SoftSheen Carson Hair Relaxer Lawsuits

February 7, 2023 | Attorney, Matthew Dolman

SoftSheen Carson, a subsidiary of L’Oreal, is facing product liability lawsuits pertaining to their chemical hair relaxers. Recent studies suggest that chemical hair relaxers can cause several types of hormone-sensitive cancers and damage the female reproductive system. If SoftSheen Carson is found liable, plaintiffs may be able to recover compensation for medical bills, lost wages, loss of enjoyment of life, and other damages.

Dolman Law Group is interested in speaking with women who have been diagnosed with reproductive health issues after using SoftSheen chemical hair relaxers. Our product liability lawyers can help you pursue compensation for your damages in a personal injury lawsuit. You can schedule a free consultation with our team to discuss the process of filing a product liability claim and what damages you may be eligible to recover compensation for.

How Can a Product Liability Lawyer Help Me?

Having an advocate who solely represents your interests is critical to ensuring that you are properly compensated. The hair relaxer lawsuits may go on for years before being settled, and during that time you should be able to focus on recovering from your cancer or reproductive health issues. In the meantime, a product liability lawyer can safeguard your right to seek compensation for your damages.

Insurance companies and other defendants do not have your best interests in mind when they make a settlement offer. Their goal is to minimize the impact on their profits. A personal injury lawyer, on the other hand, understands that the compensation you receive needs to do more than just reimburse you for the costs you have already sustained. Your settlement needs to also acknowledge the future losses you will incur as a result of your illness or injuries. 

A product liability lawyer will thoroughly investigate the defective product and work to accumulate evidence to meet the burden of proof. As they work to establish liability, they will also document and calculate the value of your damages. During the claims process, they will leverage evidence and use expert witnesses to further demonstrate that the defendant should be found at fault. Your product liability lawyer will strategically negotiate for the maximum compensation available to you in a hair relaxer cancer claim.

Chemical Hair Relaxers Contain Carcinogens 

A National Health Institute study has found a disturbing connection between the heavy use of chemical hair relaxers and hormone sensitive-cancers that affect the female reproductive system. Previous studies had already found an increased risk of cancer was associated with using chemical hair relaxers. A number of reproductive health issues, including cancer, have been traced back to the heavy usage of chemical hair relaxers, including:

Several toxic chemicals have been found in various chemical hair relaxers. This includes both lye-based and no-lye chemical hair relaxers like ORS Olive Oil. When women use at-home hair relaxers or receive treatments in the salon, they are absorbing these carcinogens through their scalps. 

Once enough of these toxins accumulate, they can cause the body to believe that estrogen levels are high. High levels of estrogen are associated with various cancers of the female reproductive system. When a chemical hinders the endocrine system from keeping hormones balanced, it is known as an endocrine-disrupting chemical (EDC)

Using Chemical Hair Relaxers Increases Your Risk of Cancer

According to the NIH analysis of the Sister Study, a massive observational study of women who had a sister with breast cancer, women who reported using chemical hair relaxers 4 or more times a year increased their risk from a 1.64% chance to a 4.05% risk of uterine cancer. While these percentages may seem small, they should not be taken lightly. 

Cancer that originates in the female reproductive system may go undetected in its early stages, and aggressive forms of cancer can compound the damage. For many women who have developed cancer as a result of hair relaxer usage, this means that their fertility is irreparably damaged. For others, it can be fatal. Black women are at an increased risk for health issues such as uterine cancer, as they tend to have higher exposure rates to the toxic chemicals in hair relaxers.

Women File Product Liability Lawsuits Against SoftSheen Carson

Consumers have a right to expect that the products they purchase are safe. Companies have a duty to ensure that their products are designed without harmful defects, manufactured without being contaminated or damaged, and distributed without being compromised. Additionally, they must warn consumers of any known risks or side effects associated with the routine usage of their products. 

In this case, companies like SoftSheen Carson either neglected to warn consumers about the carcinogens in their products, such as Dark and Lovely, or were unaware of the defects in their hair relaxers due to inadequate testing. Either way, plaintiffs believe they have the basis of a product liability lawsuit.

Court Considers Establishing a Multidistrict Litigation for Hair Relaxer Plaintiffs

When a group of people sustains similar injuries from a defective product, the courts may decide to consolidate their claims in order to avoid a large volume of similar product liability lawsuits straining the system and producing varying outcomes. There are two primary ways this can be accomplished. Plaintiffs may file a class action lawsuit in which the class, or group, is represented by one plaintiff’s case and the settlement that is negotiated is divided equally amongst plaintiffs. 

The second option is a multidistrict litigation. The hair relaxer plaintiffs have sought a multidistrict litigation for their claims. This would allow them to share resources and receive comparable settlements. In order for these claims to be considered as a group, their consolidation must be approved by the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation. The plaintiffs are still awaiting a decision.

The hearing to determine what action should be taken regarding the chemical hair relax lawsuits began on January 26th, 2023. The JPML continues to deliberate after hearing arguments from both sides. Beauty companies such as L’Oreal, Namaste Laboratories, Godrej Consumer Products, and SoftSheen Carson oppose this consolidation.

Recovering Damages in a SoftSheen Carson Hair Relaxer Lawsuit

Women who have developed cancer after using chemical hair relaxers like SoftSheen Carson’s Dark and Lovely have experienced significant physical and emotional losses, in addition to the financial costs related to treatment. While the courts may ultimately decide to impose punitive damages, personal injury lawyers’ primary focus is on ensuring that you are at least repaid for your compensatory damages

Compensatory damages can include both special damages and general damages. Special damages offer reimbursement for damages that have an established monetary value, which typically refers to economic losses. General damages can account for emotional losses that are more challenging to quantify, like losing the ability to have children.

Examples of Damages in a Chemical Hair Relaxer Lawsuit:

Frequently Asked Questions About the Chemical Hair Relaxer Lawsuits

1) How much is a hair relaxer cancer lawsuit worth?

Two women can have virtually identical uterine cancer diagnoses, yet suffer very different magnitudes of damages as a result. That can make it difficult to estimate the value of a hair relaxer cancer claim without more information about how a plaintiff’s cancer has negatively affected their career, relationships, and physical and mental health. A personal injury lawyer will be able to help you estimate the value of your specific damages, although what your claim is worth will also depend on whether or not the defendants are found liable, and what they are willing to offer.

If the hair relaxer cancer lawsuits are consolidated into an MDL, a few cases will be selected for bellwether trials. Once the bellwether trials have concluded, both sides will have an idea of what a claim is worth. If the settlements for the bellwether claims are substantially larger than what the defendants had been willing to offer, the defendants may be more willing to settle to avoid the additional expense of continued legal proceedings. 

2) How much does it cost to hire a personal injury lawyer?

Personal injury lawsuits often involve individual plaintiffs seeking compensation from insurance companies and other companies like L’Oreal that have a team of lawyers at their disposal. To rectify this imbalance of power and resources, personal injury attorneys operate on a contingency fee basis. 

If a personal injury lawyer agrees to represent you in a product liability claim, you don’t have to pay them until after they settle your case. Additionally, you don’t owe them any out-of-pocket fees. Their fee is deducted from the settlement they recover for you. Don’t delay seeking a hair relaxer lawyer because you’re concerned about the upfront cost, as you don’t want to risk letting the statute of limitations on your claim expire.

3) Why are the defendants against the multidistrict litigation?

Representatives for the hair relaxer defendants have argued against consolidating the hair relaxer cancer lawsuits into a multidistrict litigation (MDL). Thus far, plaintiffs have not pinpointed a particular company or product as the culprit for their cancer, but rather cast blame on chemical hair relaxers in general. 

Defendants argue that it is unfair to find them liable when their product may not have been at fault. Also, most plaintiffs have used multiple hair relaxers over the course of their lives, which makes it complicated to determine exactly which product is responsible for their cancer. The defendants have also expressed that they believe the number of plaintiffs is inadequate to qualify for a multidistrict litigation. 

Why Should I Choose Dolman Law Group to Represent Me?

At Dolman Law Group, we make it a point to put our clients first. By choosing Dolman Law Group to represent you in your hair relaxer claim, you will be able to benefit from our legal knowledge, work ethic, and sterling reputation. Dolman Law Group clients can depend on our ability to represent their interests in mass tort claims and emerge with a fair settlement.

We are known as relentless negotiators who specialize in handling product liability lawsuits, such as the AFFF firefighting lawsuits. Your product liability lawyer will gather evidence to support your claim, establish liability, negotiate for maximum compensation, and protect your rights regardless of how long it takes to settle.

Former clients endorse our skills, as do our fellow personal injury lawyers. In fact, they often refer their most complicated cases to us. We can provide the personal attention that your claim deserves as we strategically negotiate on your behalf. Our product liability lawyers will champion your case in order to secure a fair settlement in your ShoftSheen Carson relaxer lawsuit.

Dolman Law Group Negotiates for Maximum Compensation

When you have been seriously injured by a defective product, you need a top-notch personal injury lawyer on your side to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve for your damages. Our award-winning team has spent the last decade representing clients using a results-driven approach.

We have a consistent record of settling complex claims for our injured clients. The product liability attorneys of Dolman Law Group will use the resources at our disposal and leverage our expertise to maximize your compensation in a hair relaxer lawsuit. While you focus on healing and caring for your family, we will pursue a fair settlement on your behalf.

Contact Dolman Law Group for Help With Your SoftSheen Carson Hair Relaxer Lawsuit

At Dolman Law Group, we will work tirelessly to hold companies like SoftSheen Carson liable for failing to warn hair relaxer users about the cancer-causing chemicals in their products. Our diligent team is dedicated to maximizing our clients’ compensation for their financial, emotional, and physical losses. There’s no need to take on the task of navigating the personal injury claims process alone.

The product liability attorneys of Dolman Law Group won’t hesitate to take your hair relaxer lawsuit to trial in the event that the defendants are unwilling to offer a fair settlement in negotiations. You can trust our team to prioritize your needs, communicate effectively, and make every effort to secure a fair settlement that recognizes the true value of your damages.

Women who have developed cancer or other reproductive health issues after using SoftSheen Carson hair relaxers may be entitled to recover compensation for their damages. The product liability lawyers of Dolman Law Group can provide the expert legal insight and resources needed to maximize compensation. We offer free consultations to prospective clients where you can learn more about the services available to you and what damages may qualify for compensation.


Matthew Dolman

Personal Injury Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Matthew Dolman. Matt has been a practicing civil trial, personal injury, products liability, and mass tort lawyer since 2004. He has successfully fought for more than 11,000 injured clients and acted as lead counsel in more than 1,000 lawsuits. Always on the cutting edge of personal injury law, Matt is actively engaged in complex legal matters, including Suboxone, AFFF, and Ozempic lawsuits.  Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess of $1 million and $2 million, respectively. He has also been selected by his colleagues as a Florida Superlawyer and as a member of Florida’s Legal Elite on multiple occasions. Further, Matt has been quoted in the media numerous times and is a sought-after speaker on a variety of legal issues and topics.

Learn More