Frizzy90 says…I’m currently using Herbal Essences “Totally Twisted” Curl Boosting Mousse. I decided to look at the ingredients on the back. I was glancing at it and saw propane. The first thing that came to my mind was the grill on my porch that uses propane. Please explain the significance of this ingredient (flammable, bad for the hair, etc.).
The Left Brain responds:
This question comes straight from our Forum but we thought other people might have the same question so we’re repeating it in today’s post.
Herbal Essences Totally Twisted Mousse Ingredients
Water, Isobutane, Polyquaternium 4, Propane, Lavandula Angustifolia Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract (Lavender), Jade Plant Extract (Crassula Argentea), Fragrance (Parfum), Propylene Glycol, C9 11 Pareth 8, DMDM Hydrantoin, Disodium EDTA, Citric Acid
You can see that propane is the fourth ingredient which means it’s present in the formula at a reasonably high concentration. It’s actually part of a blend along with isobutane, the second ingredient. Why is this grilling ingredient in your mousse? Propane is a gas (a very flammable gas, which makes it useful as a cooking and heating fuel.) It also has the ability to convert to a liquid form under pressure which makes it useful as a propellant in aerosol systems. When the can is closed the gas is in liquid form; when you press down on the nozzle the liquid expands and turns back into a gas and forces its way out of the can along with the concentrate inside. In a mousse, the result is a nice fluffy foam.
Safe for hair?
Is a product made with flammable gas safe to put on your hair? As BeautyBear accurately pointed out in the Forum, “you have nothing to worry about unless you style your hair over an open flame; the propellants evaporate almost immediately and after a few minutes you can use heated appliances.” Nicely done, BeautyBear!
By the way, since hydrocarbon propellants are green house gases which can contribute to smog and global warming, their use in personal care products is limited (CARB or California Air Resources Board is the genesis for most legislation on this topic.)
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