Cindy Crawford’s Beauty Business Accused Of Causing Nasty Side Effects

"Meaningful Beauty" customers complain about fraudulent charges and painful rashes

Cindy Crawford is the face of "Meaningful Beauty" — REUTERS
Jan 21, 2016 at 11:34 AM ET

Customer complaints about Cindy Crawford’s line of beauty products “Meaningful Beauty,” accuse the company of fraud and allege that these cosmetics have potentially harmful side-effects—and it’s nothing new. Years of online backlash show the company may be operating with impunity.

I am writing this review with eyes that are almost swollen shut, burning and itching,” one anonymous user wrote last week about Meaningful Beauty moisturizer on PissedConsumer.com. Cindy Crawford’s cosmetics have an unusually nefarious reputation on the site, with over 855 reviews including complaints of allergic reactions, questionable ingredients and credit card fraud. These dissatisfied consumers aren’t alone. The company’s Facebook page is littered with similar outrage. “It [the product] burned a place on my face that is still there five years later,” Facebook user Tammy Shaw commented earlier this month.

Since the products are sold primarily through infomercials, consumers often contact the company to ask about ingredients rather than relying on salespeople. The comment sections of various beauty blogs are littered with complaints about the misleading ingredient descriptions. “When I initially ordered Meaningful Beauty, I asked if it had sulphates, I was told no,” wrote a reader called Brenda. “On receiving the order this is what the cleanser contains: Sodium Laureth Sulphate, Sodium Lareth B Sulfate, Magnesium Laureth d-Sulfate, Sodium Oleth Sulfate, Magnesium Oleth Sulfate…lets just add fertilizer to the mix!”

Across the web, countless comments complain about fraudulent charges to their credit cards. Product Amazon reviews are filled with warnings. The company’s customer service provider, Guthy-Renker, also manages other infomercial products like Proactiv and WEN Haircar. Despite a 2014 lawsuit, when a Proactiv customer in California says she was “charged an additional $347.68 for Meaningful Beauty products she neither ordered nor received,” online beauty blogs and forums are still flooded with complaints about fraudulent charges for both unwanted Meaningful Beauty products and purchased products that never arrived. Vocativ reached out to the company for comment, but received no response.