L’Oréal Falsely Advertises that Cosmetics Provide 24-Hour SPF Protection, Class Action Alleges
Last Updated on December 22, 2022
Zimmerman v. L’Oréal USA, Inc.
Filed: December 2, 2022 ◆§ 3:22-cv-07609
L’Oréal has been hit with a class action lawsuit that claims the cosmetic company misleadingly markets certain products as offering 24-hour SPF protection.
L’Oréal has been hit with a proposed class action lawsuit that claims the cosmetic company misleadingly markets certain products as offering 24-hour SPF protection.
According to the 26-page suit, certain L’Oréal Paris and Lancôme products, including foundations and powders, are labeled with messages such as “Up to 24H Fresh Wear” and “Up to 24HR” alongside claims about their sun protection factor (SPF), such as “SUNSCREEN BROAD SPECTRUM SPF 25.” The filing says that the items “do not and cannot” provide 24 hours of SPF protection, making their labels “false, deceptive and/or misleading.”
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The lawsuit charges that L’Oréal deceptively advertises its products in order to capitalize on consumers’ efforts to protect their skin from harmful UV rays. Per the case, SPF products are only effective for up to two hours after application; after that, they must be reapplied.
The complaint relays that the L’Oréal Paris and Lancôme products at issue include a drug facts label that instructs consumers to “reapply at least every 2 hours.” The case argues, however, that consumers will not see this direction unless they lift a sticker on the back label which reveals the drug facts.
“Consumers are not expected to inspect layers of stickers on the back label to discover the instructions to reapply the product every 2 hours. Nor would a reasonable consumer expect that the buried back label would contradict the front label SPF representations.”
The filing says that L’Oréal regularly displays SPF claims on an item’s front label alongside messages about the product’s long-lasting effects. The suit posits that consumers are meant to associate the “24H” claims with the product’s SPF as well.
The awareness of the harmful effects of UV rays on skin is growing, and so is the public’s appetite for cosmetic products that protect against the sun, the lawsuit explains.
Per the case, the defendant misleadingly advertises its goods “in order to compete with a growing market of SPF cosmetic products.”
Further, the lawsuit stresses that because L’Oréal seeks to “maintain its competitive edge” by adding new products containing SPF to its cosmetic brand, the company is also likely to continue to “unlawfully and misleadingly advertise” the items.
The lawsuit looks to represent anyone in California who purchased L’Oréal Paris and/or Lancôme products at any time since December 2018.
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