Hair dye base becomes thin. why??????

aqeel4ukaqeel4uk Member
edited November 2014 in Formulating
Actually in my first formulation of hair dye I use Cetostearyl(10%), SLS(0.75%), Coconut Oil and White Oil(1+1%), (Sodium Sulfite(0.5)(antioxidant)  in the Cream/Base +Active ingredients. The cream was normal thick. But the problem was that uper layer of cream becomes black in one day remain open to cool down after adition of active color ingredients and MEA. So I made some changes with Cetostearyl(7%), GMS(1%)for shining, Stearic Acid(3)for stability, SLS(0.75%), Coconut Oil and White Oil(1+1%), (Sodium Sulfite(0.5)(antioxidant) in the Cream/Base. Now the cream was good thick but a little thin after MEA and does not become black in one day but in 2/3 days. Now with the addition of Ceteareth-20(1%) Cream is more stable in color but more thinning. I also tried Oleic Acid (2%) but it is completly useless.
I saw some transparent liquid hair dyes(like Revlon) a thin pourable liquid in the bottle(not in tube) but when mix with the oxidizing developer cream it becomes very thick non drip mixture. Which is very good for application.
1- Any helpful suggestions to make cream more Stable, Shiny and Thick for hair dye?
2- Any helpful suggestions for transparent liquid hair dye like Revlon. Which is thin pourable liquid packed in bottle but non drip after mixing with developer cream.


  • RawMaterialGirlRawMaterialGirl Member, Professional formulator
    edited November 2014
    A strong grasp of organic chemistry will help you solve all of your questions.

    Your cream is becoming black because the dyes are oxidizing; any time you have oxidative dyes and they are exposed to air, you will get oxidation and it will turn black.

    As far as the thinning goes, oxidative dyes can affect the viscosity of your cream, but your formula is really vague, and it sounds like you need a more stable base.

    Please don't take this the wrong way, but you've advertised yourself as a manufacturer of hair dye products, and your other questions on Chemists Corner indicate that you are not experienced in hair color chemistry (or chemistry) at all. Hair color chemistry isn't like making a regular cosmetic product; its reactive chemistry and it can be very dangerous to the end consumer if you don't know what you're doing. Hair color chemists are typically organic chemists that can spend years training. A course in organic chemistry will help you get started, and searching any information online about the types of alkalizers and how to properly balance dyes should give you a good direction.

    Good luck!
  • Yes, you are right that I am not an experienced. Actually we are using a perfect and stable formulation of Black and Brown cream hair dyes and it's a regular work.
    But now I am learning and researching about more shades and types of hair dyes like liquid, gel, powder and Shampoo hair dyes and 1to5 minute(quick) hair dye as well,
    I wish anyone could help me.
  • RawMaterialGirlRawMaterialGirl Member, Professional formulator
    If you have access to the Journal of Cosmetic Science, there are articles over the years about hair color.

    If you dont have anyone to mentor you, I would look at current products on the market and see what their ingredients are. Go through each one and look up what they do. You'll see the active in 5-minute hair color.

    Also see if the suppliers of your dyes can offer training.
  • Bill_TogeBill_Toge Member, Professional Chemist
    the best way to stop oxidative dyes from darkening is to keep their contact with air to an absolute minimum; this is why these products are always sold in tubes or sachets (i.e. airtight containers)

    whenever we manufactured the bulk liquids for oxidative dyes we always covered the surface with a plastic film to stop them darkening

    as for the product which thickens when mixed, it sounds like the developer (pH 2-3) contains a peroxide-stable carbomer or similar polymer which is neutralised and thickens when the dye (pH ~10) is mixed with it
    UK based formulation chemist. Strongest subjects: hair styling, hair bleaches, hair dyes (oxidative and non-oxidative) I know some stuff about: EU regulations, emulsions (O/W and W/O), toothpaste, mouthwash, shampoos, other toiletries
  • Thanks Bill, I will try this peroxide-stable carbomer, it sounds good.
    RawMaterialGirl, I have no access to journal of cosmetic science. I request you to have a look for 5-minute speedy hair color.
  • RawMaterialGirlRawMaterialGirl Member, Professional formulator
    Hi Aqeel,

    All you have to do is use Google to search "journal of cosmetic science" and then pertinent terms like "hair dye" "monoethanolamine", etc. papers will come up even if you can't access

    Just look for five minute color ingredients on the Internet (just for men, etc). You should be able to figure out which ingredient is for the progressive dying.

    You will have to research the ingredient anyway if you pdon't know how to use it, and this will be more valuable than just telling you the answer - I spent years training in hair color and this is the most effective way to learn and understand.

  • This is true and valuable RawMaterialGirl. Bye the way I am not easy to say you RawMaterialGirl, What should I say you?
    Let's come to the point. It's been more than a year in searching, And now I am a little bit able to understand the Hair dye science like oxidation, color lift, color deposit, dye ingredients(Ppd,Pap,Oap,Map,Rcn,Aht,1-Nap), PH, stability, Shades etc.
    Saw few of things for 5 minute hair dye like O-phathalaldehyde, L-Arginine etc but it doesnt work. Now I want someone to share each other experience, Although I am not a fully experienced but I think I can share many other things and a little bit experience about permanent hair coloring. I want to see how people are working in hair dyes.
    (sorry for poor English).
    Hope to hear you soon positively.
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