The brand, which is estimated to have made more than $100m in sales, mainly off the back of successful QVC commercials, is marketed as a sulphate free cleansing conditioner, and an alternative to shampoo that is particularly kind to the scalp and hair.
However, in the lawsuit, the women claim to have had adverse reactions to the hair care line, which has invariably resulted in scalp irritation and loss of hair, leading to unsightly balding patches.
Litigation began last year and has snowballed
The litigation process began in July 2014 when a Florida woman named Amy Friedman first filed a class action lawsuit claiming that the Wen cleansing conditioner she purchased caused her hair to start falling out two weeks after she started using it.
In that initial lawsuit, Friedman also disputes Guthy-Renker claims citing a “3-week study of users of WEN Cleansing Conditioner,” in which “100% said hair was more moisturized, 97% notice that WEN added more shine, and 95% reported that hair became more manageable.”
Since then the litigation against the brand has snowballed, resulting in the current mass lawsuit, which has been widely reported on across more than half a dozen major news outlets and is causing considerable damage to the brand.
Wen disputes claims, says no scientific evidence
In an official press statement, a Wen spokesman stressed that more than 10 million hair care products have been shipped since 2008 and that the product has so far received an ‘overwhelmingly’ positive response.
The company has taken to strongly defending its marketing claims, as well as the integrity and safety of the brand, and the brand spokesperson backed that up with this statement:
“There is no scientific evidence whatsoever to support any claim that our hair care products caused anyone to lose their hair. There are many reasons why individuals may lose their hair, all unrelated to WEN hair care products. We intend to vigorously contest the allegations made against our products,” the spokesperson stated.