Last year, Brazilian Blowout–a popular Brazilian keratin straightening treatments currently offered at salons–was under fire from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (F.D.A.) for containing “dangerous levels” of formaldehyde in its product, despite the fact that its label claimed it was “Formaldehyde Free.” Since then, the company denied the claims and stood by their labeling. But now, it seems they have had a change of heart and have agreed to alert consumers that two of its products emit formaldehyde gas, a possible carcinogen. How nice of them to finally let us know that our quest for straight hair was so toxic.
The labeling changes are designed to settle a lawsuit that was filed in California last November, when the attorney general’s office accused the Hollywood-based company of deceptive advertising. Not only did their labeling state the product was free of formaldehyde, which can irritate the eyes, skin and lungs, but it was found to have anywhere from 8.7 to 10.4% formaldehyde, which is multiple times that of the 0.2 percentage that peer-reviewed Cosmetic Ingredient Review board considers safe for consumers.
California’s Attorney General, Kamala Harris, said in a statement:
California laws protect consumers and workers and give them fair notice about the health risks associated with the products they use. This settlement requires the company to disclose any hazard so that Californians can make informed choices.
To which Brazilian Blowout is responding by paying a whopping $600,000 in penalties and fines for failing to notify consumers and hair stylists that its products contain chemicals that may cause cancer. They have also agreed to have their products tested for all toxic substances at a state-approved lab, and include proper labeling on their products alerting consumers of the formaldehyde content–which, of course, most salons already suspected anyway.
Not that this changes anything with the product. Brazilian Blowout is continuing to manufacture and sell the same formula. The only difference is that now consumers should know better than to buy it.
Embrace your curls, ladies, and skip the toxins!