04/08/2014 08:05 BST | Updated 04/08/2014 08:59 BST

Hair Colours Could Soon Be 'Scanned' Onto You

Dying your hair can be an operation fraught with hazards, not only could you be allergic to hair dyes but then there's the possibility that you won't actually like it even if you haven't come out in an enormous rash.

Well the University of New Mexico has developed a state-of-the-art technique which bypasses all of these potential problems by simple 'scanning' the colour directly onto the fibres of your hair.

The new procedure etches nanopatterns on the hairs themselves, this then reflects the light to show up a specific colour. If this all sounds very permanent then that's because it is, at least until your hair grows it out.

Fear not though as the scientists actually believe they can mimic these patterns using a simple conditioner which can then be washed out, making the process completely reversible.

The research won't just affect the world of cosmetology as the scientists believe the process can be applied to anything from face camouflage to completely changing the appearance of a plane's surface, giving it a comprehensive but non-permanent makeover.

Still in the very early stages, the technique won't be making it into salons any time soon but it does show that new advances in technology aren't just about making our smartphones faster or our computers smarter.