Measurement of Hair Gloss / Shine – SAMBA Hair, Bossa Nova Vision, USA

While considering hair-care products such as shampoos, conditioners, and sprays, consumers take keen interest on the effect these products have on the gloss of their hair i.e. how much does it increase or decrease hair lustre. Hence, companies producing such products find the necessity to evaluate the impact of their products on the glossiness of hair. But then, gloss is a visual property and is subjective among humans. To measure hair gloss objectively, the SAMBA Hair from Bossa Nova Vision is the go-to option.


The SAMBA Hair is a unique turn-key solution popularly used for hair shine measurement. The system’s imaging sensor is contained in a head at the top of the machine. For in-vivo applications, this can be separated from the machine. The software is installed in a dedicated computer that comes along with the system.

It is a versatile system which can be used for both in-vitro and in-vivo measurements.

In-vitro hair gloss measurement: For in-vitro tests, it is recommended that they be performed on hair swatches for accurate results. It is commonly used by the R&D and QC departments of companies producing cosmetic products to perform efficacy tests and substantiate their list of claims.

In-vivo hair gloss measurement: For in-vivo tests, the system has a rotating arm on the side of the imaging sensor head. The sensor can be held by the examiner and measurements can made on the human’s head by means of a mini-cylinder attachment.

SAMBA Hair Specifications

General Specifications


SAMBA polarization camera

12-bit colour analysis

IlluminationWhite LED bar
Sample Holder3-groove cylinder removable tray
ComputerAcer Laptop (or)
All-in-oneWindows 10 Home Edition (Pro on demand)

Microsoft Excel 2016 license

Data Format

Images (RGB 32 PNG colour images)

Angular colour profiles

Numerical data

Measurement Uncertainty1% (over 24 hours)
Data Repeatability
(repositioning and combing)

SAMBA Hair working

The image capturing section of the SAMBA Hair consists of three parts:

  1. Polarization camera
  2. Cylinder on which sample is positioned
  3. Polarised illuminator

The polarized illuminator and the polarization camera allow independent measurement of reflections and diffusions. The cylinder is responsible for recording angular distribution profiles.

After the hair tress is loaded onto the SAMBA Hair system, the illuminator focuses polarised illumination on to the hair tress sample. When light is incident on hair, it gets split into shine, chroma, and diffused. Diffused light and chroma carry information of colour. Lustre depends on the diffused image, surface quality, and alignment of the hair fibers.

The imaging sensor captures two successive images of parallel and crossed polarisation state. This enables to disintegrate the image captured by a conventional camera into specular and diffused images. The specular image is formed from the light reflected by hair surfaces, while the diffused image is based on the scattered light coming from the inside of the hair. Based on the captured images, several parameters can be measured including light intensity, angular profiles, and colour distribution.

The physical separation of specular and diffused images is needed to evaluate the lustre of hair. Lustre depends on three important parameters:

  • The amount of light reflected
  • The sharpness of the reflection
  • The background on which the reflection is observed

Several mathematical formulae have been developed to calculate lustre taking into consideration all the three above-mentioned parameters. To apply these formulae, data from the specular and diffused images need to be substituted. In the SAMBA Hair, formulae such as Reich-Robbins, TRI coefficient, and Bossa Nova Vision’s proprietary BNT coefficients are used to characterize the lustre of hair samples.

SAMBA Hair Software

The SAMBA Hair has a powerful image analysis and processing software which can reconstruct the specular and diffusion images of the sample hair tresses. After processing, lustre coefficients used for claims and other additional parameters such as angular distribution of intensity, shine band parameters, and so on are extracted and displayed.

Some of the salient features of this software are:

  • Image acquisition with a simple organization system
  • Instantaneous measurement of lustre coefficients widely used for claims in the cosmetics industry
  • Image and numerical data comparison for multiple samples
  • Data export including images, graphs, and tables

SAMBA Hair Price

Agaram Industries is the authorized distributor of Bossa Nova Vision who manufacture SAMBA Hair systems. To get a quotation with the SAMBA Hair price, you can fill up this form or send an email directly to

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