Background. Allergic contact dermatitis after exposure to p-phenylenediamine (PPD)-containing hair dye products is a common and important clinical problem. Because there is a high rate of cross-elicitation of allergic contact dermatitis to other important hair dye products (such as p-toluene diamine [PTD] and other aminophenol hair dyes) in PPD allergic patients, safer alternative dyes with excellent hair coloring options are needed. We studied 2-methoxy methyl-PPD (Me-PPD), a chemical derivative of PPD for tolerance versus cross-elicitation in a cohort of eight PPD-allergic volunteers. Objective. To study tolerance to Me-PPD in a PPD highly allergic Italian cohort. Methods. Eight volunteers with a history of contact dermatitis to hair dyes or other PPD-containing chemicals and positive patch tests to 1% PPD in petrolatum, were recruited to study their immediate and delayed skin reactivity to PPD, vehicle control and 2-methoxy-methyl-PPD (Me-PPD), using the allergy alert test (simulating hair dyeing conditions) on volar forearm skin. This is a short-contact open patch test. Results. All eight volunteers reacted to PPD allergy alert test (100%); none reacted to vehicle (0%), and seven of eight reacted to Me-PPD allergy alert test (88%). However, in those seven volunteers who exhibited cross-elicitation to Me-PPD, their aggregate skin test reactivity to Me-PPD was significantly less than that of PPD (p < 0.0062, highly significant, paired two-tailed, students t test).Conclusions. Me-PPD may offer a safer alternative for PPD-allergic patients with an absent or reduced elicitation response in the allergy alert test simulating hair dye use conditions. Even patients with strong patch test reactions, with appropriate selection by allergy alert test and counselling, may be able to tolerate hair dyeing with Me-PPD containing products.