3D printing technologies are used in different medical and non-medical projects. The cosmetic industry is also working with 3D printing technologies to create artificial skin and other things. One of the newest projects was developed in a partnership between L’Oreal and the bio printing expert Poietis. If their research is successful there would be a pretty big demand for 3D printed hair replacement.
L’Oreal is a giant in the cosmetics industry and Poietis is an expert for 3D printing organic structures. The two companies have teamed up for their most recent project; they want to create 3D printed hair replacement and as milestone they are currently working on 3D printed hair follicles.
If we manage to bio-print a hair follicle we will enhance our knowledge of both hair biology and some of the mysteries of hair growth and loss. Hair loss is very emotional for some people and very distressing – if we succeed in identifying some ingredients that can fight this it will be a huge revolution.
The next step is, will it be possible to implant? This is the holy grail.
Even if it sounds pretty promising, it’s not sure that these project will be successful and there is no known date that tells us when it will be complete. However, the expectations are quite big and there would be a huge market for 3D printed hair replacement. At the same time there are also critics out there that say that printing hair replacement will be too expensive and to time consuming.
The technology that is used is the same that’s used for other projects, where Poietis prints organic structures and tissue. It’s basically a laser that creates pulses. These pulses hit a glass plate and then little drops of organic tissue fall down and build the structures required.