LONDON — Wella has developed a new molecule that promises high efficacy but with a reduced risk of developing an allergy to hair color. Traditional dye molecules PPD and PPT, which are in 90 percent of color products in the market and key to creating natural, brown and dark hair colors, have been replaced by a new molecule that is central to the formulation of Koleston Perfect Innosense.

Called ME+, the new molecule has a different shape to PPD/PPT, therefore making it less likely to react negatively with T-cell receptors that spark off allergic reactions, or contact dermatitis. That is, when a molecule fits into a T-cell receptor, an allergy exists. So ME+ has been developed so that it will not fit into the receptors.

Wella has created 22 shades of Innosense, which global creative director of color Josh Wood said equates to a limitless set of options. “When you have a paint box with 22 colors in it, you can create anything you want,” he said at the product’s launch in London.

The product offers 100 percent coverage and up to three levels of lift in shades from blonde and red to brunette and black.

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“We developed this because at the core of what we do, we state that our goal is to elevate the profession,” said Wella global president Adil Mehboob-Khan. “In the spirit of elevating the profession, [innovation] is something that we wanted to do. It helps bring new customers in, eliminate the negative through the development of new science that could be the future.”

Mehboob-Khan said that the company had committed to growing its R&D investment by 5 to 10 percent over the next five years because it was encouraged by the strong results that the launches of Illumina and Color ID. “The investments are working for us,” he said. “Our reputation on color is strong and everything we’ve launched has been a success, not just for us but for our clients, driving their revenues by enabling them to try new services.”

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