• John Larrimer

Are Manicurists At High Risk For Chemical Exposure?

Two U.S. senators have demanded more protections for nail salon workers, arguing that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is not doing enough to protect them from chemical exposure.

Some of the toxic chemicals nail salon workers are exposed to include solvents, glues and other potent substances. In some cases, the chemicals can cause burns, skin discoloration and miscarriage.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, 17 out of 20 common nail products cause harm to the respiratory tract. Another common chemical in nail products is dibutyl phthalate, which is listed as a reproductive toxicant in Australia. The chemical is also banned in the European Union.

In addition to skin, respiratory and reproductive risks, some nail polish products contain chemicals suspected of causing cancer. Formaldehyde is used in nail polish and nail hardener products, but is also a known carcinogen.

How Can OSHA Protect Manicurists From Chemical Exposure?

The two U.S. senators are asking OSHA to research the issue and find out if any additional authority would be needed to reduce chemical exposure in nail salons. OSHA would also create services that could help nail salon workers who have developed injuries or diseases from chemical exposure. According to the lawmakers, exposure regulations for chemicals such as formaldehyde are outdated and incapable of protecting salon workers.

Workers with occupational diseases might be able to receive workers’ compensation or disability benefits. Contacting a workers’ comp attorney can help injured workers find out what options are available.

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Larrimer & Larrimer, LLCColumbus Workers’ Comp Attorney


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