Sunday, April 17, 2011

Brazilian Blowout blow-up: U.S. OSHA issues warning about formaldehyde in hair-smoothing treatment

Ok.... fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu........

I talked to Butterfly this weekend about the keratin treatment I had and she asked if 1) my eyes burned during the treatment (yes they did) and 2) if the salon had used a fan (no they didn't).  So I decided to do some internet research and phuckit this is what I came up with....

(I am allergic to formaldehyde.  Again, Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu....)

Brazilian Blowout blow-up: U.S. OSHA issues warning about formaldehyde in hair-smoothing treatment

The ongoing controversy over the celebrity-endorsed Brazilian Blowout and similar keratin hair smoothing treatments that are used to tame frizzy hair intensified this week, when U.S. health officials issued a hazard alert warning about dangerous formaldehyde levels found in some of the products.

The alert from the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) said the Brazilian Blowout Acai Professional Smoothing Solution contained formaldehyde levels greater than federal limits (though it doesn’t say by how much), even in products labeled “formaldehyde free.”
State OSHA offices in California and Oregon began investigating the Brazilian Blowout and other hair smoothing products several months ago after a host of complaints from salon workers and clients reporting headaches, nosebleeds, blisters, burning eyes, vomiting, asthma attacks and other respiratory problems. Several state-level agencies -- including those in California, Oregon and Connecticut -- issued warnings about the products. Health Canada issued an outright ban. The solutions used in the brand-name Brazilian Blowout, in particular, contained formaldehyde -- which is a known carcinogen -- at an amount “42 times the acceptable limit,” Canadian officials said.

On April 6, the California attorney general filed a motion in Alameda County Superior Court requesting a preliminary injunction against GIB LLC, the company that makes the brand-name Brazilian Blowout. It is the first enforcement action the state has taken under the California Safe Cosmetics Act.

The company’s chief executive, Mike Brady, takes issue with the findings and questions the government agencies’ testing methods. In December, GIB LLC sued Oregon OSHA over its testing, although the suit was later dropped.

Brazilian Blowout solutions have “never emitted any unacceptable levels of anything that I’m aware of per OSHA testing,” Brady said in a phone interview Wednesday.

“We’re attempting to contact federal OSHA,” Brady said. “We don't know anything about their testing. We don't know what they tested; we don't know how they tested it. We haven't been contacted by them so we're trying to contact them so that we can work together.”

“The other thing that we have to make sure is that it was our product that they were testing,” Brady added. “There's a tremendous amount of marketplace confusion -- that Brazilian Blowout is a specific brand, not a category. So when someone says 'I'm getting a Brazilian Blowout' or 'I'm providing a Brazilian Blowout,' in so many cases it's not even our product, so until we get a chance to review anything that they've done I don't have any specific comment other than all OSHA tests that we've had access to demonstrate the safety.”

It’s not only government agencies that are questioning the safety of products used in keratin smoothing treatments. Brazil In a report called “Flat Out Risky,” the Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit organization that lobbies for health and environmental protections, raises concerns about the treatments and the comparatively slow response of the U.S. government to complaints.

“Hair straighteners based on formaldehyde have been recalled in six countries -- Australia, Ireland, Canada, France, Germany and Cyprus, but are still widely used in American salons,” the report said.
Stacy Malkan, author of “Not Just a Pretty Face: The Ugly Side of the Beauty Industry,” and co-founder of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, which is leading an effort to pass the Federal Safe Cosmetics Act, cites the hair-smoothing issue as a perfect example of why the U.S. needs a better product safety system. “It’s shocking the reports that have gone to the FDA regarding people who have been harmed from these products. They need to be pulled from the market,” Malkan said.

Hair salon owners who are concerned about whether products they use are problematic can request an on-site consultation from OSHA by visiting its website or calling (800) 321-6742. On-site consultations do not result in penalties or citations. Consumers who believe they been negatively affected can call the FDA’s MedWatch adverse event reporting system at (800) 332-1088.

-- Alene Dawson
Source:  LA Times:


Expat and the City said...

Looool. You are hilarious! I still want to try it out. I can just wear a M40 mask. :)

Jordana Lorraine said...

I wish that coverage like this would include information about ways for salons to protect their staff and clients.

I have been using a Chemical Source Capture System in combination with another air filter, both by Aerovex Systems, and an exhaust in my treatment space for nearly two years. It vacuums up fumes as soon as they are produced, and filters them three different ways to protect my clients, and me, from breathing in potentially harmful gasses.

This system was designed specifically for this purpose, and could help many salons protect their clients and staff while continuing to offer this wildly popular service.

Desert Girl said...

Would I do it again? Hell yes, but probably not at a salon without proper ventalation measures.

Thanks Jordana for the information. Do you have a salon in Kuwait?

intlxpatr said...

Great information, DG. There are also shampoos which give me hives; I think it is the sodium laurel, or something like that.

Butterfly on the Wall said...

Thanks for posting this... most people are not aware of the dangers.

I love the effect that this treatment produces, however I would never do it without proper ventilation and an air filter system. Kudos to you, Jordana for being the proper example of a salon that actually cares about their clients and stylists! :)

Anonymous said...

I heard about this and asked my salon (Sloane). I was told they stopped using formaldehyde ages ago. The current Brazilian products they use are safe. I hope they are right because I love it!

Desert Girl said...

Anonymous April 25: The OSHA warning was distributed APRIL 14, 2011 - specifically naming "Brazilian Blowout" brand and others. Don't always believe everything your stylist tells you.

Anonymous said...

I just did the Nano Keratin Brazilian Blowout at Eden! loved the results! Formaldehyde free!
You can read more about the Nano Keratin or talk to Mez or Danielle at Eden.
I did mine with Mez, & I highly recommend her :)

Mrs. Primo said...

@DG - how is your hair now post treatment? Did it revert back to normal or is it brittle or worst than before you did the treatment?

Summer said...

Oh am so glad I found such helpful info regarding salons in Kuwait! Cuz honestly I've called over 10 of the most famous and reputable salons, and all I got was more confusion! Honestly not more than 3 shared the same product! Each of the other  salons gave me a description of a different product from BK to loreal x-tenso (some are still using the old x-tenso cera thermic) which by the way has stopped from loreal and isn't recommended any more, because it damages the hair as Emma from tony & Guy explained to me, so they use x-tenso mousturist instead as a better option, yet so many are still using it, like Layla gallery AKA Franck provost. So for those who are considering it, try looking for it online , you won't find it at Loreal's professional websites, nys I just wanted to share my experience with u , cuz I still don't knw which salon to choose?!! So please DG if you and the other girls would be kind enough to tell me how is your hair condition now after the treatments? And where do u recommend me to go to, any specific stylists names I should ask for ? Cuz I wanna colour my hair as well, by the way i've had rebounding processes(thermal conditioning) at a salon called Shato moon , it's basically relaxer and keratin together, they call it (Diamond keratin) it gave me excellent permanent  results when it comes to straightening , but my curly hair is a lil damaged now :( 
So DG please help me out ... Thaaaanks a lot 

Ps: when I checked the Diamond treatment( I forgot the name of the mother company) online , it turned out to be an intinsive mask, but I guess they mix it with a relaxer or something , I don't really know, I just wanted to do something for my hair instead of the daily blow drying .

Desert Girl said...

Hi Summer, Thanks for the info.

Yeah, most of the salons in Kuwait use the same products because they all buy from the same distributors. Its all about wastah and what your wastah can bring into the country for you - and what competition they can knock out. Sucks for salon owners too.

I liked the way my hair turned out after the Brazilian Blowout; however, it lasted all of 3 weeks! RRR. That's a big chunk of change to pay.

What they didnt' tell me is not to use shampoos with sulphates, but I was augmenting with the Brazilian Blowout line also, so it shouldn't have caused any damage.

After that, I had a chocolate keratin treatment which has lasted longer and I've liked better.

I have very wavy hair and both the treatments left my hair without frizzies - which has always been a problem. I had the chocolate treatment and immediately left to DC at the height of the humid season. My hair looked great throughout the whole month and people commented on it. Strands Fanar - ask for Ashlee. She does amazing color also.

I would definately do it again, but not the Brazilian. I want to try different types.

There are also HUGE differences in price. Strands charged around 100 (slightly lower because I've been a client for years). Eden wants 150KD, my friend has paid around 120.

Desert Girl said...

Oh, my hair is in far better condition than it was before the treatments. It wasn't immediately apparent right after I had it done, but after a few weeks, it was really noticable.

The last time I had it done was late July and now in mid-September, it still feels and looks wonderful.

Nail Station said...

Nail Station Salon has Brazilian Blowout acai!! Contact: 99817773, 25660807
Maidan Hawally
Twitter: @NailStationKW
Facebook: Nail Station Kuwait

Anonymous said...

Hi, i was looking for a good hair that would actually fix my hair inside out
since you tried the chocolate keratin long did it last?
and was it better than the brazilian blowout?

thx :)

Desert Girl said...

Anoymous 2:17 - I wouldn't do the blowout again. It lasted all of 2 months (and that is a generous statement) and the fumes are just not worth it to me.

Chocolate was better.

Copolla (available soon at Boudoir) is the BEST. I love how my hair feels/looks and it has lasted.

Make SURE that you use non-sulphur/non-sodium shampoo and conditioner so you don't ruin it.

james thomos said...

Keratin treatment products are specially created to contain natural keratin protein.
The straight treatment is guaranteed to make hair smooth and shiny with long lasting straightness effect.
This is the final result after hair washing
Keratin blowout in San Ramon CA