Even though a Brazilian blowout likely contains dangerous levels of the known carcinogen formaldehyde, some salons and women are refusing to give up the straightening hair process. This in spite of the fact that even treatments marked "formaldehyde-free" actually have much more than the "allowed" 0.1 percent of the chemical.
My question: What the hell are you women thinking?!
It's not that I don't get it. I do. I've had friends with curly, frizzy, kinky, wavy masses of hair my whole life. My own hair can lay totally flat and straight or, less frequently (regretfully), has the ability to be Victoria's Secret wavy. Because I prefer the beachy look, I've always envied my curlier-hair friends. Honestly, if this was 1986 instead of 2011, I might be a perm junkie. But, I also feel the pain of my friends who have hair that would never be straight without a lot of chemicals and a hardcore CHI ... sometimes.
Yeah, it stinks to look like you have out-of-control bed head every day, no matter what you do. But I really think some of my friends and loved ones take it to an extreme. It's one thing to spend $10 here or there on a bottle of Biosilk. It's quite another to drop hundreds or thousands on Brazilian straightening treatments linked to serious health concerns.
I know women who have done it, and they'd probably do it again in a heartbeat. They just can't get enough. However -- these same women have suffered from fibromyalgia, a brain aneurysm, diverticulitis, food allergies, debilitating migraines, etc. Maybe they don't put two and two together, but all that aside, how in the WORLD does it make any sense to drop mega-bucks on a beauty treatment that could potentially give them CANCER, too?
Sometimes I feel like I'm on a high horse when I tell friends that I won't use a body wash that has parabens because the preservative has been linked to breast cancer, or that I skip regular toothpaste and choose Tom's of Maine Fluoride Free because the chemical compound causes/exacerbates thyroid disease. I'm sure I'll get flack on occasion because I refuse to touch a Diet Coke -- there are healthier ways to get a 3 p.m. buzz than by drinking something that contains an excitoneurotoxic carcinogen. In the end, who cares what anyone says? I'd rather use/eat/drink products I'm comfortable with, that I trust won't cost me more in medical bills in the long run.
Now, when it comes to this ... I wouldn't even flinch about that high horse! If I heard that a friend or relative was going to get a Brazilian blowout, I'd literally want to shake her and say, "What is wrong with you??? Stop the vanity insanity!!!" Having straighter hair might make you feel pretty temporarily, but is it really worth making yourself sick? I really, truly don't believe so.
Image via Stephen Durham/Flickr