Head hair drug testing: how does it work?

Webinar recording from 10th May 2022
Watch the video below:

In this webinar, Andrew Priestley (Legal Sector Marketing Manager) and Ashley Hodgkinson (Sample Collections Manager) discuss how drug testing works using head hair samples. Find out how drugs are stored in head hair, the differences between an overall analysis and a segmented analysis, and the most common ways that people try to cheat the testing system.

AlphaBiolabs offers a comprehensive suite of drug testing services for the legal sector Find out more here.

FAQs from this webinar

How much does a head hair strand test cost?

Head hair drug testing starts from £71.50 for 1 drug over 1 month or a 3 month overview. Please contact us for a quotation.

What level of alcohol use can be detected in hair strand testing?

Alcohol testing through head hair measures chronic and excessive consumption. This is covered in our recent legal alcohol testing webinars. Alternatively, visit our Legal Learning Centre to learn more about alcohol testing.

Does different type of ethnicity change reporting?

No, we do not ask for a donor’s ethnicity when collecting samples for the purpose of drug testing, as it has no effect on the results.

Can you tell if there is a false negative result due to the use of bleach or straighteners?

We would not be able to confirm if a negative result was down to the use of bleach and/or straighteners. However we can say if it is possible that the results may have been lowered to a level below the cut-off point and this would be detailed in the Statement of Witness report.

Does this webinar apply in the same/similar way to alcohol testing?

We have recently held legal alcohol testing webinars with a focus on blood testing but they also cover head hair testing. Alternatively, visit our Legal Learning Centre to learn more about legal alcohol testing.

How is testing for Afro hair different to testing from a white person’s hair?

The analysis in the laboratory is the same for Afro hair as it is for any other type of head hair sample. However, when the hair is too curly to segment, we are only able to provide an overview report.

Can we have a copy of the slides please?

Please email if you would like a copy of the slides.

Should a blood test always be taken in addition to the hair sample to increase accuracy?

Blood testing for drugs is not available but we would always recommend blood testing alongside hair testing for measuring alcohol consumption.

Does the client need to attend your offices or can they provide the samples in their home or at their GP?

Our Sample Collections team can attend any UK address including your own office. We also have 11 Walk In Centres nationally where samples can be collected free of charge.