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{"id":556313608265,"title":"oVertone Hair Color Review: Is It Actually Healthier?","created_at":"2022-03-17T21:56:57-04:00","body_html":"\u003cscript type=\"application\/ld+json\"\u003e\/\/ \u003c![CDATA[\n{\n \"@context\": \"https:\/\/schema.org\",\n \"@type\": \"Article\",\n \"headline\": \"oVertone Hair Color Review: Is It Actually Healthier?\",\n \"keywords\": \"overtone, overtone review, overtone reviews, overtone hair color, what is overtone\",\n \"description\": \"Our MD and research team reviews the ingredients in oVertone’s hair coloring products based on medical research to determine if it’s actually a healthier option to regular hair dye, and explain whether or not we believe oVertone products are safe.\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/blogs\/health\/overtone-hair-color-review\",\n\"author\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"Taylor Graber MD\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/taylor-graber\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/taylor-j-graber-md-81351642\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"Content Partner\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"medicine, health, anesthesiology, iv therapy, science, drugs, pharmaceutical, medical research, scientific research, medical journals, entrepreneurship, healthcare, orthopedic surgery, biomedical engineering\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": [\n \"University of California San Diego\",\n \"Arizona University\",\n \"University of Arizona College of Medicine\"\n ]\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"contributor\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"Calloway Cook\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/calloway-cook\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/calloway-cook\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"President\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"entrepreneurship, dietary supplements, herbal supplements, eCommerce, medical research\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": \"S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University\"\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"editor\": {\n \"@type\": \"Person\",\n \"name\": \"DJ Mazzoni\",\n \"honorificSuffix\": [\n \"M.S.\",\n \"R.D.\",\n \"C.D.N.\",\n \"C.S.C.S.\"\n ],\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/dj-mazzoni\",\n \"sameAs\": \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/in\/dj-mazzoni-rd-cdn-cscs-00a33038\/\",\n \"jobTitle\": \"Medical Reviewer\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"exercise, drugs, pharmaceutical, health, workout, strength and conditioning, nutrition, dietetics, medicine, medical research, scientific research, scientific method, healthcare, patient care, wellness\",\n \"alumniOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"EducationalOrganization\",\n \"name\": [\n \"State University of New York College Oswego\",\n \"D’Youville College\"\n ]\n },\n \"memberOf\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n }\n},\n\"image\": {\n\"@type\": \"ImageObject\",\n\"url\": \"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/oVertone_Thumbnail.png?v=1647570022\",\n\"width\": \"2881\",\n\"height\": \"2881\"\n},\n\"citation\": [\n\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/labs\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3543291\/\", \n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/32878860\/\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/17492526\/\",\n\"https:\/\/blog.overtone.co\/hair-care\/overtone-vs-traditional-dye-whats-the-difference\/\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/26404083\/\",\n\"https:\/\/echa.europa.eu\/substance-information\/-\/substanceinfo\/100.008.476\",\n\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/20086192\/\",\n\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/labs\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7760062\/\"\n],\n\"mentions\": [{\n \"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"carcinogens\"\n},\n{\n\"@type\": \"Thing\",\n \"name\": \"polydopamine\"\n}\n],\n\"datePublished\": \"2022-03-18\",\n\"copyrightHolder\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\"\n},\n\"publisher\": {\n \"@type\": \"Organization\",\n \"name\": \"Illuminate Labs\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/\",\n \"description\": \"Illuminate Labs is the most transparent supplement company in the U.S., and is a leading publisher of research-based health information.\",\n \"knowsAbout\": \"supplements, science, nutrition, exercise, health, medication, pharmaceutical, wellness, diet, weight loss, medical research\",\n \"publishingPrinciples\": \"https:\/\/illuminatelabs.org\/pages\/editorial-guidelines\",\n \"logo\": {\n \"@type\": \"ImageObject\",\n \"url\": \"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/Illuminate_Labs_Logo.png?v=1641249064\", \n \"width\": 150,\n \"height\": 150\n},\n \"foundingDate\": \"2019-01-30\",\n \"Address\": {\n \"@type\": \"PostalAddress\",\n \"streetAddress\": \"50 Union Street, Unit 9\",\n \"addressLocality\": \"Northampton\",\n \"addressRegion\": \"Massachusetts\",\n \"postalCode\": \"01060\",\n \"addressCountry\": \"US\"\n},\n \"sameAs\": [\n \"https:\/\/www.instagram.com\/illuminatelabs\",\n \"https:\/\/twitter.com\/illuminatelabs\",\n \"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/company\/illuminate-labs-supplements\",\n \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/channel\/UCpgSJAsIPb-fZ25djtTxBEA\"\n ]\n }\n}\n\/\/ ]]\u003e\u003c\/script\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cimg src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/oVertone_Review_Article_Header_Image_Optimized.png?v=1647569806\" alt=\"\"\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan class=\"dc\"\u003eo\u003c\/span\u003eVertone is a hair products brand that sells hair coloring treatments they claim are healthier than regular hair dye. The brand sells coloring conditioners and color maintenance sets, as well as standard hair care products like shampoo.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIn this article we’ll review the ingredients in oVertone’s hair coloring products based on medical research to determine if it’s actually a healthier option to regular hair dye, and whether we believe oVertone products are safe.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eIs Regular Hair Dye Unsafe?\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eoVertone’s value proposition rests on the assumption that standard hair dye is unsafe. This topic has actually been studied in medical research.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eA 2013 \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/labs\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3543291\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e published in the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology examined 63 individual medical trials to determine if hair dye use caused increased risk of cancer. The study authors found that hair coloring agents are proven to be “potent” carcinogens (cancer-causing compounds) in animal testing, but the results in humans aren’t fully clear.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eA more recent \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/32878860\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e analyzed the association between hair dye and cancer risk in over 100,000 U.S. nurses over the course of 36 years. While the risk of most cancers was not increased by hair dye use, the risk of some cancers including breast cancer and ovarian cancer was. The researchers stated the results “warrant further investigation” due to the potentially increased overall cancer risk.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAnother \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/17492526\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emeta-study\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e noted an association between hair dye use and bladder cancer, as well as leukemia. \u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe conclude from the available research that standard hair dye use is unsafe. Although it’s not yet conclusively proven to be carcinogenic, it seems logical for health-conscious consumers to avoid hair dye entirely due to its demonstrated cancer-causing properties in animals and associations with cancer in humans.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eoVertone’s Misleading Claims About Hair Dye\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cimg src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0047\/1524\/9737\/files\/oVertone_Dye_Ingredients_7c71c9ea-adc7-45be-b85f-1573bd7d350a.png?v=1647569978\" alt=\"oVertone dye ingredients\" style=\"display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;\"\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eoVertone proudly claims throughout their site and on a \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/blog.overtone.co\/hair-care\/overtone-vs-traditional-dye-whats-the-difference\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eblog article\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e that their product is “not a dye.” They claim that unlike traditional hair dye, their “coloring conditioners” don’t contain the harsh chemicals that dyes do.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe find these claims to be extremely misleading, because many of the ingredients in oVertone’s products are literally hair dye colorants.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHere is a \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/26404083\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical study\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e published in the Food and Chemical Toxicology journal examining the toxic effects of two hair dyes: Basic Brown 17 and Basic Red 51. The researchers explicitly refer to these compounds as “hair dyes,” and found that both compounds were cytotoxic and genotoxic to human cells (damaging to the cells themselves and to DNA).\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eoVertone uses many similar hair dyes in their products. As an example, their Pastel Pink Coloring Conditioner contains the following dyes: Basic Blue 99, Basic Brown 16, Basic Red 76, Basic Yellow 57, Basic Red 46, Basic Violet 1, Basic Yellow 40, Basic Orange 2, Basic Blue 9, Basic Green 4, and Basic Violet 2.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThese are all synthetic colorants used to dye hair (among other things).\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWhile it’s true that oVertone products don’t contain ammonia, which is common in traditional hair dye, they do contain many chemical compounds we would describe as harsh and potentially harmful to humans.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eoVertone’s Chocolate Brown Daily Conditioner contains a dye called Basic Green 4, which \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/echa.europa.eu\/substance-information\/-\/substanceinfo\/100.008.476\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eis banned\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e in cosmetics in Europe due to reproductive toxicity and the fact that this ingredient is “suspected of damaging the unborn child.”\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe European Union (E.U.) has much stricter consumer protection laws than the U.S., and we find it to be a red flag that oVertone doesn’t even have a warning to pregnant women on their products containing this ingredient.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAnother \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/20086192\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003emedical review\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e of artificial dyes used in cosmetics assessed the safety and toxicity of various violet dyes. The study authors concluded that due to the carcinogenic potential of these dyes, “insufficient data exist to support the safety of Basic Violet 1, 3 and 4 in cosmetic formulation.” Some oVertone products contain Basic Violet 1.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe have no reason to believe oVertone’s claims that the products they sell with hair dye ingredients are safer than the products traditional hair dye companies sell, as there have been no comparative studies and it’s clear that both categories contain harmful ingredients.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eSafer Alternative Dye Ingredients\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe searched extensively for safer alternative dyes, and while we can’t find any commercial products that we would recommend, we came across an interesting \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/labs\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7760062\/\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eclinical trial\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e from 2020 introducing a non-toxic hair dye material.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe chemical compound polydopamine, which is similar to melanin, appears to be a safe and effective hair dye that’s compatible with a wide range of hair colors from blonde to red to purple.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe can’t find any hair products with polydopamine as the dye, probably because more safety testing needs to be done, but this is an ingredient for health-conscious consumers who dye their hair regularly to be on the lookout for in future products.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003ch2 style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e\u003cb\u003eConclusion\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eoVertone makes many health claims about the superiority of their products over traditional hair dyes, which we find to be inaccurate. The brand claims to not use dye, but has dye listed on nearly all of their product labels as an ingredient.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe don’t recommend oVertone for health reasons, as several of the dyes they use have concerning safety and toxicity data in medical studies.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eUnfortunately there doesn’t appear to be a hair dye ingredient that’s proven to be safe and effective, so consumers will have to weigh aesthetic benefits against health benefits.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\n\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ePolydopamine is a novel ingredient for health-conscious consumers to keep up with, because if it passes safety testing it may be a healthier alternative to the hair dye ingredients in oVertone and other hair dye products.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e","blog_id":49281925193,"author":"Calloway Cook","user_id":26601750601,"published_at":"2022-03-18T14:23:12-04:00","updated_at":"2022-08-18T23:23:23-04:00","summary_html":"We review the ingredients in oVertone’s hair coloring products based on medical research to determine if it’s actually a healthier option to regular hair dye, and explain whether or not we believe oVertone products are safe.","template_suffix":"","handle":"overtone-hair-color-review","tags":"_related:cosmetics, _related:hair-dye"}

oVertone Hair Color Review: Is It Actually Healthier?

oVertone Hair Color Review: Is It Actually Healthier?


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Read our Editorial Guidelines to learn more about what makes our site the premier resource for online health information.
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Read our Editorial Guidelines to learn more about what makes our site the premier resource for online health information.


Read our Editorial Guidelines to learn more about what makes our site the premier resource for online health information.

oVertone is a hair products brand that sells hair coloring treatments they claim are healthier than regular hair dye. The brand sells coloring conditioners and color maintenance sets, as well as standard hair care products like shampoo.

In this article we’ll review the ingredients in oVertone’s hair coloring products based on medical research to determine if it’s actually a healthier option to regular hair dye, and whether we believe oVertone products are safe.

Is Regular Hair Dye Unsafe?

oVertone’s value proposition rests on the assumption that standard hair dye is unsafe. This topic has actually been studied in medical research.

A 2013 medical review published in the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology examined 63 individual medical trials to determine if hair dye use caused increased risk of cancer. The study authors found that hair coloring agents are proven to be “potent” carcinogens (cancer-causing compounds) in animal testing, but the results in humans aren’t fully clear.

A more recent medical review analyzed the association between hair dye and cancer risk in over 100,000 U.S. nurses over the course of 36 years. While the risk of most cancers was not increased by hair dye use, the risk of some cancers including breast cancer and ovarian cancer was. The researchers stated the results “warrant further investigation” due to the potentially increased overall cancer risk.

Another meta-study noted an association between hair dye use and bladder cancer, as well as leukemia. 

We conclude from the available research that standard hair dye use is unsafe. Although it’s not yet conclusively proven to be carcinogenic, it seems logical for health-conscious consumers to avoid hair dye entirely due to its demonstrated cancer-causing properties in animals and associations with cancer in humans.

oVertone’s Misleading Claims About Hair Dye

oVertone dye ingredients

oVertone proudly claims throughout their site and on a blog article that their product is “not a dye.” They claim that unlike traditional hair dye, their “coloring conditioners” don’t contain the harsh chemicals that dyes do.

We find these claims to be extremely misleading, because many of the ingredients in oVertone’s products are literally hair dye colorants.

Here is a medical study published in the Food and Chemical Toxicology journal examining the toxic effects of two hair dyes: Basic Brown 17 and Basic Red 51. The researchers explicitly refer to these compounds as “hair dyes,” and found that both compounds were cytotoxic and genotoxic to human cells (damaging to the cells themselves and to DNA).

oVertone uses many similar hair dyes in their products. As an example, their Pastel Pink Coloring Conditioner contains the following dyes: Basic Blue 99, Basic Brown 16, Basic Red 76, Basic Yellow 57, Basic Red 46, Basic Violet 1, Basic Yellow 40, Basic Orange 2, Basic Blue 9, Basic Green 4, and Basic Violet 2.

These are all synthetic colorants used to dye hair (among other things).

While it’s true that oVertone products don’t contain ammonia, which is common in traditional hair dye, they do contain many chemical compounds we would describe as harsh and potentially harmful to humans.

oVertone’s Chocolate Brown Daily Conditioner contains a dye called Basic Green 4, which is banned in cosmetics in Europe due to reproductive toxicity and the fact that this ingredient is “suspected of damaging the unborn child.”

The European Union (E.U.) has much stricter consumer protection laws than the U.S., and we find it to be a red flag that oVertone doesn’t even have a warning to pregnant women on their products containing this ingredient.

Another medical review of artificial dyes used in cosmetics assessed the safety and toxicity of various violet dyes. The study authors concluded that due to the carcinogenic potential of these dyes, “insufficient data exist to support the safety of Basic Violet 1, 3 and 4 in cosmetic formulation.” Some oVertone products contain Basic Violet 1.

We have no reason to believe oVertone’s claims that the products they sell with hair dye ingredients are safer than the products traditional hair dye companies sell, as there have been no comparative studies and it’s clear that both categories contain harmful ingredients.

Safer Alternative Dye Ingredients

We searched extensively for safer alternative dyes, and while we can’t find any commercial products that we would recommend, we came across an interesting clinical trial from 2020 introducing a non-toxic hair dye material.

The chemical compound polydopamine, which is similar to melanin, appears to be a safe and effective hair dye that’s compatible with a wide range of hair colors from blonde to red to purple.

We can’t find any hair products with polydopamine as the dye, probably because more safety testing needs to be done, but this is an ingredient for health-conscious consumers who dye their hair regularly to be on the lookout for in future products.

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Conclusion

oVertone makes many health claims about the superiority of their products over traditional hair dyes, which we find to be inaccurate. The brand claims to not use dye, but has dye listed on nearly all of their product labels as an ingredient.

We don’t recommend oVertone for health reasons, as several of the dyes they use have concerning safety and toxicity data in medical studies.

Unfortunately there doesn’t appear to be a hair dye ingredient that’s proven to be safe and effective, so consumers will have to weigh aesthetic benefits against health benefits.

Polydopamine is a novel ingredient for health-conscious consumers to keep up with, because if it passes safety testing it may be a healthier alternative to the hair dye ingredients in oVertone and other hair dye products.





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