to be embraced but it doesn’t always stay - I went from brown with a bit of grey prior to chemo, to chalk white afterwards, then grey. Gradually a light brown developed and I ended up, for a few years anyway, with less grey and more colour than I had before the whole performance! Never boring. 
  • patdug
    patdug Member Posts: 53
    Thank you ladies for your encouraging words re the grey hair!! Very brave of you all...but reading your comments I think you are probably all rocking the grey. (and magically AFraser yours changing colour! a few times OMG!).. in a very glamorous way! Good on you ...My hair has gone rogue really where bits of it stick straight out from my head in a perpendicular fashion ...LOL! very becoming.NOT...anyhoo! I will persist and see if I or a brave hairdresser can make a style from it! Never boring for sure !! warm regards  
  • gumnut
    gumnut Member Posts: 1,014
    Daer @patdug
    Like you, when my hair grew out it was more grey than I thought it would be - so half dark hair and half grey, which was fine except when I started to grow it out a little. I then didn't like it as much as I thought - I had planned to leave it grey but as it got longer it wasn't a great colour and I wanted to look 'well' and not old. So about 6 or 7 months after it started growing back I spoke to my hairdresser and got an organic colour put in which was a disaster. The colour really took to this lovely soft new hair and was very very dark, so they tried to strip this out. The next colour that I tried went a funny red and now I am just getting some foils put in. I've decided if it all gets too hard with the growing out and colour then I will just cut it super short and leave it like that  :) 
    When speaking to a hairdresser friend since then, she said that they should have used a non permanent dye initially on the new hair. I guess any chemicals that may have remained in my hair may have also affected the colour?
    Also when I bought my wigs, the shop that I went to sold me a little skin coloured cap that is cotton and that you can either put in the fridge or freezer and put under your wig for summer? Perhaps you can try something like this? If you can't find one, I am happy to send you mine as I didn't ever use it while I was wearing the wigs so its brand new.
    Anyway all the best with whatever you do  <3
  • patdug
    patdug Member Posts: 53
    Thank you so much gumnut for your kind offer. and best wishes ..I recall I have one of those skin-coloured caps and in the haze of this year forgot I threw it in the cupboard for retrieval at a later date to be used....You have just provided the incentive to dig it out as that is what I will need in the hot weather... Thank you so much for your help and advice. Sorry you had to go through the colouring drama.... I have read we should leave dyeing our hair for 12 months but I felt impatient....will have to tough it out now until it is ready....l tend to think every person on this network  has a real understanding of 'toughing it out' means and having to learn it (in my case!) while also maintaining patience in their journeys through the quagmire...
    Glad June1952 you have such success with your grey hair.. so is quite glamorous I feel...warm regards xxx

  • Abbydog
    Abbydog Member Posts: 448
    I finished Chemo Mid August this year. I had a large amount of regrowth on my hair roots ( I kept most of my hair, by using the Cold Cap successfully). I was both eager and nervous to have a colour. I had pampered my hair through Chemo. But I couldn't resist having my colour done, only 2 weeks after Chemo. The hairdresser said it was a tint and didn't contain peroxide. My hair did not fall out , which I was mildly worried could happen. 

  • Blossom1961
    Blossom1961 Member Posts: 2,273
    My hair grew back a marbled grey/brown which I loved but everyone else made disparaging remarks. I didn't care, I loved it. It then grew back to its normal dark brown colour after about a year much to other peoples delight. :/
  • Caz1
    Caz1 Member Posts: 382
    edited December 2020
    Wow these replies are so interesting! 

    I finished chemo last January.  My hair has grown back quite a bit thicker than it was which is great as it was quite fine.  It went from dark brown with a bit of grey to completely grey- a mix of silver and dark streaks. I don’t want to colour it cos I am worried about chemicals.
    My feelings about my colour are a bit mixed. Sometimes I don’t recognise myself and see myself as much older than I am. Other times I really really like it! 
     It’s a slow journey of acceptance I guess. I’m clearly not quite there yet. Wish I was cos it feels a bit trivial to worry about ( in my opinion. )
    But.... I also get heaps of compliment on the colour. Go figure. And I enjoy experimenting with different colour clothes that now suit me.  :)  


  • kazb
    kazb Member Posts: 25
    I too kept most of my hair with the cold cap.   Having been blonde all my life, and having  had a colour for the past 30 years I used my normal tint about 3 months after chemo finished,and all continues to be ok.  I dont use any heat on my hair, and also use good quality shampoo and conditioner. 
  • patdug
    patdug Member Posts: 53
    Thanks everyone for your encouraging and interesting accounts and comments..I shall experiment with a tint and see how it goes..warm wishes xxx