So, I am a chemist even though I don't play one on TV... And I don't know enough about TEA and how it may or may not react with other things to produce NaOH, etc. I don't know enough about product formulation to answer those questions. So I won't try to address them. And I don't have the time to wade through the scientific literature at this time.

But I do take exception with a few things that were said, and would like to clear it up, so to speak:

Lots of organic compounds are colorless and transparent in nature. Lots of them - sugar, salt, gelatin sheets, what have you. Color and transparency don't have anything to do with proteins being denatured. Or whatever it is that's trying to be established; this had been hard to follow.

While NaOH does denature hair, so do a lot of other chemicals. Including acids. Cooking denatures proteins too, that's why cooked meat tastes so yummy and is easier to chew!

Denatured alcohol is NOT the same thing as a denatured protein - the latter has been altered via chemical reaction.

Denatured alcohol has an impurity added to it to make it unfit for human consumption (methanol, for example, or another bittering agent).

I don't see where TAE = denatured alcohol in any way.

Where TEA resembles ethanol or other small organic alcohols is that is contains three alcohol functional groups and is likely a drying agent (hygroscopic and volatile - it takes water with it as it evaporates). So, like other alcohols like rubbing alcohol, you may not want to use it on your hair. I have porous hair, so it won't be touching my head anyway.

/chemistry PSA over - semantics matter!/

The only other thing I would keep in mind is that ingredients lists are based on relative amounts. Even the third ingredient on a list might be a very minor component of the overall formulation. Unless a company decides to disclose the actual percentages, we don't really have an idea of just how much is in there to begin with.

Smorgasbord of finer, porous 2a-3a; straight underlayer

humectants outside of optimal dews, PVP, oils/butters, anything remotely comedogenic

poos: Giovanni TTT, WF365FF, Suave Clarifying
condishes: VO5 VMT, KLS; IonEC
stylers: FSG, 4NSBCC, VolumaxMega, AIF, GFPC

Mod CG since 11/2012. My waves occasionally look best when combed out, so you can pry my combs from my cold, dead hands