If you or someone you know is using hair products that contain DMDM Hydantoin, it is suggested that you cease all use. The substantial evidence regarding formaldehyde and human skin suggests that continued use may be harmful to hair and skin.
What is DMDM Hydantoin though? Essentially, DMDM Hydantoin is an “antimicrobial formaldehyde releaser preservative”, or more simply, a preservative that releases formaldehyde. It is used in hair products as it is very effective in protecting against bacteria and fungus. However, formaldehyde is considered a carcinogen, which is known to be potential irritants.
Formaldehyde is a common preservative and can be found in numerous household items, such as fruit. However, formaldehyde functions along the principle of “the dose makes the poison”; meaning that while not harmful in moderation, continued or excessive exposure is harmful. Evidence shows that DMDM Hydantoin can lead to allergies, immunotoxicity, and irritation after continued exposure. Excessive contact with DMDM Hydantoin is therefore being alleged to be the cause of hair loss in individuals that have been using the specific TRESemmé products. This potential link has been researched in literature for some time now as well. In fact, Japan had previously implemented restrictions regarding the amount of DMDM Hydantoin that can be used in cosmetic products. Further, multiple other hair product companies have ceased the use of DMDM Hydantoin in their products.