Anna Kutsevolova about particle size
Tattoo pigment particle size range
The term "pigment" has taken root in the professional field, and they are replacing the correct term — "ink". In the scientific field, the word "pigment" is used to describe a colored powder. Today we will talk on this topic, namely, about the biggest misconception of the PMU artists: the size of the particles.
The modern production of tattoo and PMU inks involves organic colorants, the particle size of which can be controlled at the stage of synthesis of the substance itself, and inorganic colorants, the particles of which can only be crushed depending on their application. Both types are created artificially.
Particle sizes in tattoo and PMU inks range from 140 to 300 nanometers.
Take a look at Figure 1. The ruler in the lower right corner is 200 nanometers. Match it with the particle sizes in the pictures. The largest are titanium dioxide and organic yellow. Black, blue, green, red—the particles of these pigments are quite small.
Please note that this is not 4, 5 or 10 microns, contrary to what some PMU artists far from this topic say. It makes sense to talk about microns, and correctly, about micrometers, when it comes to agglomerates—a collection of particles firmly held together.
You need to remember: particles—nanometers, aggregates—nanometers, agglomerates—micrometers. A small conclusion: there are no particles of the same size in one bottle.
A small conclusion: there are no particles of the same size in one bottle.
Particle Size and Staining Area
See Figure 2. All particles from color ink formulas other than black sit on top of titanium dioxide particles. This is done in order to increase the optical density of the substance—in other words, to make the future ink bright.
All particles are bound together by electrostatic bonds (with the help of surfactants and polyester resins, as well as with the help of polyanions and polycations) into aggregates, and aggregates are bound into agglomerates. All the talk about coarse and fine particles of pigments is no longer relevant.
The smaller the particles of the substance, the greater the surface area that can be covered. The gaps in the colored area are minimized because small particles completely fill the surface.
Bottom line: all of the above positively affects the result (provided that the work is done with due quality)—we get a vividly colored area without gaps, in which the particles are arranged in an orderly manner. No blurring (due to glycerin), no burnouts (titanium dioxide reflects UV (solar) rays), no issues with laser removal—since the particles are small, we destroy the bonds between them with a laser, and then our immune system takes action.
We thank our friends from Permanent Lastik for the provided images.