Gonna Wash This Chain Right Outta My Hair
Date Added: Jun. 5, 2001
Most recently part of a quartet of questionable health warnings, this bit of Internet alarmism dates back as far as 1998. Like warnings about shrimp and vitamin C, satay and cucumber, and instant noodles, this one is misinformed at best and demonstrates beautifully the risks of forwarding such chains.
Subject: Go home and check your shampoo.
Go home and check your shampoo.
Check the ingredients listed on your shampoo bottle, and see if they have a substance by the name of Sodium Laureth Sulfate, or simply SLS. This substance is found in most shampoos, and the manufacturers use it because it produces a lot of foam and it is cheap.
BUT the fact is that SLS is used to scrub garage floors, and it is very strong!!! It is also proven that it can cause cancer in the long run, and this is no joke.
I went home and checked my shampoo (Vidal Sassoon); it doesn't contain it; however, others such as Vo5, Palmolive, Paul Mitchell, l'Oreal, the new Hemp Shampoo from Body Shop etc. contain this substance. The first ingredient listed (which means it is the single most prevalent ingredient) in Clairol's Herbal Essences is Sodium Laureth Sulfate.
So I called one company, and I told them their product contains a substance that will cause people to have cancer. They said, Yeah we knew about it but there is nothing we can do about it because we need that substance to produce foam. By the way Colgate toothpaste also contains the same substance to produce the "bubbles". They said they are going to send me some information.
Research has shown that in the 1980s, the chance of getting cancer is 1 out of 8000 and now, in the 1990s, the chances of getting cancer is 1 out of 3, which is very serious. So I hope that you will take this seriously and pass this on to all the people you know, and hopefully, we can stop "giving" ourselves the cancer virus. This is serious, after you have read this, pass it on to as many people as possible, this is not a chain letter, but it concerns our health.
OK, they lost me when you said the shampoo manufacturer told the customer they needed a carcinogen to create bubbles. This chain is full of ridiculous notions, mistakes and flat out lies. The most outrageous is the assertion that a company would openly admit to using a harmful substance for such a trivial purpose. In a world where millions of dollars are being spent to point out that the tobacco industry hid the fact that their product was dangerous to its users, would this claim really go unnoticed by the press if it contained one iota of truth?
The signature of Ms. Hailey at the end of the letter should by no means lend credence to this bunch of malarkey. Hailey told the The Tennessean in 2001 that she was not the author and she has no idea how she and the University of Pennsylvania became associated with it. Odds are, she receive the warning in her e-mail and forwarded on to others. When she did so, her e-mail program automatically inserted her name, position and employer. Since her profession is somewhat related to the subject matter, her signature was retained in future versions to make the warning appear to be coming from an authoritative source. This is a phenomenon I call "False Attribution Syndrome," and it is a risk for anyone who forwards chain letters like this one. Break this Chain!
References: About.com, American Cancer Society