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- The cortex of the hair shaft is located between the hair Cuticle (hair cuticle is the outermost part of the hair shaft) and Medulla (the medulla is the innermost layer of the hair shaft) and is the thickest layer. It also contains most of the hair’s pigment, giving the hair its color. The pigment in the cortex is Melanin (melanin is a broad term for a group of natural pigments found in most organism) which is also found in skin.
- The cortex determines the coloring and flexibility and the thickness of the Tensile strength (Tensile strength is the maximum amount of force the strands of the hair can take a longitudinal direction without breaking)of the hair strands,
- Hair color & relaxer are only able to alter the color or curl pattern and texture of the hair because they have enough strength to raise the hair’s cuticle and reach the hair’s cortex and manipulate it. Hair color and relaxer have special chemical that raise the hair’s cuticle and break certain bonds in the hair’s cortex that straightens the curl pattern of someone with naturally curly hair.