Are Hair Relaxer Breast Cancer Lawsuits Being Pursued?
No. Following a careful review of the available medical research regarding the types of cancer caused by hair relaxer chemicals, the lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. have determined that there is currently insufficient support to move forward with the filing of breast cancer lawsuits. However, our law firm is actively pursuing claims for women who regularly used hair relaxer products and were diagnosed with:
- Uterine Cancer (Endometrial Cancer or Uterine Sarcoma)
- Ovarian Cancer
- Uterine Fibroids (resulting in surgery)
Free consultations are available to help women and families determine if they may be eligible for a settlement. There are no fees or expenses unless a settlement or lawsuit payout is obtained.
Although our lawyers are not currently pursuing hair relaxer breast cancer cases, we are actively monitoring developing studies and new research regarding the topic chemicals in hair straighteners. Our law firm has published resources for women to stay up to date with the latest hair relaxer lawsuit updates and to understand exactly how hair relaxer causes uterine cancer risks and ovarian cancer risks.
This page provides a summary of the currently available research on the link between exposure to hair relaxer and breast cancer.
Hair Relaxer Contains Chemicals Linked to Breast Cancer
Many women, especially African American women have used hair relaxer products like ORS Olive Oil and Dark & Lovely to straighten their hair for decades. Hair straightener products use harsh chemicals in order to break down the proteins in the hair so that it lays flat.
Unfortunately many hair relaxer products contain hormone-disrupting chemicals including:
- Di-2- ethyl hexyl phthalate (DEHP)
These hormone-disrupting chemicals can mimic the body’s natural hormones like estrogen and progesterone and can cause an imbalance.
There are several types of cancer that are extremely sensitive to hormonal imbalances caused by chemicals in hair relaxer including:
- Certain types of Breast Cancer
- Ovarian Cancer
- Uterine Cancer
Breast Cancer rate has increased for African American Women
Historically, African Americans have had lower rates of breast cancer compared to Caucasian women, but recent data shows some disturbing trends are emerging:
- African American women have higher rates of breast cancer at younger ages (30-45)
- African American women are more likely to develop more aggressive types of breast cancer
- They also have a higher mortality rate for breast cancer
Many researchers have speculated that these trends may correspond to hair relaxer usage, especially since African American women are much more likely to start using chemical hair straighteners at a young age and more frequently (every 4-6 weeks).
Can Hair Straighteners Increase the Risk of Breast Cancer?
Multiple studies published in recent years have established a potential link between hair relaxers and estrogen receptor positive (ER+) breast cancer, as well as uterine cancer and ovarian cancer.
Which Types of Breast Cancer Are Linked to Hair Relaxer?
Some types of Breast cancers are sensitive to the body’s naturally occurring female hormones like estrogen and progesterone, the breast cancer cells actually have receptors built in that are specific to the hormone. Hormone disruptors found in hair straightening products can mimic and fill these receptors much faster than naturally occurring estrogen naturally would.
When the hormone receptors are filled it will signal the cancer cell to start dividing and grow more quickly.
Breast Cancer Can Be Broken Down In To The Following Groups
Hormone Receptor Positive Breast Cancer
Hormone receptor positive breast cancer (also called luminal breast cancer) contains hormone receptors for Estrogen (ER+) or Progesterone (PR+), some even have both. It is the most common type of breast cancer making up to 80% of cases.
HER2 Positive Breast Cancer
About 15% to 20% of breast tumors have higher levels of a protein known as HER2. These cancers are called HER2-positive breast cancers. HER2 does not contain hormone receptors.
Triple Negative Cancer
Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is a rare type of breast cancer (also called basal cell breast cancer). Triple negative cancer does not contain receptors for Estrogen, Progesterone orHER2 (hence the name, triple negative).
Several studies show a strong link between hair relaxers (which contain hormone-disrupting chemicals) and hormone positive breast cancer, but not for HER2 or Triple Negative breast cancer.
Studies Linking Hair Relaxer to Hormone Sensitive Breast Cancer Risks
Hair Relaxers Increase ER+ Breast Cancer Risk by 30%: Study
In a study published in the International Journal of Cancer (IJC) in 2019, researchers from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) collected data from the Sister Study involving over 50,000 participants to determine whether there was a link between hair relaxers and breast cancer.
Researchers found that over an eight year period, women who used chemical hair relaxer products at least every five to eight weeks, had a 30% increased risk of developing hormone sensitive breast cancer.
African American women who reported using permanent hair dyes regularly were associated with a 60% increase of breast cancer diagnosis, compared to an 8% increased risk for Caucasian women.
Hair Relaxers Do Not Increase Triple Negative Breast Cancer Risks: Study
A study by Rutgers researchers was published in the medical journal Carcinogenesis in 2017, which reviewed data on the types of breast cancer most associated with more than 4,000 women nationwide who reported using hair relaxers and dark hair dyes.
While black women typically have a higher rate of Triple Negative Breast cancer compared to white women, the study found that hair relaxer use did not have an impact on the incident rate of Triple Negative Breast (non-hormone sensitive) cancer for African American women.
The results of the study further reinforce the theory that exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals used in hair relaxer products increases the risk of hormone sensitive types of breast cancer among African American women.
Which hair relaxers may cause breast cancer?
Hair relaxer lawsuits are being filed against manufacturers of many popular chemical straightener products, which have been found to contain chemicals that may increase the risk of breast cancer including, but not limited to:
- Dark and Lovely
- Soft & Beautiful
- ORS Olive Oil
- Just for Me
- TCB Naturals
- African Pride
- Dream Kids Olive Oil Miracle
- Creme of Nature
- Optimum Salon Haircare
What can I do if I used chemical hair relaxers and developed breast cancer afterwards?
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with cancer caused by hair relaxers or perms, you should contact our hair relaxer cancer lawyers for a completely free consultation to answer any questions you may have and explain your legal rights.
For decades, hair relaxers have been aggressively advertised, predominately to black women and teenagers as a safe and cost-effective way to straighten their hair at home without disclosing the fact that the products contain well documented and research-backed toxic and carcinogenic chemicals.
Are there any costs to hire a lawyer for my hair relaxer cancer case?
There are absolutely no out-of-pocket costs to review your case or hire our attorneys. While hair relaxer breast cancer lawsuits are not actively being pursued, our lawyers are investigating claims involving:
- Uterine Cancer
- Ovarian Cancer
- Uterine Fibroids (resulting in surgical removal)
Potential claims are evaluated by our hair relaxer lawyers for individuals throughout the United States, and all cases are handled on a contingency fee basis. Through the use of contingency attorney fees, individuals have access to the experience and resources of our national law firm for their hair relaxer lawsuit settlement — regardless of their individual financial resources.
You pay nothing up front to hire our hair relaxer lawyers, and we only receive an attorney fee or expenses out of the money that is obtained from the manufacturers. Our law firm receives nothing unless we win your case!
What are the steps in a hair relaxer case evaluation?
Complete Our Case Evaluation Request Form. Providing contact information and some information about your hair relaxer case.
Get Contacted by Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. You will be contacted by our law firm to help determine if financial compensation may be available for you and your family.
You Decide If You Want to Move Forward. If our lawyers determine that we can help with your case then you decide whether to move forward and hire us to pursue compensation.