- A group of customers sued Olaplex in California, claiming that its products caused “serious” hair problems.
- They disputed the brand’s social media posts that their products could revive “compromised hair”.
- Insider has previously reported on Olaplex customers saying they had hair loss and getting refunds.
Olaplex was sued by a group of customers who claimed that its hair care products contained “dangerous” chemicals that could cause “serious harm”.
In a 61-page complaint filed Thursday in federal court for the Central District of California, a group of customers named their Olaplex No. 0 to No. 9 products and said they were experiencing problems, including “bald spots,” dry, brittle” hair, and scalp problems such as “burning” and “open wounds” after use.
The customers said in the suit that Olaplex products “contain or until recently contain” the allergy-causing ingredient lilial, and that they also contain panthenol, as well as ingredients such as sodium benzoate that they said could form the chemical benzene. In 2020, the European Union banned the use of lilial in hair products, and Olaplex has previously said it removed lilial from its products and released a new formulation.
The lawsuit, which was brought by more than two dozen customers, is seeking damages of at least $75,000.
Olaplex denied the allegations made by the customers.
“OLAPLEX products do not cause hair loss or hair breakage,” a company spokesperson told Insider in a statement. “We have complete confidence and belief in the safety and efficacy of our products, which are rigorously tested both internally and by independent third-party laboratories.”
The lawsuit said certain ingredients had made the products “unreasonably dangerous” and ineffective.
“Instead of repairing and protecting hair from damage, the products instead left plaintiffs’ hair dry, brittle, frizzy and dull,” the complaint said. “The hair is split and broken, making it look unkempt and like it was cut with a weed whacker.”
Insider has previously reported on customers who claimed to have experienced hair loss after using Olaplex products and reported that some had received refunds.
Olaplex’s statement added that there are “a wide variety of reasons for hair breakage or hair loss,” and called the allegations in the lawsuit “baseless allegations.”
Customers in the new lawsuit also targeted the brand’s advertising campaigns, including Drew Barrymore and influencers, who they say obscured the products’ alleged potential to cause harm.
A network of celebrities, salon workers and influencers were hired to promote the product and given marketing materials, training or other information to make “false or misleading statements,” the lawsuit said.
The lawsuit also accused Olaplex of downplaying negative feedback about the products and not being forthright about the number of complaints related to them.
The new lawsuit alleged that if Olaplex had provided more information about such complaints, customers could have avoided “going from doctor to doctor, desperate for answers” to find out if another underlying health condition was the cause of their hair problems.
“Defendants have dismissed their clients’ hair loss, instead describing hair loss as normal and unavoidable and attributing the hair loss to a long list of other possible causes,” the lawsuit said.
Do you work at Olaplex or do you want to share information? Contact Sindhu Sundar at [email protected] or on the Signal encrypted messaging app at (984)-377-3887.