Sonia's post about the Takumi collection
mentioned a conversation she had via Instagram
about coloring white goat hair brushes using hair dye. By no means am I a professional colorist, but I do use demi/permanent hair color and a range of developers and was interested in other options considering the effects. While Googling for more info about a good combination of products/colors that might work on white (goat) hair, I ended up going with (Jacquard) acid dyes:
I know what you're all thinking: "acid?!" I also wondered if the dyeing process would ruin perfectly good bristles. One of the most FAQs about acid dyes, in the context of dyeing silk, is whether it affects the texture of the fabric and the short answer seems to be "well, duh!" But since I wasn't getting much use out of some of my white goat hair brushes because I couldn't stand seeing them "dirty," I didn't have much to lose even if they didn't end up as soft as they were before being dyed.
There might be members here who are more experienced with using acid dyes and could offer suggestions for getting better results, but as someone who hasn't used them before, the instructions and dyeing process
itself was relatively easy. One reassuring aspect about using acid dyes is that if the color is going to bleed, it will happen most noticeably after the initial rinse, which will be an indication that the dye hasn't bonded correctly. Otherwise, dyeing goat hair should be as "permanent" in this application as it is when used to dye other protein fibers such as silk fabric and wool yarn, right?
After initially testing how washfast the brush was by only using transparent/colorless powders, I began to use the dyed fu-pa02 as I normally would — that is to say as a buffing brush for pressed mineral powder foundations — and haven't had any issues with color bleeding so far:
I'm reluctant to say for sure if the texture of the bristles are different since I can't compare the original white and dyed fu-pa02 side by side, but the hair seems exactly the same to me, other than the change in color. I can only assume that the effects of acid dye are more apparent on finer fibers like silk and less so on the goat hair of the fu-pa02? I'd be interested to know if anyone has tried to dye white goat brushes with hair dye, as mentioned by Sonia/Dustin Hunter, instead and what their results have been.