Hair Straightener Lawsuits: When and How to File a Hair Straightener Lawsuit

If you or a loved one were diagnosed with cancer, endometriosis, uterine fibroids, or other uterine conditions after using chemical hair relaxers, you may be entitled to compensation by filing a hair straightening lawsuit.

Hair care products can have serious side effects. The National Institute of Health (NIH) found that women who used chemical hair straightening or relaxer treatments were at an increased risk for developing cancer.

What is this hair straightener investigation about?

The connection between hair straightening chemicals and uterine cancer was first discovered in 2012. Since then additional studies on the consequences of hair straightener products have been conducted, strengthening the original findings on the impact of chemical hair relaxers and products.

The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (“NIEHS”) released a study on October 17, 2022, which found that women who used chemical hair straightening products are at a higher risk for developing uterine cancer than those who have never used the products. The NIEHS study observed 33,497 U.S. women ages 35-74 over a period of nearly eleven years as part of its Sister Study, which was a long-term study designed to follow sisters of breast cancer patients. According to the study, the rates of uterine cancer among women who used hair straightening products at least four times a year were more than double when compared to those of women who never used hair straightening products.  The study found that while 1.64% of women who never used hair straighteners developed uterine cancer by the age of 70, women who used hair straightening products for at least four (4) times a year reported suffering from uterine cancer at a rate of 4.05%.  [1] The findings were particularly disproportionate for Black women, since they use hair straightening products at a higher rate than others.

The study concluded that certain chemicals used in the hair straightening products, including parabens, phthalates, and formaldehyde likely contributed to an increased incident of uterine cancer rates. [2]  These chemicals, known as endocrine disrupting chemicals (“EDCs”), alter hormonal actions and promote growth of cancer cells. [3]

After these hair straightening findings were published, people have started suing hair-straightening manufacturers for the damages they have incurred from using the chemical products.

Who are we representing in hair straightening lawsuits?

Our lawyers are representing individuals who used chemical hair straightening products, also known as hair relaxers, and who subsequently developed uterine cancer, endometrial cancer, ovarian cancer, and/or endometriosis resulting in a hysterectomy. Our lawyers can help you file your hair straightener cancer lawsuit.

How long does a person need to have used hair straightening/relaxing products to be at risk?

Studies have suggested that the use of hair straighteners and/or relaxers at least four times a year has been associated with increased risk of cancer.

TIMELINE FOR A HAIR STRAIGHTENER LAWSUIT

Oct 22, 2022: First Lawsuit Filed against hair straightener manufacturer by cancer victim

Oct 17, 2022: New Study shows that hair straighteners may increase uterine cancer risks by 2.5 times.

2019: Doctors Link chemical straighteners to increased breast cancer risk

2012: Studies first link chemical hair straighteners with uterine cancer risk

1909: Garrett Augustus Morgan invents the 1st chemical hair relaxer

​​How Do Hair Straighteners Cause Cancer?

Chemical hair straighteners aren’t entirely safe. They can cause damage like scalp burn or hair loss, and more recently, studies have shown that the products can cause certain types of cancers. This is due to the presence of chemicals such as Bisphenol A (BPA), formaldehyde, parabens, and metals. Though, according to the FDA, these typically pose little to no risk, the results of the study by the NIEHS raise concerns about chemical straightener’s safety when applied frequently to sensitive and high-risk areas of the body, like the scalp.

Types of Cancers Linked With Hair Straightening Chemical

Researchers are studying the following types of cancers to determine if their heightened occurrence in women could be caused by the frequent use of chemical hair straighteners:

Uterine Cancer Risk

Uterine cancer is a type of cancer that starts in the uterus. It occurs in around 65,000 women in the U.S. each year, with more than 90% of those cases manifesting as endometrial cancer, in which the cancer cells form in the uterus lining.

The NIEHS study states that uterine cancer is the most common type of cancer associated with chemical hair straightener use.

Breast Cancer Risk

A study published by Oxford University concluded that black women who used lye-based hair relaxers at least seven times over fifteen years had a higher risk of developing breast cancer—30% more than those who used the same products less frequently. The study showed that between 1997 and 2017, around 2,311 African-American women (out of a study of 50,000) who used lye-based hair relaxers developed breast cancers.

Uterine Fibroids

Women, particularly African-American females, see two to three times higher uterine fibroid incidences after the use of chemical hair relaxers. The occurrence of uterine leiomyomata is also two to three times higher in black women versus white women, assuming that black women the former uses chemical hair straightening products more frequently.

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