Graphene Hair Dye Will Not Damage Your Hair

Posted: Mar 17 2018, 6:21am CDT | by , Updated: Mar 17 2018, 6:29am CDT, in News | Latest Science News

Graphene Hair Dye Will Not Damage Your Hair
Credit: Chong Luo

Researchers have found that hair dye made of graphene is a safer alternative

People dye their hair to look and feel beautiful but frequent coloring can have a damaging effect on hair. Now, researchers have developed a hair dye that includes graphene as a main ingredient and tests have showed that it does not damage hair and lasts through many washes without fading.

Graphene is a super strong, naturally black substance that is often used in electronics, solar cells and medicine. However researchers have found that this material can be extremely effective as a black hair dye because graphene has a unique structure. It is made of a single layer of carbon atoms arranged in a honeycomb pattern. Soft and flexible sheets of graphene can easily wrap around each hair and lead to an even coat.

Regular dyes need harsh chemicals, such as ammonia and bleach, to open the outermost layer of a hair or cuticle and to penetrate color molecules into it. Then, they trigger a reaction inside the hair to produce more color. Not only does this process cause hair to become more fragile, it also fades quickly.

"Your hair is covered in these cuticle scales like the scales of a fish, and people have to use ammonia or organic amines to lift the scales and allow dye molecules to get inside a lot quicker," said co-author Jiaxing Huang, a materials scientist at Northwestern University. “However, the obvious problem of coating-based dyes is that they tend to wash out very easily.”

But graphene was able to turn platinum blond hair black and maintained it for at least 30 washes. Graphene does not go inside the hair. Instead, it adheres to the surface of hair and forms a special kind of coating.

“For hair dye, the most important property is graphene being black,”said Huang. “You can have graphene that is too lousy for higher-end electronic applications, but it's perfectly okay for this. So I think this application can leverage the current graphene product as is, and that's why I think that this could happen a lot sooner than many of the other proposed applications,

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/47" rel="author">Hira Bashir</a>
The latest discoveries in science are the passion of Hira Bashir (). With years of experience, she is able to spot the most interesting new achievements of scientists around the world and cover them in easy to understand reporting.




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