The incorporation of the fluid in the new formulations is said to offer hair strengthening, long-lasting shine, straightening, heat and color protection as well as high pH stability. The fluid is a liquid amino phenyl silicone that has been widely used in a variety of hair care products, including shampoos and conditioners, but has proved to be particularly useful in the new generation of advanced styling products. Advanced patent strucure The company says that the new formulations it has developed demonstrate the fluid's patent structure, which is said to make it appropriate for leave-in products, relaxers, rinse-off products, colorants and perms. The formulations include two shine and conditioning treatments. One is a water-based leave-in treatment and the other has been developed to focus on coating the cuticle to produce healthy-looking hair. There are also two shine and spray formulations, one which incorporates a UV filter making it appropriate for summer hair care, and the other incorporating jojoba oil, which taps into the trend for natural ingredients. The other two formulations include a golden hair dressing pomade and a mild relaxer, which are both aimed at curly, unmanageable and ethnic hair types. Focus on multi-functionality Dow Corning says that the six formulations demonstrate how the incorporation of silicones can be used to develop differentiated products that tap into consumer demand for multi-functionality, while also providing hair strengthening properties. Silicones have been in the spotlight of late over criticisms that their increasing use could harm the environment because they are not biodegradable. This point has led Canada to recently put the silicone-based chemical Cyclopentasiloxane D5 on its list of toxic ingredients. BASF silicone-free hair care Indeed, answering to these type of concerns, BASF recently launched a multifunctional polymer for hair care solutions which it says has removed the need for silicones. However, European trade body Centre Européen des Silicones (CES) only today defended the use of silicones in a wide range of consumer products. According to a recently-published study from the CES on the socio-economic contribution of the silicone industry, total sales to cosmetic manufacturers amounted to $160m in 2006 in Europe alone.