Is lithium hydroxide as strong as lye?

DaveStoneDaveStone Member
And why doesn't it need a base like calcium hydroxide does?

Comments

  • PharmaPharma Member, Pharmacist
    It's nearly as alkaline as sodium hydroxide.
    Calcium hydroxide is slightly less alkaline (still medium-strong though) but foremost it's very poorly water soluble and henceforth doesn't act as a strong base under certain conditions.
  • Pharma said:
    It's nearly as alkaline as sodium hydroxide.
    Calcium hydroxide is slightly less alkaline (still medium-strong though) but foremost it's very poorly water soluble and henceforth doesn't act as a strong base under certain conditions.
    Which would work better as a relaxer? I've rarely seen lithium used...whereas calcium and lye are most common. I wonder why.
  • PharmaPharma Member, Pharmacist
    Higher price and toxicity?
    Also, it's behaviour is different... not sure how (better or worse in a relaxer?).
    It's likely having a better penetration which would weaken hair to the core.
  • PhilGeisPhilGeis Member, Professional formulator
    Counter ions can make a difference in some applications, but it's hard to understand why.  K hypochlorite is more effective than Na hypochlorite in Tilex-type products  but more expensive.
  • Bill_TogeBill_Toge Member, Professional Chemist
    edited April 29
    also, the reason calcium hydroxide relaxers have to be mixed with guanidine carbonate before use is because they form guanidine hydroxide when mixed
    although it's highly effective and less caustic than mineral hydroxides, it's also chemically unstable, so it has to be formed in situ
    UK based cosmetic chemist with 13 years' experience at the bench. I've worked with pretty much everything apart from pressed powders, soap, solid lipstick and aerosols.
Sign In or Register to comment.