What started out as a regular bath time turned into a traumatic experience for a five-year-old boy in Warman, Sask.
On Friday, Cub Ramage was having a special bath with some items his grandmother had bought for him online at Lush, a well-known chain of stores that sell beauty products.
Suddenly, Cub started to complain that his eye hurt.
At first his mother Darla Read didn’t think much of it, as he had often got soap into his eyes in the past, she said.
However, she couldn’t get the soap out. Orange liquid began oozing out of the eye.
After two hours, she called poison control and eventually took him to the emergency room.
“He was screaming,” Read said.
“He was crying. He was rolling around in pain.”
Read believes her son had gotten part of a Party Popper Bubble Bar in his eye. The brightly-coloured bath bar has popping candy inside that crackles and fizzes as it’s put into the water.
She said the bubble bar didn’t dissolve as quickly as the bath bombs they used that day and created a thick sludge that stuck to his hands.
Eventually, doctors told the family the boy had scratched his cornea, Read said. The boy’s eye was swollen shut for days, she said.
While the boy’s eye has been getting progressively better, the family remains shaken.
“I’ve never seen Cub in so much pain,” said Read.
“So, while he was crying, I was crying. I think I’m the most traumatized out of the three of us.”
Looking for answers
Cub’s father, Doug Ramage, said he has been in contact with the company over the past several days.
Initially, he was told the family used the product incorrectly, he said. According to the company’s website, it’s supposed to be crumbled under the faucet while the tub is being filled.
The company also said that a clerk would have given them proper instructions.
Ramage said the bath supplies were a gift and they were never given any of that information.
As well, he said there were no instructions in the packaging, only a list of ingredients.
Ramage would like a warning to go along with the soap, advising people with children to be careful.
He would also like to see the product removed from the Kids’ Faves section of Lush’s website.
“We’re dealing with an injury to a child,” said Ramage.
“We’re looking to minimize the possibility of this happening to somebody else.”
In an emailed response, a spokesperson sympathized with the family and said Lush was taking the matter seriously.
It said it is carefully reviewing how it can communicate instructions more effectively for online orders, so incidents like this don’t happen in the future.