It is an all too common experience: you go to your hair stylist for a routine coloring, and suddenly you experience a burning sensation on your scalp, forehead or some other place where the chemical contacted your skin. Maybe you suffer in silence for a few minutes or maybe your stylist washes the chemical out as soon as you complain. Hopefully you experience nothing more than some pain and redness which goes away after a few days. Other times you can be seriously burned leaving a permanent scar on your face or may even need a skin graft.

Chemical burns from hair care products happen all too frequently. Shockingly, these burns almost always occur in situations where the licensed professional fails to follow the basic instructions that come with the product.

Almost all hair colors and other treatments come with instructions that a “patch test” should be performed every time BEFORE the product is used. It does not matter if you have used the product before without any problems a “patch test” must be done. In our experience stylists almost never follows these instructions. Pennsylvania law specifically requires a licensed hair care professional “to follow the directions of the manufacturer and the regulations and instructions of the Federal Food and Drug Administration which appear on or come with the chemicals.” Thus, we have successfully argued that when a hair stylist fails to perform a patch test they are liable for any injury that chemicals cause.

So if you have been burned by chemicals used by anyone you paid we may be able to help you. First, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to reduce the chances of a burn. Second, if you feel burning report it to the stylists at once and remove the product in accordance with the directions. Third, seek appropriate medical attention. Fourth, take photographs of the injury. And finally, call an experienced attorney who can help you recover damages for the injuries you have suffered.