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The Hidden Dangers of Salon Products

A day at the salon: the phrase conjures up calming images of reclining in a cushioned chair, while you’re buffed, rubbed, pampered and beautified. There’s nothing more relaxing — or fulfilling than stepping out of a salon and flipping your freshly colored and styled coif.

But while a day at the salon might be good for the soul, it’s not always good for your health. Many of the products used to achieve that salon-fresh look contain formaldehyde and ammonia, which can pose serious health risks to customers and salon employees alike.

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It’s those dangers that led Pooja Tulsidas to open The Salon, a clean-air salon in Hoboken, which avoids products that contain those toxic chemicals. Tulsidas sat down with Joanna Gagis, host of Life & Living with Joanna Gagis, to discuss the hidden dangers of the beauty industry — and the healthy alternatives.

Tulsidas was a nail technician when she got pregnant — and says, “It was a red flag” in terms of the chemicals she was exposed to in her career.

“I’m in this industry day in and day out, and here I am, [soaking] all these toxins in,” she says, adding that she wondered, “What’s happening to me and my little one?”

Her interest in alternatives to the harsh chemicals used in salons led her to start a DIY beauty blog, Soon Dar Secrets, spotlighting at-home beauty treatments. The response showed Tulsidas that there was, indeed, a market for organic beauty treatments, which led Tulsidas and her husband to open The Salon at 251 First Street in Hoboken.

“We have people coming in from Brooklyn to South Jersey,” she says, admitting that, at times, she does have to educate new customers on The Salon’s way of doing business.
“We can still take you from being a brunette to a blonde,” she promises, adding that it’s “a natural alternative as opposed to going the chemical route.”

Click below to watch the Tulsidas talk about the dangers of chemical-based salon products — and to hear about the effects on long-time salon employees — on Life & Living with Joanna Gagis.

For more stories that impact New Jersey residents, click over to our Hot Topics in NJ series.

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