Surface characterization of human hair by atomic force microscopy in the imaging and F-d modes
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Surface structure and surface mechanical properties of human hair have been characterized by atomic force microscopy in the imaging mode and by force vs. distance, F-d, analysis. The effects of treatment by commercial conditioner/shampoo or by aqueous exposure have been investigated. The cuticular structure has been imaged at medium resolution; longitudinal striations with lateral spacings of 150-350 nm and vertical corrugations in the range 2-8 nm were observed at higher resolution. The features are similar to those observed for untreated wool fibre. Both adventitious debris/contamination and residues from cosmetic treatment can be imaged with resolution in the low-nanometre range. Removal of the cuticular surface layer from treatment with alkali solution, and subsequent imaging, revealed a fibrous substructure. F-d analysis of the surface is a rich source of spatially resolved mechanical and chemical information. Surface stiffness, and an equivalent Young's Modulus, E, can be inferred from the shape of the 'approach' tip-to-surface contact curve. A value of E of 蠱0 MPa was obtained for untreated hair. During aqueous exposure for 1 h the stiffness and modulus decreased by approximately a factor of 10. The discontinuity seen at 'lift-off' during the retract half-cycle of F-d analysis represents a measure of tip-to-surface adhesion. Adhesion decreased during aqueous exposure and was below the level of detectability after 1 h. Likewise, treatment by conditioner had the effect of lowering adhesion. High resolution F-d data revealed features that are consistent with the presence of a thin and readily compressible surface layer, probably analogous to the surface lipid layer on untreated wool fibre.
International Journal of Cosmetic Science
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