Osha guidelines on keratin hair treatment and products
OSHA Guidelines on Keratin Hair
Treatment and products
Keratin is a protein which occurs naturally in our hair. Keratin treatment refers to the process of
straightening of hair. People having the non-straight curly and kinky hair make use of this process to
make their hair straight. It is also one of the most common procedures, also called the Brazilian Blowout,
followed in the beauty and hair salons around the world. While it does serve the purpose of temporary
hair straightening, it makes use of regulated chemicals and formulations.
The Formaldehyde Connection
Keratin Hair Treatment and products has had their share of controversy due to their perceived health
risks to the workers who provide Brazilian hair care solutions. This risk is essentially due to the
unregulated use of a chemical called formaldehyde in these products. There have been violations with
respect to the correct labelling of these products, conducting the required tests at places where these are
used and with respect to wearing or suitable protective gear by the workers. However, instead of
completely banning these product, the US department of OSHA has reviewed these risks and provided
for complete regulation. OSHA has issued detailed guidelines in this respect.
What constitutes the violations of OSHA guidelines?
1. It would be interesting to note that the Brazilian blowout professional solution manufacturers used nondisclosure by excluding the hazardous chemicals from labels of these products. Also, there was incorrect
mention of the accurate levels of these products. So, non-inclusion of Formaldehyde as a hazardous
ingredient of the Brazilian blowout shampoo and other products is considered a violation. .
2. Non-inclusion of Formaldehyde as a hazardous substance in the MSDS sheet.
3. Failure to inform about the health effects on exposure to formaldehyde on MSDS.
4. Inability of salon owners to test these products to know how much of formaldehyde is present and
whether this is within the permissible limits.
5. Failure of salon owners to provide sufficient ventilation and protective gears to workers while using
6. Failure to train the workers on handling of these products.
7. Failure to communicate the hazardous effects of formaldehyde on exposure to it.
With stricter OSHA enforcement, things begin to change and the manufacturers now duly comply with the
guidelines. So, when you buy Brazilian blowout products now for use in your salon, you shall still double
check whether the product labelling has been correctly done in compliance with the OSHA guidelines or
not. As the awareness about this aspect of the Keratin Hair Treatment and its products has increased
among the customers as well as the salon workers, the salon owners shall resort to buying only the safest
of these products.
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