Employee Lawsuit brought against Sephora for unpaid wages

Sephora is at the centre of an Employee Lawsuit after workers accused the retailer of failing to adequately compensate them for time spent going through security and applying make-up before a shift.

The lawsuit was brought against it in the Superior Court of California, County of San Francisco, with a team of attorneys representing around 8,000 Sephora workers. The employees are asking the judge to grant class certification for the wage-and-hour lawsuit, according to a report by Top Class Actions.

However, despite Judge Karnow raising concerns that lack of solid evidence of the unpaid time spent in work could lead to liability issues, attorneys on the Sephora employee lawsuit countered that this lack of time logging was due to Sephora, which had a ‘duty to track’.

An attorney allegedly stated, “As far as liability goes, a lot of the claims involve time. You can’t allow an employer to avoid paying employees by virtue of the fact it didn’t track its time. That means an employee cannot prove his or her damages. If they had tracked time, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”

Sephora workers were said to have provided evidence that they are expected to wear and maintain their make up as part of their duties, while the lawsuit also alleged the retailer failed to provide ample rest and meal breaks.

The beauty retailer is said to have started compensating workers an extra three minutes for security bag checks, a move that attorneys argue is an acknowledgement by Sephora that it had been failing to do this previously.

Is Ulta Repackaging and Reselling Used Makeup to Consumers? A New Lawsuit Says Yes

A new lawsuit filed in Chicago last week alleges that beauty giant Ulta has been repackaging and reselling used makeup to its unsuspecting customers for years.

Attorney Zimmerman represents Meghan Devries, a Chicago woman who works in the beauty industry. She became suspicious about some of the products she purchased from Ulta.  A woman claiming to be a former Ulta employee first brought the allegations to light in early January. Posting under the Twitter handle @fatinamxo, she wrote that whenever a customer returned a product, employees were instructed by Ulta to repackage or reseal the item and put it back on the shelf for sale. This practice, she said, included everything from makeup to hair and skin-care products, fragrances and hair styling tools.

She said that makeup palettes, for example, were cleaned up so that they looked new and returned to the shelf for reselling, unsanitized. She then shared screenshots of other Ulta employees making the same claims. Those tweets were cited in the class action complaint (pdf) Zimmerman filed in Cook County, Ill., last week. The suit also cites the claims of former employees that Ulta has a limit on how many returned items can be thrown away. “Managers will take used products out of a damaged bin, and if they look good enough to resell, they’ll put them back on the shelves and resell them so they don’t exceed their quota,” Zimmerman told ABC7.

He said that some of the products purchased from an Ulta store on North Michigan Avenue in Chicago seemed to have been previously used, including eye shadows missing a brush and face cleansers that were already open. Those products, he said, could have pathogens on them that remain for weeks. “There is E. coli and Klebsiella bacteria, which is commonly found in intestine and expelled with fecal matter,” Zimmerman said.  Zimmerman told ABC7 that the goal of his lawsuit is to change the alleged company practice that limits the number of items that can be thrown away, as well as to provide compensation for customers who may have bought used products.

Think Real Good Before Using These Cosmetic Products

Keratin Hair Products

What are they? Keratin is the protein from which hair is made. Many shampoos and conditioners claim to include keratin and promote the protein’s restorative qualities. The products’ labels say they can repair damage caused by over-processing.  Why should you think twice? Most hair products that advertise the benefits of keratin don’t actually contain it or even specifically target the protein. To make matters worse, there is no evidence that keratin additives benefit hair health or growth.  As a result, ClassAction.com has filed a false advertising lawsuit against Matrix and L’Oreal, claiming their products do not contain keratin and therefore are unable to provide the benefits they advertise. If you have purchased keratin hair products made by these companies, contact us today to find out if you are owed money.

Hair-Smoothing Products with Formaldehyde

What are they? Hair-smoothing products are meant to control frizz and curls for an extended period of time; they often contain formaldehyde. The application process is usually done in a professional salon and requires heat from a flat-iron or blow dryer.  Why should you think twice?  When formaldehyde and related ingredients such as methylene glycol are heated, formaldehyde gas is released into the air, which can be hazardous to your health. The FDA and The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have issued warnings about Brazilian Blowout Acai Professional Smoothing Solution and Brasil Cacau Cadiveu, citing safety and labeling violations.  Exposure to formaldehyde can cause health problems such as headaches, dizziness, nausea, chest pain, respiratory-tract problems, eye irritation, rash, and more. The labeling violation letters allege that the product labels do not warn people of these potential harmful effects.  The FDA recommends avoiding products that contain formaldehyde, formalin, or methylene glycol, and to report any adverse reactions.

 

“Natural” Products that Contain Synthetic Ingredients

What are they? Due to increasing consumer demand, many brands are starting to create more “natural” products and trying to stay away from using synthetic and artificial ingredients.  Why should you think twice?  In recent years, certain brands have come under fire for labeling products as “natural” when in fact they contain synthetic and chemical ingredients. In 2016, Unilever settled a class action suit levied against its TRESemmé Naturals product line for $3.25 million and discontinued the line.  Another class action suit was filed in February 2017 against Procter & Gamble’s Herbal Essences Wild Naturals line for misleading labels and false advertising.  If you purchased a Babyganics, keratin, or other hair product and think you fell victim to false advertising, contact us for a free legal consultation. You could be eligible for a class action lawsuit.

 

WEN® by Chaz Dean

What is it? Founded by celebrity hair stylist Chaz Dean, WEN® is a line of sulfate-free hair care products. The WEN Cleansing Conditioner promises to clean, nourish, moisturize, detangle, and strengthen hair, all in one product and without the use of harsh sulfates. WEN’s website says it has sold over 40 million products since 2008.  Why should you think twice? In 2015, more than 200 women joined a class action lawsuit claiming that use of the WEN Cleansing Conditioner led to extreme hair loss, hair breakage, scalp irritation, and rash.  The lawsuit also alleged that WEN misled customers with deceptive marketing, and that the company blocked or removed negative comments and reviews from its website and social media pages.  WEN settled that lawsuit for more than $26 million. The FDA is currently investigating the cleansing conditioner and warns consumers to stop using the product if they experience any adverse reactions.

 

Babyganics

What is it? Babyganics is a Westbury, New York-based company that claims to sell baby-safe, organic household and childcare products (shampoos, lotions, wipes, detergents, etc.). It has grown rapidly over the past 15 years, generating $30 million in revenue in 2013 and securing a sale by SC Johnson in 2016.  Why should you think twice? Many parents allege that Babyganics products are not as organic or kid-friendly as they appear.  As a result, multiples lawsuits have been filed against Babyganics in recent years.  A class action suit filed by ClassAction.com alleges that Babyganics misled consumers through labeling that claimed certain bath products were “tear-free,” gentle, non-allergenic, and safe for infants—when in fact they contain substances that are eye irritants. Another class action lawsuit filed in September 2016 alleges that products labeled as “organic” or “mineral-free” actually contain ingredients that are neither.  One mother also claimed that Babyganics baby wipes caused her five-week-old baby to break out with a bumpy rash on his face.  PrMost serious of all, Theresa Jones alleges that Babyganics’ tear-free shampoo burned her son Hunter’s eyes, potentially causing serious and permanent damage.

Help for Those Who Suffered Chemical Burns, Allergic Reactions After Using ‘Just For Men’

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Contact Parker Waichman LLP today if you experience any of these symptoms after using Just For Men:

Swelling
Burning Sensation
Severe Itching
Blistering
Skin Rash
Weeping Sores
Scarring

Chemical Burns, Swelling, Itching

Even though Just For Men has been on the shelves since 1987, there have been a number of recent reports that the dye caused blisters, itching and chemical burns. Consumer Affairs highlights these painful experiences, citing one user who needed emergency medical care after applying the dye. “I applied the beard dye as detailed in the directions,” wrote Sean Brockton of Massachusetts in the Consumer Affairs comments section. “I had a burning sensation as well, and after rinsing it off, I thought I was fine. The next day, my face and neck had swollen up horribly. The following morning my skin had begun to weep as well, and I went to the ER. I was admitted immediately, as it looked horrible. They were concerned about my throat swelling shut. I am nearly 50 and do not have any allergies that I know of. Whatever is in this stuff is harsh. I needed steroids and Benadryl.” Customers who have been using the dye for years suspect that the formula has recently changed. J of Marietta, Georgia, wrote to Consumer Affairs that “I’ve been using it for over 10 years with no problems and in the past couple of weeks whenever I use it, there is a burning and itching. I’m going to switch to something less harsh,” According to Consumer Affairs, a company representative claims that the formula has not changed in recent years. That representative also said that users should do an allergy test before each application by testing a small patch on the inside bend of the elbow, allow it to dry, and examine it for a reaction over the next 48-hours.

Consumer Affairs points out that, based on the product label, it appears that the company knows that Just For Men can cause these symptoms. The warning reads “Rapidly spreading skin rash, dizziness, faintness, difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, tightness of chest, hives or swelling to eyes/face, blistering of skin or scalp weeping, seek immediate medical attention,” Ultimately, Consumer Affairs questioned whether or not this product is worth using if these are the risks.

Testing for Allergic Reactions

Just for Men users are advised to conduct an “allergy patch test” to determine if they will experience symptoms such as burning, itching, and painful blisters. The Just for Men website provides detailed instructions. A company representative told Consumer Affairs that it was important to perform this allergy test each time before the dye is used. This is necessary even for long-time users, the representative said, because the body chemistry may change at any time.

In the 48 hours following the test, users are told to look out for negative reactions such as stinging, burning, and/or rash. If these symptoms occur, users should stop using the dye and seek medical attention before attempting to color their hair again, the label reads. The warning says to seek immediate medical help if more serious symptoms occur, including a spreading skin rash, dizziness, faintness, difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, tightness of chest, hives or swelling to the eyes/face, blistering of skin, or scalp weeping.

As Consumer Affairs points out, it is interesting to note that the company expects the same negative symptoms reported by users. This indicates that the company knows about the potential dangers.

Testing for Allergic Reactions

Just for Men users are advised to conduct an “allergy patch test” to determine if they will experience symptoms such as burning, itching, and painful blisters. The Just for Men website provides detailed instructions. A company representative told Consumer Affairs that it was important to perform this allergy test each time before the dye is used. This is necessary even for long-time users, the representative said, because the body chemistry may change at any time.

In the 48 hours following the test, users are told to look out for negative reactions such as stinging, burning, and/or rash. If these symptoms occur, users should stop using the dye and seek medical attention before attempting to color their hair again, the label reads. The warning says to seek immediate medical help if more serious symptoms occur, including a spreading skin rash, dizziness, faintness, difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, tightness of chest, hives or swelling to the eyes/face, blistering of skin, or scalp weeping.

As Consumer Affairs points out, it is interesting to note that the company expects the same negative symptoms reported by users. This indicates that the company knows about the potential dangers.

Legal Help for Those Who Suffered Chemical Burns, Allergic Reactions After Using ‘Just For Men’

If you or a loved one suffered from pain, discomfort, chemical burns, swelling or any type of allergic reaction after using Just For Men, you may be eligible for compensation. To find out more about your legal rights, please fill out our online form to the right or call us today at 1(800) YOUR LAWYER (1-800-968-7529).

Revlon CEO rips blacks, Jews, hates ‘dirty’ Americans!

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Revlon CEO rips blacks, Jews, hates ‘dirty’ Americans!

The CEO of Revlon is a bigoted bully who hates “dirty” Americans, thinks Jews “stick together” and believes he can “smell” black people when they walk into a room, according to a new lawsuit.

The beauty company’s boss, Lorenzo Delpani, made the ugly comments after taking over in 2013, according to a discrimination suit filed by Revlon’s former top scientist, Alan Meyers, who says he was ostracized because of his Jewish heritage.

Delpani, a native of Italy, told Meyers he was “shocked” there weren’t more Jews at the company because the biggest shareholder is Ron Perelman, a prominent Jewish American, according to the suit.

“Jews stick together,” Delpani quipped. He also allegedly added that “thankfully,” Perelman “is not like that anymore.”

Delpani also said that he hates living among Americans, whom he called “small-minded” and “dirty,” and that he can’t wait to get back to a “real” country, according to court papers filed this week.

He later allegedly went on an “anti-American tirade” in which he said the US is getting closer to being like ISIS.

Meyers also claims Delpani made a racist comment after a meeting in South Africa, when he said he “could smell a black person when he entered a room.”

Meyers says Delpani had it out for him for having red-flagged safety issues in the production and manufacturing process.

Meyers claims he was concerned that several labs were not equipped to adequately test raw materials to satisfy Revlon’s safety standards.

Meyers, 56, who joined Revlon in 2010, was fired last month after he complained about the issues and his treatment, the lawsuit says.

Revlon spokeswoman Kiki Rees on Wednesday said Meyers was a disgruntled employee who did not perform up to company standards.

“Mr. Meyers repeatedly demonstrated critical lapses in judgment and failed to perform at the high standard we demand of our employees,” Rees said.

In the suit, Meyers claims Delpani’s tirades and tormenting eventually became outright bullying.

Meyers described one incident in October, when he allegedly was forced by Delpani to act as a human easel during a high-level meeting.

Meyers says he was instructed to hold a whiteboard, which covered his entire upper torso and head, for approximately 30 minutes.

He saw this as a demeaning gesture, he says, especially since he was supposed to be part of the leadership team.

Stress from the ordeal forced Meyers into the hospital with chest pains, the lawsuit says. He said he was fired on Dec. 10.

In his suit, he is demanding unspecified punitive and compensatory damages.

Attorneys for Meyers were unavailable Wednesday for comment.

No More Cocamide DEA

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Colgate–Palmolive & Lush join two dozen cosmetics manufacturers and retailers to stop the use of the chemical cocamide DEA from shampoos and other personal care products. 

You can clean your hair with just about anything.   But if you want a rich creamy foam to make it an enjoyable experience, there is one ingredient that you really must have.  Any good formulator will tell you that for a decent shampoo you really need to have a fair slug of cocamide DEA in it.  Nothing quite matches the performance this surfactant gives.   Consequently it has been one of the major ingredients in mass market and specialist shampoos and washes for years.

It came under a cloud in the nineties following suggestions that some impurities in it could, under the right circumstances react with other chemicals to form nitrosamines, some of which are carcinogenic.  Given that nitrosamines are all over the place from plenty of other sources, worrying about them in cosmetics seemed a bit precious.  For example they are created by the lightning in thunderstorms.  They are also commonly found in  food such as cured meat and whole meal peanut butter.  But nonetheless the EU cosmetic regulations were duly amended to limit the impurities and to forbid the use of Cocamide DEA with the ingredients it might react with. So belt and braces there.

And that you would have thought was the end of it.  A highly theoretical risk was identified and responded to with a heavy handed and probably unnecessary regulation.

No such luck.  With an actual link, albeit a highly tenuous one, between a cosmetic ingredient and an actual carcinogen it was only a matter of time before scaremongers got hold of it.  Cocamide DEA has been added to the list of chemicals that should be avoided by all the usual organization’s, websites  and manufacturers of high margin green products who trade on this kind of thing.

The latest wheeze is to threaten companies using this completely safe and legal material with court action.  Given that a court hearing would be bad publicity for the companies involved whatever the outcome, you can see why they caved in.

It is a shame, especially as the groups behind this kind of campaign have negligible levels of public support.  They would have little chance of using consumer pressure to force mass market brands to switch to inferior ingredients directly.  This is presumably why they have switched to litigation.

Read More: A cosmetic scientist’s beauty science blog where he shares his news and views on beauty products and the science behind them

 

 

 

Judge Rejects ‘Unfair’ L’Oréal Hair Product Class Action Settlement! Greed to the Lawyers!!!!!

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A federal judge on Wednesday refused to grant final approval to a class action settlement over claims that L’Oréal USA Inc. included misleading labels on some of its hair products, finding that the proposed settlement was not fair to the majority of Class Members.

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Plaintiff Alexis Richardson initially filed the class action lawsuit in April, alleging that L’Oréal marketed some of its high-end hair products as “available only in salons,” even though they were sold in stores such as Target, Walgreens and other retail stores. Richardson argued that this labeling implies a superior quality product that allows L’Oréal to charge a premium price.

The L’Oréal hair product class action settlement was preliminarily approved on June 27, 2013. Under the terms of the proposed class action settlement, L’Oréal would be barred from marketing its products as “salon-only.” The proposed class action settlement did not offer Class Members any monetary award and precluded them from filing another class action lawsuit seeking monetary damages from L’Oréal in the future. Several Class Members filed objections to the class action settlement, arguing that the terms were unfair.

U.S. District Judge John Bates agreed with the objections, finding that the L’Oréal class action settlement would pay the attorneys for earning Class Members only a “limited” benefit. Judge Bates found that the class action settlement was unfair because the attorneys would be compensated while the majority of Class Members would not receive a monetary award, and consumers would be prohibited from seeking damages as a class, even if they had previously been unaware about this class action settlement.

“The settlement provides no monetary relief while rewarding counsel handsomely,” Judge Bates said in his Nov. 6 decision. “Moreover, the result achieved here could be characterized as worse than ‘settling’: Counsel seeks to release class members’ originally asserted classwide damages claims for precisely nothing. Regardless of the implications for calculating attorneys’ fees, the amount requested by plaintiffs and agreed to by L’Oréal creates the impression of unfairness.”

The L’Oréal hair product class action lawsuit initially sought monetary damages, but the claim was dropped during the settlement negotiations. While the class action settlement released L’Oréal from all future class action lawsuits related to the “salon-only” marketing issue, it did not release the company from individual actions.

Judge Bates found that the probability of a small monetary reward would prevent individuals from taking legal action against L’Oréal. Further, the class action settlement would essentially bar individuals who were unaware of the class action lawsuit from seeking monetary damages.

“It does not comport with due process to bind a plaintiff who is not before a court, and who is perhaps even unaware of a judgment, as to money damages claims, without notifying her of the suit and giving her a chance to opt out,” Judge Bates said. “Otherwise, that plaintiff might be surprised to learn that someone else has bargained away her damages claim without her knowing about it or having any say in it.”