The Latest at TRI

We welcome the littlest new addition to TRI’s family of spectroscopy instrumentation, but don’t let its diminutive size fool you!

With the acquisition of the world’s smallest benchtop FTIR—the Agilent Cary 430, TRI can now bring its spectroscopy capabilities to wherever needed. With a portable, compact unit that can literally fit on the palm of your hands, TRI now offers more flexibility and versatility in its spectroscopy measurements and analysis, without compromising data quality.

TRI has continued to offer a wide range of testing methods and advanced analysis based on its expertise in vibrational spectroscopy. The Remspec fiber-optic spectroscopy system enabled us to directly analyze scalp and other skin tissue, advancing applications in pre-clinical and clinical settings. The Cary 430 FTIR will similarly provide us with opportunities to develop novel applications—the world is now TRI’s proverbial oyster.

Equipped with a diamond ATR accessory as well as a standard transmission module (with the option to add further sampling accessories), the Cary 630 FTIR is easy to use, extremely fast and reliable. Diminished size here does not equal diminished quality.

For more information about TRI’s spectroscopy-based testing capabilities and to subscribe to our newsletter visit

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, TRI has continued to work with students enthusiastic about cosmetic science.

TRI has many requests every year from students all over the world asking to join us for summer internships and research placements. We also have many requests to help co-supervise undergraduate and post-graduate student projects. The COVID situation this year, however, has meant that we could not work directly with students and we have had to be a very creative in the ways that TRI could help.

Vanessa Castro is a third-year undergraduate chemistry student at Pennsylvania State University with a real passion for cosmetic science and was interested a summer internship at TRI. We couldn’t arrange an on-site role, so this summer Vanessa has been working remotely, helping us to add material to the TRI Library. She has done a fantastic job, indexing and uploading hundreds of TRI research reports. Take a look at her work at . Dea Zhilivoda is also passionate about cosmetic science and is completing a master’s degree in Cosmetic Science at Liverpool John Moores University, UK. The COVID epidemic has meant that laboratory-based projects for students at Liverpool had to be cancelled. Instead, Dea has worked remotely with Paul Cornwell from TRI on a literature review on hair conditioning ingredients. Four months and many Zoom meetings later, Dea has submitted her dissertation on time and to very high standard. We all wish her the best of luck for her final marks!

TRI’s commitment to education continues, with new projects and collaborations starting this academic term. Fingers crossed we can fully open our doors to students again in 2021.

Recent studies by TRI show how shampoos, conditioners and leave-in styling products also spread on your skin.

We are all guilty of it aren’t we? If it says it is a ‘hair product’ on the label then, we rationalise, that the hair is the only part of the body it affects. We don’t think of hair products as skin products, but, of course, they are. When you apply and rinse-off, for example, a shampoo in the shower, this product is contacting your scalp, your face and rest of you body. Normally, this doesn’t matter, because cosmetic products are, by law, formulated to be very safe for us to use. However, some dermatologists now suspect that hair product build-up on the skin might, in some people, be related to skin conditions such as scalp acne.

In order to study this further, Dr Samuel Gourion-Arsiquaud and Dr Rezma Shrestha, both of the Skin and Bio-substrates Group at TRI, together with Iris Rubin M.D., of SEEN Hair Care, have used spectroscopy techniques to measure hair product deposition on the skin during normal in-use conditions. Their study, recently published in the Journal of Drugs and Dermatology, shows that shampoos and conditioners are not completed removed by rinsing and that residues end-up on our scalp, forehead, cheek and upper back. They also show that leave-on styling products applied just to the hair, also, over time, transfer to our skin.

Please visit our TRI Library for more information, or our website if you are interested in working with us to explore this fascinating area.

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