Policies & Patch Testing


Ok so, skin testing or AAT (Allergy Alert Testing) is changing, not just at The Hair Factory, It is changing across the industry.

With our clients safety and comfort at the forefront of everything we do, we have strict polices in place prior to certain treatments we carry out.

For all of our treatments please note the below:

  • Patch testing for colour must be carried out a minimum of 48 hours prior to the treatment.
  • If an existing client you must have been tested within the last 6 months.
  • Patch tests carried out at other establishments are not valid.
  • Treatments for 16’s and under are not permitted
  • If a reaction should occur within 48 hours, this could be in the form of redness, itching, swelling or similar. Immediately remove your patch test and seek advice from a GP or pharmacist. Even if only a slight reaction occurs, we will not be able to carry out the tint part of the treatment.
  • Please be aware that if you are taking antihistamines or other medications, they can mask a reaction during the patch test but may not be strong enough to counter a full reaction after the treatment which is an increased risk. You can decline the tint stage if you are concerned.
  • We cannot patch test or carry out the tint part if any of the following apply: – A previous allergy/ sensitivity/ problem has been caused by any tint, dye or henna treatments in the past- You have sensitive, irritated or damaged skin around the treatment area. – You have had a “Black Henna” temporary tattoo in the past, as you will be hypersensitive to PPD due to the large amount found in “Black Henna”. (If this was many years ago and without incident there is still an increased risk) We do not advise having the tint part of this treatment, since this intense exposure may have “awakened the immune system”, making it more likely to react in the event of further exposure.
  • It is a very simple process, which can be carried out from the comfort of your own home, or in the salon.

There are 2 ways of conducting a skin test.

Option 1

The Allergy Alert Test must be done up to 2 days (48 hours) before the colour is applied because it can take up to 48 hours for an allergic reaction to develop.

If you cut corners, you risk missing a reaction. Come into the salon and ask one of our team for a skin test, this will be applied behind the ear, and will be valid up to 6 months, unless you have had a tattoo, or coloured your hair elsewhere within that time frame.

Option 2

You can purchase and be part of the Colourstart Passport. Your Colourstart Passport will enable you to have full peace of mind for your colour, for years to come.

Purchase your colourstart skin test patch (AAT) for £15, and by carefully answering a simple set of questions, along with uploading photos of any reaction you may have, your details will be stored which can be shared with any hair professional.

For more information on the Colourstart Passport CLICK HERE

You will need to apply your colourstart test 5 days minimum before your hair colour appointment, and you will need to screen your information each time you visit our salon.


  • Genetics, medications, hormones and your overall health. All of the above play a role in making up your chemical makeup, including your hair. What may work for one person, may not work well for you due to the differences in how your body is built to react.
  • Previous chemical services – professional or at home. Whether lightened or darkened by a box or professional, or permed or relaxed, all of these services present their own risk. Even if a colour is faded, it is still present in your hair until it is cut off.
  • Well water, hard water, and copper pipes – heat reactions. Mineral deposits from water and pipes can build up in your hair and cause a reaction with hydrogen peroxide, bleach powder, colour removers, and oxidative colour. The reactions are UNPREDICTABLE and can happen after multiple times of using the same product. It is unsure how deposits are going to react, and many do not even know they have them built up in their hair. Using the exact same products for years, then one day having a chemical reaction is similar to developing an allergy to something we have been already using our entire lives.
  • Other Variables. There are unpredictable risks not mentioned above that may occur during your colour service.


We would not be doing our job if we did not present these risks to you ahead of time. The more we do your hair, and know the products on your hair (every colour line is different), the better predictions we can make as we learn and understand your hair better.