Wednesday, July 4, 2012

understanding heat on hair.

Let’s talk about heat and hair.  A lot of naturals have a love& hate relationship with heat. I think this is because we lack understanding of the effects of heat on our precious curls. Well it’s time to go into some of the facts and clarify some of the myths…
So, where should we start.

What is heat?short version
 In the dictionary it is described as the state in which the body perceived as having or generating a relatively high degree of warmth.  Heat is energy transferred from one system to another by thermal interaction.

What is hair?short version
Hair is a network of amino acids chains that are joined together by side bonds  There are three types of side bonds: salt bonds, hydrogen bonds, and disulfide bonds. 
Today we are going to talk about two of these bonds, the Hydrogen and Disulfide bond. 

The hydrogen bond appears more frequently throughout the hair-strand and is connected to various parts of proteins and contribute to the overall stability of  the hair. This bond is weak and can easily be broken or altered by heat and moisture.

The Disulfide bond is fewer, but is much stronger and is directly contributed to the structure of the strand, meaning the curliness.

How does heat affect the hair?short version
Since hydrogen bonds is weak, light application of heat can change or cause deformities throughout the hair structure. The proteins are relatively rigid, so several hydrogen bonds must be broken simultaneously for a protein to change its overall shape. Heating of the hair cause reconstruction of the hydrogen bonds within a single hair strand and as it cools new bonds form.
 For example curling the hair with a heated curling wand. 
If you where to create a curl and proceed to hold the curl for 5 to 10 seconds as it cools down. Then proceed to curl another section of hair but release allowing gravity to pull it down and cool in that position.The first curl created will hold its shape longer then the one that was not allowed to hold it curl until the section completely cooled down. The bonds had not set themselves in place, causing the second curled section to drop the shape of the curl.
Duly noted, this newly created bond is weak and the smallest presence of moisture can cause the structure to return to its previous state. Increasing the kinetic energy within the atoms increases vibration or interactions between the atoms involved in the hydrogen bond.  More energy or increase in temperature increase changes or deformation of hair strand. The structure becomes disrupted and denaturation happens.  High temperatures or prolonged use of heat can affect the hydrogen Bond in a way that can destroy or permantly alters the disulfide bond that creates the curly pattern in your hair. Most people know it as heat damage.

That's all flocks..... for now. I just wanted to give my reader a head up to the future video coming soon...Yahhhh!!!!!! I'm really excited about this one. Other questions that will be answered and discussed in this video will be listed below. If you have any questions or topics dealing with heat fill free to leave below and I will add them to the video. 
Thank you and see you soon....
How does heat damaged hair look and act?
Why should I stay away from heat or lower my use of heat?
What to do if you have heat damage?

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