P&G, Rimmel and Alberto Culver criticised by UK advertising watchdog

By Guy Montague-Jones

- Last updated on GMT

P&G, Rimmel and Alberto Culver have all been criticized this
week by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for breaking UK
advertising rules.

Marketing is crucial in the cosmetics industry and companies are often prepared to push the boundaries on standards in order to make themselves heard.

Rimmel follows Avon and L'Oreal as the third company in recent months to breach ASA rules for its mascara adverts.

The TV adverts for 'Magnif'Eyes', featuring Kate Moss, were challenged by complainants who believed that the supermodel was wearing fake eyelashes.

Rimmel was also asked to substantiate its claim that the new mascara provided 70 per cent more lash lift.

The ASA concluded that the adverts were 'misleading' and both complaints were upheld.

Rimmel did not provide documentary evidence to prove that Moss was showing off her real eyelashes and the advertising agency, J Walter Thompson, admitted that the lashes were 'cleaned up and enhanced' in post production.

With regards to the '70 per cent more lash lift' claim, the ASA ruled it to be misleading because digital images rather than actual lashes were used to measure lash length.

The ASA criticized L'Oreal and Avon this summer for similar misdemeanors, with both companies being found to use fake eyelashes in advertising.

Responding to the complaints, Avon had told the ASA that the use of fake eyelashes was standard practice in the global cosmetics industry.

In the latest round of advertising adjudications this week, the ASA also criticized P&G and Alberto Culver for their beauty product adverts.

The ASA ruled that TV and press advertising for Alberto Culver TRESemme shampoo and conditioner products was misleading in virtue of the way their 'No.1 claim' was made.

Meanwhile, P&G was found to have breached rules on 'truthfulness' and 'substantiation' regarding a press advert for its body moisturiser, Olay Complete Everyday Sunshine.

ASA spokesperson Olivia Campbell told CosmeticsDesign.com that the watchdog received a 'fair amount' of complaints about advertising for cosmetics.

She said that face cream manufacturers were particularly likely to find themselves in conflict with the ASA over failure to provide medical research to support their claims.

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