FDA Proposes Ban on Hair Straightening Chemicals

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently filed a proposed ruling that could ban and eliminate the use of some chemical hair straightening products. Hair smoothing and straightening products that contain formaldehyde and formaldehyde-releasing chemicals have been linked to long-term health concerns including cancer. People who frequently get smoothing or relaxing treatments for natural hair are thought to be at greater risk. 

Not only has uterine cancer been associated with the use of these chemicals,1 but a 2019 study published in the International Journal of Cancer linked hair dye and chemical straighteners to breast cancer in women.2  

Pressure from Congress led to the FDA’s investigation and subsequent proposal.3 The FDA will take comments from the public before deciding on their regulatory path.  


Since 2012, Associated Hair Professionals (AHP) has been supporting and educating licensed cosmetologists. Now, AHP wants to empower you too. 

Learn how you can stay informed of bills or regulatory changes, find your legislator, and how you can make your voice matter. AHP is your essential partner. We encourage you to advocate or voice your opinions to influence change. 

Access the AHP Legislative Toolkit to help you better understand the rules and regulations that govern your license and give you the tools and resources to make your voice heard. We hope to inform and inspire you to become knowledgeable about all aspects of your career. 






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