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How does Osis Dust-It Texture Powder work?

Hamfan asks…I just inherited some kind of cool stuff called Osis Dust-it Texture Powder from a friend. Once it’s on the hair it gets a kind of unusual tacky consistency and puffs everything up; the effect is visually similar to backcombing. The packaging says the effect is coming from silica silylate, which I’m not familiar with and haven’t been able to find much about.  Just wondering what it is that activates the powder (it stays powdery in my hand, so I guess it’s not skin or heat but something particular about hair?), why that type of stickiness would create volume rather than weighing everything down (which is my usual experience with, say, gel or hair wax), and if there’s any potential for it to be damaging?

The Beauty Brains respond: 

Believe it or not, this “Dust-it” product is actually powdered water!

The power of powder

We worked on this technology a few years ago: if you put water and silica silylate in a blender and pulverize it, the silica encapsulates the water. It feels like a dry powder even though it consists primarily of water! As the “capsules” are ruptured and become dried out the silica particles remain on the hair. The Osis formulators have also added Octylacrylamide/Acrylates/Butylaminoethyl Methacrylate Copolymer, a styling resin, increases the tacky feel.

The combination of the tiny silica particles and the resin create sticky little ball bearings that push the hair fibers apart to create volume. Most styling gels and waxes work by coating the entire hair shaft instead of creating these little spot welds, which is why you get increased volume instead of flat, weighed down hair.


Water, Silica Silylate, Sodium Benzoate, Octylacrylamide/Acrylates/Butylaminoethyl Methacrylate Copolymer, Citric Acid

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Eileen May 14, 2014, 9:39 am

    How interesting! Is this technology similar to what is used to create the so-called wet powders that can be used on the face? Prescriptives had one called Magic that felt wet when first applied and had a slightly grainy feel. Hmmm . . .

  • Tess @ Tips on Life & Love May 14, 2014, 4:39 pm

    I’ve heard about this stuff, but never knew if it actually worked. Good to know it actually works! Thanks!

  • rozy May 14, 2014, 8:28 pm

    Are there any drug store products that use this technology?

    • Randy Schueller May 14, 2014, 9:23 pm

      Not that I’ve seen.

      • KC May 1, 2015, 5:35 pm

        got2be (swartzkopf) has a product that is better than OSIS IMO.
        6-8$ in the drug store.

  • Kavya November 11, 2014, 11:02 pm

    Interesting article which makes me want to buy this product. But I am afraid of its side effect. Does it remove from hair easily using normal shampoo or does it make hair dry?

  • Nahim November 12, 2015, 1:54 am

    I’ve made it myself and it works wonders, it’s easy to clean you’ll only have to shampoo on dry hair and then you rinse out et voila!

    • Beth February 14, 2018, 3:22 pm

      How can you make it yourself? So expensive for a tiny bit would love to try and make myself

  • Iggy March 27, 2016, 7:15 pm

    Warning: Product is excreted strangely.

  • Linda December 30, 2019, 9:28 am

    I’ve used Osis dust in my crown for 10 years and my once thick hair is thinning in my crown. Any connections?

    • Perry Romanowski December 30, 2019, 7:00 pm

      Not likely, especially if it’s been 10 years. Your hair will naturally thin as you get older.