The Brazilian Blowout, is a popular hair-straightening treatment that promises to eliminate frizz and give you smooth and straight hair for months.
In lab tests, the Brazilian Blowout solution has been found to contain 12 percent formaldehyde, (a known carcinogen) when only 0.2 per cent is permitted in cosmetics.
On its website, Brazilian Blowout advertises that all of its products have been tested as "formaldehyde free.
Derek Bodnarchuk, owner of Aru Spa and Salon in White Rock, said that the product was heavily marketed as being formaldehyde-free.
"That was their competitive advantage," he said. "It's alarming for us, because we're the type of place that's trying to promote a healthy, natural lifestyle."
The national health agency has received complaints of breathing difficulties, burning eyes, nose, throat, and even one case of hair loss associated with the treatment. The agency believes that the reactions are triggering when the solution is heated during blow-drying and flat-ironing.
Health Canada is now asking hair salons to stop using the Brazilian Blowout Solution immediately, and is advising customers who have suffered adverse effects to contact their doctors.
Isolde Semple, a Stylist in Vancouver said Thursday that she has stopped using the treatment.
"I think it's absolutely devastating that it got approved,". "There's a lot of victims here, and I'm absolutely upset at the people who produced the product."
Semple said that the treatment does have an awful smell, but she didn't think it was anything serious.
"It makes your eyes kind of water, but it's the same thing as when you're cutting an onion," she said. Some customers have reported feeling slightly ill afterwards. "Now people are realizing, maybe it wasn't what I ate."
Semple said she was charging around $350 for the treatment, and could now be out quite a bit of money.
"If I can't return the product, I'm sucking it up as a very big lesson learned," she said.
Now Semple will have to find a new way to help customers straighten their hair.
"It did a great thing to the hair -- that's the worst part." Other Brazilian Blowout products are not affected by the Health Canada warning.
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