Hair-straightening product may endanger stylists, clients

Hair-straightening product may endanger stylists, clients
Study found too-high levels of formaldehyde in Brazilian Blowout solution.

(HealthDay)—A popular hair-straightening product can pose a health threat to hairstylists and their customers, researchers say.

The Brazilian Blowout Acai Professional Smoothing Hair Solution could expose people to potentially dangerous levels of the cancer-causing chemical , according to the study in the August issue of the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene.

"Our study found that using Brazilian Blowout, without proper engineering controls like local exhaust ventilation, could expose hairdressers and their clients to formaldehyde at levels above the short-term occupational exposure limits," study author Michelle Stewart said in a University of California, Berkeley, news release.

She conducted the study as a graduate student in the university's school of public health. Stewart and her colleagues found that formaldehyde concentrations in the air around hairstylists and customers exceeded limits set by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health.

The findings appear in the August issue of the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene.

"While installing local exhaust ventilation is a traditional exposure control, that solution may not be feasible in small salons due to the cost of ventilation systems, permits, installations, ongoing maintenance and efficacy checks," Stewart noted.

"The recommendation is that salons use products containing no more than 0.1 percent formaldehyde, but the product we investigated contained 12 percent formaldehyde," she added.

Symptoms that have been reported by hairstylists when using hair-straightening treatments such as Brazilian Blowout include watery eyes, runny nose, irritation and nosebleeds. The product is available in more than 6,000 salons within the United States, according to the news release.

More information: The Environmental Working Group has more about hair straighteners.

Related Stories

Beef sold in Zambia contained harmful chemical: govt

Jul 19, 2013

Beef products imported from Europe and distributed in Zambia by leading meat company Zambeef have tested positive for aromatic aldehyde, a chemical which can cause cancer, the health minister said Friday.

Recommended for you

Suddenly health insurance is not for sale

21 hours ago

(HealthDay)— Darlene Tucker, an independent insurance broker in Scotts Hill, Tenn., says health insurers in her area aren't selling policies year-round anymore.

Study: Half of jailed NYC youths have brain injury (Update)

21 hours ago

About half of all 16- to 18-year-olds coming into New York City's jails say they had a traumatic brain injury before being incarcerated, most caused by assaults, according to a new study that's the latest in a growing body ...

Autonomy and relationships among 'good life' goals

Apr 18, 2014

Young adults with Down syndrome have a strong desire to be self-sufficient by living independently and having a job, according to a study into the meaning of wellbeing among young people affected by the disorder.

User comments