Hair is a filamentous biomaterial (made from long protein chains, interactions with biological systems), which grows from follicles found in the dermis of the skin (middle layer). It consists mainly of keratin, which is a fibrous structural protein.
The entire human body except palms of hands and soles of the feet are covered in follicles that produce hair.
Each strand consists of three layers: cuticle, medulla and cortex.
The cuticle is the outermost layer. It is composed of hardboard-like cells that overlap. It is made of dead cells that have been daring. Its purpose is to protect the inner layers and give the hair strength. The shape that the cuticle is in determines how healthy your hair is. Fresh, shiny hair has a cuticle cut down. In damaged hair the scales are lifted up. You can slip the cuticle off by using mild heat (like a towel that sits around your head when you come out of the shower) or acidic hair products (that's why many hair products contain citric acid, etc.) Alkaline completely does the opposite and they raise the cuticle.
The next layer, in the middle, is the cortex, which makes up most of the hair. Melanin, which is color pigment, is found here in the cortex. They determine the hair's fiber color based on how many there are and what types they are. The shape of the hair follicle determines the shape of the cortex, which determines whether the hair is straight, wavy or curved. The cortex also holds water and is packed with keratin protein. The process of dyeing, perm / straightening or other styling takes place in the cortex. The innermost layer is called medulla, although some people (with fine hair) do not have a medulla. Its purpose is still unknown.
Hair color is generally classified by numbers 1-10. Level 1 is generally black, while level 10 is generally blond.
All natural hair colors are combined with percentages of the three primary colors: Red, Yellow and Blue. The two main chemicals that are present in permanent hair color are hydrogen peroxide and ammonia (which is why the color damages the hair). Ammonia works by separating the nail scales. Peroxide helps oxidize pigments. When the hair color enters the cortex, new pigment molecules are created, which are too large to escape from the cortex. This is why it is difficult to remove paint when you insert it.
Bleaching your hair is a similar process. The peroxide softens and lifts the cuticle and then bleaches (lighter) disperses the color molecules present in the cortex.
There are different levels of peroxide. 5V and 10V (V = volume) is only deposit. You should use them to insert a darker color (like black) and they work by just raising the cuticle a little bit. 20V lifts up to 2 levels and inserts color. This is the most common peroxide used. 30V lifts up to 3 levels and 40V lifts up to 4 levels. You will not see that 40V is often used. It is usually only used with high-altitude blondes and bleaches, but it is very harmful to the hair and can burn the scalp if used incorrectly.
Now back to primary colors …
The three primary colors, as I said before, are red, blue and yellow. The three secondary colors are orange (red + yellow), green (blue + yellow) and violet (blue + red). Look at how the color wheel is set, because it is done this way with intent. The color directly from a color is its free color. Free colors can either intensify or neutralize each other. For example, when you bleach your hair, it usually stops a pale yellow tone. To remove the yellow, tone the hair with a violet-based toner to make it platinum-blond. That's why many "blonde" shampoos are purple. If your hair is orange, tone it with a blue (ash) toner.
Toner is essentially pigment to fade the hair after bleaching. I highly recommend toning hair after bleaching it, as it looks more exhausted. There are so many different kinds of tones. You can tone hair ash blonde, platinum blonde, neutral, strawberry blonde, etc.
Let's say your hair is pale but you decide you want to color it back to brown. You must first pigment the hair first. If you don't, the color will become really ashy / grayish and pale. To pigment (fill) the hair, you want to use reddish / golden colors that are a level lighter than the desired color. I used Paul Mitchell color and there are different formulas you can use depending on your target level. For PM, you would mix equal parts of the formula with 10V developers and apply to damp hair. You process for 10 minutes and then apply the target color over the pigmentation formula (except that the target formula is cool / neutral, you should wipe off the pigmentation formula). Process it all for 35 minutes.
Then I get into the different types of colors: Permanent colors can lift the hair up to 3 levels, generally and should take a while. High lifts lift the hair around 4 levels. Demi-permanent colors last about 4-6 weeks and will be flushed out ever and leave no roots. Temporary colors generally cover the hair shaft, without penetrating the cortex, therefore no developer needs. If done right, they should even be a few weeks. The little old ladies use a color rinse a lot, which is a temporary color that will only wash out the next time they wash their hair.
A very important thing to know about color, which most people do not know is that
The color will never lift color
This basically means that if your hair is dark brown and you want to lift it to a light brown, you must bleach your hair before it takes the color you want. I hear customers talk about this at work all the time. They are confused because they tried to color their own hairlighter but it just got darker. Now think of everything I've learned so far. If your hair already has dark color molecules in the cortex, and you put another color on top, all you do is deposit more color molecules into your cortex, as the reason is darker. The color raises the virgin, but not the hair that is already colored.
Now I'll tell you how perms and straighteners work. You always prepare before you make a perm, as it will help to get the structure and medication out of the hair. While the hair is wet, you roll it in rolls (the same width as the result will be). You then apply perm solution to each perm bar and allow it to process. The perm solution is generally made from ammonium thioglycolate. The solution breaks down the disulfide bonds in your hair (which are the proteins that give your hair shape.) After you have processed, rinse the perm solution and then apply the neutralizer. The neutralizer rebuilds the disulfide bonds in the new form of the perming bar. Voila! Now you have curly hair! Straighteners usually do the same thing, except that they make your hair straight instead of curly.
Well, I hope you learned something new and interesting about hair! There are so many other cool things to learn and I will write about them later in the day!
Have you been to beauty school? I always love to hear new things, so if you want to add something to this article, please comment.