On Friday, three women filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan against the Maybelline unit of L’Oreal SA for false advertising over the ‘staying power’ of the Super Stay 14HR Lipstick and the Super Stay 10HR Stain Gloss wear.
The women, Carol Leebove, Wanda Santa and Denise Santiago accuse that despite advertising claims to the contrary, the lipstick and stain gloss wear off only after a few hours. The complainants say Maybelline misled consumers by making false claims that their lip gloss “stays vibrant and shiny, yet transparent, and won’t fade” for 10 hours and that the lipstick has “super staying power.”
Obviously, ‘staying power’ is a crucial consideration, and blatant false claims in this respect was bound to cause outrage, and it has. The lawsuit against Maybelline alleges violations of state consumer protection laws and seeks class-action status. The complaint also alleges breach of warranty and asks for compensatory and triple damages amongst other reliefs.
A spokeswoman for L’Oreal USA told the media that the company has not yet received the complaint, and she could not discuss ongoing litigation according to company policy.
Among the plaintiffs, Leebove lives in Michigan, Santa in New York, and Santiago in New Jersey. Among the defendants in the lawsuit, Maybelline is based in New York, while L’Oreal is based in Clicy, France, which is a suburb of Paris.
This case may prove quite interesting as the 10HR and 14HR tags in the product labels claiming extraordinary staying power, is difficult to explain away as anything but clear indications of time-periods for which the products should remain effective.