Heat and pencils? Ingredients are the key!

Caldo e matite? Questione di ingredienti!

Some like it hot… Make up pencils don’t. High temperatures are definitely a challenge for all cosmetic products, but creating a pencil lead requires even more attention: the goal is finding the right balance with texture, look and heat resistance. Or R&D team has studied different solutions and we always put our pencils through a “stress test” before we start production. It’s not easy, but we can create leads that can stand the heat without losing their composure. 

Heat can damage pencils: how?

When temperatures rise, make up pencils might have a bunch of problems, if the manufacturer hasn’t studied formula and raw materials correctly. Heat can jeopardise the cohesion in the leads, creating negative results.

  • Appearance: heat can cause external trouble, if an ingredient seeps on the surface of the lead or creates the “blooming” effect. The lead isn’t ruined, actually, but an aesthetic flaw in a make up product is inexcusable. 
  • Lead compactness: high temperatures can break the chemical bonds between the raw materials used in the formula. This is serious trouble, because the lead “melts”, getting so soft it’s unusable. 
  • Rancidity: with high temperatures some of the oils – used to obtain the right texture – can go rancid. In this case case the pencil is still usable, more or less, but its payoff and the effect are ruined. The performance can be very different from the standard.

How can we prevent our pencils from ending up like an ice lolly in the sun? When we create a formula, we pay specific attention to some ingredients. Oils and some low-melting waxes are the most sensitive to heat, as many natural materials are. Natural raw materials are less stable and less reproducible than synthetic products: they have excellent characteristics, but we must handle them with great attention. 

So is it impossible to obtain a heat resistant pencil? Not at all! The main challenge is to build a stable mixture of ingredients: we need to choose raw materials with similar characteristics, avoiding compatibility problems that worsen with high temperatures. We choose oils and butters that are less likely to go rancid. 

Then we can strengthen the heat resistance, starting with a pencil that’s stable and has a very good performance at  mild temperatures. How? We add ingredients that strengthen the chemical and physical structure of the weak bonds, giving “solidity” to the lead when temperature rises. 

Test, test, test

We always evaluate our formulas, during development and with experimental productions: the pencils are tested in the heather at 37C, with maximum temperature of 45C. We check cold resistance as well, down to -4C: low temperatures are less challenging, but can create some setbakcs in the performance of pencils. 

We ì’ve created whole heat resistant lines: our new Colibrì offers soft and sliding leads that can keep a perfect payoff at low and high temperatures. We’ve tested all these pencils in the heater (and the fridge) and the verdict is clear: there’s no relevant difference between the pencils kept at mild temperatures and those undergoing thermal stress. 

If you’d like to know more about our “hottest” pencils, please write to commerciale@confaloniericosmetica.com to get the technical details or to book a call to analyse your requirements and discuss the customisation. 

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