Glossary of terms in detail


An excessive accumulation of fluid in the body tissues.


A small raised spot in the skin, less than 5mm in diameter.

'Para' Poisoning

Para-dyes are found in permanent tints. A specific type of allergic reaction to para-dyes is known as 'para'-poisoning. The signs and symptoms of this reaction include swelling of the face and neck, severe headaches and/or nausea. An allergic reaction to a para-dye, if severe enough, has even been known to cause death, seemingly through anaphylactic shock!

Permanent Colour

The action of permanent colour is progressive. The chemicals swell the hair shaft and raise the cuticle, allowing for the addition or removal of colour molecules within the hair cortex. The strength of peroxide used depends wholly upon the degree of lift required. The maximum strength to be safely used on the scalp is 9% and on virgin (untreated) hair it is 12%, this will produce the recommended maximum lift of 3 shades.

Permanent Waving

Perming solutions have properties, which enable them to swell the hair shaft and break down certain chemical bonds within it. The stronger, more alkaline, the solution and the longer it is left in contact with the hair, the more bonds will be broken. Its action is progressive. The hair remains in this weakened state until it is neutralised. Under normal usage the neutralising process fixes the broken bonds within the hair shaft, setting them in the new configuration.


Refers to the hair's ability to absorb moisture. Very porous hair is typically damaged with the cuticle not completely intact, usually from too much bleaching or over processing from perms or relaxers. Porous hair absorbs hair chemicals very quickly and can become over process and damaged quickly. On the contrary, hair that is not very porous does not absorb chemicals very quickly and can be difficult to perm or colour.


A small puss-filled blister on the skin.