Kelly Kruppner looked almost unrecognisable after she got her naturally red hair professionally dyed dark brown for a change, after dyeing it years earlier without a problem.
A horrified admin assistant has issued a warning after experiencing an awful allergic reaction to hair dye.
Kelly Kruppner’s entire head swelled up, leaving her husband struggling to recognise her before she was rushed to hospital.
The 26-year-old got her naturally red hair professionally-dyed dark brown on Sunday 24 October and initially, there were no problems.
But she woke up the following night to discover her face and head had ballooned, making her almost unrecognisable to her gobsmacked husband, Brandon Sprague, 24.
The hairstylist had applied a patch test for the dye behind Kelly’s ear an hour before doing her hair – but had failed to leave enough time for the delayed allergic reaction to show up.
As the reaction progressed, Kelly says her scalp was covered in painful chemical burns that doctors have warned will take a month to heal, during which she cannot use shampoo due to the severity of the burns.
She has now shared photos of her swollen face to warn others to leave their patch tests on for the recommended 48 hours to avoid the same fate she suffered.
Kelly, from Brockport, New York, US, said: “It was fine throughout the dying and it felt good even after and then the next morning I had these rash type things that kind of looked like I got a really bad sunburn.
“Then I woke up at midnight on Monday night and my face was all blown up and swollen and the rashes were even worse and looked more like burns – they were blistering and scabbing.
“My husband woke up and I told him not to turn the light on because I looked so bad but he still turned the light on and he definitely got a shock. I scared him.
“It was really painful and each day it just got worse and more swollen. By Wednesday my eyes were almost completely swollen shut.
“My cheeks were really puffy so I thought I looked like Fat B*stard from Goldmember, Austin Powers.
“I didn’t even look like myself. It kind of looked like I was wearing a fat suit just for my face, it was awful.
“I kept saying I looked like Sloth from the Goonies and my friend sent me a picture of the hunchback of Notre Dame, so there was a lot being thrown around about what I looked like.”
The admin assistant was devastated to end up in the hospital being checked over by a burns specialist.
Kelly says she has never suffered an allergic reaction to any beauty products before and so the horror swelling 12 hours after her appointment came as a big shock.
Emergency doctors told her it was the worst reaction they’d ever seen from hair dye and told her to stay off work for a week since her eyes were almost swollen shut, making it unsafe for her to drive.
Kelly said: “I went to the emergency room and they said it was going to take three to four weeks for the burns to fully heal – they said it ended up being a chemical burn instead of just an allergy.
“Three doctors total had to see me and come look at it, including a burns specialist, because they said they’ve never seen anything quite this bad with hair dye.
“The ER doctor actually took me out of work because of how swollen I was. He didn’t want me driving.
“My primary doctor gave me a steroid cream for the burns and a steroid pill to help but the ER doctor said it might not help because it’s burns on an allergic reaction.
“I have to take lukewarm or cold showers because my head is so badly burnt and I can’t use shampoo right now because it could cause an infection or further swelling and pain.”
Because of the severity of Kelly’s reaction and scalp burns doctors have warned her never to dye her hair again.
That means that she will have to wait for the almost black permanent hair dye to grow out until she’s back to her natural red locks.
Kelly said: “The burns are starting to scab over horribly and itch but my face is nowhere near as puffy, I’m starting to look like me again.
“I’ll definitely never do it again and I would advise anyone to patch test regardless of what product they use just to be safe after having my experience.”