A TV ad for the Nivea Q10 power cream, seen on 22 January 2019, began with a woman doing facial exercises and reading a magazine which showed an image of a needle with the text “All you need to know about LIFTING”. The voice-over stated, “Face exercises? Lifting? Not for me.” The next scene featured a woman’s face with the on-screen text “10x MORE CREATINE” and “LINES & WRINKLES”. The voice-over stated, “New Q10 power from Nivea. Now with 10 times more creatine. It reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles”. The next scene showed a group of friends walking down stairs. One of the friends turned to the main character and said “Wow, your skin looks great.” The final scene showed the product. The voice-over said “Unleash your inner power with new Q10 power only from Nivea”.
The complainant challenged whether the ad misleadingly implied that the results of the product were comparable to a cosmetic procedure.
Beiersdorf UK said that the ad focused on the cosmetic benefits of the product, in particular, the impact of creatine. They said that the ad showed that a cosmetic procedure was one of the options available to consumers who were interested in anti-ageing solutions as well as other non-surgical options such as facial exercises and use of the product.
Beiersdorf UK said that the ad did not make any claims about the efficacy of the product in comparison to the other available options or comment on the efficacy of the other options in isolation. They said that consumers would understand that the product only improved the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles whereas cosmetic surgical intervention such as Botox could eradicate fine lines and wrinkles.
Clearcast said that the ad did not make a comparison between the Nivea Q10 and cosmetic procedures. They said that the ad only presented the options available to consumers and made clear that a cosmetic procedure was one of the drastic options available. They said that the ad did not exaggerate the benefits of using the Nivea Q10 product or imply that it was as effective as cosmetic procedure.
Clearcast argued that the ad only explained how the product worked to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, specifically through the amount of creatine it contained compared to the previous Nivea Q10 formula.
The ASA noted that the ad featured a woman contemplating different anti-ageing options for her skin which included facial exercises, a cosmetic procedure and the Nivea Q10. We considered that consumers would interpret the ad as presenting different anti-ageing options but would understand that each of those options would produce different results on the skin. We noted that the scene which referenced the facial exercises and cosmetic procedure was brief and did not comment on the effectiveness of those individual options. While we acknowledged that the voice-over in the middle of the ad stated “New Q10 power from Nivea. Now with 10 times more creatine. It reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles”, we considered that consumers would understand the claim to be a reference to the new formula of that product in relation to the other products available in the Nivea range rather than a comparison between the product and the other anti-ageing alternatives.
Because we considered that the ad did not imply that the Nivea Q10 could produce comparable results to a cosmetic procedure, we concluded that the ad was not misleading.
We investigated the ad under BCAP Code rule 3.1 3.1 Advertisements must not materially mislead or be likely to do so. (Misleading advertising), but did not find it in breach.
No further action necessary.