Hair Dye Cancer Risk, Should You Be Worried?

Image of woman getting hair dyed in a salon.

The international media has been shocked by a US study which claims hair dye and chemical straighteners could cause cancer or at least raise a woman’s risk of the disease.

A study of 4000 women in the US, over half of whom were breast cancer survivors, has made links between brunette hair dye and chemical hair straighteners and breast cancer.

The results of the study were published in the Journal of Carcinogenesis and found black women using dark shades of hair dye and white women using chemical straighteners were most at risk.

In The Sunday Times in London, Professor Kefah Mokbel, a breast cancer surgeon at the Princess Grace Hospital in London, reviewed the studies and found a 14 percent increase in breast cancer amongst women who dyed their hair.

He suggested women should only dye their hair a maximum of five times a year and should use natural products such as beetroot.

In another study published by The New York Post, Finnish researchers also found women who use hair dye were more likely to develop breast cancer but the results were inconclusive as to whether it was the actual hair dye as the direct cause or whether women who used hair dye were more likely to use other beauty products and cosmetics than other women, and questioned if they in fact may be the cause.

More research is needed to find conclusive results.

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