Mom Warns Other Parents About Black Henna Tattoos After Her Young Sons Got Them And Developed A Severe Reaction

Date August 13, 2018 17:02

What a seemingly harmless temporary tattoo can lead to

Getting a temporary tattoo sounds like fun! You can choose any design you want, and if you stop liking it you know it's temporary anyway. Temporary tattoos are especially popular during summer season, and many people who get them enjoy their tats for a few days to a few weeks. But, as it turns out, this experience is not always pleasurable and safe.

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Toni Feeney, a young mom of two, was on holiday with her husband and sons. The boys asked to get temporary tattoos, so Toni and her husband allowed them, thinking they would be safe. They were horribly wrong.

The artist who painted these tattoos used black henna, and the boys developed a severe reaction. As Toni wrote in a Facebook post, her sons were prescribed antihistamines and antibiotics to prevent skin infection.

The mom warned other parents against letting their children get these tattoos, especially if black henna is used.

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A good reason not to get black henna tattoos

Natural henna, which is safe to use unless you’re allergic to it, comes in shades of orange, red, and brown. It’s a different story with so-called black henna, which is usually darkened with a strong chemical called paraphenylenediamine (PPD).

ElRoi /

PPD is commonly used in dark-color hair dyes, and they contain a very small amount of it. The amount of PPD in black henna is much higher, and it’s not regulated by law. The risk of allergic reactions and chemical burns is high if PPD-containing product is applied directly on the skin.

In addition to that, it’s possible to become sensitized to PPD. Say, you’ve been dyeing your hair with a dye that contains this chemical (a small amount of it), and you’ve never had any adverse reaction to it. But if your skin comes into contact with black henna, in which the concentration of PPD is much higher, you can develop an allergic reaction and have an even more severe reaction later if you use this chemical again. That means you would have to stop using any products containing PPD.

Africa Studio /

So, here’s a word of advice: don’t get black henna tattoos, and don’t let your children get them. Also, if you don’t know what ingredients any product contains (and there’s no way to find it out), don’t put this product on your skin.

If you want to learn more about black henna and PPD, get your info from reliable sources, such as the NHS.

Stay safe!

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This article is solely for informational purposes. Do not self-diagnose or self-medicate, and in all cases consult a certified healthcare professional before using any information presented in the article. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not bear any responsibility for any harm that may result from using the information provided in the article.

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