At least two Calgary hair salons are pulling a popular hair treatment after a warning on Thursday from Health Canada that the product could be dangerous.
Brazilian Blowout Solution, which promises to smooth frizzy hair, contains 12 per cent formaldehyde, far exceeding the allowable level of 0.2 per cent in cosmetics, the federal agency said in a release.
The California-based company's website claims its products are formaldehyde-free.
"Health Canada has received complaints of burning eyes, nose, and throat, breathing difficulties, and one report of hair loss associated with use of the product," the warning said.
The agency advises any consumers who have reactions to the treatment to seek medical attention. It warns stylists to stop using it immediately.
Despite costing from $350 to $600, treatments with the Brazilian Blowout Solution are very popular, said Bassem Jawhari, owner of Pink Lime salon in Calgary, who has temporarily pulled his bottles off the shelves.
"It is a fabulous service. I really enjoy doing them and I look forward to working with that product again, but again we're concerned," he said.
Salon 240 has also decided to stop using the products, said owner Lesa Berg.
"I think the biggest issue is that when you contact formaldehyde in high concentration, the big risk is that you become allergic to it," said dermatologist Dr. Derek Woolner.
The Canadian distributor of the Brazilian Blowout said a safe version of the product will be shipped out to salons as soon as possible.