Deep down, we all wish we had a little magic in our lives. :) And thermo-manicure may well be suitable for this! If you are interested in how color changing varnish works, I suggest reading my article today.
If you usually find it difficult to decide which shade of coating to use when meeting with a manicurist, thermal nail polish is what you need. After all, why choose if you can have a magical manicure that changes color under certain conditions.
Thermal nail polish is a type of nail polish that changes color with temperature. Such varnishes are also known as thermochromic. When I first saw the effect of thermal varnish, it reminded me of the “mood ring”, which all the girls in our school once wanted to become the owner of, and according to legend, the color of which, according to legend, changed depending on the psychological state. :)
True, most thermochromic varnishes cannot decide between only two colors, and do not display the entire rainbow, like this magic ring. Either way, there's a bit of chemistry here and there...oh, that's magic! :)
How thermal nail polish works
The thermal coating changes color because it contains a leuco dye. The word "leiko" is a Greek word meaning "white". This is why leuco dye comes in two forms: one is clear or colorless (white or leuco) and the other is colored. The transition between two colors can be triggered by heat (thermochromism), light (photochromism), or a change in pH (halochromism).
Leuco dyes can be found not only in nail polishes. Indigo is a leuco dye used to dye clothing. Other leuco dyes are the pH indicators phenolphthalein, thymol phthalein, and crystal violet. Such dyes are used even for thermal printers.
For thermo nail polish, the dye is packaged in tiny spheres called microcapsules. Each microcapsule is 1 to 10 microns in diameter (that's 0.001 to 0.01 millimeters) and contains three chemicals:
- Leuco dye. Color change is a reversible process, that is, over time, the changed shade will return to its original state. The color itself depends on the specific dye. And when this dye combines with a proton or a hydrogen ion, it becomes colorless.
- Weak acid. It is the substance that can release a hydrogen ion.
- Solvent. This is the third component that controls the situation! It is because of him that the magic happens. The solvent allows you to change color at a certain temperature. When it is “cold”, the solvent solidifies, so the hydrogen remains “adhered” to the acid, and does not react with the dye. Therefore, we see a rich color of the coating. But when it gets "hot", the solvent melts, the weak acid dissociates, the hydrogen ion binds to the dye and the it becomes colorless. I hope I didn't confuse you too much! :)
Nail polishes that change color with temperature don't always show up the same way. Some brands only change color when you soak your nails in ice cold water or expose them to warm air from a hair dryer or standing in a hot shower.
Other types are so sensitive that even the length of the nail can affect how the color appears. The nail bed receives body heat, while the tip of the nail, which protrudes beyond the finger, does not receive this heat. Therefore, owners of long nails, having painted them with thermal varnish, can get an excellent ombre/gradient manicure without any effort!
The best way to find out exactly how polish works is to read reviews before buying.
In addition, it should be borne in mind that all thermal varnishes have an expiration date. And most often it is less than that of the usual gel polishes. Under normal storage conditions, most manufacturers promise that thermal varnish will delight you from six months to a year. The shelf life of thermochromic varnishes is reduced by exposure to sunlight or ultraviolet light, high temperatures and contact with certain solvents. Therefore, deciding to become the owner of a bottle of thermal varnish, store it in a cool, dark place.
A thermo manicure is a great way to add some magic to your usual nail care routine. In addition, it can be an excellent design option for a festive manicure. Therefore, I advise you to pay special attention to varnish that changes color. :)