Nail salons, toxics & your health

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Tue, 2015-02-03 12:00

Nail salons, toxics & your health

Illustrations by Bjoern Arthurs

The Canadian Women's Health Network is pleased to be able to provide, on behalf of our sister organization the National Network on Environments and Women's Health (NNEWH), a podcast of NNEWH's recent work on the chemicals used in nail salons, and the efforts to make nail salons healthier places to work.

February 3, 2015 - Listen to the interview on Radio Canada International with Anne Rochon Ford, Research Associate at NNEWH, discussing the serious health issues for workers in nail salons.

November 2014 - Read “Overexposed, Underinformed”: Nail Salon Workers and Hazards to Their Health, a review of literature compiled and written by Anne Rochon Ford and published by NNEWH.

On April 29, 2014 in Toronto, Ontario, NNEWH collaborated with the Central Toronto Community Health Centre to host an evening of information and discusson on this important health issue, focusing in particular on the “toxic trio”—phthalates, toluene and formaldehyde—the three most harmful chemicals found in common nail salon products.

Thu Quach, a Research Scientist at the Cancer Prevention Institute of California and Assistant Professor at Stanford University; and Minhthu Le, Research Assistant at the Cancer Prevention Institute of California and licensed manicurist, were the main speakers at the event.

Listen to the podcast of the event - mp3 format

As part of this initiative NNEWH produced a brochure Nail Salons, Toxics & Your Health for nail salon customers, owners and those who work in the salons—to raise awareness and work for change. Tides Canada and the CIHR Team in Gender, Environment and Health at Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) provided financial support for the brochure, which is available in English, Chinese and Vietnamese.

Media: Cheap manicures come with risk of high health costs by Judith Timson, Toronto Star, April 30, 2014

"The products used by nail salon workers contain a variety of chemicals, some of which can cause serious health problems, especially when used regularly.
Some of these chemicals can contribute to cancers, skin reactions, and asthma. They can aslo have an effect on women's reproductive health, which is a concern since the majority of aestheticians in Canada are women (88%). Chemicals can build up in our bodies, sometimes causing problems only many years later."    - Nail Salons, Toxics & Your Health

Download the brochure