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Foam Color Technology for Easy Home Hair Coloring with Professional Results

Hair Care

Hair coloring is used by people all over the world who want to design their own look with a new hair color or achieve a younger appearance by covering the gray. At Kao, we received countless requests from consumers searching for a hair color that they could apply quickly and easily at home and still get uniform coverage and color, even without the know-how of a professional beautician.

Kao set out to develop such a product. Our goal was a foam preparation that would be voluminous yet not stiff or thick and thus easy to spread through the hair. We succeeded in developing a foam hair-color preparation that combines dense and creamy foam to maintain the dyeing performance users expect; strong foam stability to prevent dripping during the leave-in stage; and superior conditioning to minimize the "squeaky" hair texture that sometimes results from dyeing. Being the first of its kind, the development of a foam-type hair color was a long and arduous process of trial and error, but we achieved our goal, thanks to an advanced understanding of interface science built up through years of research. In 2007, we commercialized this technology in the form of an easy-to-apply do-it-yourself foam hair color, and consumers responded enthusiastically.

In the years since this initial success, we have been busy engineering further improvements in usability and performance. With our original "transformation technology," the preparation takes on the highly adhesive properties of a cream after massaging, because polymer complexes adsorbs specifically onto the liquid film surface when massaged into the hair (Figure 1, 2). This has further advanced the performance of our foam color product that has been highly praised in the home hair-color market to date.

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Figure 1 : Appearance of a highly adhesive creamy foam under dyeing

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Figure 2 : Relation between massage time and foam viscosity

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