ASA Adjudication on The Maperton Trust
The Maperton Trust
27 April 2011
Internet (on own site), Internet (on own site)
Health and beauty
Number of complaints:
A website for a head lice repelling device stated "The Head Lice Repelling Unit (HELRU) is a small device using the latest technology to repel head lice from infesting children and adults. It is in the form of a badge of the Unicorn and is pinned to the clothing of the individual. It is designed to be completely safe to the wearer. Its effect on head lice is to repel them."
The complainant challenged whether the claim that the badge could repel head lice could be substantiated.
CAP Code (Edition 12)
The Maperton Trust submitted correspondence between them and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) which they claimed showed the MHRA were satisfied with the way in which the device was marketed.
The ASA noted the correspondence submitted from the MHRA dated 2004. However, we noticed that correspondence did not refer to any specific claim and considered the claims that the device could repel head lice were objective claims capable of substantiation with robust human-based trials that showed the device repelled head lice. Because we had not seen such evidence in support of the claims we concluded that the website was misleading.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1 (Misleading advertising), 3.7 (Substantiation) and 12.1 (Medicines, medical devices, health-related products and beauty products).
The Maperton Trust must remove all claims that the product can repel head lice from its website.
Adjudication of the ASA Council (Non-broadcast)