Brazilian blowout dangers

FDA Deems Popular Hair-Straightening Treatment Unfit

Brazilian blowout dangers leave the makers of a popular hair-straightening product in a tangled mess.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is targeting Brazilian Blowouts—a hair-straightening salon treatment reportedly coveted by stars like Jennifer Aniston and Halle Berry—due to the products' dangerous levels of carcinogenic formaldehyde.

This past week, FDA issued a warning letter to the makers of the Brazilian Blowout Acai Professional Smoothing Solution, after government tests detected formaldehyde at levels that endanger salon patrons and employees. Although the product is touted as "formaldehyde free," an FDA analysis found levels of methylene glycol (the liquid form of formaldehyde), up to 10 times higher than the legal limit set by the Occupational Safety & Health Administration. In some cases, more than 10 percent of the tested product's weight came in liquid formaldehyde form—way over the legal limit. FDA also told the company that the high formaldehyde content made the product "adulterated" and "misbranded," and for those reasons, it's illegal to ship the product across state lines.

While salon workers who inhale the compound daily face the greatest risk, the FDA also noted straight-hair-seeking salon patrons are at risk, too. Reported side effects of the treatment include blurred vision, headache, dizziness, wheezing, chest pain, vomiting, and rash.

Read Brazilian Blowout Dangers for more information on the salon treatment, and safer hair-straightening solutions.


Published on: September 7, 2011

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Stylist breathing zone

Dependable keratin hair-smoothing/straightening companies will state "use proper salon ventilation during the entire hair smoothing service" in their manufacturer’s instructions and training manuals. Many salon owners are unaware that to fully protect the stylist, client & salon environment, they need a “chemical source capture system” to provide proper ventilation. I've asked numerous salon owners and stylists what type of ventilation they provide for their keratin hair straightening services, and they usually report using fans & opening windows/doors. Some report only doing these services at night so their other clients aren’t subject to the fumes/vapors. New ventilation technologies and systems have been developed specifically for salons that offer keratin hair smoothing/straightening services. These systems will help salon owners to comply with current and potentially more restrictive OSHA requirements. A salon "chemical source capture system” protects the stylist and client's breathing zone. An effective salon air purifier will cleanse the air in the stylist's workstation area & circulate fresh air throughout the salon. Special filters are available which are designed to remove salon vapors/odors & dusts from the buildings’ HVAC system. The bonus is that salons using these innovative salon ventilation control measures and systems will also benefit from the reduction of vapors/odors & dusts created from providing a range of chemical services, including color, bleach, artificial nail services and hair removal.

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