The 5 Best Ammonia-Free Hair Dyes of 2022

The Best Ammonia-Free Hair Dyes

With so many debates about natural beauty products compared to regular ones, you can easily get confused. But change is constant. 

With new information and research outcomes, you shift your mind and adapt to change. But life is too short not to do the things you want. 

Besides, there are always better ways of doing something, for instance, dying your hair with ammonia-free hair color. So, have fun with that hair color.

The 5 Best Ammonia Free Hair Dyes:

1. REVLON Colorsilk Permanent Hair Color

Best for covering grey hair

REVLON Colorsilk Permanent Hair Color

If you’re looking for an ammonia-free hair dye that colors grey hair, this dye could be your solution. Besides covering grey hair 100%, it smooths and strengthens your hair. 

The dye is infused with keratin and silk Amino acids which deliver shiny, silky hair. From the 41 shades, you can get a beautiful natural-looking hair color that is permanent.

This hair dye uses 3D color gel technology to provide highly pigmented colors that compliment your skin tone. Due to its liquid-gel consistency, it’s nonstop and easy to use.

2. Garnier Olia Permanent Hair Color

Best hydrating ammonia-free hair color

Garnier Olia Permanent Hair Color

This permanent hair color by Garnier is ammonia-free. Blended from 60% natural flowers oil, the dye helps you achieve gorgeous radiant color results. The oils nourish your hair, restoring it to a healthy state. 

Due to the hydrating nature of oils, the hair color adds a sheen to your dull hair and makes it soft.

With a non-drip cream formula, the dye applies easily without causing a mess. It has an applicator bottle which makes self-application straightforward.

As a bonus, it comes with a conditioner that you can use after applying color to your hair. The color also lasts long without fading due to frequent washes

3. Schwarzkopf Simply Color Permanent Hair Color

Best nourishing hair color

Schwarzkopf Simply Color Permanent Hair Color

This fantastic hair color product is gentle on your hair since it’s free from ammonia, silicon, and alcohol. These ingredients can strip your hair of its moisture and natural oils, leaving it dry and difficult to style due to altered hair texture.

To back up its claims, this hair dye is dermatologist tested to be gentle on the scalp and is recommended for all hair types. It covers grey hair with 100% coverage as well as adding color to your hair.

This hair color is more than a dye; it doubles up as a hair care product because it’s packed with nutrients from botanical oat milk, soy protein, and argan oil.

4. Clairol Natural Instincts Hair Dye, Semi-Permanent

Best color pigment ammonia-free hair dye

Clairol Natural Instincts Hair Dye, Semi-Permanent

Made from 80% naturally extracted ingredients, this ammonia-free hair dye is gentle on your skin. Although it’s a semi-permanent hair dye, it’s richly pigmented, delivering excellent results. The color lasts up to 28 washes without fading.

The hair dye is available in 38 natural shades that you can choose from. Plus, it’s perfect for all hair types.

It’s infused with coconut oil and aloe vera to prevent hair from drying and make it radiant. The dye is free from paraben, which causes skin irritation.

5. WELLA Color Charm Demi Permanent Hair Color

Best long-lasting hair color

WELLA Color Charm Demi Permanent Hair Color

For fade-resistant hair color, Wella hair dye is unbeatable. Its unique ammonia-free formula ensures long-lasting vibrant color. This product works great, whether you’re applying for the first time, toning, covering grey hair, or refreshing your hair color. 

It has a creamy consistency that is easy to apply without creating a mess. The available shades range from neutral, Ash, gold, warm to red shades that match your natural hair color or bold shades for something different.

This hair color formula profoundly penetrates and fuses with hair strands to ensure the color doesn’t fade. It leaves your hair silky, soft, and radiant.

Ammonia vs. Ammonia-free

Hair coloring is a chemical process that requires reactions between different agents. Ammonia is the most common agent that reacts well in the process.

Ammonia is a pungent-smelling ingredient used in most hair dyes. It’s the reason behind longer-lasting hair color because it opens up the cuticles to allow hair color to penetrate and change color permanently.

Ammonia-free hair color doesn’t contain ammonia. It uses a different formula to change your color – alkaline ingredients, which are different in structure from ammonia. 

The non-ammonia particles are larger compared to ammonia, so they cannot cause the same reaction as ammonia does- opening your hair cuticles and making strands swell to allow the color to penetrate in. 

Ammonia lightens your hair, allowing it to absorb more color than a non-ammonia dye. Hence ammonia delivers longer-lasting vibrant colors. 

On the other hand, ammonia-free hair dye will still color your hair, but the pigment would not be as much. It’s also not as long-lasting as ammonia.  

However, at the end of the day, though ammonia delivers vibrant colors, it causes more damage to hair and scalp compared to the pros.

It causes your hair to dry and makes it brittle. Plus, it weakens your hair structure and leaves it unprotected from the sun and harsh chemicals from hair products. 

In worse cases, it leads to skin conditions like dermatitis and dandruff or causes hair loss.

Benefits of Ammonia-free hair dye

Reduced hair damage 

If you change your hair color, cover grey hair, or retouch to refresh color several times a year, then you’ll appreciate ammonia-free hair dye. It can change your hair color while causing minimal or no damage at all. 

Ammonia is known to cause damage because it’s a chemical that causes your hair to dry and weaken. It strips away your hair’s ability to retain moisture and leaves your hair with no protection from the environment. 

You can still cover grey hair or color your hair beautifully without using ammonia. 

Gentle on scalp and hair

The less the processed ingredients and chemicals you use on your hair, the less the itching. Ammonia, a chemical, is the culprit for causing an itchy scalp in most hair dyes; it’s too harsh on your skin. 

Ammonia-free hair color is gentle on your scalp and hair. In place of ammonia, a natural plant-based ingredient is used to make your hair color vibrant.

Lovely fragrance

An ammonia-free hair dye doesn’t have an irritating smell because the pungent smell in ammonia dyes came from ammonia itself. 

The new crop of ammonia-free dyes has pleasant fragrances from essential oils or herbal extracts. You can dye your hair as you enjoy the relaxing scent of bergamot or other fruits and florals.

Silky soft hair

It’s possible to have smooth hair after adding color to your hair. Most ammonia-free dyes have natural ingredients like oils that moisturize your hair and seal in the moisture. 

Your hair gets one less chemical to deal with, so the texture doesn’t get rough but silky.


Most ammonia-free hair colors didn’t just drop ammonia, but they embraced healthy ingredients that nourish your hair. Vitamins, antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, and hydrating ingredients found in most ammonia-free hair colors nourish your strands, leaving them better.

How to Choose the Best Hair Dye

Ammonia free

We’ve seen the disadvantages of ammonia in your hair dye ranging from making hair dry to lifeless brittle hair.

Look at the bottle to see if it has an ammonia-free label or read the ingredients list. 

Natural ingredients

There are many ammonia-free hair dyes, but that doesn’t mean they are the best for you. Some dropped ammonia but replaced it with another ingredient that is as harmful, if not worse. 

Some of the common ingredients that most manufacturers love because they create permanent natural-like hair color include:

  • PPD(paraphenylenediamine).
  • monoethanolamine
  • aminoethanol
  • ethanolamine

Your skin type

Avoid ingredients like paraben, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, and chemical additives if you have a sensitive scalp or allergies.

Some products may be ammonia-free, but in their place, they contain ingredients that irritate, cause dermatitis, and it is harmful to your health. 

If you’re sensitive or health-conscious, it’s best to check that your hair dye contains 98% organic ingredients that are kind to your skin and environment.

Permanent vs. Semi-permanent Hair Color

Some hair dyes are permanent, meaning they are long-lasting, but they may fade after some time. Others are not permanent, giving you the flexibility and liberty to change your hair color for a short duration of time.

Permanent hair color is ideal for covering grey hair and long-lasting hair color change.

The temporary hair dye includes: semi-permanent and demi-permanent. Demi-permanent lasts about 28 shampoo washes, while semi-permanent is more temporary, about six washes or less. 

Unlike permanent hair dye, which penetrates hair cuticles, the temporary ones achieve color by wrapping around your hair strands. So the hair stays on the surface level of your strands, making it easy to wash away.

Demi-permanent hair color is mixed with a low amount of color developer, while the semi-permanent one is not combined with a developer, so it’s just a quick fix of hair color that washes out fast.


Is ammonia-free hair dye effective?

Yes, it’s effective. There are so many positive experiences given by reviewers. Although it may not be as effective as ammonia, the results are impressive, considering you don’t expose yourself to the risks posed by ammonia.

Does ammonia-free dye cover grey hair?

Yes, it does, but the color will not be as vibrant after many washes. But with regular retouch, it will be shiny and rich in color.

Bottom line

There are so many ammonia-free hair colors that have been tested and tried over time with remarkable results. The shift now is towards ammonia-free hair dye, but while at it, consider the other benefits that you get from one brand compared to another.

This article was last updated on February 4, 2022 .

Categorized as Hair Care