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Toxic hair relaxer claims eligibility

Over the past few years, consumers’ concerns have been directed toward the personal care and hygiene products they use on a regular basis. Several studies uncovered the presence of hormone-disrupting and carcinogenic chemicals in such products, leaving their users with an increased risk of developing severe health problems.

Recently, new research was conducted into the potential connection between the frequent use of hair straighteners or relaxers and a higher incidence of uterine cancer. Uterine cancer has long been presumed to be caused by phthalate metabolites that can be found in hair relaxer products. Frequent exposure to the chemicals in hair relaxers can especially impact the Black female demographic that predominantly uses such products.

Research linking uterine cancer to hair straightening chemicals

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recently conducted a study spanning over 11 years that tracked close to 33,5K women aged 35-74 of various races and ethnicities. The research aimed to pinpoint risk factors for cancers in the uterus associated with hair product use. Throughout the study’s duration, 378 uterine cancer diagnoses were confirmed.

The researchers estimated that women who used hair straightening products on a frequent basis (more than 4 times over the past year) were more prone to developing uterine cancer than women who never used such products (with risks increasing from 1.64% to 4.05%). Notably, no such link was registered in the case of other products analyzed in the study.

Nevertheless, the authors of the NIH study note that further research is needed to:

  • demonstrate a causal relationship between the regular use of hair relaxers and uterine cancer
  • confirm to what extent hair straighteners use affects different ethnic groups causing disparities in uterine cancer incidence
  • identify the specific chemicals that increase cancer risks in women

There are two types of uterine cancer:

  • endometrial - more common and more treatable
  • sarcoma - less common but much more aggressive and difficult to treat, with a lower survival rate

Previous research from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in 2019 indicates that there is an alarming increase in aggressive subtypes of uterine cancer in the U.S., with a higher incidence among the non-Hispanic black women demographic. According to the NCI, uterine cancer is the most common female reproductive system type of cancer, with an estimated 66K new cases in 2022.

When symptoms develop for uterine cancer, these are typical:

  • abdominal bloating or swelling
  • discomfort in the pelvic area
  • vaginal spotting or bleeding between periods or after menopause
  • post-menopausal vaginal discharge
  • back pain
  • weight loss
  • fatigue
  • frequent need to urinate
  • changes in bowel patterns

Unsafe hair straightening products available on the market

Personal care products don’t require safety approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) when they are brought to market. This is why toxic hair products end up on shelves and endanger public health. When hair relaxers touch the scalp, the harmful chemicals can cause lesions and burns, making it easier for them to enter the bloodstream and wander to different organs and tissue.

While the results of the NIH study were released in 2022, previous research conducted in 2017 and 2019 linked chemical hair straighteners to other female cancers, such as breast and ovarian. This is probably due to the presence of hormone-disrupting chemicals in the form of:

  • parabens
  • phthalates
  • formaldehyde
  • heavy metals
  • bisphenol A

Black women extensively use hair straightening products compared to other ethnic groups, often beginning at young ages. Spanning from societal pressures and outdated beauty standards to greater versatility in hairstyles, these are just a few of the reasons that contribute to Black women’s more frequent use of chemical hair relaxers. Many manufacturers aim to capitalize on this opportunity by marketing their hair straightening products specifically to the Black demographic.

Strength of Nature Global, LLC, L’Oreal USA, Inc., and a group of smaller, non-public cosmetic companies are currently being sued over claims that their chemical hair relaxers put women at an increased risk of uterine cancer. There are additional big names on the hair relaxer market, like Procter & Gamble and Unilever, that can potentially be brought into the litigation.

While the list is still open and new developments occur swiftly, other brand names for chemical hair straightener and relaxer claims have been circulated:

  • TCB Naturals/Godrej
  • Strength of Nature
  • SoftSheen Carson
  • Just for Me®
  • ORS Olive Oil
  • Optimum Care®
  • Crème of Nature®
  • Motions®
  • Dark & Lovely®
  • Soft & Beautiful®

Eligibility criteria for hair relaxer damage claim

There are several criteria that establish if you are eligible to file a chemical hair straightener claim with the liable cosmetic companies. The main requirements are listed below:

  • you used a chemical hair straightener/relaxer product regularly (at least seven times in one year, for at least ten years)
  • you received a diagnosis four years or longer after the first full year of hair relaxer product use for:
    • uterine cancer
    • ovarian cancer
    • endometriosis
  • you do not have a history of uterine cancer or another type of above-mentioned cancer in the family

Given the swift developments in this matter and the specificities of each individual’s struggle after exposure to toxic hair straightening products, we carefully evaluate each claim to determine its eligibility.

File a toxic hair relaxer claim with Atraxia Law

Our firm is currently handling toxic hair relaxer claims eligibility across all 50 states. If you or somebody close to you were diagnosed with uterine cancer after years of using chemical hair straighteners on a frequent basis, contact our office as soon as possible for a free consultation. You can also fill out our free case evaluation form on the right-hand side of the page, and a member of our expert team will reach out to you immediately.

We understand the need for urgency in this significant product liability matter. If our eligibility assessment professionals find causation evidence linking chemicals in hair relaxers to your uterine cancer or another type of eligible cancer diagnosis, you may have a strong claim for eventually obtaining an adequate settlement payout.

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