In the past, the cases have been pretty standard: the trademarks were registered after Lady Gaga’s rise to fame and have directly tried to profit from an association. But now Gaga’s cosmetic company, Ate My Heart Inc., may have found themselves on the side of a losing battle with Gaga Pure Platinum. The Albany makeup brand not only holds the trademark name, but filed it long before Stefani Germanotta transformed herself into the queen of the Little Monsters.
According to a filing back in March, Ate My Heart Inc. petitioned for a cancellation of the Gaga Pure Platinum trademark, currently held by Christina Sukljian. Ms. Sukljian–who is referred to as Christina Samuels in numerous interviews and on the GPP website, though not on the court documents–and her sister Jennifer Isaac are second-generation makeup scions whose brand falls under the parent company of their actual parent. Their father, Ike Sukljian, founded Zela International Co., which in turn owns both Gaga Pure Platinum and the sisters’ other cosmetic line, Mode.
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The petition for cancellation did not claim that Gaga Pure Platinum was trying to bite off of Lady Gaga’s popularity, since the Platinum trademark was initially filed in 2001, before the “Bad Romance” singer shot to stardom. Instead, the suit calls for a termination of the trademark since it will impinge on Lady Gaga’s ability to register her own cosmetic trademarks for Lady Gaga, Lady Gaga Fame, and Haus of Gaga. The filing also claims that Gaga Pure Platinum is no longer selling makeup anyway, and hasn’t really been in business for three years. (Read the original Petition for Cancellation here). (Un)Coincidentally, Lady Gaga is planning to launch her line of Fame perfume in September.
Bold move, considering Gaga Pure Platimum’s line is still available for purchase on their website, and the company’s Facebook page shows photos and interviews of the two sisters promoting the brand. (Though it should be noted that the page’s first update was March 28th, almost directly after Ate My Heart claimed that the Gaga Pure Platinum “mark was no longer in use.”
Either way, this will be a harder battle to win for Lady Gaga’s team, especially since Ms. Sukljian has filed her own Notice of Opposition, attempting to bar Lady Gaga from launching her Haus of Gaga line, lest consumers confuse between the two. Although we can’t imagine they would be any more confused than we are now.
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