The lifting of the cuticle causes weathering of the hair; some cuticles are destroyed and some will not close properly after repeated colouring. The more weathered the cuticle, the rougher your hair will feel, and the more it will look like the proverbial ‘rat’s nest’ you see on some people with long hair that has been coloured repeatedly over time.
Chemical colouring removes keratin and eventually weakens your hair to the point that it breaks off. Colouring a cuticle that has not fully closed will mean an accelerated loss of pigment. This means you will have to re-dye your hair more often.
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Some chemical dye companies claim their product helps repair the hair or make it feel fuller. However, if the product contains peroxide or ammonia, it is still going to damage your hair.6 The volumising effect of the hair-colouring process will not make your hair fibres thicker, but can make hair fibres rougher, creating the appearance and feel of thicker hair.
This is because the rougher texture causes neighbouring hair fibres to ‘grip’ each other, rather than slide past each other the way smooth fibres do, leading to increased friction and the more likelihood of hair snagging and snapping.
Permanent waving (the perm) and chemical straightening or relaxers use chemicals to disrupt the cortex’s internal structure and change the hair’s outward appearance.
In order to change the shape of the hair, chemicals break the bonds that give the hair its structure by penetrating the cuticle and get into the cortex where they have their effect. The hair is then put into its new shape andneutralisedwith further chemicals to ensure the new bonds stay in their new shape or hairstyle.
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