Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Olaplex just beat L'Oreal USA in a lawsuit, and it's important

Have you ever heard of Olaplex? It's a fairly new brand that launched in June of 2014. Olaplex is a bond builder. They have created a two step system that starts with a serum that your hairstylist puts directly into the color or lightener they use on your hair. According to their website, Olaplex No.1 "rebuilds broken disulfide bonds and begins the process of preventing damage and repairing hair." After using this on you, your stylist is supposed to apply a second step, after they shampoo your hair that "continues to rebuild and restore any remaining broken bonds ensuring the strongest, shiniest, and healthiest hair possible." They have now expanded the line to include an at home treatment (No.3) as well as shampoo, conditioner and styling aids.

Olaplex has swept the nation in the last five years, getting noticed by so many magazines, blogs and beauty gurus I couldn't even begin to list them all! You can see a sampling of their press reviews by clicking here.  On top of that many influencers and celebrities credit their healthy hair to Olaplex and use it religiously. Some of them being Kim and Khloe Kardashian, Kylie Jenner, Drew Barrymore and Julianne Hough, just to name a few.

Hair stylists (like myself) have fallen for this brand. Why? Because it works. When I first heard about it I was a HUGE skeptic. But the proof is in the pudding. I work at a salon where I use Olaplex in every lightening service I do to protect my client's hair, because the hair's health is my number one priority always. And in the age of platinum icy white blondes, and silver gray trends, this product is a Godsend.

Another reason I love Olaplex? It is a small grass roots company, developed by two top notch chemists in a garage, who just wanted to solve a problem. They wanted to help stylists be able to transform hair, without damaging it. YEARS of trial and error, R&D, a sweat went into this product. It was developed in California and is still made in America today.

But just like all successful things, knock offs were sure to come. Soon every brand had their own bond builder that they were promoting. Many saying that while Olaplex may have been the first, they improved upon the technology. L'Oreal USA launched several competitors within their various brands as well. I began using some of the various competitors, and while I some seemed to work in the beginning they did not have the longevity of Olaplex.

But the L'Oreal choices did work, and even looked the same as Olaplex. It was a little too similar if you know what I mean. Olaplex began a long and arduous lawsuit against the world's largest beauty company as soon as they launched their version various brands. And recently Olaplex won! In both the UK and USA, Olaplex has won a lawsuit against L'Oreal for patent infringement. Now you can no longer purchase the first step color and lightener additives made by L'Oreal in the United States or the United Kingdom, including L'Oreal Professional SmartBond, Redken pH Bonder, and Matrix Bond Ultim8.

However L'Oreal isn't letting this stop them. They have pulled the products (as they are legally required to) but are publicly vocalizing their intentions to appeal and put their products back on the shelves. Olaplex has a very strong case against L'Oreal, but L'Oreal has resources and an enormous amount of cash flow. Olaplex has given examples of L'Oreal filing motions, so that Olaplex has to spend time and money paying lawyers to research and defend against those motions, only to have L'Oreal withdraw the motion at the last minute, wasting Olaplex's time and resources. Even if Olaplex has a very strong case, L'Oreal could easily spend them into bankruptcy. To put it plainly, L'Oreal is playing dirty.

Why is this important?

We can not support companies like this. We must work together to spend our money on companies who make ethical choices. Remember when Kylie Jenner was accused of knocking off Vlada MUA's dripping lip art for her packaging? People began to boycott Kylie Cosmetics for hurting another artists business by not properly crediting or paying them. So why would we not do the same to L'Oreal when they are trying to bankrupt an small company and steal their technology?

What can you do?

Don't support L'Oreal. It can be tricky, because this multifaceted beauty conglomerate has several companies under it's umbrella. But you CAN choose to make the switch and do better. Go to LOreal.com and click "brands" to see a full list of what they own, but I am going to list a few of their most popular brands.


  • NYX Professional Makeup
  • Maybeline New York
  • L'Oreal Paris
  • Garnier
  • Kerastase 
  • Pureology
  • Pulp Riot
  • Redken
  • Biolage 
  • Lancome
  • Matrix
  • Ralph Lauren
  • Keihl's
  • Clarisonic

You can also use your social media influence to contact the company directly. Tweet at L'Oreal. Comment on their Instagram Posts, and their facebook posts. Let them know you want them to stop litigation against Olaplex. You can also share this article to get the word out.

Buy Olaplex products! They are very high quality and you will not regret it! And giving the company your business is important! It will help them fund their lawsuit, and it will show them that they have loyal fans in their corner.

Ask your stylist if they use Olaplex, or another bond builder. Make sure they aren't using a competitor from L'Oreal. Even if they use something that isn't Olaplex, that is okay. I personally prefer Olaplex, but other stylists may like the results they get without it, or with other bond builders. But I'd recommend you try to encourage your stylist to not use the items that are being pulled from shelves.

In the end, money talks. And if we put our money where our mouths are, it can make a huge difference.

Sources:
THE FASHION LAW: L'Oreal USA Must Permanently Pull 9 Infringing Haircare Products From Shelves in Olaplex Case
OLAPLEX BLOG: Legal Update: Olaplex Patent Litigation Victory
LA TIMES: L’Oreal owes Olaplex $91 million for stealing trade secrets
LOREAL.COM 

This is hard for me, because I personally use Matrix in my salon, and I have a lot of love for some of their products. But I am choosing to eliminate L'Oreal products in my life where I can, and move away from a giant conglomerate that has proven time and time again that it doesn't have our best interest at heart.

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-Angela ♥