Have You Regularly Used Chemical Hair Straightening Products?
Haircare products are a staple for millions of consumers across the United States, and especially for women. Many women choose to alter the texture of their hair to make it easier to manage and style. Chemical hair straighteners and chemical relaxers are common tools used to achieve these desired results. Unfortunately, regular use of these products has been found to significantly increase a woman’s risk of uterine and ovarian cancers, as well as endometriosis and uterine fibroids.
We believe consumers are entitled to safe products that prioritize their well-being and do not put their health at risk. Unfortunately, large corporations often place profit ahead of safety, without regard for how these products endanger the lives of their customers.
In this particular instance, the potential for harm is quite high because many of these straightening products contain formaldehyde, a known carcinogenic agent. Additionally, chemical relaxers often burn the scalp, making it easier for toxic chemicals to be absorbed through the skin.
Am I at Risk for Hair Straightener Cancer?
A new study conducted by researchers at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH), has found that women who use chemical hair relaxers and straighteners may have an increased risk of developing uterine cancer. The findings were published in the Journal of the National Cancer institute on October 17, 2022.
More than 33,000 women taking part in a large, ongoing study, which is looking at various risk factors for breast cancer and other health conditions, provided the data for this research. At the time of enrollment, participants were asked about their use of various hair care products over the prior year. They were specifically asked to report use of hair dyes, permanents or body waves, and relaxers or straighteners.
Women who had reported the use of hair straightening products were almost twice as likely to have developed uterine cancer during the nearly 11 year follow-up period, after adjusting for other risk factors. Women who reported using straightening products regularly (more than 4 times in the prior year) were, on average, more than 2 ½ times more likely to develop uterine cancer.
Consequently, if you, or someone you know, have been using chemical hair straighteners or relaxer products, (see the full list of brands below) you are at an increased risk for certain types of cancers.
Health Conditions and Cancers Linked to Chemical Hair Relaxers
In addition to the study linking these products to uterine cancer, studies have also shown that endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) found in chemical hair straighteners increase the risk of uterine cancer, breast cancer, uterine fibroids, and endometriosis. These dangerous substances include parabens, phthalates, and an extremely toxic chemical called DEHP. The health risk increases with frequent use, which is defined as more than four times a year, or every five to eight weeks.
- Uterine Cancer – The 2022 NIH study looked at data from 33,947 women between the ages of 35 – 74, with women reporting use of hair straightening products experiencing a significant increase in uterine cancer.
- Breast Cancer – A 2019 NIH study found that women who used chemical straighteners frequently were approximately 30% more likely to develop breast cancer. Researchers also linked a higher incidence of breast cancer in black women to the use of these products.
- Endometriosis – Researchers believe hormone imbalances may be to blame for endometriosis. Parabens, phthalates, and EDCs like those found in hair dye and chemical hair straightening products, have the ability to disrupt hormones, possibly leading to endometriosis. A 2018 study published in the Journal of Human Reproductive Sciences found that women diagnosed with endometriosis had high levels of phthalates in their systems.
- Uterine Fibroids – A study by Northwestern Medicine, published in November 2022, found that there was higher risk if developing symptomatic fibroids for women with a high exposure to phthalates, like DEHP and its metabolites. DEHP mimics hormonal structure, activating certain hormone receptors and causing fibroid tumor development. This research reinforced an already established link between uterine fibroids and phthalates.
These brands are all parties to the lawsuit; however, if you have used a similar product that is not listed below, contact our product liability attorneys, as it is still highly likely that you could have a case.
- SoftSheen Carson (SSC), L’Oreal
- Precise No Lye Conditioning Relaxer Supreme
- Precise No Lye Original Relaxer
- No Base Relaxer
- Multi Mineral Reduced Ph Creme Relaxer
- Optimum Smooth Multi-Mineral Creme Hair Relaxer
- Multi-Mineral Reduced Ph Crème Relaxer
- Salon Collection Hair Relaxer Super Strength – Optimum Salon Haircare
- Salon Collection Relaxer Regular Strength – Optimum Salon Haircare
- SSC Dark and Lovely, L’Oreal
- Moisturizing Relaxer with Shea Butter
- Triple Nourished Silkening Relaxer
- Beautiful Beginnings Kids No-Mistake Nourishing No-Lye Crème Relaxer
- Healthy Gloss Shea Moisture No-Lye Relaxer
- Mizani, L’Oreal
- Sensitive Scalp Rhelaxer
- Butter Blend Sensitive Scalp Rhelaxer
- Conditioning Crème Relaxer
- Organic Root Stimulator (ORS) Olive Oil
- No Base Relaxer
- No-Lye Relaxer
- New Growth Relaxer
- Girls Hair Relaxer
- Zone Relaxer
- Professional Crème Relaxer
- Mild Touch Relaxer
- African Pride
- Olive Miracle Deep Conditioning Relaxer
- Olive Miracle Deep Conditioning No-Lye Relaxer
- Olive Miracle Anti-breakage No-Lye Relaxer
- Olive Miracle Dream Kids Relaxer
- Olive Miracle Touch Up No-Lye Relaxer
- Africa’s Best
- Herbal Intensive Dual Conditioning Relaxer
- Originals Olive Oil No-Lye Conditioning Relaxer
- Touch-Up Plus Moisturizing No-Lye New Growth Relaxer
- Just For Me
- No-Lye Relaxer for girls
- No-Lye Texture Softener
- Super Relaxer
- No-Lye RelaxeSoft & Beautiful
- Soft & Beautiful
- Botanicals Regular Texturizer
- No-Lye Regular Texturizer
- No Lye Sensitive Scalp Relaxer
- Classic Formula Relaxer
- Regular Relaxer
- Silkening Shine No-Lye Relaxer
- Smooth & Silken Relaxer
- Silk Elements
- MegaSilk Shea Butter Relaxer
- Luxury Moisturizing Shea Butter Relaxer
- No-Lye Conditioning Relaxer
- Crème of Nature
- Argan Oil Relaxer
- TCB Naturals
- Conditioning No-Lye Hair Relaxer
- No Base Crème Hair Relaxer
Hair Straightener Lawsuits and the Impact on Consumers
People began filing lawsuits shortly after the NIH study linking uterine cancer to chemical hair straighteners was published in October of 2022. Attorneys expect many more people to file chemical hair straightener lawsuits and are still accepting cases.
Jenny Mitchell, a thirty-two-year-old woman, diagnosed with uterine cancer in the same month as the study was released, was one of the first individuals to file a claim. Her suit states that her cancer “was directly and proximately caused by her regular and prolonged exposure to phthalates and other endocrine disrupting chemicals found in Defendants’ hair care products.”
As is common with large corporations, there is evidence that they were aware their products contained dangerous chemicals and simply did not disclose the dangers to consumers. One class action suit states, “The presence of EDCs in Defendants’ Toxic Hair Straightener was not disclosed in the products’ label, in violation of state and federal law.”
Companies being sued include L’Oreal, Revlon, Dark and Lovely and more. Additionally, these lawsuits claim that these dangerous products were heavily marketed to Black women, as they are more likely to use chemical hair relaxers. “Sixty percent of the participants who reported using straighteners were Black women. The bottom line is that the exposure burden appears to be higher among Black women,” said Chandra Jackson, one of the NIH study’s co-authors.
Product Safety Issues and Personal Injury Claims
Consumers expect products they purchase to be both safe and effective. This is especially true if the product is something that goes in or on the body. However, when corporations and manufacturers knowingly ignore the standards set in place by regulating agencies, consumers are often seriously injured or permanently harmed.
If you, or someone you care about, has been potentially harmed by a product that was falsely marketed as safe, but you are now facing a cancer diagnosis or other health issues, it is imperative to find an experienced law firm you can trust to help you during this difficult time.
What to do If You Have Used Chemical Hair Relaxer Products
Anyone who has used chemical hair straightening products on a regular basis, for at least 4 years, and has developed uterine cancer (endometrial cancer or uterine sarcoma), ovarian cancer, endometriosis, or uterine fibroids, should contact the knowledgeable attorneys at Van Wey, Metzler & Williams immediately. You may be eligible to file a hair relaxer cancer lawsuit.
Additional eligibility criteria include being at least 25 years old and having been diagnosed at least seven years after the first regular use of these products. If you were diagnosed more than 18 months ago, you must have discovered the connection to chemical straighteners within the past 18 months – and your treatment must include significant surgery (exception for cancers too advanced for surgery) :
- hysterectomy for ovarian or uterine cancers
- laparotomy/laparoscopy for endometriosis
- myomectomy/fibroidectomy for uterine fibroids
If you believe you meet the eligibility requirements, are not already represented by another law firm, and you can remember at least some of the names of the hair straightening products you used, reach out to our legal team today.
Why Choose Our Law Firm
At Van Wey, Metzler & Williams, you will find personal injury attorneys in Dallas, TX who care about you and your wellbeing, not just your case.
When you work with our award-winning legal team, you will find that we prioritize clients’ needs and take a hands-on approach to building every case. This means our clients receive the opportunity to focus on themselves and their families during the overwhelming process of filing a personal injury lawsuit.
Navigating the legal system is complex, and especially taxing when you are trying to recover from an injury or illness that was caused by someone else’s mistake. For clients who have been injured by dangerous products, filing a personal injury claim can be exceptionally difficult. This is because proving your injury or illness was the direct result of a manufacturer’s negligence can be complicated.
While there are many law firms that handle product liability claims, few consistently face off against the medical and pharmaceutical industries on a regular basis and win. At Van Wey, Metzler & Williams, we have decades of experience successfully representing clients in cases where defective medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and beauty products have caused serious harm.
When you work with an attorney from Van Wey, Metzler & Williams you aren’t just working with a personal injury lawyer, you are working with an experienced attorney who is dedicated to seeking justice for victims of wrongful injury, illness, and death. No one should know what it feels like to go through a tragedy that could have been prevented had the decision makers of large corporations and manufacturers cared as much about their customers as they do about profit. However, when these situations arise, Kay Van Wey and her team are here to help.
Our goal is always to achieve justice for victims of personal injury and help them obtain the compensation they deserve. If you, or someone you care about, has experienced an illness that may be tied to chemical hair straighteners or relaxers, we invite you to reach out to our team and schedule a free consultation where we can help determine if you may be eligible for a hair relaxer lawsuit settlement. Call or fill out our contact form online today.