More than 21,000 complaints have been received against Wen Hair Care sold by Hollywood hairstylist Chaz Dean. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is investigating claims that range from bald spots to large chunks of hair falling out to complete and total baldness in consumers using Wen hair care products.
There is a movement by several members of Congress to increase the powers of the FDA to actively test ingredients in beauty products and recall those products deemed unsafe. The multi-billion dollar cosmetics industry is currently largely unregulated.
When popular celebrities such as Alyssa Milano, Brooke Shields, and Angie Harmon, endorse Wen products by appearing in televised infomercials, the belief tends to be that the product is safe and effective.
A class-action lawsuit has been filed against Chaz Dean, along the Wen’s distributor, Guethy-Renker. One consumer described that her scalp “tingled” when the hair product was applied. She did not immediately notice a serious problem until she looked at the drain in her bathtub and found it was clogged with chunks of her hair. The woman noticed that when she brushed her hair, she alleged it would come right out of her head and bald spots were appearing on her scalp. Her scalp would itch, and when she scratched it, the hair would rip out from the root, the mother-of-two remarked.
Bobbi Russell is a certified clinical trichologist from Hair Therapy for Women in Tampa, Florida. She said that it is a positive step that Congress is trying to get tougher laws passed to give the FDA more power to issue mandatory recalls on products found to be unsafe. She noted that 21,000 claims against Wen are a lot, so there is obviously a problem.
Ms. Russell hopes that consumers will become more educated and informed about the products they use daily and the effects those products have on their bodies. Skin is the largest organ of the body and consumers need to know exactly what is being put on the skin and in the case of Wen, on the scalp.