Advanced Microscopy Applications
Life Sciences


Model: Lucent

Modes used – AFM – Tapping Mode, Phase imaging; LSM

Hair care is a big segment within the FMCG industry. Researchers are constantly trying to come up with improved hair care products. In that quest, they also need to correlate human experience with what is measurable in the lab. We used the Lucent AFM to measure the hair surface profile and quantify the effects of damage / treatment. Human hair is about 100 µm in diameter. The LSM feature helped to get the co-ordinates for the AFM tip to zoom into. The AFM images showed cuticle boundaries and measured step heights across them (0.9 µm) and also measured smaller layers in the 100 nm scale as well as irregular growths of ~100 nm size. Phase images of certain hair regions showed layered directional material growth with ~500 nm extensions. The data allows better understanding of hair conditions and correlating the effects of conditioners or other treatments.