OPI Update

First off, a million thanks to my friend and her husband for getting a copy of the complaint to me.

So all the drama that went down can be found below. The information below is from the actual complaint, so this is not my speculation, but the real court filed documents:

In the complaint OPI alleges that TransDesign infringed on their copyright…which TD did.

So, if you ever look at some bottles of OPI, do you notice that it looks like someone’s filed some part of the glass bottle away? That there’s a rough spot on the bottle where it should be smooth? I have and I thought, “WTF was filed away from here?” Now I know!

In the complaint, OPI alleges that TD (as well as other companies) have done that. But here’s where it gets ugly…

The infringement? It’s the pictures we’d see on TD’s website. They (TD) make it sound like they are authorized sellers of OPI. They are not. They have no contract with OPI to sell. So yes, their pictures are an infringement because OPI has no contract with TD, TD can’t get any legit OPI products from OPI. In the complaint, OPI alleges that “Defendants resort to deceptive, fraudulent, and illegal trade practices as well as false pretenses in order to obtain OPI products.”. OPI even has distribution policies and contractual mumbo jumbo on their website under “Anti-Diversion Policy”.

In November 2009, OPI asked TD to stop selling OPI Products on the Internet and to stop using images of OPI on their site (intellectual property).

TD did not comply.

Remember what I said about that filed part of the glass bottle? Well, that filed part of the glass bottle is the OPI Serial Number. That number is crucial to OPI in terms of quality control and detection of fake OPIs. TD knowingly and willfully sold these OPI Products with the missing OPI Serial Numbers.

Why is it important? Because if OPI ever had to do a recall and you had a bottle that was in the recall, how the heck are you to know when there is no serial number on it? Ultimately, OPI doesn’t want lawsuits.

Last, but not least, TD sold OPI products internationally where there was already a distribution setting put in place. So basically, OPI didn’t like TD undermining their distribution set up or their quality control. In TD’s case, it’s a lack of quality control. I can see why OPI would be pissy about it.

After all of this, I wonder if all the bottles I got from VNS and TD are legit OPI colors…hm…

However, sucks to be TD because OPI stated in the complaint they want financial recompense from TD for selling the non-legit OPI. No number was mentioned, but I figure it could be ugly.

You can click icomplaint2 below for a full copy of the complaint. It’s 87 pages long and it has pictures!

ipcomplaint2

Below is me weighing in on the issue.

What do I think? I feel like OPI’s being a bit like the LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessey) corporation in tracking down fake Louis Vuittons. It’s all about quality control. But in the grand scheme of things? It’s nail polish. It’s not purses/wallets/suitcases that sell for over $1,000 per item. Relax, OPI.

That’s it. That’s the drama. That’s why our fave cheapie e-tailers don’t have OPI any more.

PS I’m lifting my OPI ban. They weren’t in the wrong for wanting to protect the integrity of their products. If anything, it makes me admire and like them even more.

60 thoughts on “OPI Update

  1. Thank you for your very informative post – it definitely clears a few things up! I understand that TD wants more control over their distribution, but I wish that they could have done this more elegantly – either by setting up their own webshop commanding the price that they want, or just make TD charge $9 a bottle (similar to what Essie did?). I’m not in the US, and OPI sells for $26 here and the selection is limited to put it nicely, so losing TD doesn’t just mean that I can’t afford as many polishes as I could before, but it basically cuts me off from colors and collections that I want (for example, even if I was willing to pay $26 x 6 for the Shrek collection, I wouldn’t be able to as it’s not going to be launched here).. So although I fully understand OPIs wish to control their trademark, they should set up a good alternative for their buyers (and especially us internationals that depends on one importer) to buy online where they have control. (There are a few online stores such as lookfantastic.com that are authorized to sell online, but their selection is only okay, not as amazing as TD’s)

    Also, I have a collection that’s a mix between TD-bought polishes and polishes from authorized dealers (LF), and both kinds seem to have the serial number intact (except from one of the older collections, but I bought parts of that collection from both dealers, and none of them has a serial number on the bottle itself).

    But again, thank you for an informative post, and as an LV buyer I understand the LVMH comparison although I agree with you that there is a huge difference between nail polish and expensive purses. (I have to admit that I was reluctant to order from TD the first few times, but after pretty much every nail polish blogger I know about praised it, I decided to give it a chance and was positively surprised by them). Sorry, this turned out to be a really long post.

    • Just a small observation: I noticed that VNS and TD are literally down the road from each other in Georgia. I wonder if that’s why OPI hit them so fast? I haven’t ordered from the other e-tailers, so I don’t know their address.

      I wish I could help all my fellow nail polish addicts who don’t live in the US.

      I am a bit on the fence for paying $9 for a bottle of OPI. I think I have to get out of the mindset that I can purchase it for $3.75 or $4.00.

      When OPI releases collections that have 12 colors, the thought of paying $9 or $10 per bottle makes me cry a little…ok, well, a lot. Granted, not like some where it becomes $21 a bottle. That’s getting pretty darn close to Chanel range there. At that point I’d splurge and get the Chanel.

      What makes TD/VNS/8ty8/Head2Toe a huge loss for me is that the sellers near me who are cheap sellers don’t get the collections in on time like the e-tailers. Sometimes they get them on time, others it’s a week or three later. I just never know. I think that is what I am truly upset about. When OPI would say X_Date is the release date, I could always go to TD,etc and get them on the date. Now I have to wait.

      Nail polish is my least expensive vice and the one I don’t think twice about dropping money on.

  2. I had a feeling that it was not OPI who was in the wrong here, but not knowing was bumming. Thanks for clearify it for us, this way I also discovered your awesome blog!

    I fully understand OPI stand on this; I would prabably do the exact same thing. The bad news is that OPI’s availability is decreasing for us Europeans. Needless to say OPI is one of my favourite brands.

  3. Hey,
    I linked your story on my blog… I don’t know if the shaved down part on the OPI bottles is where the serial number goes, I’ve never noticed that before, and my bottles have arrived damaged like that too, I thought it was just from how they were storing them in the warehouse or whatever. Anyway, thanks for the insights, this story is slowly becoming to make more sense. RIP TD :(

  4. I now understand why there was such a mess.
    Okay for TD but what about 8ty8 and Head2Toe ? Are they in the same situation ?
    Why not opening their own e-store ??
    Their polishes are made in Netherlands. Why the prices are SO HIGH in Europe ?
    I totally understand the fact that they HAD to sue TD because of their lack of contract, but i think OPI is not as clean as they claim to be…

  5. Bah, the “quality control” talk and the copyright infringement lawsuit is just bs that OPI pulled out of their arses because they are actually stupid enough to think they would make more money if their polishes become harder to get and more expensive. Here in Sweden a bottle of OPI costs 21 USD which, IMO, is completely absurd and I know the price is ridiculously high in the rest of Europe as well. I will never ever buy a bottle of OPI for that price, if they continue with their e-tailer witch hunt and I wont be able to buy it online anymore I will just simply stop buying OPI and buy more polish from other brands of equal quality. Hey – I can even buy Rescue Beauty Lounge or Illamasquas for the same price as OPI charges here in Sweden.

    OPI needs to chill and realize they are not Chanel.

    I will stop ranting now, but I want to say this reply is no attack on you and I’m not saying you’re stupid for believing them – you clearle came to another conclusion than I did and that’s totally okay. I just wanted to share my thoughts on the matter. Hope you have a wonderful day, I’m going to bed now. ;)

    • I think that paying that much (21USD) when a product is made in your own country is ridiculous. One would think OPI would give a bit of a break given that you could, in theory, buy it directly from the place of manufacture for a lower rate.

      I said it in my first post about OPI – they’re not Chanel or Rescue Beauty Lounge…they’re a middle grade brand you can find in *any* salon.

      I definitely agree with you – OPI needs to relax.

  6. Thanks for this info! I’ve been wondering about the OPI/TD lawsuit, and it’s finally great to get some cold, hard, info instead of speculation. You are indeed a Sherlock! :)

    There’s just one minor detail though. I read the court documents, and it doesn’t sound like TD is selling fake OPIs. I think the OPIs they’re selling are real, theyre just illegally gotten because TD isn’t a licensed reseller, that’s why the court docs say that they’re using “false pretenses in order to obtain OPI products”, and not that they’re selling fakes.

    The docs speculate that they filed away the serial numbers because if someone got hold of the bottles with the serial numbers, they’d be able to track which legit wholeseller was clandestinely providing an unlicenced reseller with their stock. So I think TD filed off the numbers (or their supplier filed off the numbers) to evade being tracked down, not because the OPIs are fake. If they were fake I don’t think they’d need to file off the serial numbers…

    So here OPI isn’t protecting the integrity of their products per se (as in the quality of their polish is the same), but more of the integrity of their distribution channels (like misuse of pics, having their stock sold by people who aren’t supposed to be selling them and are undercutting their prices). I don’t know if that makes sense, but that’s the impression I got after plowing through the documents…

    Once again, great post! I kind of feel sorry for TD, I know that they’re illegally distributing polish when they’re not authorized resellers, it seems like a small biz, and they’re probably going to be sued to bankruptcy..I hope they come out alive after this lawsuit…

    • I didn’t think TD was selling fake OPIs and you are right – it’s more the distribution and the illegal channels they (TD) used to obtain the OPI Products.

      Personally, I’d have that that OPI was happy to get their money and call it a day. I think they are making TD the example of what will/could happen if you sell OPI that wasn’t procured through the proper channels.

      However, I have to say that some of the cheapie local places I go to near my homes for a $3.75 bottle of OPI also have some filed off parts of glass on the bottles, hmm…

      I just now think that OPI got an incredibly small part of the market.

  7. Thank you for this article. It makes sense now. I thought OPI was just being greedeh and selfish. LOL!

    But even so, I’m still really mad at them because this foolishness has rocked my whole OPI boat. I’m in America, so I don’t have it as bad as international polish lovers, but still…I don’t wanna pay $8.50 for OPI. They come out with nice colors, but most of them are not $8.50 nice. They’re $4.75 nice.

    And I’m about to go through my whole collection looking for filed off numbers. I know that the ones I got from ebay for $4.95 have their numbers intact, which is so ironic.

  8. If a company becomes aware of some sort of trademark violation and does nothing, from a legal standpoint they are essentially giving permission. In the future, if another entity does the same thing, the company loses a lot of their ability to fight it because a precedent has been set. So they really are forced to act.

    OPI did asked etailers to stop, they didn’t so OPI has to take legal action. They really aren’t being mean, they can’t just chill out and let it pass.

    ** not a lawyer, fuzzy recollection from the business law class I took.

  9. Interesting. Thanks for looking into this further.
    I had seen some posts on MUA with people wondering why they were finding OPI bottles with a “rough” patch on the side. I saw some at a TARGET retail store like this last month, and assumed it must not be important. Ha! Some big retailers are also buying non-authorized stock apparently! I’m curious to check the bottles at a CVS near me that has an OPI display. I really don’t think OPI wants it’s product to be in drug stores, and was curious if this store manager was buying it legitimately….

    It took me several attempts to find the “serial #” you refer to, because the numbers are TINY and seemed to be almost engraved into the glass, right near the top shoulder of the bottle, near the seam on one side. VERY hard to spot. I’m travelling, and can’t check my whole collection right now, but a checked a bottle of OPI DS Design I purchased at least 3 years ago from a salon (authorized retailer) and it does NOT have the serial #. Perhaps they added this recently, so they could tighten up their distribution?

  10. i really t hink that it may not be the etailers. but the authorized distributors of the product who else would know to grind down the #, also i bought some from a opidiva.com nailpolishdiva they have ground down # too. question did’nt opi make the $ with the original sale to the authorized distributors whose numbers would route it back to them. smells fishy to me – i bought my opi friday from h2t&td and i guess im done with that brand screw paying 10.00 a bottle —true dat i’ll buy rbl,chanel,illamsqua,nars eff opi :)

  11. Thanks for the post, very informative!

    But isn’t it stupid from TD to sell the remaining OPI bottles for liquidation prices if there’s the possibility of having to pay the recompense? I imagine the sooner they stop selling them the better for them. But then again, it probably wouldn’t make that big difference…

  12. Thanks so much for this post! I knew there was probably a legitimate reason for OPI’s lawsuit. They could have handled the pr better but Transdesign could have stopped selling OPIs when they were asked to do so! I know lots of nail polish bloggers get very angry when their pictures are used to sell products online. OPI should be able to protect their photos (not to mention their products) too!

  13. That’s interesting. So by their logic, perhaps they should be going after Target as well since Target seems to carry OPIs with the serial numbers filed off…good luck suing a corporation with deeper pockets than you, OPI :P

  14. Thanks very much for your informative post! It really helps me to understand what’s going on with the various etailers withdrawing from selling OPI.
    I live in Hong Kong, the official selling price of a bottle of OPI is $16, (similar to Essie and CND) not as bad as Europe, but cosmetics is tax-free here. A bottle of Chanel is $23, Dior is $20, Lippmann and Sparitual are $19, MAC is $11.5. China Glaze is hard to find and there are not many drugstore brands. Not long ago, I still thought that OPI is of high quality (at least much better than Essie) – not until I met RBL, Lippmann and Sparitual (IMO). But as OPI is intended to protect its authorized distributors, it’s time to see whether OPI worths that much in consumers’ mind. Maybe OPI has decided to wow us with really innovative collections in the future and that’s why these etailers shouldn’t price it at $5.25!
    One thing I notice is the paper label on the bottom of the bottle. The label has the name of colour, barcode and serial number printed on it. It seems to me that starting from the Hong Kong Collection, the OPI I ordered from TD has changed the paper label with no barcode and serial number printed on it. I’ve just checked my local authorized stores and found that the label of the Hong Kong Collection is pretty much the same as the previous bottles I have, no matter I bought from authorized stores or H2T or TD or ebay. If someone has replaced the label, I can see why OPI has won the court case. But that’s just my wild guess. Sorry that it turns out to be a long post.

  15. Na, don’t worry about them being real, I doubt TD has connections to someone who makes knock-off OPIs. Haha, they ain’t that great. Sorry OPI you’ve lost one customer and hundreds of others. You too Essie.

  16. Hi there,

    I’ve seen – and purchased – many bottles in drugstores that have that suspicious file mark, and I’m glad to know why. It seems the problem is not limited to online e-tailers (though it begs the question of where these drugstores ordered their OPIs from).

    But just to be clear: those bottles with the serial numbers filed off mean they are authentic OPIs that have been “diverted” (as OPI likes to say RE: anti-diversion policy)? Or are they fakes? Or a mix of both?

    Thanks for the info, BTW!

  17. Thanks for this post. It was a really interesting read. I pretty much agree with all the comments. Can see why OPI is pissed off, but the polish sells over here for extortionate prices and won’t be buying any. I’m just glad i convinved myself of a transdesign purchase before it was too late. Both of my bottles have the number filed off though. I had noticed before, and call me naive, but i always thought they’d just rubbed against eachother during transport or something… :)

  18. Just like Origami, I’m still confused if the filed ones are fakes or just diversions?
    I only have 2 OPI polishes from TD, but both have this filed off part on them… I understand OPI wants to protect their brand and all that, but the price of OPI polishes are just ridiculous (150 SEK) so I think I’ll just stock up on genuine fake OPI on the local markets here in Shanghai (where I live now)

  19. Thank you for posting this! Suddenly OPI disappears from US e-tailers and *bam* Italian distributor opens his e-shop (at the bargain price of 15 € :-P). I understand OPI reasons (defending its distribution channels) but I won’t be buying their polishes at crazy prices and will switch to other brands. I bought from TD only once and one OPI out of two had filed number (I thought about damaged lot of bottle, really naive) and the bottom label removed. Curious thing, OPIs I bought from Ebay “unauthorized” seller had serial numbers intact.

    • Hello there, when I received my first (and last!) order from TD I thought that the bottles were “damaged”. :)
      I read about the new italian online shop and I have only a comment: bah! I’ll pay 15$ for a polish only if there will be available my beloved Glamour from Designer Series.

  20. Carina, I believe VNS and TD are located in different cities so I’m not sure if they’re down the road from each other unless one of them moved. Also, as far as I know, TD is the only etailer that has been sued. Let’s not automatically assume that all of the other etailers are illegit dealers.

    BTW, has anyone else purchased polishes from other etailers with the serial number scratched off?

  21. Wow, guess it’s a good thing they get an actual day in court since they’ve already been declared guilty here. #1, I don’t really like OPI so I don’t care. #2 The two OPI’s I own (which are why I don’t much care for OPI, it chips too easily on natural nails) both have filed off serial numbers and came from two different sources neither of which were TD. If they weren’t ‘real’ OPI’s there would be no serial numbers to file off so that complaint is out the window. OPI just doesn’t want their products being sold for discount prices because it makes people wonder why they charge so much elsewhere. In the long run, this stupid move will cost OPI money because while the fanatics will still buy and the salons will still get a fat discount, your average buyer if going to look elsewhere. Be looking for a price hike at OPI real soon. The prices at places like RBL, Lippmann and Illamasqua are making them look ‘less than’, not good for their prestige. I see $12 OPI’s by the end of the year. Glad I don’t like them.

    • Merci pour l’information, Mademoiselle, je ne savais pas que les OPIs sont fabriqués en Hollande. C’est incroyable.
      Ici en Italie les prix sont absurdes. Les vernis de China Glaze coûtent 6.50€, et ils ne sont pas trop chers, mais on doit aller à Rome pour les trouver. Pas de boutiques dans l’entier Nord Italie.
      Les Zoyas coûtent 18€, les OPIs 16.50€, les Essies 15€.
      En outre, les nouvelles collections ne sont jamais disponibles.
      That sucks!

        • Well, i don’t agree with you about the fact that it’s just nail polish. a fake expensive purse won’t affect consumers health…. despite a fake nail polish could do. and that’s a serious issue. it is responsability of a manufacturer ensure consumer about product safety and if something wrong could arise from those non indintified bottles… who is gonna be responsible for that? who knows what couled ever be inside those bottles? consumers haealth it’s serious more than a million expensive purses. chapeau OPI.

          • But it’s not fake – I never said that. I likened OPI’s way of handling things the way LVMH does in tracking down fake LVs.

            That’s why OPI cracked down on TD/VNS and all the other places – they want to control distribution. I wonder if TD/VNS will give up the name(s) of the person/people who provided them with the OPI.

            In the complaint, OPI alleges that TD actually made themselves sound like they were legit retailers of OPI when in fact they weren’t. OPI disliked the use of TD’s use of meta tags and how they used it to drive people to their site, despite not having a contract in place with OPI. TD courted enough people to make OPI sit up and notice.

            OPI really had no choice in the matter – they had to take action, which I applaud them for. Because when/if there are future instances of this, OPI can say they’ve already set a precedence and show them the case against TD.

  22. Boy you got sucked in hook, line and sinker didn’t you? OPI isn’t losing a dime on these and since they are real OPI polishes quality control has nothing to do with it. If they were worried about ‘unauthorized dealers’ they’d be going after Amazon and Target as well, as opposed to just the little guys they think they can put out of business. This is about keeping their image (prices) up. Pretty hard to keep up with the currntly popular RBL’s, Illamasqua’s and Lippmann’s when somebody is selling your polishes for half of what you’re trying to retail them for. Strangely enough, Ulta can still sale them out for $4.50 and make money (because you know they aren’t selling them at a loss). Apparently Ulta is where they dump the polishes that aren’t moving. OPI sucks, pure and simple. Overrated, overpriced polishes that don’t last for crap on natural nails in colors that have been released over and over and over. Good riddance to bad rubbish. I’m glad I won’t have to even look at them any more.

    • I know what OPI is doing. While we see it as “oh crap. we don’t get OPI cheap anymore.”, OPI is really protecting their brand.

      If they let all these etailers slide and do nothing, say somewhere along the line in the not too distant future, something bigger comes along. Like bigger than what TD or all the other e-tailers are doing and it causes OPI to lose lots of $$. What can they do? Sue now? If they do, all the other etailers have to do is look at precedence – TD, et al didn’t get sued, why should it all start now?

      This is really about setting precedence. OPI is protecting themselves.

      Nothing wrong with that. We as consumers don’t like it, but it’s happened.

      I know I’ve vacillated between “I HATE YOU OPI FOR DOING THIS” and “I ADMIRE YOU OPI FOR PROTECTING YOUR BUSINESS”. I still do. I am so saddened by the fact that I can’t get OPI for $4 a bottle and that I can’t get the collections faster now.

      My OPI purchasing may just be hampered by all of this and I’ll cut down on their products and spend my $$ elsewhere.

      I’m not berating OPI for a sound business practice (that much), but there is far too much polish out there in the world for me to truly be upset.

      As for the other retailers who are not selling OPI for retail, I’m sure it’s a matter of time. I’ve been tempted to toss warbid (a nail polish etailer on eBay who sells OPI for cheap, but charges obscene amounts for shipping) under the OPI bus for quite some time now.

  23. I am very disappointed that I will no longer be able to get my OPI at reasonable prices anymore, but as an attorney I understand the necessity of the actions that are taking.

    My biggest disappointment is similar to others: availability locally and I will no longer be able to purchase entire collections like I have always in the past. It would be wonderful if they came up with some sort of brand loyalty promo that would reward us and maintain the integrity and prestige of the brand.

    Whenever people ask me the ‘dream job” question – ‘you don’t like being a lawyer? what would be your dream job?’ – the answer has always been “Creative Naming Executive for OPI Polishes” was my fantasy title! I Guess I’ll now just have to get All Laquered Up and watch my love for OPI ride off into the Sonora Sunset! (sorry – couldn’t resist!)

  24. My issue with the overseas distribution aspect of OPI’s claim is that they should really be the ones being taken to court over their overseas distribution policies.They are claiming to be the victim, when in fact they have been the ones ripping people off for years. In Australia we pay between $20-$25AUD ($15-$20USD) a bottle from an authorised seller whereas Americans have been paying $3-6USD for the exact same thing. This is criminal. Especially considering that the Australian Dollar has gained considerable ground against the US Dollar in recent months.

    I do not feel sorry for OPI at all. Sure TD have been infringing copyright laws, and they probably should have known better than that. This aspect of the case is understandable. However, to prevent TD from selling the product overseas is ludicrous.

    I think the smarter course of action for OPI would have been to draft an agreement between TD and OPI to make them an authorized reseller and set the price at say $10USD a bottle…. That way they could control the stock and their profit margin and still maintain their international customers.

    • I disagree! As an American I am not paying $3-6 USD; If I want something from a new collection, I have to go and pay the $9+ USD per bottle.

      If I was OPI I would not trust TD after all this. They asked them to stop, and they didn’t. I’m not painting them the martyr, and they are upcharging internationals (including people who live near where it is manufactured), but something needs to be done. Let’s wait and see what happens instead of jumping to conclusions.

      • I am hardly jumping to conclusions. As a lawyer I just find the OPI case an example of a large corporation flexing their financial bicep in order to bully small retailers. Like I said, if they were really concerned about a loss of profits the smarter option would have been to come to an agreement with TD to make them an authorized reseller and just implement a price increase. Litigation is a lengthy and costly exercise. It’s definitely not something you engage in to preserve profits.

        And perhaps you have not been able to get the polishes for that price, but I read many blogs and see plenty of YouTube videos where the purchaser has only paid 3-6USD. Even if you do pay 9USD it is still considerbly cheaper than what we pay here.

  25. Well said Carina. I find it completely ludacris that these OPI polishes retail for $20+AUD. I was in David Jones Perth store yesterday and wasn’t suprised that at least another 3 girls were looking at their polishes as were I. I think that what TD has done is not great but they did it for a reason. There is a huge market for it as OPI is way over priced. I was looking to purchase myself some polishes just last week from TD and didn’t because their shipping is outrageous. I could buy what I wanted from eBay and still have some change left over. Unfortunately we get heavily ripped off here for high end beauty products that seem relatively ‘cheap’ in the US compared to here.

    I have been on TD today and have seen the recently released ‘shrek’ collection is on there, so this hasn’t seemed to stop them from selling OPI at all. It will be interesting to see in the coming months whether this will change.

  26. I still find the whole situtation frustrating. I live in a very rural area and there are only a few salons that sell them at all. I have managed to pick up a few on clearance before and even got some for under $2!! However, my collection greatly expanded once I discovered etailers. The reality is that OPI is making a profit on it regardless of what the etailers are selling it for b/c there is a huge markup on cosmetics altogether. It would probably make us all sick if we knew the cost for OPI to produce a bottle. Will this stop me from buying OPI altogether ? – probably not, but I will have to be more selective about the ones I do get. If I want the ones from a new collection I woud have to drive over an hour away to check out Ulta and chances are they’ll be gone before I get there just like the Xmas exclusives were :( It means that the overall percentage of OPI in my collection will decrease and other vendors will get my $ instead. I think several ladies will also purchase other brands and I would wonder if OPI won’t see a sales decline??

  27. Thank you SO much for this ultra informative post! I was wondering what actually happened with the whole OPI suing etailers thing, and I’m glad you have all of this information put together for other nail fanatics :) Thank you!!

  28. I know it’ s a year later BUT I think OPI has bogus practices. What they’re doing is trying to limit the amount of “diversion” from in salon purchases by trying to stop etailers from selling. BUT if an etailer purchases bulk amounts from a distributor of OPI do they not have the right to sell the product? They got it from somewhere-I am assuming Mr Tran didn’t back a semi up to the OPI factory production warehouse and steal it. OPI has made their money by selling to distributors-now they want to control the flow of product so you have to pay full retail. Here’s a news flash-they’re selling WAY less OPI in salons-all the shatter and american touring collections are ending up in discount stores because the salons can’t move the product. But OPI doesn’t care, they have made their money-so why should they dictate who can sell their product if their own distributors are selling it?

  29. I’ve actually purchased some OPI bottles from my cheapie guys in CA and AZ…and surprise! There are no serial numbers and you can see where it’s been filed off.

    It’s a pretty big thing that OPI is trying to track down and control. I wish them luck in their efforts…they’re definitely going to need it.

  30. Thank you!!! Good riddance!
    They think they are indispensable – They are NOT. They understand that Target, Amazon, ulta and others are too big for them to bite, so they decided to fight a small e-tailer and set a precedence? Cheap and nauseating!
    The nail polish market is giant – we’ll find a lot of replacements to a greedy maker of a mediocre polish. They were good for $4 – $5, for $8.50 I choose to forget their name.
    Once again, Good riddance!

  31. I can’t even begin to get over the fact that these polishes are manufactured in the city I am going to work in tomorrow, and I can’t buy them for the price for which they are retailed in the States.

    I pay 13 euro’s here for a bottle of nailpolish that’s being manufactured not a hundred kilometres from here, then is shipped to the States and imported back. And OPI wonders why we bought so readily from places like TD? I will never spend another 13 euro’s on OPI again.

    I do understand how they want to protect their intellectual property and retailing system. But as long as the prices keep bordering on the absurd in Europe, they will see a steady decline in sales. In the end that’s probably going to cost them more than what they gain from stopping TD and their likes.

  32. I think the health angle is a legitimate concern. I hadn’t worn nailpolish for many years (kids, work = no time), but have recently started to & I am loving the great colors now available. When I looked at the websites that offered dirt cheap prices, I had to wonder how they were able to sell OPI so cheaply. My first thought was that it’s not really OPI (have no idea, just my thought). Are they putting old polishes that they purchased at a discount into new bottles? Is the polish really OPI? I don’t know. I personally purchase mine from a local beauty supply place for $8.00 a bottle. The person usually in the store is very knowledgeable. Always happy to show me real color swatches, and help me find great colors. I appreciate the customer service & know that I am getting the real thing. Buying online at such a significant discount, while tempting, just doesn’t inspire my confidence as to what I am actually receivning. I was actually surprised to see that several “drugstore” brands in my area have polish in the $6 -$7 dollar range, so I am happy to pay the $8 for OPI. I have to agree with OPI’s decision, they are a large company that has worked hard on there product image, and have the right to distribute their product as they see fit, in order to maintain the integrity of their product. I may not be able to purchase as many polishes at the higher price tag, but at least I know for sure what I’m getting.

  33. Places like TD and VNS don’t sell fakes. If they did, they wouldn’t get the volume of business they currently have and I think that they’d get a massive smack down from Orly/OPI/ChGlaze, et al. You can rely on places like them to sell you the real deal, just not at the prices we are used to.

  34. I think the health issue could be a legitimate angle, if the polishes were fakes – but as has been stated here numerous times TD did not sell fakes. As for how to recover damages if a fake polish made someone sick — there are numerous ways to recover from distributors. Also, OPI clearly states that they only guarantee their products if purchased through licensed distributors, they wouldn’t be on the hook in the first place.* It is a ‘chance’ we take when buying from ANYPLACE that isn’t officially sanctioned. That leads me to my biggest problem with this issue. In my area you can buy contraband (filed bottle) OPI at Walgreens and Target anytime – and occasionally I see them at CVS, K-Mart, Rite-Aid and Meijer. If this was about copyright and consumer safety then OPI would be coming down on all those sources as well – the fact that they are are not leads me to believe that the issue is price. These other retailers are charging no less than $7.50 (US) and therefore are not the diversion that TD was at $3.50-4. As an attorney I can appreciate OPI’s concern over the legitimate aspects to their position, but cannot abide the hypocrisy they exhibit in practice.

    Also, OPI, where do these bottles come from in the first place? According to a friend of mine that works in a salon, if you see the salon lines in a non-salon retailer, they get the product from less than honest reps and/or distributors of the corporation itself. I don’t know if this is entirely accurate, so if someone knows how it all works, I’d be very interested!

    * To counter the argument that it is still a damage to their name and reputation in the event of ‘tainted’ polish: Heaven forbid this ever happens, but IF it did, it could be argued that it would be better for OPI than this mess they have created for themselves: they could really push the ‘can’t trust an etailer’ angle — and watch the consumers abandon those sites in droves.

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