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Can Just For Men hair dye take the color out of my skin?

AffectedForLife says…Watch out folks. Started using JFM last summer – once per month, and developed vitiligo. JFM co. is paying for dermatologist treatments etc, so they know there is a problem. Their box now warns about Vitilligo. I don’t believe it did back when I started using it last summer. I could be wrong about that, but clearly they know about a connection now.

The Beauty Brains respond

When I saw AFL’s comment I was immediately skeptical. I expected the reason they’re paying her doctor’s bills is that it was cheaper than going to court. So I searched the literature for a connection between this product and vitillgo but I didn’t really expect to find anything. Hoo boy was I wrong!

The hair dye – vitiligo connection

Until I checked it out I didn’t realize that JFM contains paraphenylenediamine (PPD) a chemical used in hair dyes that is known to cause sensitizing problems in some cases. In particular, PPD is known to cause skin depigmentation in some individuals. (The chemical affects the melanocytes which produce skin color.) Whether or not this is exactly the same condition as vitilligo I don’t know but the end result is the same: white patches on your skin that may or may not ever resume their natural color. As AFL pointed out, Just For Me includes the following warning statement on their package:

In rare cases, use of hair dye has been associated with skin depigmentation (skin lightening or loss of skin color), which may be temporary or permanent. If you notice any skin depigmentation or other allergic reaction such as discomfort or severe itching, discontinue use immediately.

Do not use this product at all if you have depigmentation problems such as white patches on your skin (a condition called vitiligo) or if you have a family history of skin depigmentation problems, as an allergic reaction may cause temporary or permanent loss of skin pigment.

Just For Men Hair Color Ingredients

Water, Coco Glucoside, Amino Methyl Propanol, Carbomer, Isopropyl Alcohol, Fragrance, Isopropyl Acetate, Trisodium EDTA, Erythorbic Acid, 2 Methyl 5 Hydroxyethylaminophenol, 1,2,4 Trihydroxybenzene, P Phenylenediamine, Sodium Sulfate, P Aminophenol, N,n Bis (2 Hydroxyethyl) P Phenylenediamine Sulfate, Sulfuric Acid, Cinnamidopropyl Trimethyl Ammonium Chloride

The Beauty Brains bottom line

While there is cause for concern you shouldn’t freak out about this. MANY people use this product (and other hair dyes that contain PPD) without any problem. But for those individuals who are susceptible to this condition, PPD can cause a real problem. Always do a patch test as recommended by the manufacturer and discontinue using the product if you have any issues.



Taylor JS, Maibach HJ, Fisher AA, Bergfeld WF. Contact leucoderma associated with the use of hair colors. Cutis 1993;52:273-80.


Comments on this entry are closed.

  • amy November 14, 2014, 6:07 pm

    it seems like because it’s a cosmetic, some people don’t realize how dangerous hair dye can be. a friend of mine who had been dying his hair for over a decade recently suffered from a reaction so bad, it landed him in the ER. his scalp split open and bled. when I saw him a few days later, his face was so swollen, I didn’t recognize him at all. apparently it was from dye that had passed its expiration date, but the store didn’t pull it off the shelves. so scary!

    anyway, that’s scary stuff about the vitiligo. how awful.

    • Randy Schueller November 15, 2014, 8:33 am

      That’s a terrible story Amy! It sounds odd, though, that it would be because of the product passing its expiration date.

  • Simon Fraser August 17, 2015, 9:10 am

    I have been a user of JFM beard dye for around 13 years. 5 years ago I noticed a very small white skin patch situated by my goatee style beard. At the time it seemed insignificant and nothing to worry about. However as time progressed the white skin patch became much larger. I still had no idea why this was occuring until I seriously became worried seeing the skin depigmentation had now spread to my neck, hands and other body areas. My GP told me I had a skin condition called Vitiligo. By this time it had impacted on my life greatly, destroying my self confidence as well as causing mental health issues which I am still trying my best to cope with. As there is no family history of this condition I started to look for other causes. Through some initial research It has been stated, I quote “that a small percentage of hair dye users can be prone to Allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) which has been implicated in the development and progression of vitiligo. Also paraphenylenediamine (PPD) a chemical used in hair dyes that is known to cause sensitizing problems in some cases. In particular, PPD is known to cause skin depigmentation in some individuals. (The chemical affects the melanocytes which produce skin color.)” I am presently seeking answers to my plight and hopefully one day a cure.

  • Brendan January 16, 2018, 1:47 pm

    I suffered vitiligo patches after using just for men

  • Janice B March 4, 2019, 10:15 am

    My dad used Just For Men for several years and suffered from a severe case of vitiligo. After months of testing it was discovered that the JFM was the cause. He is African American and the skin on the top of his head initially looked polka dotted. After several year, his skin tone evened out. In the areas that I can see he is now much lighter than he used to be. Buyer beware!