Pure white creme developer and peroxide are personal care and cosmetic products for bleaching or giving your hair a lighter color. They work by removing the outer layer of pigment in the hair to reveal the lighter pigment that lies underneath. Although pure white creme developer and peroxide perform similar tasks, they do have some disparities.
The type of chemical ingredients used to make both products differ. Creme developer is oily in addition to including other ingredients such as glycerin, conditioning wheat germ protein or cetearyl alcohol. On the other hand, peroxide or clear developer mainly contains de-ionized water and hydrogen peroxide.
Since peroxide has no buffers — ionic compounds that resist change when acid or alkali is added to them – it tends to work faster than creme developer does. Creme developer, on the other hand, contains ionic buffers, usually found in milk cream as an the ingredients. Hence, creme developer requires more processing time and work much slower on the hair than peroxide.
Peroxide is a thin, clear liquid and when you apply it to your hair, it thickens a little but still flows freely. Creme developer is consistently thick in structure. When you apply to the hair, it stays put, making it suitable for use in instances where you need only some parts of the hair bleached.
Both of the developers can be distinguished from their colors. While peroxide is plain, clear, colorless liquid because it mainly consists of hydrogen peroxide, creme developer is white or may come in many other colors, depending on the ingredients the manufacturer has used, such as oil, glycerin, wheat germ protein or cream in addition to hydrogen peroxide and water.
The technique of applying both developers to the hair is different. Peroxide is applied to the hair using a color bottle in instances when you desire a uniform change of color given that it gives consistent results. Application of creme developer by a bottle is difficult. To apply it, you need to use a brush and a bowl. Given that it is less likely to be absorbed by hair unlike peroxides that may drip or flow freely, it is often used in instances where you need to change color of only some sections of your hair and not the whole hair.
Peroxide is often more irritating to the skin or scalp and can cause unusual allergic reactions. Apart from water and hydrogen peroxide, it contains no other ingredients, which makes it less harsh on your hair, skin or scalp. Creme developer may be less harsh because it contains ionic buffers and glycerin or conditioning wheat germ protein that helps to guard against sensitivity to your skin or scalp.
References and ResourcesCosmetics Info: Hydrogen Peroxide
Cosmetics Info: Hair Dye and Hair Coloring Products
Solvay Chemicals: Interox - Cosmetics Grade 35%, 50%
Glycerin Producers Association: Uses of Glycerin
ILRI: Milk chemistry: An introduction