You won’t believe what beauty products might just be linked to cancer. They’re more common products than than you’d initially guess: hair dye.
Specifically, hair dye and relaxer usage seems to have been linked, big time, to cancer.
A study from the Rutgers School of Public Health claims African American women saw a 51 percent increased chance of developing breast cancer, and a 72 percent increased chance of estrogen-positive breast cancer.
Meanwhile, chemical relaxers caused a 74 percent increased chance of breast cancer in white women.
Correlation or Causation?
Of course correlation does not prove causation. So what does it mean exactly?
No one knows for sure yet, and more studies need to be done. It’s not so much that we need to start throwing these products into bins and declaring heresy.
But we should certainly be careful.
It could be that certain chemicals in certain products are more harmful than others. The study did not account for different brands.
Is Everything a Carcinogen?
It’s worth saying that before something is labeled a carcinogen, usually different types of studies are conducted.
At the very least, lab tests are run on animals. By using rats, we can more directly test the effects of chemicals.
Then, more complex studies involving different demographic groups might be conducted.
For what it’s worth, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, an organization dedicated to determining carcinogens, has deigned not to classify personal hair dye use as carcinogenic.
However, they have listed workplace exposure, such as being a hairdresser, as having enough exposure for hair dye to be carcinogenic.
So What Does It All Mean?
Unfortunately, life is complex, and it’s hard to say anything definitive. Mostly, do some careful research and be cautious with what products you use.