Health Canada is sounding the alarm over a new batch of straightening treatments, often referred to as Brazilian blowouts or keratin solutions, over fears they contain high amounts of formaldehyde.
The department issued a warning Tuesday that 11 additional products have been found to contain higher-than-permitted levels of formaldehyde, following similar warnings issued in recent months. Despite widespread concerns that emerged last fall over high amounts of formaldehyde in professional straightening treatments, it is clear many of the products are still being used in salons in Canada.
Formaldehyde, which is carcinogenic, is permitted as a preservative for cosmetics in Canada, but cannot exceed 0.2 per cent of the product. Some of the products tested by Health Canada have as much as 8.4 per cent formaldehyde. The department has received reports of burning eyes, nose, throat and hair loss associated with Brazilian and keratin straightening products.
The treatments, available almost exclusively at salons, emerged as a trendy, albeit expensive, option for long-term hair straightening in the past few years. But a research lab in the United States had raised concerns they contain formaldehyde after conducting tests.
While many consumers have turned away from the treatments, others say they're not fazed by the health concerns.
Other salons say they have been given formaldehyde-free versions of the product, but subsequent Health Canada warnings cast significant doubt about all of these types of straightening products.
Have the recent health warnings scared you away from this go-to hair treatment? Or is it business as usual when you hit the salon?