A study published on October 17, 2022, by The National Cancer Institute has shown that the use of chemical hair straighteners or relaxers more than doubles the risk of uterine or endometrial cancer in women.
You may be eligible to become a plaintiff in the defective products lawsuit if you used hair straightener products and were later diagnosed with uterine cancer.
Learn more about your legal options today!
Five Cosmetics Companies Sued for Product Liability
A Waynesville, Missouri, woman sued cosmetics giant L’Oreal and four other companies that assisted in the development, marketing, and sale of defective chemical hair straightener products on October 21, 2022. This is the first lawsuit claiming hair straightening products caused uterine cancer.
Jenny Mitchell’s 77-page lawsuit alleges that these products caused her uterine cancer. She was forced to have a full hysterectomy. Mitchell, whose cancer was diagnosed in 2018, said: “I’m 32 years old now, and I’m still feeling that void of not being able to bear my own child. I am the first voice of many voices to come that will stand up to these companies.”
She claims to have used hair straightening products manufactured by cosmetics firm L’Oreal and other companies for over 20 years.
Her suit makes the following allegations:
- Chemical hair straightening, or relaxing products manufactured, marketed, developed, and sold by L’Oreal USA Products Inc., Strength of Nature Global, Soft Sheen/Carson Inc., Soft Sheen Carson Inc., Dabur International Ltd, Dabur USA Inc., and Namaste Laboratories, LLC. caused her uterine cancer.
- The companies were aware or should have been aware that these products increased the risk of uterine cancer for consumers but continued to manufacture, market, and sell them anyway.
- L’Oreal gave no warning to consumers that their products carried such risks.
The Study that Prompted Her to Take Action
Mitchell’s attorneys filed the suit days after the National Institutes of Health study was published. The study tracked over 33,000 women in the U.S. from 35 and 74 years old who used hair straighteners, dyes, and pressing products for a decade on average. It shows that frequent use of hair straightening products by women increases their risk of uterine cancer by 247 percent.
In the study, ‘frequent use’ is at least four times per year. Researchers also found that “ever use,” or using these products at least once in a lifetime, significantly increases the risk of uterine cancer.
Black Women Are Disproportionately Affected
Data from the aforementioned study shows that Black women are not more likely than women of other races to develop uterine cancer from regular use of hair straighteners. However, 60 percent of the study participants who used hair straightener products self-identified as Black. So, in the U.S., most of the women who use hair straightener products are Black.
Therefore, it’s not surprising that Black women have the highest uterine cancer death rates as a population. “This is a public health crisis,” Mitchel’s well-known civil rights attorney Ben Crump said after filing the suit. “You are beautiful just as you are… it is not worth losing your ability to have children just to have straight hair.”
Many More Plaintiffs May Join Her Lawsuit
An estimated 65,950 women are diagnosed with cancer of the uterus annually in the U.S., resulting in over 12,000 deaths. Mitchell’s lawsuit is a mass tort lawsuit, which means that many more individuals can join it as plaintiffs or injured parties.
Five companies are being sued, but any company that manufactures hair straightening or relaxing products is a potential defendant. Whether a company is sued depends on how the chemicals in their hair straightening products compare with the cancer-causing chemicals in the study.
Who May Qualify to Join?
Women who were diagnosed with uterine or endometrial cancer after using hair straightening products at least once in their lifetimes.
What Must Be Proven for Compensation?
Lawsuits filed on behalf of people diagnosed with cancer caused by using cosmetic products fall under the defective product or product liability category of personal injury law.
Successful litigation depends on whether a plaintiff can demonstrate that the manufacturer failed to provide adequate warnings about the dangers of use.
Talk with A Personal Injury Expert
If you were diagnosed with uterine or endometrial cancer after using hair straightening products, you may be eligible for compensation. Our lawyers have the experience and expertise to assess whether you are likely to be eligible to join Mitchell’s lawsuit.
Please give us a call ASAP at (773) 823-0298 to speak to a friendly legal expert. The call is 100% FREE. We look forward to helping you!