Materials science for goths: graphene hair-dye

A team of material scientists from Northwestern University figured out how to make hair dye in various shades of grey, all the way to a very, very black black, out of graphene sheets.

The dye is easy to apply, contains no toxic substances, tames flyaway hair, and conducts heat(!). It is goth as fuck.

Graphene-based hair dyes can be applied simply by spraying and combing, which helps to complete the dyeing process more quickly than with molecular dyes. Yet the coloration is quite durable; it is already comparable with commercial permanent hair dyes. In addition to their main function of dark or gradient coloration, r-GO- and GO-based hair dyes offer a number of enhancements to hair properties, including better antistatic and heat dissipation performances. These coatings can potentially render even more functionalities, including UV protection, antibacterial,46 and odor absorption on the basis of known properties of GO and r-GO. It should also be feasible to adjust the thickness and composition of the coating to tune the bending rigidity of coated hair to achieve a volumizing effect, which is another highly desirable feature.

In addition to fashion and aesthetics, the new functionalities enabled by graphene hair dyes may have other uses. For example, they could be applied to coat animal furs to reduce electrostatically induced irritation in livestock farming. Antistatic hair would also be useful for the development of humanoid robots to reduce the level of static interruption to embedded electronics. Highly conductive hair strands could also be repurposed as in situ electrodes to interface with skin or “dermal electronics”47 or become functional elements in wearable devices. Finally, at the end of their use, graphene-coated hair waste can be readily repurposed or converted to make energy storage materials or sensing devices.48, 49, 50

Multifunctional Graphene Hair Dye [Chong Luo, Lingye Zhou, Kevin Chiou and Jiaxing Huang/Chem]

(via JWZ)