If You Have This Product in Your Bathroom, THROW IT AWAY NOW

Unilever, a mega consumer goods company, announced a nationwide recall of dry shampoo that may have high levels of benzene.

The company announced the voluntary recall on Oct. 18 for select lots of aerosol products. All products recalled were produced prior to Oct. 2021.

Benzene is a chemical compound that is used to make plastics, resins, synthetic fibers, detergents, rubbers, drugs, and pesticides. It is a light yellow or colorless liquid at room temperature, is highly flammable, and has a sweet odor.

Benzene is naturally occurring and can be produced by forest fires and volcanoes. However, repeated and high exposure can have serious health consequences. The chemical disrupts normal cell production and can damage the immune system. Oral or transdermal exposure to, or inhalation of, the chemical can lead to multiple health issues that include leukemia, bone marrow cancers, or blood disorders. Tobacco smoke is also considered a major source of benzene exposure.

Unilever said it was acting out of “an abundance of caution” and had not received “reports of adverse events to date relating to this recall.”

“Based on an independent health hazard evaluation, daily exposure to benzene in the recalled products at the levels detected in testing would not be expected to cause adverse health consequences,” Unilever said in a statement.

The company published a full list of impacted products and their lot codes. The recall includes dry shampoos from Dove, Suave, Tresemme, Bed Head, and Rockaholic. Those who have purchased an impacted item have been directed to visit UnileverRecall.com for instructions on receiving a reimbursement.

According to the Center For Disease Control and Prevention, symptoms of benzene exposure include drowsiness, dizziness, headaches, confusion, loss of consciousness, and tremors.

“Benzene causes harmful effects on the bone marrow and can cause a decrease in red blood cells, leading to anemia,” states the CDC. “It can also cause excessive bleeding and can affect the immune system, increasing the chance for infection. Some women who breathed high levels of benzene for many months had irregular menstrual periods and a decrease in the size of their ovaries.”

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