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Chaz Dean, NYT August 15, 2016

Chaz Dean, NYT August 15, 2016

Women’s Health Litigation, August 22, 2016 ~  Women Offered $26 Million to Settle WEN Haircare Product Complaints

What’s Wrong with Wen?

A yet unapproved settlement has been offered to settle reports of hair loss and breakage reportedly related to the WEN line of hair products.

WEN allegations, Consumer Reports

WEN allegations, Consumer Reports

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reports on the WEN hair care line by celebrity stylist Chaz Dean.  In July, the agency reports it had taken in 127 consumer reports of a similar nature naming WEN alleging the product caused hair loss, breakage, itching,balding and rashes.  

Chaz Dean, Inc. and Gunthy Renker, LLC, the Santa Monica-based company which markets and distributes WEN products have reportedly received more than 21,000 complaints.

fromSchmidt Law

from Schmidt Law

Schmidt law reports no one knows why there have been so many cases of hair loss.  Consider that WEN Cleansing Condition is a 5-in-1 product. That means it takes the place of a shampoo, a conditioner, a deep conditioner, detangler and a leave-in conditioner.

The problem may be that the product is never fully removed from the scalp because it contains no suds or cleanser. Another theory is that the combination of ingredients create a chemical reaction that damages the hair.

As is often the case, Plaintiffs argue that the Defendant failed to warn about the potential downsides of its product.

A copy of a lawsuit filed in Texas (here) in March 2015 now represents more than 200 women.

Another lawsuit was filed against Guthy-Renker in California in July 2014 in a Class Action Complaint.

Hair care products, cosmetics and vitamins represent a largely unregulated area of consumer products under the FDA. 

A $26.25 Million Settlement

As of last week, Schmidt law announced consumers could be eligible for a portion of the proposed $26.25 million class action lawsuit settlement offered by Guthy-Renker. At this writing, the proposed settlement (here)  is still not approved by a federal judge.

The New York Times writes more about this grey area of regulation and proposals to make it stronger in this August 15, 2016 article, “Their Hair Fell Out. Should the F.D.A. Have the Power to Act?.”

It would also provide a $25 cash payment to anyone who has ever purchased a WEN product, regardless of whether she has had a problem

On a separate topic – Women’s Voices for the Earth has more on hair care products that contain formaldehyde.

How To Make a Complaint to the FDA

Healthcare professionals and consumers are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA’s MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:

  • Complete and submit the report Online: www.fda.gov/MedWatch/report
  • Download form or call 1-800-332-1088 to request a reporting form, then complete and return to the address on the pre-addressed form, or submit by fax to 1-800-FDA-0178Include information on:
  • A case description of the adverse events, including the specific cleansing conditioner products the patient used, how long he or she used the cleansing conditioner products, and how long he or she kept the product in his or her hair. (Specific product labeling would be helpful.)
  • The autoimmune status of the patient.
  • Relevant laboratory and biopsy results.
  • Concomitant medication and cosmetic use.More from the FDA 

[07/19/2016 – Statement – FDA] 
[07/19/2016 – Dear Health Care Provider Letter – FDA] 
[07/19/2016 – FDA Information for Consumers About WEN by Chaz Dean Cleansing Conditioners – FDA]
[07/19/2016 – FDA Authority Over Cosmetics – FDA] 

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