Nine years ago I thought going natural was purely about embracing up-and-coming black women and avoiding the Eurocentric gaze on how hair grows naturally. It turned out to be much more than that. For many people natural hair It was protection from processes that meant genuine harm. Hair relaxers have recently made headlines and left a powerful (and familiar) sting among black women around the world. relevance became clear. As most people guessed, black women are the most vulnerable because hair straightening chemicals are primarily targeted at black women and girls.
This study shows a link between hair-straightening chemicals and uterine cancer
Journal of the National Cancer Institute It was published Findings from researchers at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH). The researchers used data from her more than 33,000 women, aged 35 to her 74, over her decade. These were women who were also participating in a sister study, an ongoing study focused on risk factors for breast cancer and other health conditions.
The study lasted 11 years, during which 378 women developed uterine cancer. “It was estimated that 1.64% of women who never used a hair straightener would develop uterine cancer by age 70, but frequent use increased the risk to 4.05%.” Alexandra White of the US National Institute for Environmental Health and Safety (NIEHS), the study leader, explained in a statement. “But it’s important to put this information in context. Uterine cancer is a relatively rare type of cancer,” she added. There is something you should do. According to the National Cancer Institute, black women develop uterine cancer at a much faster rate than women of other races.
In this study, researchers cited frequent use of hair-straightening chemicals four or more times a year.
Study reveals higher risk for black women
Previous studies have revealed an increased risk of certain hormone-related cancers, including breast and ovarian cancer associated with hair-straightening chemicals. The same study also stated that certain hair dyes increase similar risks.
The study showed that the association between hair straightening products and uterine cancer was most pronounced among black women. 59.9% reported using hair straightening products.
There are several things to note about these findings. Not only are relaxers aggressively marketed to black women and girls, they also have younger exposure than other races. Afro textured hair needs taming, unprofessional , or unattractiveness, are some of the beliefs that still persist in society. Social pressure has also led to normalizing the use of hair-straightening chemicals.
This research reveals what many people felt intuitively. Safe hair care is not always a guarantee for black women. to save. It provides transparency and respects the fact that black women and girls deserve clean, safe hair care.
Related: These are the health conditions that black women suffer disproportionately from
Thoughts of a natural hair care expert
We are experts in natural hair care, Naira’s Naturals Talk about research. Davis learned the science behind safe afro-she-textured hair care and founded her company in toxin-free hair care. Here’s what she had to say about using chemical straighteners in the Afro hair care space:
“Recent research has revealed serious health risks associated with the straightening perm process for black women. According to the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, many of the chemicals used in these processes include formalin and thio Contains harsh ingredients such as ammonium glycolate, which can cause scalp irritation, hair loss, breakage, and even chemical burns. , found that these powerful chemicals may increase the risk of developing skin conditions such as dermatitis and eczema, which are difficult to manage and may require long-term treatment. .
Your hair needs the best and safest options
Additionally, the use of permanent toxins on delicate afrostrands can lead to further damage from environmental pollutants such as dust and smoke.As a result, AAD can harm both physical and mental health. It recommends that black women avoid straightening or “perming” their hair because of the risk of hair loss. , suggests achieving the desired appearance without compromising health.
“Overall, it is important for black women to consider the risks involved before undertaking a chemical process such as a straight perm. You can maintain healthy hair and skin while you’re at Nylah’s Naturals. Committed to providing natural and organic products Helps maintain hair health without compromising hair integrity. We believe every woman should have access to quality products to look and feel her best. ‘ explains Davis.
Final Thoughts on Navigating Straightening Chemicals and Uterine Cancer
Ultimately, the harmful association between hair-straightening chemicals and uterine cancer is an invitation to return to cleaner hair care. For people, it’s about using them in moderation. Black women are often encouraged or forced to prioritize “looking good” over health and comfort, but this study urges a rethink. How can we raise future generations to undo these avoidable health risks and the conversations we have avoided?
Related: The Relaxer Box Girls: Where Are They Now?
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