Um, no thanks! Photo credit:Richard Perry/New York Times
At Sin 7 Salon we have been around the block regarding the controversial and toxic Brazilian keratin smoothing treatments that were formerly available in Canada. Although the products in question produced fairly remarkable results for women with frizzy, curly, or unmanageable hair, we did not feel the risk to our stylists’ health or that of our guests was worth it. We are all about your vanity and making you feel and look pretty, but not willing to risk cancer and other illness to make your hair temporarily smoother.
Well, there is a bit of good news for our fellow stylists in California who have been fighting this uphill battle for the last 2 years – Californa has ordered Brazilian Blowout to remove its toxic crapola from the CA marketplace! From PrettyToxic.org (link no longer available):
According to the Attorney General’s office, GIB has 30 days to stop all sales of their current product and the California Air Resources Board will be testing the new reformulated product by the middle of December to see if it falls within the state’s VOC limit, in this case it’s 6% VOCs.
Unfortunately, we won’t know how much formaldehyde is in the new product because the state is strictly testing for VOCs. The way our current (severely outdated) law works a salon product is allowed to contain formaldehyde as long as they let us know it’s there, even though formaldehyde at any level has been declared unsafe for use in Hair Smoothing Products by the industry’s very own body of scientific and medical experts, the Cosmetic Ingredient Review Expert Panel (CIR).
Sadly, 6% VOCs doesn’t exactly = safe and healthy for salon workers and their clients, it means the product doesn’t produce as much smog. It’s unfortunate it was smog that ultimately got this toxic product off the market, NOT all of the countless salon workers and consumers who have suffered irreparable damage to their health and now have complicated medical issues. But hey, we’ll take this win however we can get it!
It’s not perfect, but it’s a start. This stuff is truly awful! For some really scary accounts of what exposure can do, check out this article, and the story of the whistleblower that started it all, Molly Scrutton. We’re feeling like we dodged a bullet since Health Canada acted so quickly to ban these dangerous products from salons. As much as we wish there were an easy solution for frizz, fuzz, and unruly hair, we’re very happy that we don’t have to worry about being exposed to toxic clouds of known carcinogens. On the upside, curls and body have made a comeback!
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