You Could Get $50 From This Lawsuit If You Bought Honest Company Detergent
The Honest Company believes in “clean without compromise.” At least according to its website.
But a lawsuit filed against the company suggests Honest has not been honest with its customers. The suit accuses the company of using chemical ingredients it swore never to use.
The company — made famous by its co-founder, actress Jessica Alba, and its promise to stay clear of potentially harmful chemicals that are common in mainstream household products — has reached a settlement after nearly two years of litigation.
Honest will pay $1.55 million to settle the national false advertising class-action lawsuit.
According to CNN Money, customers who bought the detergent but didn’t hold on to receipts could qualify for up to $50. But those who held on to receipts that prove they spent more could be paid more.
The Dishonest Company?
Despite agreeing to the million-dollar settlement, Honest says it has, indeed, been honest. (OK, I’m done with the “Honest” puns. Honest.)
“We vigorously deny any and all allegations alleged in the lawsuit — specifically that any of our cleaning products contain SLS,” spokeswoman Karen Richman said in a statement to CNN Money. “However, given the fact that continued litigation could be protracted and expensive, we have settled this lawsuit to limit further costs and distraction to our business.”
Despite that denial, an investigation by The Wall Street Journal based on two independent chemical analyses of the the company’s laundry detergent found that SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) is included in its detergent.
Representatives for the company and its manufacturer told the WSJ that no SLS was added to the product and that it used sodium coco sulfate (SCS) instead. Honest says SCS is a milder alternative to SLS, which, in concentrated amounts, can cause skin irritation.
“More than a dozen scientists interviewed by the Journal said SCS, which is made from palm or coconut oil, is a mixture of various cleaning agents that includes a significant amount of SLS,” the WSJ reported.
Although Honest said the settlement is not an admission of wrongdoing, it did agree to change its formula.
The settlement still needs to be approved by a judge before you can get paid. Of course, when that happens we’ll update you about how you can claim your payout.
See which products are included in this class-action lawsuit.
Desiree Stennett (@desi_stennett) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She’s doesn’t qualify for this class-action lawsuit.