Three women in California have filed a class-action lawsuit against the beauty company L’Oréal after using the company’s SoftSheen-Carson Optimum Amla Legend relaxer. After using the product, Sharon Manier, Dorothy Riles and Lakeytra Nero claimed they suffered from severe scalp burns and balding.
The company claims the product is safe and healthy for hair use because the product uses Indian fruit oil amla instead of lye. In general, the company has said that it provides “the safest and most effective” products for its customers.
Dorothy Riles, one of the plaintiffs in the suit, claimed that after using the Amla relaxer, she experienced burns and scabs on her scalp and was left with several bald patches.
Lori Feldman, an attorney representing the plaintiffs, stated that the product is made of harmful ingredients.
“The ingredients in the product are very harmful,” Feldman told Buzzfeed. “This product is advertised as having Amla oil that will help, but it’s trumped many times over by very harmful toxic chemicals.”
According to the suit, filed by Mark Geragos, the product “contains hardly any Amla oil at all. The true ingredients in the Amla Relaxer are a dangerous mix of irritants and potentially toxic chemicals.”
In addition to the three women who filed that lawsuit, additional users have left online reviews for the product and claim to have had similar results.
A user named Chelsea claimed on Amazon that the product also left her burned and bald.
“My hair is falling out! It left really bad chemical burns on my scalp,” wrote Chelsea. “My hair is forever damaged! This is the worst hair product I've ever used. I can't even run my fingers through my head without [having] a hand of hair afterwards.”
Matthew DiGirolamo, L’Oréal spokesperson, believes that the lawsuit is built on baseless claims.
“We do not believe the allegations in this lawsuit have merit,” DiGirolamo said. “For more than 100 years, L’Oréal has been committed to the safety of its consumers.”
The company has used many famous faces to stand behind their products in the past. In 2013, celebs such as Real Housewives of Atlanta star Cynthia Bailey, Tracee Ellis Ross and even Michelle Obama's hairstylist attended the Optimum Salon Haircare AMLA Legend product launch.