6 Times Gwyneth Paltrow's Staff Have Called Out Goop's 'Toxic' Work Environment

For a wellness brand, they sound cruel.

Gwyneth Paltrow Ron Adar / Shutterstock

Gwyneth Paltrow's "Goop" has come under fire after a leading voice in the company has spoken out about the "toxic" impact of the workplace environment.

The Oscar-winning actress first started her wellness and lifestyle brand back in 2008 as a weekly newsletter, sent out by Paltrow herself, which focused mainly on advice to family and friends.

It didn't take long for the newsletter to gain traction, turning into a full-blown, expansive website that showcases wellness products, recipes, beauty, products, and so much more.


Now, the brand has something of a cult-following but behind-the-scenes this cult-like environment may be all too real for her staff.

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“We operate from a place of curiosity and non-judgment, and we start hard conversations, crack open taboos, and look for connection and resonance everywhere we can find it,” Goop’s website reads. “We don’t mind being the tip of the spear — in short, we go first so you don’t have to. We’re glad you’re here.”

However, employees at Goop have recently come out, detailing their experience working under Paltrow, and the toxic workplace environment that they have had to endure.


Here are 3 times Gwyneth Paltrow's staff have spoken out about Goop's toxic workplace culture.

1. Goop's former COO suffered from body image issues while working at the company.

Goop's former COO, Elise Loehnen, opened up about the amount of cleanses that she did while working at Goop, and how many of them "distorted" her body image.

Loehnen had left her position at the company in October 2020, and seemed to denounce the company's "toxic" practices.

"To me, it had become synonymous with dieting and restriction, and I felt like I was not in a healthy relationship with my body, where I was always trying to punish it [and] bring it under control," Loehnen, 42, explained in an Instagram video.

In the post's caption, Loehnen said that allowing herself to eat an unrestricted diet after leaving Goop, was a healthier option in many ways because it helped her let go of “ideas of what my body should look like as a 42-year-old who has had two kids."


She continued, saying that during her time at Goop, she developed a “critical and punishing” attitude to her body and well-being.

“I needed to break a tendency to be critical and punishing. To chastise myself. All of it,” she wrote. “I stopped weighing myself completely.”

2. Paltrow allegedly has "favorites" when it came to her employees.

According to Business Insider, via Radar, ex-employees at Goop believe that the issues they faced plagued the company even before the pandemic.

One former employee told the news outlet that Paltrow "definitely had her favorites" and made it known in the company.

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"Sometimes when you have founders who are also CEOs, that passion can be a blind spot," an anonymous former employee said. "Sometimes their ideas fill the room."

3. Gwyneth Paltrow allegedly fires staff without warning.

Many of the supposed "favorites" either quit abruptly or were allegedly "forced out," as ex-staffers believe was the case with Goop's former CTO, Juan Paul Ramirez, who left with "little explanation" and a "vague" one from Paltrow.

Reviews about Goop on Glassdoor are even more telling, with many former staffers slamming the company for  "instability," including "lots of random firings" and "a lot of resignations and exits that no one knows about until the person is gone."

4. Goop staff have called the work environment "catty."

Among the many critical Glassdoor reviews are several calling out the company for cultivating a fear-inducing workspace.


One ex-staffer even called Goop "the worst experience I've ever had at a workplace," pointing to "fear-based management," "a clique of OG bullies," "serious micro-management and lack of leadership," "catty women who throw each other under the bus" and "managers who belittle and are condescending due to their own insecurities."

5. Goop has extremely high rates of layoffs.

Since 2019 over 140 employees at Goop had left, citing low pay, burnout, and difficult leadership as some of their reasons for quitting, according to Insider.

While many staffers at Goop had left because of pandemic-related layoffs, others anonymously told Insider that the pandemic heightened pressures while working on the team, causing many people to stretch their duties to include the workloads of those who were furloughed or laid off.


6. Gwyneth Paltrow was accused of underpaying her staff.

Another former employee even revealed that they were being paid at least 40% less than the industry standard at Goop when they started interviewing for similar positions at other companies.

"More than once, people during our stand-up [meeting] would ask, 'How would you deal with an employee that's unhappy?' and someone in leadership would just say, 'Well, maybe this just isn't the right company for them,” one former Goop employee claimed.

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Nia Tipton is a writer living in Brooklyn. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics. Follow her on Instagram.