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Allergy to Wife's hair conditioner.
Old 07-02-2009, 12:53 PM   #1
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Allergy to Wife's hair conditioner.

For several weeks, seems like months, I have had nasty breathing problems, swollen eyes while sleeping, to the point of waking up out of breath. And not form any pleasant forms of marital relations either.

Extensive scrubbing, changing pillows, bedspreads, banning the cat, scrubbing the house, cleaning two rugs (most of the house has hardwood floors) failed to clear up the nighttime breathing problems, or the swollen eyes. I'd wake up after a few hours of sleep having a hard time breathing through nose, mouth breathing only. Eyes nearly swollen shut. Move to a different part of the house, 1/2 hr or so later, nose sinuses open up, fall asleep.

Several camping trips sans wife, allowed good sleep, showed no breathing problems. Much discussion with DW about stuff women put on to beautify themselves resulted in an impasse. Could not point to face creams, nail polish, perfume or such stuff.

Finally we came down to hair care stuff. She colors her hair, says no change in that stuff in years.

That did not leave much, so now down to shampoo and conditioner. She noted that she changed shampoo and conditioner brands. She asserted that since she had been swimming, and then just rinsed her hair, the effects of the shampoo or conditioner should have been nil, since the pool chlorine should have nullified any effects.

Finally after much cajoling on my part she agreed to wash her hair, shampoo only, several rinses.

Result, a good nights sleep by me, and her, wake up around 7 am, normal breathing, clear eyes. Think we found the culprit. L'oreal Vive Pro, high gloss conditioner. Did a quick online search for the brand name and "health hazard". Found a hit on web site "Skin Deep" cosmetic safety database.

Plugging in the brand name the site lists this stuff as having a high hazard of 7 out of possible 10. Not good IMHO. DW to her credit immediately $hit canned the conditioner. Now she will try and find something else.

Hope we have a solution. I have never heard of having allergic/chemical reaction to hair conditioner days after another person using it, least of all if it had been several days, a swim in chlorinated pool, rinse. Yet it is exactly what seems to be the case with me.

Maybe just an extreme case of chemical sensitivity. Any ideas
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Old 07-02-2009, 01:10 PM   #2
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I did a search on my usual Head and Shoulders Dry Scalp Care brand, and was amazed at the ratings and effects of the ingredients.
http://www.cosmeticsdatabase.com/pro...?prod_id=21568

I usually steer clear of the heavily fragranced products. Strong perfumy smells bother me.
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Old 07-02-2009, 01:14 PM   #3
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Compared to the goop DW is/was using that stuff is good. Her conditioner showed a score of 7, the shampoo is worse at 8.

Looks like your stuff is relatively safe.
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Old 07-02-2009, 04:57 PM   #4
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I am allergic to perfumes, both natural and unnatural. Even the smell of roses plugs up my nose within minutes. Most perfumes give me a headache within seconds. This has been true my whole life, since I was an infant. My mother was a heavy perfume user and wondered why, since birth, I wiggled and struggled when picked up until I was put back down.

My transplant drugs (immunosuppressants) seem to have lessened my allergies, both to perfume and pollen some.

We don't have anything scented in the whole house. It's getting harder and harder to find unscented products lately. The '80s were a boom time for unscented stuff with the widespread "natural" craze, but now people are of a new generation.

I live in a really rural part of northern Virginia. Someone built a house thousands of feet away from mine to the west. The winds blows here from west to east almost all of the time. When they are running their dryer with dryer sheets in it I can smell them in the wind and get a cloudy head.

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Old 07-02-2009, 05:55 PM   #5
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My DW has had allergy symptoms for 3 months now.
Thought it was just springtime. Lasting a little long.
Wife uses Suave "Naturals". Rated an 8 on the cosmetics web site.
Maybe we are on to a solution thanks to your post.

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Old 07-02-2009, 06:23 PM   #6
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Good detective work, ls99!
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Old 07-02-2009, 09:22 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeD View Post
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I live in a really rural part of northern Virginia. Someone built a house thousands of feet away from mine to the west. The winds blows here from west to east almost all of the time. When they are running their dryer with dryer sheets in it I can smell them in the wind and get a cloudy head.

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Can you sniff out termites, gunpowder, and IEDs? If so, you have a lucrative career awaiting you.
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Old 07-03-2009, 01:37 AM   #8
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At least you got your wife to help out.... mine would just say "I am not using anything".... and then I would see her put on a number of creams etc...

And I ask her not to wear perfume as they usually cause me problems.... but she 'sneaks' a little and then I get clogged up and yell....


She has been good lately... but I usually have problems in the spring and can handle a bit more in the fall... so maybe I can just tolerate it more now..
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Old 07-03-2009, 07:24 AM   #9
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Mike maybe you need to make a website and sell "natural stuff" to people. I am sure there are others like you out there.
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Old 07-03-2009, 08:47 AM   #10
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I have a sensitivity to strong perfumes and perfumed products as well. Some people at work wear strong perfumes and too much of them. I can tell if such a person has walked by my cubicle earlier in the day because the smell still lingers. These strong perfumes make my airways constrict a little, making it harder to breathe. Thank goodness I am not allergic to them but I do have to leave my cubicle for a while sometimes for a few minutes if someone like that has walked by.

As for shampoos, in the past I had a sensitivity to Head and Shoulders and switched to baby shampoo. Even Johnson's still bothered me at that time, but Baby Magic was wonderful - - however, I don't think Baby Magic shampoo is still made. I still have an unopened bottle of it that I tucked away years ago. Meanwhile, my sensitivities have receded and I have gone back to "non-baby" shampoos, specifically Sauve Natural in the coconut scent.

I was surprised to see that both Baby Magic products and Sauve Natural shampoos rated so high at that website. Most shampoos that rated low looked like they would be hard to find in middle America, and expensive.

I use Tide Free detergent for my laundry. Why throw another scent into the mix?
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