Ethnic Personal Care Products


Ethnic Personal Care Products

Issues Concerning Ethnic Hair Care Products

Not all personal cosmetic products found on store shelves are “safe.” Many of these products contain harmful chemicals that have been linked to serious health problems such as birth defects and cancer.

The FDA cannot require cosmetic companies to do safety testing for their products before marketing. Manufacturers are not even required to list ALL ingredients due to the fact some ingredients are considered “trade secrets.” Major loopholes in federal laws and regulations allow manufacturers to place chemicals that have not been tested or approved by the FDA in their cosmetic products.


  • Hair products containing hormones have been linked to very early puberty in African American children
  • Health effects related to hair care products include asthma, skin irritations, headaches, tumors, teeth and gum pain

What steps can I take to use ethnic personal care products safely?

  • Follow the directions found in the packaging, pay attention to all “Caution” and “Warning” statements
  • Wear gloves when applying dyes and relaxers
  • Don’t leave product on longer than directions indicate
  • Rinse scalp thoroughly with water after use of hair product
  • Do not dye eyelashes or eyebrows

 See How WE ACT is Taking Action on Ethnic Personal Care Products

 For more information contact:
Ogonnaya Dotson-Newman
1854 Amsterdam Avenue, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10031
212-961-1000 ext 310