In North Hollywood, hair straightening product Brazilian Blowout made people bleed from their nose, accompanied by breathing problems and eye irritation.
Apparently it has something to do with the fact that Brazilian Blowout uses methylene glycol and amino acids to straighten frizzy hair. When heated, it emits formaldehyde gas which has recently been classified as a carcinogen under federal law.
This would not have been such a problem for the company had they not labeled their product as "formaldehyde free." This resulted in the product, sold only to hair stylists and salons, being used by these establishments under the mistaken assumption that there was no formaldehyde involved.
The complaints piled up, and finally the FDA stepped in to investigate. The inquiry continues, but the FDA has already issued a letter of warning to Brazilian Blowout for the false label. The company settled its product liability problems with California State by paying $600,000 in fines and agreeing to let customers know the product emits formaldehyde.
Assuming the FDA agrees to the same kind of settlement, there is nothing much else that Brazilian Blowout has to worry about. Except for a class-action suit filed by customers who bought, used and suffered because of the product. The plaintiffs include both hair stylists and the customers they used the product on.
Brazilian Blowout has finally agreed to a $4.5 million settlement in this class action lawsuit. Under the terms of the settlement, end-users harmed by the product will get $35 for each treatment they need, up to three treatments. Stylists will get $75 per bottle purchased.
Brazilian Blowout will still be sold and used to straighten frizzy hair. But it will now be marketed honestly and used carefully by salons with proper ventilation where the formaldehyde will not affect customers.