By now, you may be familiar with our ad-regulating friends in the UK, the Advertising Standards Authority: they’ve had a banner year taking on those suggestive Marc Jacobs ads staring Dakota Fanning, then emaciated models in swimsuits and–most relevant to our present topic–they banned some L’Oreal ads starring Julia Roberts and Christy Turlington for being overly airbrushed.
Now, a new ad’s been banned… in America! Our own National Advertising Division (NAD, hilariously) have finally said, “Enough!” to absurdly misleading fashion/beauty campaign on this side of the pond. Their target? A set of CoverGirl spots starring spokesmodel Taylor Swift, which NAD says made “superior performance claims” such as “2X more volume” and “20 percent lighter” that couldn’t be substantiated, largely because those phrases don’t mean anything out of context (2x more volume than what and how does one measure that with mascara?). NAD’s director told Business Insider: [tagbox tag=”Taylor Swift”]
“You can’t use a photograph to demonstrate how a cosmetic will look after it is applied to a woman’s face and then — in the mice type — have a disclosure that says ‘okay, not really.’ “
Further, the ruling said:
“… [Proctor & Gamble, which owns CoverGirl] advised NAD it has permanently discontinued all of the challenged claims and the photograph in its advertisement. NAD was particularly troubled by the photograph of the model – which serves clearly to demonstrate (i.e., let consumers see for themselves) the length and volume they can achieve when they apply the advertised mascara to their eyelashes. This picture is accompanied by a disclosure that the model’s eyelashes had been enhanced post production.”
Did you see how much sanity was in that statement? It is preposterous that a campaign can promise Youth! Beauty! Glamour! Flattering Sunset-y Lighting! Lashes That Could Crush Your Ex-Boyfriends! and then in tiny, almost imperceptible script, have the freedom to say, “Obviously not.” We’re for it.
Do you think ads that make ridiculous claims should be banned? …Or is it all just a natural part of advertising?