California Court of Appeals, Second District, Third Division
FOR PARTIAL PUBLICATION[*]]
from a judgment of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County
No. BC501173, William F. Highberger, Judge.
[Copyrighted Material Omitted]
Law Group, Erica E. Hayward; The Rudd Law Firm, Christopher
L. Rudd; Whitfield Bryson & Mason, Gary E. Mason and
Esfand Y. Nafisi for Plaintiffs and Appellants Mary Restaino,
Geoffrey Yu, Theresa Stern Valentic, Betty Huang and Zoe
Offices of Ronald A. Marron, Ronald A. Marron, Skye Resendes;
and C. Benjamin Nutley for Plaintiff and Appellant Donna
Office of Young W. Ryu, Young W. Ryu; Law Offices of Gerald
S. Ohn and Gerald S. Ohn for Plaintiffs and Respondents.
Ellis, Ronie M. Schmelz and Rebecca A. Lefler for Defendants
Lee and Wankyu Choi sued Mario Badescu Skin Care, Inc. and
Mario Badescu for marketing and labeling two face creams
without disclosing all of the ingredients. Plaintiffs sought
economic damages and equitable relief on behalf of themselves
and a nationwide class of face cream purchasers. Before the
class was certified, defendants agreed to settle the action.
Nine class members, who timely objected, appeal raising
numerous contentions. In the unpublished portion of this
opinion, we hold that the objectors have not demonstrated
error. In the published portion of this opinion, we hold that
the one-time publication of the notice of settlement did not
violate the Consumers Legal Remedies Act (Civ. Code, §
1750 et seq. (CLRA)). Accordingly, we affirm the judgment.
AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
December 2012, the Korean Ministry of Food and Drug Safety
suspended the sales of defendants’ Healing Cream after
testing revealed the product contained two unlabeled
corticosteroids, hydrocortisone and triamcinolone acetonide.
The recall advised consumers to cease using the cream and
warned that long-term use of steroids could lead to skin
atrophy and enlarged capillaries.
Lee and Choi (together plaintiffs, the named plaintiffs, or
class representatives) purchased defendants’ Healing
Cream and used it. Their attorneys had the purchased
creams tested by an independent laboratory and discovered the
presence of 2610 µg/g of hydrocortisone and 1899
µg/g of triamcinolone acetonide. The named plaintiffs
filed this consumer class action against defendants on behalf
of all persons residing in the United States who purchased
defendants’ Healing Cream.
operative complaint alleged that defendants represented
through marketing, advertising, labeling, and other forms of
promotion, that the Healing Cream prevented acne scars and
speeded up the healing process for irritated or acne-erupted
skin,  but “failed to disclose that
[defendants’] Healing Cream products contain levels of
Hydrocortisone and Triamcinolone Acetonide, which are steroid
substances with serious side effects. [¶]... [¶]
Triamcinolone is a synthetic corticosteroid
used to treat various skin conditions.... Triamcinolone
Acetonide... is a DOCTOR’S PRESCRIPTION
ONLY medicated cream....” The complaint
alleged that the class overpaid for the product because its
value was diminished at the time it was sold to consumers.
Had the class members been aware that the cream contained
hydrocortisone and triamcinolone acetonide, they would not
have purchased the product, would have paid less for it, or
would have purchased another competing product.
complaint asserted causes of action for violation of the
CLRA; fraudulent concealment; false advertising in violation
of Business and Professions Code section 17500, all of which
violated Business and Professions Code section 17200; breach
of express and implied warranties;
and false and misleading advertisement in violation of the
Magnuson-Moss Warranty —Federal Trade Commission
Improvement Act (15 U.S.C. § 2301 et seq.). Plaintiffs
sought an order certifying a nationwide class and a
California subclass, and sought injunctive relief,
restitution, monetary damages, punitive damages, and attorney
fees. Defendants stopped selling the creams after the
complaint was filed.