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Dyeing to Get it Right

By: Sara Mason
Posted: September 2, 2008, from the September 2006 issue of GCI Magazine.

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Herbal Essences Colorflirt Mousse, launched by Clairol in March, also allows consumers to experiment with new colors. “The semi-permanent colorant product uses a very different technology from permanent colorants,” explained Frauke Neuser, PhD, senior scientist, Clairol. It does not contain any ammonia or peroxide and the dye molecules, known as direct dyes, are pre-formed so there is no product mixing. “The color molecules don’t penetrate the hair; they get ‘stuck’ in the cuticle layers and wash out,” Neuser explained. Consumers also have control over the intensity of the color—the longer they leave it on, the more color they get.

On the ingredient side, suppliers have accommodated fashion trends characterized by vibrant colors, highlights and unique effects by providing formulators with chormophores of high brilliancy and tinctorial strength. Ciba Specialty Chemicals’s Vibracolor hair dye is one such example. “It combines the most brilliant shades with excellent stability and fastness properties,” said Michael Schork, marketing manager, colorants and stabilizers, Ciba.

Lasting Impressions

Glazing and post-color treatment products that promote longer-lasting color represent a potential area of growth in the hair color segment, especially considering the vibrancy of today’s colors. In fact, the most recent product launches from Clairol have been based on the realization that consumers’ desire to maintain the look and feel of just-colored hair longer. “We have found that there is a roller coaster of emotions for consumers,” explained Clairol’s Neuser. Following an initial exuberance, they tend to feel a decline in satisfaction. This has led to the development of products that maintain or boost color appearance and hair quality between colorings. Nice ’n Easy Color Boosting Glaze is just one salon-inspired product that delivers a boost of color and shine in five minutes.

Ingredient innovation plays a substantial role in longer-lasting color. Croda’s most recent ingredient innovation is the Keratint EZ hair tint emulsifying system, available since April. “Keratint EZ helps increase the dye penetration, thus longer-lasting color,” explained Charles Moses, research manager, ethnic products and hair color, Croda. Designed to simplify hair color formulations, the pastille is a one-step conditioning and emulsifying package for creating stable, cost-effective emulsions. Keratint consists of a balanced ratio of Crodafos CES, a phosphate ester that provides better hair dye penetration for truer, longer-lasting color; Incroquat Behenyl TMS, a quaternary conditioning agent that contributes to detangling; and Procetyl AWS, a pH-stable ether that contributes to moisturization.

Crodafos HCE, from Croda’s line of phosphate esters, works by aiding in the delivery of dye actives to promote a faster coloring rate inside the hair cortex. This allows hair color formulators to create hair dyes with more color uptake, greater color intensity and better color wash-fastness, as shown by studies using a Hunter LabScan Spectrocolorimeter.

Looking Natural