A good conditioner is known to improve the texture, quality and appearance of the surface to which it is applied. It also helps to correct or prevent certain aspects which are associated with the damage of the surface. Our skin and hair go through the constant process of wear and tear on a daily basis. A good conditioner is a must to make the hair look healthy and beautiful.
Today in this article, we are going to discuss one such conditioner Polyquaternium-10 which is known to be an excellent conditioning agent for your skin as well as hair. Because of its beauty benefits, Polyquaternium 10 is used in a wide range of skincare and hair care products. Keep reading to know what is Polyquaternium 10 and what makes it so special in the beauty industry.
What Is Polyquaternium-10?
Polyquaternium-10 is a white granular powder which has got a particular odour that is similar to the amine. It is readily soluble in water. Polyquaternium-10 is a polymeric quaternary ammonium salt of hydroxyethyl cellulose. It acts as an excellent anti-static agent, film former and fixative in all your skincare and hair care products. It is a key ingredient in almost all cosmetic products due to its conditioning ability.
Generally, polyquaternium which is often referred to as polyquat is a cationic polymer with several positive (poly) charges on it. These positive charges are found on the Nitrogen due to which it forms a quaternary ammonium group. Hence known as polyquaternium, the name is then followed by the number. Eg: Polyquaternium 1, 7, 10 etc. This number has nothing to do with the chemical structure, but instead, this number signifies the listing order in which the polyquat was registered with the INCI (International Nomenclature For Cosmetic Ingredients).
Role Of Polyquaternium-10 In Cosmetics
Polyquaternium-10 is a cationic polymer with excellent conditioning properties, hence extensively used in many skincare and hair care products. The positive charges which are found on Polyquaternium-10 effectively bind with the hair which is negatively charged. When the hair gets damaged either due to the use of excessive styling products or hair treatments, cysteic acid is formed which makes your hair even more negatively charged. The positively charged Polyquaternium-10 easily binds with the negatively charged hair at several points through ionic interaction, thereby helps to smooth out the cuticle of your strands. Thus Polyquaternium-10 has a good conditioning effect on the hair. Its anti-static effect and film-forming ability helps to keep your strands soft, smooth, silky and well-nourished preventing frizzy and dry hair.
Polyquaternium-10 has the same conditioning effect on your skin as well. It forms a thin film over the surface of your skin and helps to keep it soft, supple and well moisturized.
Due to these beauty-enhancing properties, Polyquaternium-10 is extensively used in a wide range of cosmetic products.
Benefits Of Polyquaternium-10 In Skincare
Polyquaternium-10 is a water-soluble cationic polymer with excellent conditioning ability. It acts as a conditioning agent in many skin care products which make your skin soft and supple. It attracts moisture from the surrounding and forms a thin film on the surface of your skin, thus helps to moisturize your skin. It also helps to retain the moisture on your skin for a longer period of time as the thin film acts as a barrier on the surface of your skin preventing water loss. It also acts as a surfactant in many skincare products. The surfactant lowers the surface tension between water and grime, thus facilitates the easy removal of dust, dirt and grime from the surface on the skin. Hence Polyquaternium -10, is used in a wide range of skin care products such as creams, lotions, moisturizers and facial cleansers.
Benefits Of Polyquaternium-10 In Hair Care
Polyquaternium-10 is a cationic polymer which has many beauty benefits, hence used in a wide range of hair care products. Polyquaternium-10 which is also known as Quaternium-19 is a cationic polymer which is used in hair care formulations because of its conditioning, film-forming and anti-static properties. It is mild and non-irritating and is known to be compatible with a wide range of surfactants.
The positively charged polymers help in neutralizing the negative charges of the shampoos and conditioners, thus helping to smooth out the cuticles of the hair and gently condition your hair. Lets us have a closer look at some of the other beneficial features of Polyquaternium-10.
1. Conditioning Agent
Polyquaternium 10 has excellent conditioning properties due to which it is used in many skincare creams, moisturizers and lotions. Its conditioning properties make your skin exceptionally soft, smooth and hydrated without making it look greasy. It also makes dry and wet combing easy as Polyquaternium-10 provides a slip and makes wet combing easier by detangling the hair.
2. Film Formers
Polyquaternium 10 is known to form a film on the surface of your strands and helps to protect it from environmental aggressors. In hair care products, it forms a protective barrier over the strands and helps to retain its moisture level, thereby making your hair soft, silky and vibrant. It also adds volume to your hair making the hair look thick and bouncy. Polyquaternium 10 is known to help the product in the setting of hair due to which it is used in making hair gels, mousses and setting lotions.
3. Protects Your Strands
Polyquaternium-10 is a natural cationic polymer which forms a protective barrier over the surface of your strands, thereby helping to seal and realign the damaged areas of the hair shaft and adds strength to the damaged hair.
4. Thickeners And Stabilizers
Polyquaternium-10 is also known to be an excellent rheological modifier, hence used as a thickener in many cosmetic formulations to increase the viscosity of the product. It gives a thick consistency to your hair care products. It provides stability to your hair care formulation as Polyquaternium-10 is compatible with other active ingredients in the product.
5. Anti-static Agents
Static electrical charges are buildup on the surface of the strands which attract dirt and dust and are very important to get rid of this static effect. This is where Polyquaternium-10 comes into the picture as an anti-static agent in major hair care products. Anti-static agents are generally amphiphilic in nature which has a hydrophilic end and the other hydrophobic end.
The hydrophobic end binds with the surface of the strands and the hydrophilic end attracts the water molecules from the surrounding and binds with it in such a way that it creates a conducive layer of water on the surface which causes the static charge to disappear. Polyquaternium-10 is a cationic chemical compound that prevents the buildup of static electricity on the surface of your strands, hence it is effectively used in many hair care products such as conditioners, styling gels, sprays, mousses and hair serums.
6. Compatible with Surfactants
Polyquaternium-10 is known to be compatible with a wide range of surfactants, thereby enhancing the performance and stability of the formulation.
Due to these incredible beneficial properties of Polyquaternium-10, it is used in a wide range of hair care products, which help to make your hair soft, smooth, silky, bouncy and vibrant. It helps to improve the texture and appearance of your strands.
Uses Of Polyquaternium-10
Polyquaternium-10 is a cationic polymer which is used as a key ingredient in many skincare, haircare and personal care products. Polyquaternium-10 is well known for its conditioning property due to which it is used in creams, lotions, conditioners, serums. Due to its film-forming ability, Polyquaternium-10 is used in facial creams, moisturizers, hair gels, leave-in conditioners, hair dyes, hair sprays and mousses. The anti-static property of Polyquaternium-10 makes it an ideal choice for addition in shampoos and conditioners.
Polyquaternium-10 is derived from cellulose and cellulose is considered to be natural polymer as it is found in most of the plants. HEC or Hydroxyethyl Cellulose is the precursor of Polyquaternium-10 which has a wide range of uses and applications such as being used in the manufacture of paints, various types of coatings and in various kinds of household products. When HEC is quaternized, then the end product that we get is Polyquaternium-10 which is used in a large number of cosmetic products.
Side Effects Of Polyquaternium-10
Polyquaternium-10 is generally considered to be safe for topical use. It is mild, non-irritant and non-sensitizing to the skin, hence used in a wide range of cosmetic products. At 2% concentration in the skincare and haircare formulation, Polyquaternium-10 is non-irritant and does not show any signs of allergic reaction on your skin. Hence Polyquaternium-10 is considered to be safe for use in cosmetics at 2% concentration. At 5% concentration, Polyquaternium-10 is known to show mild irritation to your skin and eyes. Polyquaternium-10 is considered to be entirely safe for use at 2% concentration or below. Anything above it can cause slight irritation to your skin and eyes.
Written By - Akhila Menon
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