LONDON — Lashify, a Los Angeles-based premium eyelash maker, filed a lawsuit in Qingdao, China, on Monday against Qingdao Hollyren Cosmetics Co., Ltd., one of the biggest Chinese manufacturers of eyelash products, to protect its intellectual property and to stop what Lashify claims are Hollyren’s unauthorized reproductions of the U.S. brand’s DIY lash extension products, including its proprietary application wand.
According to a civil complaint letter seen by WWD, Lashify also demands that Hollyren destroy molding for manufacturing and existing inventory of the patented design, compensate 300,000 renminbi, or $41,843, for Lashify’s loss, and pay for the costs of the lawsuit.
“Hollyren is selling Lashify’s patented wand to unsuspecting American companies,” said Sahara Lotti, founder and chief executive officer of Lashify. “We are filing this lawsuit not only to stop Hollyren from unlawfully using our creation, but to alert other companies that doing business with Hollyren is not worth the jeopardy it puts you in.”
This marks the first time that an American female-owned beauty brand has taken legal action against a manufacturer within the Chinese legal system, as Lashify holds a patent for the application wand in the country.
“I took legal steps to secure the appropriate patents and trademarks, both in the United States and elsewhere. This was a necessary protective step, considering some of the drugstore brands get into legal battles over infringement,” Lotti added.
“This industry thrives and grows only within a climate that inspires and nurtures innovation in beauty. People will take fewer risks to pursue their ideas if they believe it’s only a matter of time before a big company swoops in and takes it. This is something that needs to be addressed, and it’s long overdue,” she added.