Straight Talk: Hair Straightening -- What are my options?

The Full Brazilian?
How did she achieve such straight, lustrous locks -- could it be a BK?
How did she achieve such straight, lustrous locks -- could it be a BK?

The newest thing in hair straightening is the Brazilian keratin treatment -- also known by the incredibly creative nickname "BK." It started popping up in the United States in the mid-"naughties" and has since garnered a ravenous cult following -- and a good bit of controversy. Keratin treatment, which costs several hundred dollars, involves a lot of chemicals and hours of painstaking straightening, but devotees swear by the silky results. The thing is, it's sold as a natural treatment, but the active ingredient is actually formaldehyde, a known carcinogen. It's not FDA-approved, and a study by Allure magazine discovered illegally high formaldehyde levels in all of the salons they tested [source: Fischer]. So -- yes, the Brazilian keratin treatment does seem to work wonders, but try it at your own risk.

You'll find more info about hair straightening below.

Related Articles


  • "Straight Talk on Hair-Straightening Treatment." Aug. 13, 2004. (Accessed July 21, 2010)
  • "Phytorelaxer: the Lie of No-Lye Relaxers." Jan. 7. 2008. (Accessed July 21, 2010)
  • "Health Alarm Over New Hair Straightener." Oct, 26. 2007. (Accessed July 21, 2010)
  • Fischer, Mary. "Scared Straight." (Accessed July 21, 2010) July 7, 2008.
  • "Choosing the Best Hair Straightener For You." (Accessed July 21, 2010)
  • Hayt, Elizabeth. "Curls, Split! Ringlets, Begone!" July 19, 2007. (Accessed July 21, 2010)
  • La Ferla, Ruth. "Do Straight-Haired Women Have More Fun?" March 17, 2002. (Accessed July 21, 2010)
  • Landman, Beth. "Score Discounts on the City's Best Hair-Straightening Treatments." June 25, 2010. (Accessed July 21, 2010)
  • Sainani, Kristen. "Hair at Risk." April 19, 2010. (Accessed July 21, 2010)