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Hair Relaxers and Cancer

Cosmetic hair products such as relaxers and perming agents have been shown to carry significant health risks, causing concern for millions who have bought brands such as L’Oréal, TCB Naturals, Revlon, Optimum Salon, and Namaste.

Toxic chemicals can cause serious conditions, including cancer. Those impacted may be entitled to initiate a hair straightener lawsuit to claim reparations and the financial support required to pursue effective medical care.

Strom Law has summarized some of the findings below, including the primary cancers associated with hair products, and explains how relaxers cause fibroids and other dangerous side effects.

Cancers and Health Conditions Caused by Hair Relaxers

Our experienced legal teams are investigating several claims where women have been diagnosed with breast and uterine cancer directly linked to hair products–many of which have since been recalled.

It is highly advisable you speak with a knowledgeable lawyer at your earliest convenience if you suspect you have been affected or wish to explore your eligibility for a financial compensation claim. Chemical straighteners may contain harsh ingredients such as:

  • Formaldehyde: also labeled as methylene glycol or formalin
  • Phalatates: a plasticizing chemical that impacts healthy hormone production
  • Parabens: disrupt natural estrogen and breast cell development
  • DEHP (Di-2-ethyl hexyl phthalate): a carcinogenic chemical linked to fertility issues, multiple cancers, and endometriosis

These substances cause rapid reactions such as burns, irritation, and a noxious smell, with research now revealing that other effects are less immediate and considerably more serious. Producers are being held to account where misleading marketing and a lack of chemical testing have caused extended harm, in breach of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations or circumventing legal obligations by claiming exemptions.

Pre-existing investigations concluded by the FDA in 2011 have identified that brands such as Brazilian Blowout contain as much as 10.4% formaldehyde, where a 0.1% content level is listed as a hazard by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Are Hair Product Manufacturers Liable for Settlement Claims?

In many cases, producers were aware of and informed of the considerable health risks associated with these chemicals and failed to disclose them–sometimes omitting active ingredients from product packaging altogether. Claimants may also have a valid case where products used at a beauty salon to achieve hair smoothing or straightening have contained high-risk chemicals or where an individual has purchased a product for home use.

A 2022 study by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences identified that regular users of hair products with dangerous chemical compounds were 156% more likely to experience uterine cancer and 30% more exposed to breast cancer. Individuals that experienced burns to their scalp during a hair treatment are also at increased risk due to the heightened potential for harmful chemicals to enter their bloodstream through damaged skin.

While every legal case is unique, where multiple people have been affected, this strengthens the likelihood of achieving a favorable outcome and seeking compensation to account for the following:

  • Medical expenses, including diagnosis or preventative treatments
  • Stress, pain, and psychological injuries
  • Loss of income, inability to work, or reduced access to gainful employment
  • Long-term treatments, including counseling, surgeries, in-hospital stays, and other therapies

Where manufacturers have been proven to be aware of the chemicals used in production techniques and did not display appropriate warnings, there may be a legal precedent set to establish direct responsibility.

How to Claim a Settlement for Cancer Caused by Hair Relaxer

The first step is to contact the Strom Law team for confidential, professional legal advice–our experienced personal injury lawyers are well-versed in ongoing and concluded claims against hair straightener manufacturers and can steer you through the process. 

You may be able to file a settlement claim if you have been diagnosed with cancer associated with the chemicals and brands above. However, this is not an exhaustive list, and many other companies may be liable. Other claimants may be entitled to claim based on uterine fibroids, often treated surgically or through a hysterectomy procedure, with associated harms caused due to infertility.

Any manufacturer of a personal care product containing cancer-causing chemicals is potentially liable, particularly those actively marketed as safe. Please get in touch at any time to discuss your eligibility to lodge a settlement claim or legal complaint. We will provide further guidance to help you pursue a successful outcome.




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