Danish Group Files Suit Versus L’Oréal

PARIS — The Danish Consumer Council has filed a lawsuit against L’Oréal over one of its hair coloring products.

The council is taking the French cosmetics giant to court after receiving a complaint from a Danish woman who claimed to have developed eczema and itching of the scalp after coloring her hair with L’Oréal Excellence Crème.

A spokesman from the French beauty giant refused to comment on the case.

This is not the first time L’Oréal has been sued for damages allegedly caused by its hair dyes: The Council says it has registered 38 cases in Denmark connected to the brand’s hair coloring products.

The L’Oréal spokesman emphasized that “customer safety remains the number-one priority” for the company, and that all its hair color products comply with the European Union’s strict regulations on such items.

The Danish Consumer Council, however, would like to see those regulations tightened; it is calling on the European Union to ban all dangerous substances in hair-dye products.

“[These products] contain a vast number of different chemical substances, many of which are not regulated, that is, their effects on human beings have been far from clarified,” said Sonny Kristoffersen, the council’s senior legal adviser for consumers’ test cases.

Kristoffersen said products should include warnings about such substances, as well as what percentage of substances they contain.

The spokesman at L’Oréal said the company started placing warnings on the packaging of its hair dyes last year, reenforcing those already contained in the  inside instruction leaflets.
— Jennifer Joan Lee


Hain Acquires Zia Cosmetics

NEW YORK — The Hain Celestial Group is continuing its efforts to become a natural beauty powerhouse with the acquisition of Zia Cosmetics Inc.,  the company announced Wednesday.

Zia, a 20-year-old natural beauty company, based in San Francisco, reported 2004 annual sales of less than $10 million, which were generated by its line of moisturizers, cleansers and color cosmetics under the Zia Natural Skincare brand. Zia products are sold in natural food retailers such as Whole Foods and Wild Oats.

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