About Colourstart

Colourstart is a clean, convenient and easy to use patch test. The Colourstart pack contains full instructions on how to use the test and what the result can mean.

Colourstart can be used to screen for allergy to PPD and you can repeat the Colourstart test if you are switching to a new hair colour product.

Participating hair professionals will recognise and accept the Colourstart test result, so you will not need to be screened for allergy before your colour appointment, unlocking walk-in colour appointments.


About allergy to hair colour

Many hair colorants contain ingredients that can cause an allergic reaction.

One common ingredient in hair colour is para-phenylenediamine (PPD). PPD is the most common cause of reaction to hair colour.

To reduce the risk of users experiencing a reaction, many manufacturers of hair colour recommend the use of an Allergy Alert Test before their product is used.

If you are allergic to PPD, you should not use hair colour or Colourstart. Your chosen hair colour may not contain PPD, but it may contain ingredients that are similar to PPD and these can also cause an allergic reaction.

Assessing the risk of reaction

Colourstart contains a small amount of PPD, many times less than used in a typical hair colour. It works by exposing the skin to the PPD in the test.

Once Colourstart is on your skin, you will see one patch square marked
“A+”, which is the active patch containing PPD and one clear patch square marked “A-”, which is the control patch with no PPD allergen. If the test is positive, indicating potential allergy to hair colorant, the area under the patch marked A+ will look different to that marked A-.

If you do have a reaction, you should not use hair colorant, Please see the Patient Information Leaflet (PIL).

How it works

How it works

Colourstart can show whether someone may be allergic to one of the ingredients, called PPD, used in hair colorants. Find here a step by step guide to how to use Colourstart and how Colourstart works.

Read More

Help and advice

Help and advice

Here you can find lots more useful information and advice on who should use Colourstart and how it should be used.

Read More



You can buy Colourstart from any participating Colourstart hair or beauty professional.

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Colourstart Test 65mcg Cutaneous patch. Contains p-phenylenediamine (PPD). A screening test for allergy to hair colour (PPD). Always read the label.