Advances in Polymers for Hair Styling

February 16, 2009 | Contact Author | By: Robert Y. Lochhead and Lisa R. Huisinga, School of Polymers & High Performance Materials, The University of Southern Mississippi
Fill out my online form.
  • Article
  • Keywords/Abstract

Keywords: polymers | fixative | hair spray | styling | straightening | conditioning

Abstract: Block and graft copolymers, including some produced by living free-radical polymerization, are among the new hair fixative polymers surveyed in this article. Other new polymers offer advantages in hair styling gels, hair straightening and hair conditioning.

Hair spray consists of more than just polymer. All components must be considered and these comprise fi xative polymer, solvent, propellant, adjuvant and the valve system of the aerosol. Hair stylers also have numerous components. In this article we’ll discuss the hair styling components that depend on polymers. They include hair fi xatives, styling gels, straighteners and conditioners. (For a brush-up on the classes of polymer architecture discussed in this article, see Figure 1.)

Hair Fixatives The desired attributes of hair fixatives include: hair style hold improvement, ease of application on wet hair, ease of combing, no sticky feel, quick drying, not powdery or fl aky during grooming, assurance of hair body and bounce, increased hair volume, no clumping of the hair, formation of a non-hygroscopic binding fi lm that is removable by shampoo, good hair gloss, and no excessive stiffness.