HAIR CHEMISTRY 101
Hair is made of up of protein which starts off in the hair follicle. As the hair cells mature, they fill up with a fibrous protein called keratin. These mature hair cells travel up the hair follicle and become dead material once they leaves their roots - the reason why it doesn’t hurt when you get a haircut. In other words, hair is dead material.
Hair is composed primarily of proteins (88%).
These proteins are of a hard type (keratin)
Comprised of many amino acids
With cystine which gives hair much of its strength, being the most abundant
The amino acids are joined together by "peptide bonds” which are;
– Hydrogen bonds
– Cystine bonds
– Salt bonds
– Sugar bonds
These bonds are link together to form the hair structure;
THE HAIR CHEMICAL BONDS
THE HYDROGEN BOND
This bond is responsible for the ability of the hair to be stretched;
The hydrogen bonds allow us to change the shape of the hair temporarily with the aid of water or heat
It is the most readily broken down and the most readily reformed.
It is responsible for approximately 35% of hair strength and close to ~ 100% of hair's elasticity
THE SALT BOND
THE CYSTINE BOND
THE CYSTINE; SULFUR BOND
- This bond is largely resistant to the action of acids but the can be broken apart by alkali solutions
- Which what enables us to permanently straighten or wave the hair.
- Permanent relaxers (straighten naturally curly hair)
– Breaks the disulfide bonds causing the hair to loosen up for reshaping. (a reducer)
- Perms - acid based hair relaxers
– curl or wave naturally straight hair
– instead of breaking up the disulfide bonds totally, it weakens the internal structures of the bonds. (an oxidizer)
THE SUGAR BOND
- Gives the hair toughness but little strength (5%).
- Contributes to hair moisture
THE CYSTINE BOND
- Responsible for hair type (genetic mark up)
- Hair is curly or straight;
– depending upon the number of disulfide bonds between hair proteins found in the hair shaft.
- The greater the number of links
– the curlier the hair,
– and the fewer the number of links; the straighter the hair.
HAIR PRODUCTS’ PH
A pH's of 3.0 to 3.5
- Will not only close the cuticle but more importantly compact it. This:
1) Adds natural shine
3) Adds elasticity
– The lower the pH, the higher the positive charge.
– This in turn brings hydrogen bonds from a beta state (weak) to and alpha state (strong).
Hydrogen bonds account for nearly 100% of the hair's elasticity.
4) Locks in moisture and protein
– A compacted cuticle will not allow evaporation or dissociation as much as an open cuticle.
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