Stable Micro Systems User News
Texture Analysis product testing areas Powder flow analysisFood applications Pharmaceutical applications Adhesive applications Cosmetic applications Volume measurement

May 2016 | To notify a colleague please click here |

In this Edition: | Hair-colour testing | Pharmaceutical gels | Wine astringency | TPA | Applications course |
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Food applications Pharmaceutical applications Adhesive applications Cosmetic applications Powder flow analysis Volume measurement

Characterising the effects of hair colour application using a texture analyser

There are many instances where consumers want to apply colour – that lasts longer than a few hours or a day – to keratin surfaces.

For example, individuals who have very light hair often have light eyelashes and eyebrows too, and darkening the lashes and brows would improve appearance.

Other examples include individuals with greying hair who may want to touch up spots showing grey between dye sessions, and where the touch up colour lasts more than a day. Similarly, some individuals want to darken eyebrows or hide grey.

Accordingly, keratin fibre colouration that lasts longer than a day is very desirable in many instances. Lash tints that apply colour to lashes that lasts more than a day are known. However, one problem with these lash tints is that the resin used to provide the desired long-wearing property is quite brittle. If these resins are not plasticised with non-volatile oils the resulting lash tint tends to flake, or break off the lashes in pieces.

In addition, the brittle resin causes the coated lashes to be more rigid, which can promote lash breakage. On the other hand, if the formula contains ingredients that plasticise the resin, this compromises wear and adhesion.

Gloss is also an important and desirable feature of long-wearing colour tints. Thus, it is important to maximise the benefits of the composition in each of the desired benefit categories without maximising the effect of one and simultaneously negatively impacting one or more of the other benefits.

Accordingly, ELC Management LLC have filed a patent for their invention formulation – a composition that remains on keratin surfaces for extended time periods, preferably more than one day, and more preferably over multiple days, where the drawbacks of flaking and poor wear and adhesion are minimised or eliminated and the product coated onto the keratin surface remains glossy.

To quantify the physical properties of each trial formulation they applied their TA.XTplus Texture Analyser in very novel characterisation methods.

To read more about this topic, click here...

You can also request one of our articles on testing haircare products:

Using Texture Analysis to Substantiate Claims in Haircare

Using Texture Analysis in Haircare Formulation and Packaging Selection

When thinking about pharmaceutical applications, tablets, sprays and liquid formulations spring quickly to mind.

However, gels also offer a valuable method of delivering medicines through digestible capsules, topical dermal application and parenteral delivery. 

Gels can offer a convenient, comfortable method for administering controlled drug release for the patient. They can also enhance bioavailability and enable medication to be targeted at specific areas of the body; for example, gels find application in ophthalmic treatment as they enable retention of medication around the eye. Similarly, in dental applications, the gel can be delivered to the exact site of treatment and remain comfortably in situ.

Our article covers the widespread use of gels in pharmaceutical applications, the challenge that R&D and manufacturing departments need to overcome and the important role that texture plays in determining the suitability of formulations for specific pharmaceutical applications such as mucoadhesion, capsule bursting force and contact lens mechanical strength.

Click here to request the PDF...

You may also be interested in our most recent pharmaceutical formulation article: 'Novel Oral Dosage Forms – testing the alternatives to traditional tablet-form medications’. 

To request a copy, click here...


Using a texture analyser as a tribometer

Researchers at Zhejiang Gonshang University in China have just published their work entitled "'Oral' Tribological study on the astringency sensation of red wines".

Astringency is a specific oral sensation dominated by a dryness and puckering feeling and is one of the main quality factors for red wines, teas as well as some fruit products.

Various hypotheses have been proposed to explain the mechanisms of the astringency sensation; however which prevails is still unknown. Here we used a tribological system to determine if the astringency is predominantly a physical perception.

Mixtures of whole human saliva and typical astringent compounds such as tannins and red wines were evaluated for their lubrication behaviour. Friction coefficient was measured over a wide range of lubrication speed. By comparing friction coefficient with human sensory results of astringency, a positive correlation was found.

In particular the highest correlation was observed (R2=0.93) at a sliding speed of 0.075 mm/s. Results from this work demonstrate that astringency of polyphenol-rich products is a sensory perception via a physical stimulus and can be quantified using tribology techniques.

Practical Applications

There is an increasing interest in sensory astringency, particularly its signaling process in oral cavity and the quantitative assessment of its intensity. This is due to the fact that astringency is an important quality characteristic which strongly influences consumer's acceptability for many polyphenol-rich foods.

This research achieved the first experimental approach to sensory astringency determination on red wines by using a tribological technique. Results from this work positively confirm the hypothesis that astringency is a tactile sensation.

The method established in this work provides a useful tool for efficient determination of astringent intensity both as industrial quality control and for the prediction of consumer's sensory perception.

This is a very innovative way to use a Texture Analyser – located on its side –which has now been assessed in several publications in this manner to measure frictional components.

To read more on this, click here...


How to do Texture Profile Analysis (TPA) properly

Texture Profile Analysis is a popular double compression test for determining the textural properties of foods.

It is occasionally used in other industries, such as pharmaceuticals, gels, and personal care.

During a TPA test, samples are compressed twice using a texture analyser to provide insight into how samples behave when chewed. The TPA test was often called the "two bite test" because the texture analyser mimics the mouth's biting action.

The textural identity of any food is rarely a simple matter of understanding a singular attribute such as hardness or cohesiveness. The texture of any food is multi-faceted and tied to consumers' sensory expectations. It is not sufficient to deliver a food with a target hardness and springiness value if consumers do not like it and it does not meet their expectations for that food type.

The beauty of TPA as an analytical method is that it can quantify multiple textural parameters in just one experiment. That is also the method's curse, since many researchers rely on TPA's labelled characteristics without considering whether the test method provides metrics that are relevant to the experimental objective.

To read a great review of this topic, click here...


Applications of food texture and rheology

Applications of Food Texture & Rheology:
Department of Food & Nutritional Sciences,
University of Reading, October 17-19, 2016.

A three-day training course at Reading University funded under the BBSRC Food Advanced Training Partnership, this post-graduate course is targeted at developing and extending the academic and technical abilities of people working in the food industry and food research centres.

The course will provide an in-depth understanding of the principles and measurement of Food Texture and Rheology and its applications to food processing and the creation and design of new or improved food textures. The aim is to present leading-edge state of the art knowledge and practice on food texture and rheology measurements and methods of developing and controlling texture by the leading academic and industrial experts in the field, and to underline these with applied case studies presented by industrial speakers and practical sessions.

The Food ATP programmes are a new collection of postgraduate courses designed to fit around your working life, programmes encompass a combination of distance and face-to-face tuition and deliver highly inspirational, cutting edge material using the latest learning techniques to ensure skills are quickly embedded in your working environment.

For more information, email:


Latest posts from Texture Analysis Professionals

The Texture Analysis Professionals blog keeps you up to date with current texture analysis developments across industry and academia.

Keep up with the latest news, and find out how Stable Micro Systems helps you take your new product from the earliest stages to the finished item.

Follow the blog regularly to keep abreast of the latest news in this fast-moving world.

People and Pets go more gourmet

Texture Analysis in Sports Nutrition: Fuelling workouts with powdered energy drinks

Texture Analysis in Sports Nutrition: Fuelling workouts with energy bars

Texture Analysis in Sports Nutrition: Capsules offer an innovative dosage form

We have now completed our overview of texture analysis in the sports nutrition market.

Novel oral dosage forms is our next theme - so look out for these posts over the next couple of months.

See below for our Blog Categories Panel, which will help you find your way around over 200 posts.

Don't forget the Texture Analysis in Action series, in which we present the whole range of standard Texture Analyser attachments. It features descriptive text, photos, sample output graphs, and other information including illustrative videos and a list of relevant published papers where applicable.

You can find all these posts under the Texture Analyser Attachments label in the right sidebar of the blog window, or you can use our Alphabetical Attachments Index

Looking ahead, as and when new attachments become available, a detailed post will be added to the list.

Click here to read our latest posts or to sign up.

This Month's Featured Post

The Global Food Texture Market

Texture plays a critical role in the satisfaction and acceptability of food products.

Food texture is used for enhancing the flavour and appearance of texture-modified foods and in improving the acceptability and enjoyment level of said food products.

The analysts forecast the global food texture market to grow at a CAGR of 5.06% by revenue over the period 2014-2019.

A new report, The Global Food Texture Market 2015-2019, has been prepared based on an in-depth market analysis with inputs from various industry experts.


Blog Categories Panel: click on any link below to see all available posts on the topics listed...

Texture Analysis in Action

Texture Analysis Properties











User News invites you to take part

We would be very interested to hear from you if you have any texture analysis news that you are able to share with our many thousands of users.

Whether it is an unusual product or a new approach to a procedure you have been carrying out for many years, why not get in touch and let us know what you are testing!

Please email us with your ideas.

Product testing videos

Our application area specific videos on Stable Micro Systems’ YouTube Channel are accessible from

Use the Video Channel > Texture Channel link from the left menu panel of our website to find the YouTube TextureAnalysis’s Channel screen.

If you click on the Videos by Industry option on the right of the page, you'll be able to view a selection of our videos, giving you some insight into how Texture Analysis can have a positive impact on your testing regime, and how Stable Micro Systems in particular can help you maintain the highest standards in both research and development and quality control.

Whether your speciality is adhesives, baked products, cosmetics, fruit and vegetables, meat, packaging or powders, we are confident that we can help you achieve better products.


Have you lost your manual?

All of our product manuals are available in .pdf format, free upon request to our users.

Please ensure that your e-mail account quota is not exceeded by the manual(s) you have requested, as this is the most common delivery failure.

To request any of these documents, please select your requirements on the Product Manual Request page of

User News invites you to take part

Our one day User Training Courses are designed for users wishing to obtain the maximum benefit from our texture analysis equipment and software.

The remaining Training Course dates for 2016 are as follows:

• Wednesday 29th June 2016

• Wednesday 26th October 2016

Further course dates may be released according to demand and any such dates will appear in future newsletters – or check the Training page on our website.

Click here for more details...

Then – book your place today by emailing:


Exhibitions and conferences

Our representatives will be available at each of these events.
Please visit us on our stand to discuss your texture analysis problems
and requirements – we will be only too pleased to help you!

The Texture Experts from Stable Micro Systems will be attending the following events over the next few months:

• Baking Technology Conferenceexternal link
26 – 27 May 2016
Chipping Campden, UK

• Campden BRI Dayexternal link
8 June 2016
Chipping Campden, UK

• IFTexternal link
16 – 19 July
Chicago, USA

• CRSexternal link
17 – 20 July
Seattle, USA

• 18th IUFoST – World Congress of Food Science and Technologyexternal link
21 – 25 August
Dublin, Ireland

Software versions/updates

The software packages below are available for download from our website – in the Software Download section:

Exponent/Exponent Lite6.1.10.1

VolScan Profiler software –

You may also download our free Texture Analysis Screensaver
from this page.

To notify a colleague please click here | Back to top

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Stable Micro Systems

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Using Texture Analysis to Substantiate Claims in Haircare Using Texture Analysis in Haircare Formulation and Packaging Selection The staying power of pharmaceutical gels Novel Oral Dosage Forms