Peoria, AZ asked in Patents (Intellectual Property) for Arizona

Q: What is the lashify patent? Trying to start a lash business but want to adhere to their patent.

1 Lawyer Answer
Peter D. Mlynek
Peter D. Mlynek
  • Patents Lawyer
  • Moorestown, NJ

A: Congratulations on starting a new business!

As you know, there are many legal hurdles that you need to deal with, including registering the business name, incorporation, zoning, health, hours of operations, employment, taxes, etc. You are to be commended that you are concerned about patents early on; this is something that most business owners do not worry about until they are hit with a cease and desist letter.

The good news is that if you are going to be buying Lashify's products for use in your business, then you won’t be sued by Lashify. The whole point of Lashify having patents on their products is so that their competitors do not make and sell the same products. Your business is not Lashify's competitor, but their customer. They do not want to sue their own customer.

A few caveats:

(1) Lashify, Inc. has about 11 US patents, both utility patents, and design patents. There are more patents pending, and the company also has rights to other patents since they post on their website that they have "70 patents". Some of these patents are on artificial eyelashes, some are on applicators, and some are on storage cases. I have not reviewed all of them, but it appears that the patents are to the products that the company sells or may sell and not to a business of lashing. If they have a patent on a lashing business or a method of lashing that I have not seen, and are operating (or franchising) a chain of lash bars or lash salons and thus will be your competitors, then you do need to worry about such patents.

(2) Although you've named only Lashify in your question, please be aware that there are other companies whose patents you may need to worry about.

(3) If you buy off-brand supplies from someone who is copying Lashify's (or other vendor's) products that are patented, then you do need to worry about their patents. A vendor does not want to sue the lash business which is a customer of its competitors, because the vendor wants to convert the lash business to its own customers, but depending on how the patent is written, the vendor may need to bring a suit which names the lash business as one of the co-defendants. The vendor may need to include the lash business in the suit, even though the real target is its competitor. It is a danger that you need to be aware of. To address this, you may want to deal with this potential danger contractually by adding the appropriate indemnity clauses to any supply contracts that you'd sign.

Most of my clients are in the personal care product space, so I'd be happy to help you with any patent or trademark questions that you may have.

Good luck!

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