I suffered a painful rash when I had my hair coloured a few days ago, am I entitled to compensation for an allergic reaction to a beauty treatment? My friend asked if I had a patch test and I didn’t, does this mean something?

Eoin P. Campbell, LL.B., Solicitor

Editor in Chief

Eoin P. Campbell

You may claim compensation for an allergic reaction to a beauty treatment if your hair stylist failed to provide an adequate duty of care. By not carrying out a patch test at least 48 hours before performing the beauty treatment, your stylist acted negligently and is responsible for your injury.

All packets of hair dye carry a recommendation that the user tests for allergies through a patch test. Though not required by law, any professional stylist should know that these tests are necessary – even in cases when the client has had their hair dyed before, using the same product – since allergies are unpredictable.

It is recommended that you take photographs of your injury in order to support your compensation for an allergic reaction to a beauty treatment claim – one close up shot and one from slightly further away. You should also see your GP to be treated for the rash and to have your injury noted in your medical records. Another step to take would be to return to the salon and have your injury recorded in their “Accident Report Book”. You can present your copy of this report to a solicitor to be used as further evidence in your claim.

It is advisable that you engage in the services of a solicitor when making a claim for compensation for an allergic reaction to a beauty treatment. He or she can assess your claim and determine whether or not it is worth pursuing. In the case that the salon admits liability and offers you an early compensation settlement, your solicitor can establish if how much offered is a sufficient amount to represent the pain suffered and effect the injury has had on your quality of life.