A TV ad, for Palmer's Skin Therapy Oil, featured three women talking about the product. They stated, "I took a stand against scars", "I took a stand against stretch marks", and "I took a stand against dry, damaged skin". The voice-over stated "Palmer's Skin Therapy Oil is a unique formula that helps improve the appearance of scars, stretch marks, dry, damaged skin, uneven skin tone and ageing skin". On-screen text stated "89 of 100 women agree (after 8 weeks daily use)".
The complainant challenged whether the claim that the product "helps improve the appearance of scars, stretch marks, dry, damaged skin, uneven skin tone and ageing skin" was misleading and could be substantiated.
E.T. Browne (UK) Ltd said a laboratory had assisted them in conducting trials, which assessed the efficacy of the product on the appearance of scars, stretch marks, dry, damaged skin, uneven skin tone and ageing skin. They provided two reports, each of which included a survey that had been completed by 100 women who had trialled the product for 8 weeks. They pointed out that they had included on-screen text to make the basis of the claim clear.
Clearcast endorsed the comments made by E.T Browne. They explained they had taken advice from their consultant who agreed that the evidence supported the claim.
The ASA considered consumers would interpret the claim, with the on-screen text, to mean that that 89 out of 100 women agreed that Palmer's Skin Therapy Oil reduced the visibility of scars, stretch marks, dry, damaged skin, uneven skin tone and ageing skin. We considered viewers would understand from the on-screen text that the ad's claim to "help improve the appearance of" the skin was based on the women's self-assessment, conducted after 8 weeks of using the product. We understood from Clearcast's expert that Palmer's Skin Therapy Oil contained natural oils and also that a body of evidence existed to show a moisturising and occluding product with high oil content, such as Palmer's Skin Therapy Oil, could improve the cosmetic appearance of scars and stretch marks. Because 89% of women agreed that the product produced the claimed effect, we concluded that the evidence supported the claim.
We investigated the ad under BCAP Code rules 3.1 3.1 Advertisements must not materially mislead or be likely to do so. (Misleading advertising), 3.9 3.9 Broadcasters must hold documentary evidence to prove claims that the audience is likely to regard as objective and that are capable of objective substantiation. The ASA may regard claims as misleading in the absence of adequate substantiation. (Substantiation), 3.12 3.12 Advertisements must not mislead by exaggerating the capability or performance of a product or service. and 11.2 11.2 If they are necessary for the assessment of claims, broadcasters must, before the advertisement is broadcast, obtain generally accepted scientific evidence and independent expert advice. (Medicine, medical devices, treatments and health), but did not find it in breach.
No further action necessary.