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St. Ives Apricot Scrubs: A Brief History of Hatred and Adoration

Spoiler: It ends in a lawsuit.

Two St Ives apricot scrubs Photo: St. Ives

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For those who love a little skincare schadenfreude, you’ve been given a late holiday gift: a lawsuit against St. Ives alleging that the company’s famed apricot scrub is damaging to the skin. Two plaintiffs, Kaylee Browning and Sarah Basile, have brought a case stating the scrubs are damaging and abrasive, and that St. Ives parent company Unilever has engaged in false advertising.

To which thousands (?) of face washers will probably say: Yes! We agree! Rubbing your face with ground apricot and walnut shells may just be the greatest hoax of our time.

Or it could be a brilliant, tried-and-true exfoliant method. A Unilever spokesperson tells Racked, "As a general practice we do not comment on pending litigation. We can say that for over 30 years, consumers have loved and trusted the St. Ives brand to refresh and revitalize their skin. We are proud to be America’s top facial scrub brand and stand by our dermatologist tested formula.”

But really, the jury has been out for years. Now, a real jury may actually get to decide just how terrible (or not) St. Ives apricot scrub is. It’s been a long time coming:

Update: December 29th, 2015, 6:43 p.m.

This post has been updated to include comment from a Unilever spokesperson.