HC Blue No. 2

What Is It?

HC Blue No. 2, or Hair Colorant Blue No. 2, appears as a dark blue powder. In cosmetics and personal care products, HC Blue No. 2 is used exclusively in the formulation of hair dyes, colors and tints.

Why Is It Used?

HC Blue No. 2 helps to impart a color to hair. The exact color obtained will depend on the other ingredients that are used in the preparation and the starting color of the hair.

Scientific Facts

HC Blue No. 2 is used in semi-permanent hair coloring systems that are usually applied in a shampoo base and contain thickeners, alkalizers, and foam stabilizers. HC Blue No. 2 may also used in permanent hair coloring systems where color is produced inside the hair fiber. The color that is produced results from careful formulation of the product so that the ingredients interact in a highly controlled process.

Safety Information

The safety of HC Blue No. 2 has been assessed by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel. The CIR Expert Panel evaluated the scientific data and concluded that HC Blue No. 2 was safe as used in hair dye products.

CIR Safety Review:

In studies with volunteers in which HC Blue No. 2 at use concentrations was applied to the scalp, less than 0.1% was absorbed over a period of 30 days. National Toxicology Program oral feeding bioassays show the ingredient to be relatively nontoxic. Additional studies indicate no evidence of dermal irritation, sensitization, or photosensitization, and no ocular irritation. Whereas HC Blue No. 2 is mutagenic, it was not carcinogenic. Clinical data indicated minimal irritation and no sensitization.

More information about the safety of Hair dyes

HC Blue No. 2 and its salts are listed in the Cosmetics Directive of the European Union. These ingredients may be used as non-oxidizing coloring agents for hair dyeing at a maximum concentration of 2.8% (see Annex III).

Link to the EU Cosmetic Regulation: http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/consumers/product_labelling_and_packaging/co0013_en.htm

More Scientific Information

Hair dyeing formulations belong to three categories – temporary, semi-permanent and permanent coloring of hair. Hair dyes can also be categorized as oxidative and non-oxidative (or direct). HC Blue No. 2, an aromatic amine, is a non-oxidative hair dye. This means that it directly colors the hair without having to react with other components of the hair dye product. product also serves as bleaching agent for the natural pigment of the hair.


The FDA’s factsheet on Hair Dye Products http://www.fda.gov/Cosmetics/ProductandIngredientSafety/ProductInformati…

Search the FDA Code of Federal Regulations http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm

National Toxicology Program (NTP) information on HC Blue No. 2 http://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/index.cfm?objectid=BCDF2D97-123F-7908-7B9AAD76E…

EU Cosmetic Ingredients Inventory http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/cosmetics/cosing/