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Formaldehyde Testing Services

Category Press Release
Publish Date 10/11/2021
Author Paul Cochrane
Title FDA Warns of Hair Smoothing Products That Release Formaldehyde When Heated
Introduction EMSL Analytical provides consumer product and indoor air quality (IAQ) testing services to identify formaldehyde from hair products and other materials.

Cinnaminson, NJ, October 11th, 2021

Earlier this year, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) released a Cosmetics Facts bulletin warning that some hair smoothing or straightening products contain or release formaldehyde, which can be harmful. When such products are heated, formaldehyde gas is released into the air and can cause serious irritation to the eyes, nose, and lungs.

FDA cautions:

Breathing in formaldehyde gas can be harmful and cause immediate reactions ranging from irritation of the eyes and throat to coughing, wheezing, or chest pain to chronic or long-term problems such as more frequent headaches, asthma, skin irritation and possibly cancer. It is also a sensitizing agent that can cause allergic reactions upon repeated exposure. Of note, the International Agency for Research on Cancer has classified formaldehyde as a human carcinogen.

Several years ago, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) also published a Hazard Alert about hair smoothing products that release formaldehyde into the air. This was the result of OSHA and several State OSHA programs investigating questions and complaints from hair salon owners and workers about possible formaldehyde exposure from some of the products they use.

“If a product contains formaldehyde and is used indoors it could be a serious exposure concern, especially for workers that are exposed repeatedly,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President, Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “The use of these types of products could cause air levels to rise above OSHA's permissible limits for the workplace, not to mention be a concern for anyone using these goods at home.”

The scientists at EMSL Analytical identify exposure risks to formaldehyde and other chemicals. They offer consumer product, industrial hygiene, and environmental testing services, along with all the necessary sampling supplies. EMSL has even sponsored an educational video about hair salons and formaldehyde exposure concerns that can be seen at: https://youtu.be/aFCraXk3AiM.

To learn more about formaldehyde testing or other material, indoor air quality, occupational, or environmental services, please visit www.EMSL.com, call (800) 220-3675, or email info@EMSL.com.


About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is one of the leading testing laboratories throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella, USP <797>, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOC’s, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products, and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA-LAP, LLC (AIHA-LAP, LLC EMLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC IHLAP, AIHA-LAP, LLC ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP, and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at www.EMSL.com for a complete listing of accreditations. In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.
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