FDA Threatens Action Against Maker of ‘Adulterated’ Hair Product

For the makers of the Brazilian Blowout hair-straightening solution, this may burn.

The Los Angeles-based company, known both as GIB and as Brazilian Blowout, is taking more heat from federal regulators. The Food and Drug Administration has weighed in with a warning letter to Brazilian Blowout’s chief executive, Mike Brady, stating that its product is “adulterated” illegally with the liquid form of formaldehyde — contradicting its “Formaldehyde Free” label.

The FDA told the company to take “prompt action” to correct the problem or face an “enforcement action” that could include the seizure of its products. It is due to respond to the agency by next week.

The action follows a hazard alert this spring by another federal agency, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, about Brazilian Blowout and similar products. It warned that use of the products could expose salon workers and their clients to formaldehyde, a human carcinogen.

Separately, OSHA issued citations Thursday to four Florida companies that make or distribute other hair care products. OSHA accused the companies of failing to protect their employees from formaldehyde exposure or to alert the products’ users to the hazards. In all, the agency is seeking $49,200 in penalties.

The FDA’s analysis found that that Brazilian Blowout, which already is banned in Canada, is 8.7 percent to 10.4 percent liquid formaldehyde. As Time reports, that puts it in the range of the embalming fluid used by funeral homes.

People exposed to the product, the FDA says, have suffered side effects such as burning sensations, eye and throat irritation, headache, dizziness, breathing problems, nosebleeds, chest pain, vomiting and rashes. Formaldehyde is released when hair treated with Brazilian Blowout is heated with a blow dryer and then with a hot flat iron, as the product’s labeling recommends.

But Brady, the company CEO, disputes the regulators’ contentions. He told NPR’s Shots blog: “We have been tested countless times by OSHA. And we have never exceeded a safety standard ever.” In statement, the company said it is working with the FDA.


Related Posts:
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Brazilian Blowout Maker Sues, Claiming Formaldehyde Findings Were Wrong
Lawsuit by California Attorney General Blasts Brazilian Blowout Salon Treatment

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One comment to “FDA Threatens Action Against Maker of ‘Adulterated’ Hair Product”

  1. MaryAsk

    No chemicals, I prefer using a flat iron with tourmaline ceramic plates to avoid hair damages, I bought a very good one at safrons, it’s the Karmin G3 Salon Pro and it leaves my hair soft, shiny and super straight. Plus a very good hair treatment with heat protector, to keep it healthy, I use Pro Naturals Moroccan Oil. :)

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