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NATURAL HAIR COLOR

Natural hair color comes from pigments. A pigment is a substance used to create color.

It is usually an insoluble powder, to be mixed with water, oil, or another base to produce paint and similar products.

In plants, it can be a substance like chlorophyll.

In hair, it is a substance like melanin.

Two different types of melanin can be found in different concentrations inside human hair:

Eu-Melanin 
Big defined granules with a black brown scattering.

Pheo-Melanin 
Small granules with reddish scattering.

PIGMENTS

Natural hair has a colorless cuticle. The pigments are in the cortex.

The different concentrations of varying melanin pigments determine our natural hair color and are found in the cortex of the hair. Varying concentrations of Eumelanin and Pheomelanin create different natural levels and shade directions. The levels vary from 2 – 10, with 2 being the darkest and 10 representing the lightest level. The higher the Eumelanin concentration, the darker the color. The total melanin-concentration is 0.1 for light-blond and 3.5 % for black hair.

 

The different concentrations of varying melanin pigments determine our natural hair color and are found in the cortex of the hair. Varying concentrations of Eumelanin and Pheomelanin create different natural levels and shade directions. The levels vary from 2 – 10, with 2 being the darkest and 10 representing the lightest level. The higher the Eumelanin concentration, the darker the color. The total melanin-concentration is 0.1 for light-blond and 3.5 % for black hair.

BY THE WAY

Naturally blond hair always shimmers a bit more than naturally dark hair. The reason is the transparency of blond hair fibres, so that the hair behind the hair shimmers through.

More about dyes and pigments in this chapter.

NATURAL WHITE HAIR

Hair’s age is also reflected in natural hair color. When Melanocytes stop working they’re not producing any pigments. The hair grows colorless, becoming white rather than grey. The grey appearance comes from the combination of naturally colored and white hair.

Fairy tales talk of hair becoming white overnight. Don’t believe it. Pigments can’t fall off the hair, and it never happens that quickly.

More about white hair in this chapter.

BY THE WAY

Polar bears don’t have a white fur. Their fur, or hair, is completely translucent but their skin is black. The translucent fur/hair transports the warming sun’s rays to the black skin which heats up their body system.

 

Learn more about Color Theory here.