Eye Cosmetics Can Do More Harm than Good: Rodan + Fields Lawsuit

Closed Eyes

Society today is so focused on beauty and driven to achieve it at any cost.

Whether it is superficial or medically altered, it seems that there are often uncalculated or undisclosed risks that are associated with achieving beauty. One of the most recent examples of the risk of beauty is the class action lawsuit that has been filed against Rodan + Fields, the skincare company, for violation of consumer protection laws and fraudulent, unfair marketing of one of their products.

Lash Boost eye serum is the product being brought to court due to the fact that Rodan + Fields failed to disclose the side effects of one of the ingredients. Rodan + Fields says that Lash Boost gives users “the appearance of lush, longer-looking lashes” but did not disclose the side effects of one of the key ingredients; isopropyl cloprostenate. This ingredient is a type of medication called prostaglandin analog, which is often used to treat eye conditions like glaucoma. The basis of the class action lawsuit is that Rodan + Fields failed to disclose the side effects of prostaglandin analogs to their customers. Eye doctors are well-aware of the Rodan + Fields Lash Boost side effects that have been experienced such as changes in iris color, eyelid drooping, itchy eyes, eye/lid discoloration, thinning and loss of eyelashes, eye sensitivity, eye infections and vision impairment.

Another product on the market, Latisse by Allergan, contains prostaglandin analog and is the only Food and Drug Administration-approved medication for “lash enhancement”. Although, Allergan fully discloses the side effects of their product for their consumers. Rodan + Fields face a less severe outcome due to the fact that their product is marketed as a cosmetic rather than a medication, which requires approval from the FDA prior to being sold to the public.  Cosmetic products face far less scrutiny and regulations than medications, but prostaglandin analogs have been banned from cosmetics in Canada. While still US companies are still permitted to use them, the side effects must be fully disclosed in accordance with state consumer protection laws.

The class-action lawsuit seeks compensation for consumers that have purchased and used Lash Boost. However, Rodan + Fields have denied any wrongdoing and claim that the plaintiffs were comparing Lash Boost to unrelated products and Lash Boost has been consistently marketed as a cosmetic product, which may cause irritation in some users. The product has clear directions for users to follow, including instructions for those who experience irritations. Rodan + Fields have elected to go to trial and let the specifics of their legal defense play out in court.

Generating more than $1.7 billion in sales for 2017, Rodan + Fields is one of the top cosmetic companies in the country.

Lash Boost brought in nearly $200 million in sales for the company in 2017. This lawsuit could potentially cost Rodan + Fields a large sum of money, depending on the outcome.

It is always best to consult with your eye doctor before trying new cosmetics or products. Your vision is precious and at the end of the day is it really worth the cost of “beauty”?

Always read the side effects of any new products that you choose to use and seek medical help right away if conditions occur.

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