Technical Information on Hair Colouring You Must Know

Technical Information on Hair Colouring You Must Know

The PH Story & the Structure of Hair

The PH Story

PH Comparisons

To the right are the PH figures of Organic Colour Systems products. Note that a PH of 10 or more is where damage to hair becomes significant.

Why not compare these with the PH figures from hair products that you currently use? That is, if the suppliers will tell you! I’m afraid that they may not want you to know just how their products fail.

pH Levels of Organic Colour Systems Products

Prevention is better than cure.

It’s far easier, nicer and cheaper to not damage your hair in the first place!
If your hair is damaged, it’s harder and more expensive to fix, and you have to spend more for your hair to look not as nice, and be harder to manage.

The Structure of Hair

Human hair is a hard, fibrous substance with a delicate balance of protein and moisture. Unlike skin, hair is not living tissue and therefore does not have the ability to repair itself.

It is in the delicate inner structure of the hair where we find moisture (water) along with the hard and soft protein. On the outside of the hair shaft there are 7 to 11 layers of interlocking scales which are called the cuticle (see microscope photo on the left). These form a protective barrier and hold the structure in place.

Protein levels in healthy hair are around 83%-87%; moisture levels aance is made up of sugar, salt and trace elements. It is essential that this balance is maintained to keep hair healthy, strong and in good condition.

This is why care must be taken to protect its condition and use the most natural and gentle products that are available, such as the Organic Care Systems range of products. This professional range is specifically formulated to work in conjunction with Organic Colour Systems.

It is essential to understand what products are, what is in them, and how they work in order to maintain the good condition of both your hair and scalp. Products that can maintain the natural pH balance should be seriously considered.

The importance of restoring the correct pH balance after colouring.

The pH scale is a measure of acidity and alkalinity which ranges from 0 to 14 with 7 (pure water) being neutral. The natural pH level of hair and the surface of your skin is between 4.5 and 5.5.

The ideal level for our hair (and skin) is between 4.5 – 5.5. Above 5.5 the hair starts to open and below 4.5 it starts to contract.

To colour hair permanently we have to lift the cuticle and allow permanent colour into the hair. The only way to do this is to alter the acid-alkaline balance (the pH balance) of the hair.

There are two ways to alter the hair’s PH to allow colouring to take place:

1. The first is to suspend the hair in a substance such as ammonia. This takes the hair well beyond its normal pH and causes the hair to swell considerably. This is effective for attaching colour but has numerous side effects including damage to the hair.

2. The second, more natural method is to suspend the hair in a substance that acts as a moisturizer. This softens the cuticle and, because it does not take the hair as far from its natural pH, causes it to open rather than swell.

The pH of Organic Colour Systems’ colours is 8.5 to 9.2. This is a stable pH level – unlike ammonia-based colours which can go as high as 11+ when you add heat.

Our system does not take the hair as far from the natural pH balance and it is able to close the cuticle down when shampooing and applying conditioner. This gives the hair a natural feel and shine.

Because there is no ammonia or ammonia substitutes there is no damage to the hair and the hair maintains its natural moisture and protein balance.

Organic Hair colouring

More about Ammonia

NO ammonia in organic hair colouring

Ammonia not only negatively affects the cuticle of the hair, it also damages an amino acid or protein called tyrosine which is found inside the hair shaft.

Tyrosine is responsible for producing melanin (the natural pigment in the hair shaft). When the Tyrosine is damaged the hair’s ability to hold onto colour (the hair’s own natural colour or pigments introduced into the hair) is greatly reduced or eliminated altogether.

When you introduce colour into the hair shaft without damaging the tyrosine the colour will last longer because the colour has something to bond to. Without ammonia the results are superior.

The Genetic Make-up of Hair

The Structure of Hair

  • Nucleus
  • 46 Chromosomes
  • 23 From each parent


  • Deoxyribonucleic Acid

(This is the Boss Cell)


  • Ribonucleic Acid/li>

(This is the Factory)

Helix Coil

Made from a collection of Amino Acids, and suspended into the soft protein, held together with the side links.
Links of Dysulphide (strong), Hydrogen (weak), Vanda Vall Forces Cysteine, Salt (Strong).

It is this spring that gives hair its strength, providing the intercellular cement has not been degraded.

Hair must have the ability to bend and stretch. This depends on the above. Is it too strong or too weak?

Amino Acids (20 are found in hair)

19 Amino Acids (This is called a Peptide)

19 to 30 Amino Acids (This is a Polypeptide)

30 or more ( is a protein)

This protein is in two forms in hair.
One is hard and forms the helix coil.
The other is soft and is called inter-Cellular cement.


In a salon environment, it is easier to think of hair as a protein.

Hair is:
83% to 87% protein, 3% water
The rest is made up from fatty acid, salt and sugar.

Hair can be weak or strong, to find out what it’s strength’s or weakness’ are we must analyse the hair


The Wet Stretch Test

Hair will stretch 30% of its natural length and return.
elasticity of hair
  1. if hair has no stretch= too hard
  2. hair stretches more = too weak
  3. hair stretches and breaks = very damaged.

Above mentioed points always give us problems when colouring or perming hair. The problems above can be overcome if we learn to recognise them.

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Call today for Organic Hair Colouring.
The Central Coast’s Organic Hair Salon. Healthy, happy hair for you!