All Acetone is Not Equal

by Holly Schippers | March 21, 2011
With acetone prices jumping at distributors everywhere in a response to growing demand, some salons are opting to purchase acetone from hardware or lumberyard type stores instead. Pure acetone is pure acetone, right?

Not exactly. To find out more about this and to understand the science of it, I spoke with Thong Vu, a CND chemist, on why one acetone may be different from another:

“Technically, there is no such thing as an absolute 100% pure chemical. There are always small traces of impurities in any chemical. Practically, the number is rounded (up or down) both in science and in life. The term '100%' is for purities of 99.50% to 99.99%.

Not all '100%' acetone is made the same. In fact, they differ in their purities (99.50% to 99.99%) and the contents of the impurities (the ones that make up the other 0.01% to 0.50%). While all 99.50% to 99.99% acetones can be considered "100%", the contents of the impurities assign them to different grades.
• U.S.P or N.F. grades are suitable for human use (in food, drug, and skin applications)
• "ACS" and "Reagent" are not certified for human use
• "Lab", "Purified", or "Technical" grades are also not pure enough for human use

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Acetone from hardware stores is probably not appropriate for human skin. Check the grade specified on their label. Acetone (100%) supplied by cosmetic distributors are more likely to comply.”

I hope this information helps you in the salon. Increasing costs for our services are another reason that salons need that 3.7% price increase every year. Shall we all consider a pact to go up at least 3.7% together this October?

— Holly

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