Sephora is coming out to deny that the site intended to discriminate against Asian customers during its Insider sale. Shoppers claimed that they were barred from using their Sephora premium VIB membership accounts to access the sale online. A class action lawsuit has been brought against the beauty retailer by four Asian customers, who say their accounts and several others bearing Asian-sounding last names were blocked when they tried to log in and purchase the discounted goods.
The plaintiffs say that the store blocked their accounts “based on the ill-founded and discriminatory belief that all Chinese/Asian customers abuse discount sales to engage in bulk purchasing for resale.” Several accounts with Asian-sounding email addresses and a few Asian web addresses were deactivated during the sale. While Sephora denies any wrongdoing, a Facebook message posted on the retailer’s page claims it shut down so many accounts because of “high levels of bulk buys for reselling purposes in North America and other countries.”
Sephora is confident that it will be proved innocent in court of any kind of intentional discrimination and looks “forward to defending [their] actions” at the trial.