L’Oréal named in class action over caustic ingredients in Soft Sheen-Carson Optimum Salon Haircare brand Amla Legend Rejuvenating Ritual Relaxer Kit

L’Oreal USA, Inc.

This is a class action against L’Oréal, USA, Inc. and Soft Sheen-Carson, LLC. Plaintiff seeks damages and equitable remedies for herself and the putative Class, which includes consumers who purchased Soft Sheen-Carson Optimum Salon Haircare® brand Amla Legend Rejuvenating Ritual Relaxer Kit (hereinafter “the Product”).

The Product is part of Defendants’ Amla Legend product line, as indicated by the large, bold letters on the front and center of the Product’s packaging. In their marketing and advertising materials, Defendants represent that their Amla Legend products, which include the Product, are a “secret ritual for hair rejuvenation,” and that “Amla oil’s intense moisture will rejuvenate every strand, leaving you with thicker-looking, healthier hair,” with “unique properties [that] prevent breakage, restore shine, manageability and smoothness.”

Defendants specifically market the Product to African American women as an “easy no-mix, no-lye relaxer kit that ensures an easier relaxing process for unified results and superior respect for hair fiber integrity”.

As alleged, an inherent design and/or manufacturing defect in the Product causes significant hair loss and skin and scalp irritation, including burns and blistering (collectively “the Injuries”). At no time did Defendants provide Plaintiff with adequate disclosure or warning about the potential dangerous hazards of using the Product as directed by Defendants, of which Defendants have knowledge. Instead, Defendants make numerous assertions regarding the values of Product’s purported safe and gentle qualities in their labeling, marketing and advertising materials, including that the Product is “NO-LYE”, (i.e., does not contain Sodium Hydroxide), is a “rejuvenating ritual” that “refills as it relaxes for amazingly lively-looking hair”, “protects [the] scalp & skin”, has “anti-breakage” properties, provides “unified results and superior respect for hair fiber integrity,” and contains a “powerful anti-oxidant rich in vitamins and minerals.”

Consumers damaged by the Product often have permanent hair loss. Plaintiff and the putative Class Members have suffered injury in fact and loss of money and/or property as a result of using Amla Relaxer.

Unknown to Plaintiff or the putative Class the Product contained, and continues to contain, Sodium Hydroxide, also known as Caustic Soda or Lye (hereinafter “Lye”), and other caustic ingredients or combination of ingredients that causes Injuries upon proper application. Further, the instructions on how to “test” the Product and how to apply the Product are so woefully inadequate they are virtually useless.

Lye is a very strong and caustic ingredient that can and does cause Injuries, including significant hair loss, skin and scalp irritation, burns, blistering, and may also compromise the immune system.

As a result of the defective nature of the Product, it is unfit for its intended use and purpose.

Complaint

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