Photographed by Ben Ritter.
We rely on our flat irons for silky-straight strands and beachy waves. But, these go-to tools may soon be doing more than styling our hair — they could be changing its color. According to The Daily Mail, engineers at the University of New Mexico and Los Alamos National Laboratories are doing research on flat irons that could manipulate your mane's hue.
But, how exactly could that work? The trick has to do with light. Using a focused ion beam, researchers were able to etch patterns on human hair. These patterns affect the reflection of light, depending on how concentrated or spread apart these etchings are. And, since color as we see it is the result of the wavelengths at which light is reflected, the varying patterns result in a rainbow of colors. And, where is the ion beam housed? In a device that closely resembles that flat iron in your bathroom drawer. Handy, huh?
While the researchers tested the technique on all different hair hues, it was most effective on brown. This means it could eventually help ladies with darker strands achieve new colors without the use of bleach or other harsh chemicals, leading to more user-friendly hair dyes. Hey, if it means that we, too, can achieve My Little Pony-level strands without completely frying our heads, we're totally on board. Now, the most pressing question: Is there a test group or something we can sign up for? (The Daily Mail)
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