There is a saying "Beauty is Pain"... but in the case of having smooth frizz-free hair, it can actually mean death. There is no question that these treatments can be life changing, but for many stylists and consumers of Brazilian Blowout the "change" usually includes burning eyes, respiratory issues, asthma, nosebleeds, blisters and headaches in the short term; and the possibility for nasal, lung or brain cancer and leukemia or lymphoma in the long term.
While several brands of keratin treatments have been found to have higher than "safe" levels of formaldehyde, Brazilian Blowout was found to be the worst and most toxic offender with an average of 10% formaldehyde. This is 50 times the "safe" level ("safe" levels are less than .2%). You may be wondering why this is even allowed to be done in the US? Doesn't the FDA have a say in this matter? Aren't they supposed to protect the American public from a product that is this dangerous? Good questions, and yes and no. The FDA typically does not have the regulatory authority over cosmetics, unless the product is deemed "dangerous", which the FDA has actually acknowledged. The FDA has ordered Brazilian Blowout to relabel their bottles with a "warning label" to say that it contains formaldehyde, a known carcinogen. A good first step. However this is not enough, and by signing this petition I would like to put pressure on the FDA to take the next step and remove this product from the market. The product has already been banned in Canada, France, Ireland, Germany and Australia. The US is sadly lagging behind and time is running out for those of us whose health can be and has been adversely affected.
I was lucky in the sense that after I stopped performing the treatments in my salon, my health rebounded for the most part. No more chronic sinus infections, painful sores in my nose, or extreme respiratory difficulties. However being around household cleaners and other products which may contain even the tiniest amount of formaldehyde affects my ability to breathe. And of course, I do not know yet about my (probably highly increased) odds of developing cancer. Others that I know also did not rebound so quickly. One stylist I know was diagnosed with formaldehyde poisoning and had to be put on an inhaler for asthma attacks, and she still continues to have side effects a year later. Those affected all have similar symptoms that one cannot deny: asthma attacks, sinus infections, bronchitis, scabs in the nose, difficulty breathing, migraines, sore throats, vision and hearing changes, and a high percentage are now on inhalers.
Many stylists and clients alike are under the impression that if this product really was unsafe, it simply would not be on the market. A naive and dangerous assumption in this case unfortunately. While the FDA has issued a "warning" about the product, it is still "investigating" and it may be a long road ahead before a recall is issued. There also still is alot of misinformation out there, so many clients don't realize what they are doing is toxic to their health. Also, many stylists choose to ignore the dangers, and their own failing health, since this product is still in high demand and we have an innate desire to make our clients happy... not to mention make money. In order for things to change, we need to remove the demand for this product. Then and only then will these companies perhaps work on reformulating into a product that is safe. We are here to put pressure on the FDA to remove this product NOW before many more people get sick...this PRICE for BEAUTY is simply TOO HIGH!
For more info... check out these blogs:
Ban Brazilian Blowout and other toxic smoothers from the market