Tag: Vivienne Mackinder

US Department of Labor continues to cite beauty salons and manufacturers!

US Department of Labor continues to cite beauty salons and manufacturers
for formaldehyde exposure from hair smoothing products
OSHA urges salon owners to implement protective measures

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration is continuing its efforts to protect workers from the dangers of formaldehyde exposure.

In November, OSHA issued citations and fines to two salons for failing to implement precautions to protect workers from exposure to formaldehyde when using certain hair-smoothing products. Formaldehyde can irritate the eyes and nose; can cause allergic reactions of the skin, eyes and lungs; and is a cancer hazard. Salon owners who decide to use products that may contain or release formaldehyde must follow the requirements of OSHA’s formaldehyde and hazard communication standards to keep workers safe.

“We want to make sure that salon owners are aware that if they use these products, they have to implement protective measures such as air monitoring and training,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA Dr. David Michaels. “What is very troubling to the agency is that some of these products clearly expose workers to formaldehyde even when the label states they are ‘formaldehyde free.'”

OSHA continues to respond to complaints and referrals of formaldehyde exposure in salons, beauty schools and manufacturing facilities. To date in calendar year 2011, federal OSHA has issued citations to 23 salon owners and beauty schools in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Florida, Illinois, New York, New Jersey and Ohio, with fines ranging up to $17,500 for failing to protect workers from overexposure and potential exposure to formaldehyde.

Some of these violations include failing to communicate the hazards of exposure to formaldehyde, provide needed protective equipment and test air levels. The requirements of OSHA’s formaldehyde standard can be viewed at http://s.dol.gov/KW. In three separate salons, OSHA’s tests showed that workers were exposed to formaldehyde levels above the agency’s 15-minute short-term exposure limit, which is 2.0 parts of formaldehyde per million parts of air. In one case, OSHA determined that a hair stylist was exposed to more than five times the allowable amount with an actual exposure reading of 10.12 ppm. In another instance, the exposure reading was 4.73 ppm.

OSHA also has issued citations to two Florida manufacturers and two Florida-based distributors of hair products containing formaldehyde for failing to protect their own workers from possible formaldehyde exposure as well as to communicate the hazards of formaldehyde exposure to salons, stylists and consumers. The violations of OSHA’s formaldehyde and hazard communication standards include failing to list formaldehyde as a hazardous ingredient on the material safety data sheet, the hazard warning sheet provided to users such as salon owners and stylists; include proper hazard warnings on product labels; and list the health effects of formaldehyde exposure on the MSDS. Labels must include ingredient and health hazard warning information, and the MSDS must provide users with information on the chemicals in a product, the hazards to workers and how to use the product safely.

“The best way to control exposure to formaldehyde is to use products that do not contain formaldehyde. Salons should check the label or product information to make sure it does not list formaldehyde, formalin, methylene glycol or any of the other names for formaldehyde,” said Michaels. “If salon owners decide to use products that contain or release formaldehyde, then they must follow a number of protective practices — including air monitoring, worker training and, if levels are over OSHA limits, good ventilation or respirators.”

OSHA already has conducted significant outreach to salons, beauty schools and manufacturers to alert them about the hazards of hair smoothing products and the requirements of OSHA’s standards. In late September, OSHA issued a second hazard alert to hair salon owners and workers about potential formaldehyde exposure from working with certain hair smoothing and straightening products, which can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/formaldehyde/hazard_alert.html. This alert, which revised the initial alert issued last spring, was prompted by the results of additional agency inspections, a warning letter issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and factually incorrect information recently sent to salons by Brazilian Blowout, a company that manufactures hair products.

In response to the Aug. 24 letter sent by Brazilian Blowout to salon owners claiming that all OSHA air tests performed on the company’s Brazilian Blowout Professional Acai Smoothing Solution yielded results below OSHA’s standard for exposure, the agency sent a letter to the company refuting that assertion. OSHA’s letter can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/formaldehyde/brazilian_blowout_letter.pdf*.

For more information on formaldehyde exposure in salons, visit http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/hairsalons/index.html.

For small businesses in all states across the country, OSHA’s On-site Consultation Program offers free and confidential advice for employers seeking help to identify and prevent job hazards or improve their safety and health management systems. In fiscal year 2010, the program provided free assistance to more than 30,000 small businesses covering more than 1.5 million workers across the nation. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov/dcsp/smallbusiness/consult.html.

“These consultation services are separate from enforcement and do not result in penalties or citations,” said Michaels. “Consultants from state agencies or universities work with employers to identify workplace hazards, provide advice on compliance with OSHA standards, and assist in establishing safety and health management systems.”

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.




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Deception, Greed, Lies Pure Traits of My Profession

In my industry trying to give the professional who works behind a chair daily as an employee, booth renter, salon owner the real story of what they are using pertaining to products, and advertising is a very easy job. I take high regard for my fellow professionals, and give them a full amount of respect. Beauty Industry Reports, Manufacturers, And also Magazines in this industry take pride on receiving a pat on the back from fellow members who do not want to break the lines of greed and deception they consistently promote from within my industry.

If you take the time to look at this Professional Keratin Smoothing Council they claim that they are the Committed to the safety of salon professionals and consumers and the growth of the professional beauty industry, advocacy for the Keratin/Smoothing hair category and the principles of professionalism, transparency and accountability. The members are as follows Marcia Teixeira, Keratin Complex , Cadiveu were all cited for mis-labeling, improper  MSDS Sheets.

During Federal OSHA investigations, air tests showed formaldehyde at levels above OSHA’s limits in salons using Brazilian Blowout Acai Professional Smoothing Solution, labeled “formaldehyde free,” and Brasil Cacau Cadiveu. Both Federal and State OSHA have found violations at several manufacturers, importers, and distributors (GIB LLC dba Brazilian Blowout, Keratronics Inc., Pro Skin Solutions, M&M International Inc., Copomon, INOVA Professional). The violations include failing to list formaldehyde as a hazardous ingredient on the MSDS (the hazard warning sheet) provided to downstream users (e.g., salon owners, stylists), failing to include proper hazard warnings on product labels, and failing to list the health effects of formaldehyde exposure on the MSDS. Labels must include ingredient and hazard warning information and the MSDS must provide users with information about the chemicals in a product, the hazards to workers, and how to use a product safely.

But these company’s have banded to provide you with false information, leading you to believe their company’s as honest, depending so-called organization in our industry. Again I quote them “Committed to the safety of salon professionals and consumers and the growth of the professional beauty industry, advocacy for the Keratin/Smoothing hair category and the principles of professionalism, transparency and accountability”. They were cited by OSHA in 2011, their website started in 2011. They were interviewed by the BIR (Beauty Industry Report?) in 2011. The BIR’S Written interview with the (PKSC) in 2011 states ” As reported by Beauty Industry Report (BIR) in March, a number of the top companies in the category, such as Cadiveu, Keratin Complex, Marcia Teixeira, SalonTech and Aerovex Systems have joined forces to form the Professional Keratin Smoothing Council (PKSC) to advocate for this continually expanding segment of the industry. BIR recently had the opportunity to chat with the founding members to learn about their plans to safeguard one of the most lucrative opportunities to hit the professional beauty industry in decades. Knowing full well they were cited by OSHA for violations. Do you think they would come back after seeing these entity’s claiming honesty, and commitment to the industry as a falsehood. No that would not be good business. Business is the big word here everyone.  In the interview a question was asked and I quote, BIR: What would BIR’s readers be surprised to learn about the controversy surrounding this category of products? Claudia Ancantara, Cadiveu Brazil, President; Founding Member PKSC:

“Regulatory agencies in the US and around the world continue to use antiquated and highly inaccurate methods to measure the level of formaldehyde in not only cosmetics, but in other areas, including scientific research. The lack of standardization has contributed to a wide scale skewing of reported results. As a result, salon professionals and consumers are receiving information that is inaccurate, inflammatory and destructive to our industry and economy. The vast majority of manufacturers marketing products in this category are committed to providing safe products. The PKSC was formed primarily to ensure full disclosure of ingredients, MSDS compliance and the education of salon professionals on safe and proper use of these products. While consumer watch groups and the press often make claims of irresponsible and unsafe practices by manufacturers in the personal care products industry, this Council is calling for regulations and standards that surpass government requirements. We believe it is time to be sure that accurate information is being gathered, evaluated and communicated in order for salon professionals and consumers to make informed decisions about safety”.

 You can read the violations these company’s have sustained from OSHA so who is Bullshitting Who!

An article on BEHIND THE CHAR.COM in this article the PKSC claims they are “Consistent with the organization’s principles, the PKSC has undertaken an extensive scientific research and testing program to positively demonstrate that the products of its members meet or exceed the safety requirements established by regulatory agencies. This Program accurately measured the safety levels of PKSC member products by using advanced and state-of-the-art product testing methods, as opposed to the antiquated testing methods traditionally used for several decades. The results clearly document the safety of PKSC members’ products when used under normal conditions (as per manufacturers’ directions).” Please read the violations by the  ACTIVE MEMBERS OF THE PROFESSIONAL SMOOTHING COUNCEL From OSHA SUBMITTED TO THEM IN 2011.


During Federal OSHA investigations, air tests showed formaldehyde at levels above OSHA’s limits in salons using Brazilian Blowout Acai Professional Smoothing Solution, labeled “formaldehyde free,” and Brasil Cacau Cadiveu. Both Federal and State OSHA have found violations at several manufacturers, importers, and distributors (GIB LLC dba Brazilian Blowout, Keratronics Inc., Pro Skin Solutions, M&M International Inc., Copomon, INOVA Professional). The violations include failing to list formaldehyde as a hazardous ingredient on the MSDS (the hazard warning sheet) provided to downstream users (e.g., salon owners, stylists), failing to include proper hazard warnings on product labels, and failing to list the health effects of formaldehyde exposure on the MSDS. Labels must include ingredient and hazard warning information and the MSDS must provide users with information about the chemicals in a product, the hazards to workers, and how to use a product safely. And by the way the CIR is not a governmental agency they are a Non Profit Organization that has nothing to do with what the FDA, or OSHA.

No go to the PKSC ACTIVE MEMBERS LIST Now you will see what I am saying to you, this is a band of brothers who will deceive you with a coalition of so-called professional industry reports, industry websites, and manufacturers who will band together to sell, sell, sell. Saying they are for your well-being when they are NOT! It is all about helping one another get to the next level in the Beauty Industry, wether it be for financial, ego, etc the harm and deception is being done everyday within your industry. Proper ventilation should be a requirement in every salon, MSDS Sheets should be provided by every manufacturer but they are not. Sitting in a classroom and listening to the manufacturer saying their product is SAFE. Is not good wisdom takin by the stylist, or salon owner. Do your own chemical investigations with a chemist OUTSIDE OF THE INDUSTRY. Go to your local state college they will do all forms of test to let you know what ingredients are in your products. And most of the state colleges will do it for free for you. In this industry they are not concerned about your health, nor are they concerned about the consumer thats a whole story in itself. Manufacturers are only interested in the health of the bank accounts and there labels. This is a kiss of death to our industry!




Become a Entrepreneur!

In a profession that is product driven, a lot of Entrepreneurs are being driven to promote their product within the beauty industry by themselves. I have an Organization for Entrepreneurs of the Professional Beauty industry I see a lot of Ambitious, Persistent Professionals who are trying to promote themselves and there ideas and products. But they fall on the wayside by not having the business knowledge needed to succeed in a Manufacturer driven and controlled industry.  The entrepreneur has to learn to do it all by themselves with little or now help or financial funding for staff.

If you look  the Beauty industry magazines and websites it a catalog of the same manufacturers who are at the Premiere Beauty Shows, NAHA, Behindthechair.com, Hairbrained, etc. And supporting these company’s are a major waste within the industry. Salons carry products from manufacturers that are sold over the counter, and also on the internet. SUPPORT THE ENTREPRENEUR OF THE Industry!

I have a section in my next documentary called Health/Welfare and I found Five company’s selling their Smoothing Treatments that you do and sell as a service in the salon to the consumer. Check out STYLEBELL.COM

And isn’t that offered as a SALON SERVICE given by a professional. Manufacturers want to cover any and all ends of sales for just financial achievement in the industry. While the Entrepreneur has the hardest time trying to pay for Hair Show space, Booths, Magazine advertisements and the list goes on and on. These price ranges in Beauty Industry Magazines, Hair Shows, Websites are set up for the Manufacturer Dollar, that is what sustains these entity’s, while in the long run all you will see is the advertising of hair care lines that are sold in the commercial sector. Which is causing the most harm to the salon owner, and booth renter. Supporting a company that is independent, or an Entrepreneur is the most important decision a professional can do NOW in my Beauty Industry.

You have spent the time building up these manufacturers and now their loyalty is not longer there for you. But you will still find a way to support the hairshows, magazines, websites that will advertise them and the entrepreneur goes to the wayside. Hairshows used to be a venue for all NEW in the industry to show off their products, books, etc but now they are just FLEA MARKETS, But you will still go to these shows. And you buy there WARES. Knowing full well you are losing on the Salon Retail space you may have set up in your salon. And that is true but you don’t want to face the facts. And Where does the Entrepreneur come in, with those type of prices in an industry magazine or website an only a major manufacturer can pay. But you will still support them!

I carry a hair care line in my salon, it is from an Entrepreneur, and I also featured him and his line in my next documentary. He promotes the line on the Internet, Magazines (Outside the Industry) and a few more advertising avenues. But talking to him he has the funds to sustain the company but not for the unfair prices that only a manufacturer can pay for advertising in this industry. Can a entrepreneur in the industry call a local beauty supply and have there product sold to the professional/ NO Loreal owns the Salon Centrics and Salon Alliance distributorships and if you called these supply chains do you think Loreal will place your product in the stores? Or how about Malys?

Manufacturers will buy Private label products created by a entrepreneur within the industry to keep competition away. I have also interviewed professionals in the industry to tell me Manufacturers have stolen there formulations of their product or paid off chemists for the formula’s. That is a big business in my industry. The beauty industry professional has to see the light of day and support the entrepreneur within the industry, Beauty schools that are manufacturer supported such as Paul Mitchell, Redken, Loreal , Toni&Guy are merely putting free salesmen and saleswoman to keep up the sales for themselves. You are giving you sponsorship to the wrong entity’s.  I have received thousands of emails from people in my industry saying enough is enough, but when does you’re talking end and action start. You see in america now the people are talking out now, Occupy groups, Tea Party organizations etc, showing up all over the United States. But as time goes along the professional in my industry would probably gain enough strength to just click on the “Like” button on Facebook to show there support. And not take the initiative to start their own campaigns of change in their industry. Well life goes on and sooner or latter you will come to realize that when you go to Salon Alliance or Salon Centrex you are merely buying LOREAL products that are sold over the counter. And in time that niche in the market will be totally bought out. THEN WHAT ARE YOUR GOING TO DO?????

Become a Entrepreneur!!!

Ultimate Skincare & Beaute Report on the Documentary!

The last two weeks for me have been a re-education in the hair industry.  I received a copy of Joseph Kellner’s The Real Hair Truth and immediately, I was taken to a place where I was forced to think about everyone who had ever touched my hair.  Remembering back to age 10, I could recall just about everyone who made my locks lovely to the one who butchered my long fab coiff a few years ago.  My mind stayed in one very happy place, remembering the incredible talent I had promoted and marketed in the Chicago market.  I was proud to represent the talent who worked as hard as I did to maintain that artistic and technical edge.  At times, I would even attend the education sessions to better understand what the stylists and colorists went through to meet requirements and maintain client trust.  Everyone seemed to take such pride in what they did and knew where they wanted to go and what they needed to do to get there.  From this vantage point, I was shocked to see the variable of responses collected by Joseph Kellner and fully understood the reasons behind the answers.  Based on one of the last experiences I had, I fully see the need for continuing education and accountability for higher educational standards in the salon industry.  It has been best said…you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.

While watching The Real Hair Truth for the second time, I stopped the video to collect my thoughts and write…the first time I Tweeted throughout the film and wanted to capture pertinent details.  A rush of thoughts came forth.  The first, all the wonderful professionals I have had the honor to interact with in the industry.  These professionals get it.  They have single-handedly been able to create a name for themselves in this industry and in a very powerful way.  Expressing my gratitude to them in this post is the humblest homage I can offer.  J. G. – A consultation with this man is worth its weight in gold.  When I met him, I represented a salon on Oak Street in Chicago.  An hour with him is like saving yourself 20 years in growing pains.  To have him as a mentor for only an hour made my career.  His contributions?  I now know about Luiz Alvearez and Aquage hair care (and the continuing education surrounding the brand).  I know about better, more streamlined ways to effectively market a salon/spa business (I amazed myself by incorporating his words and generating 10K a month in sales volume).  Of course, much more was learned, but these two stand out most.  Martin Rodriguez.  Phil Stone.  Maurice Tidy.  Shane Talbott.   There are many, many others.  Two of the common threads that brings them together is their passion for the industry and maintaining high standards across the board!

If you were asked to cite the qualifications of anyone who has touched, cut or colored your hair, what would you answer? When I lived in Germany, answering this was a no-brainer.  Everyone who touched hair, unless they were actually participating in an apprenticeship, was required to go through a rigorous four year apprenticeship where the master stylist would stand over the student instructing and ready to step in if needed.  My hair dresser, Lilo, was incredible.  When I promoted salons in Chicago, I could confidently answer this question with impressive answers…more like bragging about the credentials of the talent I helped.

How much continuing education does your hair dresser participate in annually?   #TheRealHairTruth When asked in an open interview, one hair dresser admitted to the required six hours and attending two shows.  The salons I worked with in Chicago participated in regular if not weekly education classes.   Are you aware of the qualifications for beauty students to be able to graduate? Some states require 1200 hours while others only require 1000 hours.  What kind of testing is required for beauty students to receive their license? Written or computerized theory. There are no standard practical requirements in finalized testing.


Diversion and No-Diversion


Another real hair truth that was once again brought to my attention…product diversion.   For those who are not aware of the definition behind the word…basically it boils down to a company who sells their products to one type of business or many types of businesses.   For example, a product company who only sells their products to only salons can say their brand is a no-diversion brand.  There are companies who claim their products are sold only in salons when they are sold in discount and other retailers outside the salon industry.  This is an example of diversion.


Keeping this in mind, I watched as Joseph Kellner approached countless retailers in an attempt to find out the reason why products that were labeled ‘sold only in salons’ were brightly displayed on the long side counters of discount retailers.  No one seemed to be able to provide an answer with a closed ending. Do you know if the beauty products you use that are suppose to be sold in salons and spas are pure to their commitment to remaining sold only in these professionally serviced/licensed businesses?  This has been a question asked by many over the years.  I never really gave it much thought until I started working in the salon and spa industry and was held accountable for selecting unique brands not found in chain businesses or mass and discount markets.

What would you think if you found your favorite hair care product at a major retail chain, on sale only to turn over the bottle to see the words “Only Sold In Professional Salons” in bold lettering?  Would you be so inclined to hold off buying or take the deal?  IF you were salon owner who signed a contract with a major hair product company and found the products you sell in your salon at a discounted price at a major retailer, what would you think?  What would you do?  Would you hold the hair care company accountable or would you keep quiet?  Would you trust a product line that sells under these conditions?  Would the sinking sensation in your gut and disappointment of a first-time offense finding,  make you want to change directions?  How can something designed to finish and make pretty become such an ugly situation?

The Reason Behind The Truth

One salon owner and ‘industry watch dog’, Joseph Kellner, saw a need to bring this and other topics to the fore front and educate those in the industry about these not-so-best practices and other ‘hot’ issues.  His movement is called The Real Hair TruthThe Real Hair Truth is a collection of interviews conducted by Joseph and his team to find the answers to these and other hard-hitting questions surrounding the glamorous world of hair.  In this documentary, long term industry veterans tackle mainly the don’ts and should nots in the industry.

In summary, I fully understand and support how educational standards need to be increased and maintained.  Students need to be taught theory, practical and marketing skills that will set them up for future success.  They need to work with a master within an apprenticeship program to enhance and encourage skills.  Practical skills should be required to graduate as well as a higher number of hours.  Students need to be made aware of what they want to do when they graduate and be educated as to what is out there in the industry for them.  Making educated choices yields better results.  Continuing education standards need to be raised and maintained.  Where as it concerns diversion, I applaud those companies who have the control over their business that results in them being able to say they are a no-diversion product company.  Joseph Kellner, thank you for bringing these and other issues in the industry to the fore front.

Have a good week.



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