Hailey Bieber Sued For Trademark Infringement Following Skincare Line Launch
Hailey Bieber has been sued for trademark infringement by RHODE after she launched a skincare line with the same name, which is also her middle name.
The fashion company’s co-founders, Purna Khatau and Phoebe Vickers, filed a suit against the model in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on Tuesday.
People Magazine reports that Khatau claims in the filing that she and Vickers founded the business in May 2013 and have since “dedicated ourselves to growing and nurturing the RHODE brand through much personal sacrifice and hardship.”
RHODE is sold in luxury stores, including Saks Fith Avenue and Neiman Marcus, and has been worn by a long list of celebrities like Beyonce and Rihanna.
Several popular apparel and accessory items have the RHODE trademark, which Khatau and Vickers own. According to Khatau, they have also submitted applications to grow into other markets, such as home goods, and they are thinking about doing the same with cosmetics and skincare.
Earlier this month, when Bieber debuted her Rhode skincare line, Khatau claims that she and Vickers noticed “confusion in the marketplace,” which has already harmed their company.
The lawsuit also alleges that Instagram first promised the @rhode handle to them, but ” Instagram decided to allow Ms. Bieber to use it even though it had no posts until June 8, 2022.”
As it was “dormant per Instagram regulations, after initially giving it to us, Instagram chose to allow Ms. Bieber to use it even though it had no postings until June 8, 2022.”
A shared Instagram post with Justin Bieber’s personal account, which has more than 45 million followers, is also mentioned in the complaint. At the time of the filing, the post had received more than 600,000 likes.
According to the lawsuit, while sharing pictures of famous celebrities wearing the plaintiffs’ apparel brand, consumers have instead referenced Hailey’s @rhode Instagram account rather than the official @shoprhode account.
“We have real concerns about the future,” Khatau says in the lawsuit. “We put blood, sweat, and tears into this brand for years … It is disappointing to me that an entrepreneurial woman, whom we’ve long been fans of, is trying to stifle what we have built.”
According to court filings, Vickers and Khatau requested a preliminary injunction directing Hailey to stop using the name “rhode” for her brand. The two also ask that she modify the name of her skincare business to avoid further misunderstanding, according to a statement provided to People.
“The brand Rhode is everything we have worked hard to achieve, and her using our name is hurting our company, our employees, our customers, and our partners,” they said in the statement.
The co-founders said Hailey attempted to buy the rights to the name from them four years ago, but they declined.