The chemistry of hairspray
What is hairspray: introduction
Hair spray (or hair lacquer) is a common household aqueous solution that is used to keep hair stiff or in a certain style. Weaker than hair gel, hair wax, or glue, it is sprayed to hold styles for a short period of time. Using a pump or aerosol spray nozzle it sprays evenly over the hair. Hairspray was first developed and manufactured in 1948 by Chase Products Company, based in Broadview, Illinois.Its active ingredient is a suitable polymer or the chemical elastesse. Elastesse is a form of liquid elastic that keeps the hair stiff and firm without snapping. Pytocalcious, an ingredient in hair spray, lowers the amount of minerals in the hair's root causing the hair to become stiff, or polyvinylpyrrolidone. Excessive use or lack of washing after hair spray may lead to dull or damaged hair. Some hair sprays are scented or have color. Hair spray is an easy way to hold hair styles for a short period of time. Hairsprays belong to a class of personal care products that help hair to hold a desired style. These products contain film forming ingredients that are applied as a fine mist. When dry, these chemicals form tiny glue-like spots that hold the hair shafts together. Hairsprays are formulated as aerosols that are powered by pressurized gasses or non-aerosols that are dispensed by manually depressing a pump.Hair spray is extremely flammable, more so before it is dry. The result of ignition is moderate to serious burns to the hair and upper torso, sometimes resulting in death.
How hairspray is made: Methodology
Hairspray is a solution of long, chainlike molecules (called polymers) in a very volatile solvent. Spraying deposits a stiff layer of the polymer on your hair after the solvent evaporates. The solvent used was once a compound of carbon, fluorine, and chlorine (a chlorofluorocarbon, or CFC). CFCs are nontoxic, nonflammable, and make almost ideal aerosol propellants. But when it was learned that...
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