According to research by the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health (FIOH) and the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL), hairdressers are not more exposed than the general population to endocrine-disrupting parabens, bisphenol A or resorcinol. The study measured 77 hairdressers’ urinary concentrations of these chemicals, using biomonitoring. The hairdressers were from all over Finland.
The urinary concentrations of endocrine-disrupting chemicals among hairdressers and the rest of the population were below the levels that cause clear health risks. However, knowledge regarding the health effects of resorcinol, parabens and bisphenol A is still partly incomplete, and there are no absolute health-based limit values.
“Hairdressers’ exposure to chemicals has been studied very little so far, despite existing concerns about the extent to which workers in the beauty industry are exposed to chemicals,” says Tiina Santonen, senior specialist at FIOH. Earlier research has focused more on environmental exposure among the general population rather than work-related exposure to chemicals that disrupt endocrine functioning.