I'm sure most people in the hair industry (and beyond) have witnessed the whirlwind of controversy associated with the once popular hair straightening treatment known as the Brazilian BlowOut. The controversy began with the Brazilian BlowOuts extensive use of the known human carcinogen- Formaldehyde. The solution used during the Brazilian BlowOut treatment was tested in labs with a shocking revelation- anywhere from 8.7-10% Formaldehyde was found in their product!
The Brazilian BlowOut has already been banned in Canada (via Health Canada) and has been under scrutiny from the FDA and OSHA (but nothing in the U.S. has completely prevented the sale and distribution of this product), which was advertised as formaldehyde-free and this is where my story begins...
I have been going to my stylist for over 15 years; therefore, I trusted his judgment when he told me that they were no longer happy with their straightening system Coppola (also banned by Health Canada) and had replaced it with Brazilian BlowOut. I've heard absolutely horrible things about Brazilian BlowOut, but the bottle label read formaldehyde-free, so against my better judgment I agreed to the treatment.
Well the upshot is that 5 days later my scalp is still burning, it hurts to touch, I've developed a cough, my lungs hurt and about 30% of the hair from the crown of my head is gone.
I now have thin flat hair that looks horrible -- I look like a drowned rat. I am so furious. BUT after careful research, I believe I've identified the misleading advertising that both my hair stylist and I were exposed to.
Brazilian Blow-out is not Formaldehyde free; it contains Glutaraldehyde which is a colorless liquid with a pungent odor used to disinfect medical and dental equipment. It is also used for industrial water treatment and as a chemical preservative.
However, it is toxic, causing severe eye, nose, throat and lung irritation, along with headaches, drowsiness and dizziness. It is a main source of occupational asthma among health care providers.
Glutaraldehyde is an oily liquid at room temperature (density 1.06 g/mL), and miscible with water, alcohol, and benzene. It is used as a tissue fixative in electron microscopy. It is employed as an embalming fluid, is a component of leather tanning solutions, and occurs as an intermediate in the production of certain industrial chemicals.
Glutaraldehyde is frequently used in biochemistry applications as an amine-reactive homobifunctional crosslinker. The oligomeric state of proteins can be examined through this application.
Monomeric glutaraldehyde can polymerize by aldol condensation reaction yielding alpha,beta-unsaturated poly-glutaraldehyde. This reaction usually occurs at alkaline pH values.
Brazilian Blow-out's claims of being formaldehyde free is very misleading especially if somebody is allergic to formaldehyde or has asthma
I sincerely hope enough people can get behind the government and their case against Brazilian BlowOut because what is going on now just isn't enough!