GLOSSARY OF HAIR and BEAUTY TERMS
Absorbent - If hair is absorbent, it takes in liquid by acting like a sponge.
Accelerator - A product that works under the surface of the
skin and provides the necessary ingredients for melanin production, which will
the rate at which the skin tans. An accelerator is most effective when used
after a shower or at least four hours before tanning.
Acid mantle - The combination of sweat and sebum that provides the skin's
Acid Perm - An acid perm produces permanent hair waves with
curls that are actually softer than an alkaline perm. It also has a pH from 6.5
Alkaline - A substance with a pH greater than 7; non acidic.
Allergen - Allergen is a substance that causes an allergic reaction.
A form of baldness.
Amino acids - The building blocks of hair.
Aminophenols - Phenol derivatives used in combination with
other chemicals in permanent (two-step) hair dyes.
Ammonia - An alkaline ingredient used in some permanent hair
color. Ammonia is an ingredient that results in a chemical action that decolorizes
Amphoteric - A mild nonirritating surfactant (an agent that
allows oil to mix with water) often used in shampoos; leaves hair manageable
is gentle enough for chemically treated hair.
Anagen - The active growth of the hair cycle.
Arrector pili muscle - Involuntary muscle attached to the hair follicle and
germinative layer of the skin.
Barbicide - Brand name of sanitizer used to disinfect salon
Basic shade - A natural or neutral colour.
Betaine - A natural conditioning substance for example: from molasses or sugar
Boar Bristle - A bristle commonly used in natural bristle
Body - The volume or springiness of hair.
Botanical - Refers to a product containing plants or ingredients made from
Brassy - Refers to unflattering warm tones in hair colour
created by chemicals or damage.
Carbomer - A polymer on the basis of acrylic acid. Provides a thickening,
gelling action and consistency regulator for cosmetic products.
Cationic - Possessing a positive electrical charge. Cationic
detergents are often used in shampoos because they reduce static electricity
the hair manageable.
Cationic polymer - Positively charges the hair
to provide manageability and reduces static.
Capillaries - Small blood vessels which connect the arteries and veins that
feed the hair.
Cetyl Alcohol (fatty alcohol) - A gentle humectant, lather
booster, and emulsifier. In hair products, it is used to smooth and soften
Chamomile - Used in many products for blonde hair to enhance color.
Chelating - A deep cleansing process which strips the hair
lightly before a chemical service. Also known as clarifying.
Chitosan - A natural polymer obtained from sea crustaceans - protects the
Catogen - The resting stage of the hair cycle.
Climbazole - Highly effective active anti-dandruff ingredient. Combats bacteria
on the scalp.
Coarse - A classification for stronger, thicker types of hair.
Cocamide DEA - Either made synthetically or derived from the kernel of the
coconut, it gives
lather and cleans skin and hair.
Cologne - A combination of water containing alcohol and fragrant
oils. Not to be confused with a concentrated perfume.
Conditioner - Creamy
hair product meant to be used after shampoo. Moisturizes and detangles hair.
Cortex - The largest section of a single hair, containing the main bulk of
Cream Rinse - A mixture of wax, thickeners, and a group of
chemicals used to coat the hair
shaft and detangle after shampooing.
Cuticle - The outer protective layer of the hair. Healthy
cuticles impart sheen to the hair.
Dandruff - Flaking scalp due to excessive cell production.
Deep Penetrating Treatment - A conditioner for hair meant
for occasional use. Of greater intensity than ordinary conditioners. Formulas
usually contain protein, vitamins, and
moisture to help dry, damaged hair.
Depilate - Removal of hair on the surface of the skin. Examples
shaving or the use of depilatory creams.
Dermis - The inner layer or main bulk of the skin.
Developer - A product which oxidises artificial colour pigment.
Depth - The darkness or lightness of a colour.
Diameter - A measurement across the width of the hair.
Dimethicone - Detangling aid which conditions, protects against humidity,
Elasticity - The hair's ability to stretch without breaking
and then return to its original shape.
Epidermis - Top section of the skin.
Emollients - Ingredients that soften or smooth.
Emulsifier - A thickening agent and/or binding agent added to products to
change their physical composition (joins two or more ingredients together).
it can turn a lotion into a cream.
Essential Oil - The essence of a plant, removed by compressing, steaming,
dissolving or distilling. These oils produce the strongest odors, flavors,
properties when used in a product.
Exfoliating - A process of removing the top dead skin layers to reveal healthier,
newer skin underneath.
Extension - Hair extensions are pieces of real or synthetic weaved close to
the scalp in
order to achieve greater length and/or fullness.
Extract - An herbal concentrate produced by separating the essential or active
part of an herb into a solvent material.
Fashion shade - A basic colour with added tone.
Finishing Spray - A hairspray with medium hold used on a
finished style to maintain its shape
Follicle - A pore in the skin from which a hair grows.
Follicle sheath - Protects the hair during its growth stage.
Fragrance - Any natural or synthetic substance or substances
use solely to impart a sweet or pleasant smell (odor) to a cosmetic product.
Fragrance-Free - Products so labeled may still contain small amounts of fragrances
to mask the fatty odor of soap or other unpleasant odors. (There is no official
definition for this term.)
Freezing Spray - A hairspray with the firmest hold used to maintain style
of hard to hold hair.
Gel - Jelly like material formed by the coagulation of a
emulsion that liquefies when applied to the skin.
Glabella - The space/area between the eyebrows.
Glycerin - A humectant which absorbs moisture from the air
to keep hair moist.
Henna - Derived from the henna plant, a vegetable dye made
from its leaves and stems into a powder. Traditionally, it imparts a reddish
cast to the hair by
coating it. Clear henna enhances shine. Henna cannot be dyed over since
it coats the outer hair shaft, affecting the penetration of the chemical
Highlights - The subtle lifting of color in specific sections
Humectant - An ingredient in skin or hair products that draws moisture from
the air to
Humidity - The amount of moisture available in the air.
Hydrate - To add moisture to the skin.
Hydrogen peroxide - Used to oxidise (expand) artificial colour molecules.
Can also lighten natural colour pigment.
Hydrolyzed keratin - Basically corresponds to human hair, contains the "structural
protein" of hair, repairs damage - active ingredient 'Liquid-hair'.
Hydroxypropyl guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride - All essential ingredient
that adds moisture to the hair.
Indentation - A hollow or pocket in the skin.
Infusion - Tea made by steeping an herb's leaves or flowers
in hot water.
Isopropyl Lanolate, Myristate, and Palmitate - Synthetic
Keratin - The hair's natural protein.
Jojoba Oil - Contains superior properties to keep skin and
hair soft. It is beneficial to dry hair.
Lauryldimonium hydroxypropl hydrolyzed - A conditioning agent in shampoos,
which helps detangle the hair.
Liquid hair - Strengthens and rebuilds the structure of the hair.
Lubricant - An oil or oil rich crème or lotion designed
the skin and slow moisture loss.
Lubricates - Makes smooth or slippery by using oil to overcome friction.
Luvimer - Flexible resin.
Matte - A non-shiny surface that absorbs light; a dead or dull
Medulla - Central core of the hair, not always present.
Melanin - Natural hair colour pigment.
Metabolism - The body transformation of food into energy.
Micro diffuse - Optimum hold without overload.
Micro fine - Brushes out easily.
Moisturizer - An emollient cream used to hydrate the skin.
Natural - Ingredients extracted directly from plants, earth
minerals, or animal products as opposed to being produced synthetically.
Nerve endings - Receptors which respond to touch, pain, pressure, heat and
Neutralise - To cancel or reduce effect.
Nutrient - A substance, such as a vitamin, which provides elements
for the ongoing functioning of the body's metabolic processes.
Organic - Pertaining to carbon-based compounds produced by living plants,
animals or by synthetic processes. Referring to substances that are or have been
and therefore contain carbon molecules in their chemical structure.
Oxidation colour - A colour which requires oxygen to make it work.
Panthenol - Aids detangling. Provides volume, control and shine.
Papilla - The hair's factory.
Parfum - The most concentrated and most fragrant scent and therefore
the most expensive.
Patch Test - A test performed (usually with a hair dye or
other potential allergen) on the skin 24 hours before its use to determine
Permanently - Completely changing the natural colour of the hair.
PH: (pH: percentage of hydrogen) - Used to measure acidity in
P.V.P - Seals and adds shine.
P.V.P/VA - Copolymer Nonionic "film" forming agent.
Pigment - Colour.
Pore - A small opening of the sweat glands of the skin.
Porosity - Ability to absorb moisture.
Protein Treatment - A treatment used on the hair. Designed
to add strength and elasticity to the
hair by adding protein to the cortex.
Relax - To chemically straighten the hair to gently smooth
reduce frizz, or create a straight style.
Resistant - Stops or opposes treatment.
Sebaceous gland - Oil producing gland in the dermis.
Sebum - The oil produced by the sebaceous gland.
Self-tanner - A sun tanning product that contains DHA, which
reacts with amino acids in the top layer of skin, causing it to temporarily darken
Subcutaneous tissue - The body's shock absorber.
Semi-permanent - A colour which lasts from 6-8 shampoos.
Silicone - Increases wet and dry combability.
Silk Protein - A natural water-soluble source of acid derived
from liquid silk; these acids help moisture penetrate the skin (aid in absorption)
and aid in skin healing. Used in skin and hair products.
Slough - To become shed or cast off (to separate in the form of dead
Soap - Cleansing agent that is a sodium or potassium salt of animal or
Soluble - Being able to dissolve into, or being compatible
with, another substance.
Soothing - Reducing skin discomforts from irritation, blemishes,
burning skin, etc.
SPF - An acronym for "Sun Protection Factor" ranging
from 2 to 45 with
2 being the least protection and 45 the most.
Sunscreen - Products with ingredients that absorb UVA and
UVB rays. Find one labeled "broad spectrum" for maximum protection.
Sunblock - Products that reflect all the sun's rays, such as zinc oxide and
titanium dioxide. They permit minimal tanning, and are a good choice for those
who are sensitive to chemicals.
Surfactants - Active agent that allows oil to mix with water.
Used in skincare products like cleansers, wetting agents, emulsifiers, solubizers,
conditioning agents and foam stabilizers.
Tan - When your skin is damaged by exposure to the UVA and UVB
rays of the sun, its reaction is to produce more melanin as an attempt to protect
itself against further damage. Melanocytes (produce Melanin) float within
the epidermis and don’t migrate to the top. Melanin is a brown colored
protein that helps determine the color of our skin. The Melanin that the
melanocytes make finds its way into the keratinocytes (the cells containing
the keratin) as they make their way up to the surface. The melanocytes produce
more melanin when we are exposed to the sun. The result of this is a tan.
Telogen - The hair fall stage of the hair cycle.
Temporary Color - A hair color formula that lasts only until
you shampoo your hair.
Tone - Distribution of ashen and warm pigments, visual effect
of gold or ash in the hair.
Translucent - Allows some light to pass through.
Triclosan - Is effective against most bacteria occurring
on the skin.
T-zone - The forehead, nose and chin areas, which tend to be oilier than the
UV - Ultraviolet radiation. The invisible spectrum of solar radiation. It
is divided into three regions with increasing danger to the skin; UV-A, UV-B,
Water-resistant - Repels moisture or water; not readily removed with water.
Water-soluble - Soluble in water; capable of being dissolved in water, especially
if a wetting agent is added, like detergents and soaps.
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