CHEMICAL HAIR RELAXING PRODUCTS LINKED TO CANCER

Concerned about your health after using chemical hair straighteners?

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with uterine cancer, endometrial cancer (not endometriosis), or non-serous ovarian cancer, call The Yost Legal Group to speak with a Hair Relaxer Attorney.

Your cancer diagnosis could be linked to the use of chemical hair straighteners. You may be eligible to file a Hair Straightener lawsuit.

At The Yost Legal Group, we are reviewing claims from women nationwide. If you were diagnosed with any of these medical conditions, call us to speak with a Hair Relaxer Attorney. If you have been using chemical hair relaxers for a long time, you may qualify for compensation.

A study was released highlighting the dangers of chemical hair relaxers and straighteners. On October 17th, 2022, The Journal of the National Cancer Institute published a study. It reports a strong link between chemical hair relaxers and hair straighteners to uterine cancer.

Researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) conducted the study, which was funded by the US government determined that using hair straighteners and hair relaxers for at least five years increased the risk of cancer in women. The study showed that the risk of developing cancer from hair straightening more than doubled.

A prior published research study had linked chemical hair straighteners to an increased risk of cancer. In 2019 the National Cancer Institute published a study with similar findings. It reported that women who used hair relaxers and permanent hair dyes increased the risk of certain cancers in women by 9%.

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Filing a chemical hair straightening lawsuit

We are filing many Hair Straightener lawsuits on behalf of women nationwide. One of our experienced hair relaxer cancer attorneys will represent you to win a hair relaxer settlement.

These include:

  • Uterine cancer lawsuits
  • Dark and lovely lawsuits
  • Lovely Hair relaxer lawsuits
  • Hair relaxer cancer lawsuits

2019 Study. This is not the first study that has linked chemical hair straighteners to an increased risk of cancer. In 2019 the National Cancer Institute published a study with similar findings. It stated that women who used hair straighteners and permanent hair dyes were 9% more likely to develop cancer.

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Which hair relaxers cause cancer?

The link to uterine cancer, endometrial cancer (not endometriosis), and non-serous ovarian cancer has largely been attributed to chemicals such as parabens, nitrosamines, bisphenol A (BPA), metals, and formaldehyde.

The chemicals are absorbed through the scalp during the hair straightening treatment.

The harsh nature of the products can cause burns and lesions on the scalp. This creates pathways for the dangerous chemicals into the body and bloodstream. Many of these chemicals, specifically formaldehyde, are known to be highly toxic to humans and linked to an increased risk of cancer.

All chemical hair relaxers also contain an endocrine-disrupting chemical called diethylhexylphthalate (DEHP). This chemical interferes with hormone receptors and is known to cause developmental abnormalities and damage to the reproductive system.

Due to the toxic nature of many of these chemicals, manufacturers should have known that there was a risk associated with including them in their products.

The manufacturers ignored past studies about the dangers of the chemicals used in their products. They also failed to warn consumers of the risk associated with using their products. Women across the country have been harmed or face an increased risk of harm.

We are considering cases from brands like:

  • SoftSheen Carson (Owned by L’Oreal)
  • Bantu
  • Dark and Lovely
  • Optimum
  • Ultra PreciseNamaste (Owned by Dabur)
  • ORS Hair Care
  • Curls Unleashed
  • HAIRepair
  • ORS Olive Oil
  • Strength of Nature
  • African Pride
  • Just for Me
  • Motions
  • Soft & Beautiful
  • Luster’s Pink
  • TCB Naturals

We are also considering straightening products such as:

  • Cantu Shea Butter
  • Natika
  • Revlon Africa’s Best
  • Schwarzkopf Glatt
  • Ultra Sheen

Revlon Inc.

Revlon Inc. is one of the major manufacturers of hair relaxer products, among other cosmetics items. However, Revlon Inc. filed for bankruptcy in June of 2022, which prevents the company from being sued or being one of the defendants in the current hair relaxer MDL. Plaintiffs who allege harm from Revlon Inc. products will still have a pathway to compensation, but it will be separate and apart from the MDL litigation. It will begin with the submission of Proof of Claim forms to notify the company that they have a “creditor” or “debtor” to be paid.

Hair Relaxer Multi-District Litigation Updates 

May 22, 2024: The Revlon bankruptcy remains a central issue in this litigation. Last year, many plaintiffs’ lawyers hastily filed lawsuits against Revlon without proof of a specific cancer in order to secure the ability to sue Revlon. As time progressed, many of these cases did not contain adequate proof of cancer, or the medical records did not confirm a cancer diagnosis at all. The plaintiffs’ lawyers are seeking to dismiss these non-cancer-related cases without prejudice. This means that the suit could be refiled in those cases if cancer does eventually develop.

May 14, 2024: The discovery portion of the hair relaxer MDL litigation is well underway. Judge Rowland issued Case Management Order #11, which focuses on the continued filing of these lawsuits and how the Plaintiff fact sheets should be served. Plaintiff fact sheets are extensive, court-ordered questionnaires completed by plaintiffs and/or plaintiffs’ attorneys in order to advise the court and defense counsel on the nature and extent of their individual claims and injuries. Essential to MDLs and signed under oath, it mirrors the function of traditional discovery – interrogatories and requests for the production of documents. In the hair relaxer litigation, specifically, the Court is requiring plaintiffs to use a third-party vendor to submit these documents for greater efficiency. 

April 5, 2024: There are approximately 8,300 cases now pending in the MDL. Only 53 cases were added last month, which is the fifth consecutive month that the volume of new cases added to the MDL has decreased. This consistent and steady decline in the MDL is significant as it is a far cry from the booming days of the litigation, when the MDL was averaging over 2000 new cases per month. It appears the days of surging growth have come to an end.

February 27, 2024: At this time, over 8,200 cases are pending in the MDL. In large litigations such as this, document production and review are extremely important. The Honorable Paul Grimm (retired) was hired to be the Special Master for electronic discovery in this litigation. In this role, he has been assigned to use his legal expertise to review and debrief complex issues and oversee other technical matters as assigned by the Judge.

January 8, 2024: The first bellwether trial for the hair relaxer litigation has been scheduled for November 3, 2025, next year. Bellwether trials are test trials of cases representative of the larger pool of lawsuits filed. They are a critical component of MDLs because the outcome of the trials provides valuable insight into what the parties can expect from juries if the cases were to actually go to trial. Depending on the strength or weakness of the evidence and arguments presented, bellwether trials often lead to settlement discussions.

December 1, 2023: As expected, the hair relaxer litigation has exploded, with close to 500 cases added each week to the MDL. It has been reported that there are approximately 8000 pending hair relaxer cancer lawsuits filed into the MDL. The Honorable Judge Mary M. Rowland continues to conduct status conferences with the parties to address document production issues, Case Management Orders (CMOs) related to Plaintiffs’ Fact Sheets, and other scheduling needs.

October 20, 2023: The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is planning to propose a regulation that would ban the use of hair straightening products that contain the toxin formaldehyde. It’s important to note that current research has not established a link between formaldehyde in hair relaxer products and an increased risk of ovarian or uterine cancer. Additionally, formaldehyde is commonly found in other cosmetic products, such as hair dye and nail polish, as well as household products and materials. However, the FDA’s proposal comes at the right time as thousands of new hair relaxer cancer cases are continuing to be filed into the MDL. The proposal is an acknowledgment of the adverse health effects that stem from the use of chemically laden hair products.

August 3, 2023: Honorable Judge M. Rowland approved the Short Form Complaint to be used for filing all hair relaxer lawsuits into the MDL. The Short Form Complaint condenses the Plaintiffs’ allegations and outlines the type(s) of the product used and the injuries developed as a result of the repeated use of the product. Going forward, all new hair relaxer lawsuits can now be filed directly into the MDL with the newly approved Short Form Complaint.

May 15, 2023: Plaintiffs filed a Master Long-Form Complaint into the MDL (Document 106). The Master Long-Form Complaint streamlines the litigation process by outlining all the common allegations and supporting evidence raised by plaintiffs in their individual lawsuits. Individual Short-Form Complaints will be forthcoming for each plaintiff. These Short-Form complaints make reference to the Master Long-Form complaint and, importantly, outline the plaintiff-specific allegations and damages.

February 6, 2023: An official MDL was established for the hair relaxer litigation by the United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML). Dozens of hair relaxer lawsuits – filed across the country – were consolidated and transferred into the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois to be presided over by the Honorable Judge Mary M. Rowland. Establishing the MDL emphasizes the anticipation that this litigation will grow exponentially with time. Leadership committees have been formed, and procedural issues pertaining to pre-trial proceedings and discovery are being established. For example, a new case management order (CMO) was filed in the MDL on March 30, 2023 (Document 56). It approves and outlines instructions for plaintiffs to file their lawsuits directly into the MDL now, as opposed to in their respective state court. This direct file option will streamline the discovery process of all the cases.

Hair Straightener Lawsuit

Black women have been diagnosed with uterine cancer from hair straighteners.

More Black women are harmed by hair relaxer products.

In the US alone, millions of Black women regularly use chemical straighteners and relaxing products. Hair straighteners became popular in the 60s when Black women faced bias at work because of their natural hair.

As such, many women subscribed to the Eurocentric beauty standard by straightening their hair chemically to avoid discrimination. Today, Black women are still the largest consumers of all hair relaxing sold in the US.

The study done by the NIH included 33,000 women, 60% of whom self-identified as Black women. Due to their more frequent use of hair straightening or relaxing products, Black women are at a greater risk of developing uterine cancer.

The incidence rate for uterine cancer, endometrial cancer (not endometriosis), or non-serous ovarian cancer is twice as high for Black women in comparison to White women.

Uterine Cancer – Statistics and Prognosis

Uterine cancer is the fourth most common cancer and the sixth leading cause of death related to cancer for women in the US. As a result of the frequent use of these popular hair products, women as young as their 20s are being diagnosed with cancer.

Common symptoms of uterine cancer include:

  • Pain in the pelvic region
  • Painful urination
  • Pain during sex
  • Unusual vaginal bleeding or discharge
  • Unusual weight loss

Anyone experiencing the symptoms above should talk to their doctor about their concerns. They may need to be screened for uterine cancer.

We’re filing hair relaxer lawsuits across the country 

Women across the country have begun to file lawsuits against top manufacturers of hair relaxers and straighteners.

The first lawsuit was brought by Jennifer Mitchell of Missouri. She used hair relaxers from the age of ten and was diagnosed with uterine cancer at age 28, resulting in a hysterectomy. Her hair relaxer lawsuit was filed against L’Oreal, SoftSheen Carson, Strength of Nature, Dabur, and Namaste Laboratories. These are the top manufacturers of chemical straightening products.

Since Mitchell filed, there have been many more chemical hair straightener lawsuits filed on behalf of women diagnosed with cancer.

Call The Yost Legal Group to file your hair relaxer lawsuit

The defective product lawyers at The Yost Legal Group are dedicated to obtaining justice for those wrongfully harmed by dangerous products. We are currently pursuing cases of individuals harmed by chemical hair relaxers or straighteners.

If you or a loved one used hair relaxers or straighteners and have been diagnosed with uterine cancer, endometrial cancer (not endometriosis), or non-serous ovarian cancer, you may be entitled to a Hair Relaxer Settlement.

Call us today at 1 (800) YOST-LAW (1-800-967-8529). Or fill out the Free Consultation form on our website. We will contact you shortly for your free case review. It is important to know your legal options.

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