Summary of Council decision:

Two issues were investigated, both of which were Upheld.

Ad description

A website for Glowday,, an aesthetic treatment comparison site, seen in September 2022. One page featured an image of four women together and text “The best Botox in London”. Beneath that, text stated “We only feature the best Botox practitioners near you who we have vetted to ensure that they’re medically qualified, trained and insured. Click their profile to read their real life patients’ reviews and to see their before and after photos”. Further down the page profiles of practitioners were provided. These profiles linked through to a practitioner’s booking page for treatments. The page also contained text tiles, questions and answer section and a treatment guide to Botox.

A second page, titled “Back to School Botox”, featured an image of a woman with a child wearing a rucksack. Text below stated “The start of the new school term has an extra edge of anticipation for us Mums this year. It feels like the beginning of normality…with women bearing the brunt of it all – so it’s great we might finally be turning a little attention back to ourselves”. Directly below this text was a black text box with white text stated “Book your treatment on Glowday. Choose from hundreds of medically-qualified practitioners. All insured, checked and verified. Glowday”. Beneath that, text stated “Booking a back to school treatment for you? Find a clinic near you who is trained, checked, insured and qualified on Glowday, right here”. The text contained a link through to the Glowday home page search tool for aesthetic treatments.

Further down the page, text stated “Glowday has more bookings for treatments in September, then [sic] ever before! Over a quarter of women say lockdown has aged them and are turning to non-surgical aesthetic treatments to put the spring back in their step and perhaps feel more like themselves on the school run”.

This was followed by an image of a woman smiling, dressed in high heels and a dress. Beneath the image a section titled in bold text “Why are Mums having Botox?” along with text “All these women really want is to look like the very best version of themselves, and feel confident and self-assured. And that’s exactly what aesthetic treatments can do for us”.

A further headline in bold text stated “So, what treatments are good for Mums on the school run?” with additional text “By far the most popular poison of choice, Botox…If it’s your first foray into treatments baby Botox is your new BFF”. This section contained a number of different aesthetic treatments which included “Baby Botox” as well as tear trough fillers and chemical peel. The section also contained before and after photos.

The final section of the page titled in bold text “School run Mum” included text which stated, “So there’s a few ideas if you are one of those Mums who wants to dazzle at the school gates, or just a Mum who wants to dazzle, or just an ordinary woman who want to feel more like herself again! You can book any of these treatment with some incredible practitioners on your doorstep”. The page included text “right here”, which linked through to a page where treatments including Botox could be booked.


1. The complainant challenged whether the ads breached the Code because it advertised Botox, a prescription-only medicine (POM).

2. The ASA challenged whether the “Back To School Botox” page exploited women’s insecurities about their bodies and the aging process, and was therefore irresponsible and harmful.


1. Glowery Ltd t/a Glowday said their website offered patients the opportunity to book consultations and appointments with healthcare professionals who offered a range of skin and aesthetic treatments. Consumers were not able to purchase Botox or any other prescription-only medicine. They said consumers were not able to book appointments for Botox but could book appointments for lines and wrinkles subject to a consultation that was included in each appointment. They also said that during the booking process consumers were regularly reminded that all appointments included a consultation which could result in a change to the recommended treatment, cost or duration. They said that they operated within a medical model of practice whereby a treatment plan was determined following a thorough consultation and an assessment of the consumer’s medical history and suitability for treatment. Whilst consumers confirmed their appointment at the time of booking by uploading their card details, payment was not taken until the treatment plan had been completed.

They said that in addition to the website offering the opportunity to find aesthetic practitioners they also published treatment guides and blog articles relating to aesthetic and skin treatments, and that their articles were written to inform and educate rather than promote particular brands. They said when they discussed treatments that required prescription only medicines, they did so alongside treatments which did not, to provide balance and impartiality for consumers who were seeking information.

They said that they consistently highlighted the need for patients to have a consultation with a prescribing professional prior to treatment and that they aimed to keep factual. They also said they did not have commercial affiliations with any particular manufacturer or pharmaceutical company, and they did not sell advertising space on their blogs.

They said the London landing page had been updated with references to brands removed other than in the initial overview where facts relating to Botulinum toxins were covered. They were carrying out an audit of their existing blog articles to ensure that they were entirely focused on informing and educating consumers. They considered there was a challenge faced by all publishers relating to content referring to aesthetic treatments due to Botox being the main way consumers would refer to anti-wrinkle treatments. They provided evidence in the form of Google search terms to support that position.

2. Glowday said that the article that was originally published in September 2021 related to treatments mothers had after school holidays, and had now been removed since it was out-of-date.

They said that the article had been based on data gathered from quantitative research they had carried out with 1,012 women aged 26-55 years, many of whom had been heavily involved in childcare and home-schooling, not only during the pandemic but also through most school holidays. They said they had also seen that many women (and some men) had booked in for treatments following the pandemic. They said that behaviour was often seen following school holidays, when bookings for haircuts, manicures, facials and treatments from aesthetic professions often experienced a spike in bookings in the weeks following school breaks. They said that was because care givers finally had the opportunity to care for themselves. They believed that assuming insecure women sought treatment was an incorrect stereotype, and was not one to which they subscribed.


1. Upheld

The ASA welcomed the advertiser’s willingness to make changes to their website by removing references to Botox.

The CAP Code stated that prescription-only medical (POMs) treatments must not be advertised to the public.

We understood Botox was a trading name for a form of a specific botulinum toxin type A product and that it was a POM. We noted that the webpage was titled “Best Botox in London”, and repeatedly referenced Botox, which was the only treatment referred to on that page. We also noted that links contained within the page directed consumers to Glowday-accredited providers where, at the time the ad was seen, they could book Botox treatments. The provider booking pages also displayed ‘before’ and ‘after’ photos for Botox along with price lists for different Botox treatments.

We noted consumers booked those treatments via the Glowday website directly. We also understood that those accredited providers had a financial agreement with Glowday to appear on their website, with Glowday acting as the clinic’s agent. Glowday received the full treatment booking fee for those aesthetic procedures once the procedure had been conducted, from which Glowday would take a commission, before passing the remainder of that fee to the provider. We acknowledged that no payment was taken at the time of a booking, and the full treatment process included the consultation that could result in a change to consumer’s booked treatment, but that was not sufficient to prevent an ad from promoting a POM.

We therefore considered that the website went beyond the provision of factual information and instead promoted Botox to the general public, and concluded that it breached the Code.

On that point, the ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 12.12 (Medicines).

2. Upheld

Notwithstanding that the advertising of Botox treatment to the general public was prohibited, we also assessed whether a webpage featured on the website was irresponsible and harmful.

We first considered whether the blog was an ad for the purposes of the CAP Code. We considered that because the article was interspersed with a call to action in the form of invitations to make a direct booking for an appointment with one of their accredited practitioners as well as before and after treatment images, the article therefore fell within the remit of the CAP Code.

We noted the following claims in the ad: “Over a quarter of women say lockdown has aged them and are turning to non-surgical aesthetic treatments to put the spring back in their step and perhaps feel more like themselves on the school run”, “all these women really want is to look like the very best version of themselves, and feel confident and self-assured … and that’s what aesthetic treatments can do for us” along with “if you are one of those Mums who want to dazzle on the school gates…or just an ordinary women who wants to feel more like herself again”. We noted that the ad focused solely on women, and specifically mothers, and considered that those claims suggested that by undergoing a cosmetic intervention to reverse the signs associated with the natural aging process, women could improve their confidence and emotional wellbeing. Furthermore, it implied that women needed to look a certain way in order to have confidence.

We also considered that the title “Back to School Botox” in combination with “what treatments are good for Mums on the school run”, implied that having an aesthetic treatment was something that women did as part of the annual routine of children returning to school, and underlined the suggestion that it was necessary for women to look a certain way to be confident taking their children to school.

Therefore, we considered the ad exploited women’s insecurities around aging, and perpetuated the harmful gender stereotype that women should look a certain way. We concluded it was irresponsible and breached the Code.

On that point, the ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 1.3 (Responsible advertising) and 4.9 (Harm and Offence).


The ad should not appear in the form complained of. We told Glowery Ltd t/a Glowday not to advertise prescription-only medicines to the general public, and to ensure that their ads were prepared with a sense of responsibility and did not perpetuate harmful gender stereotypes.

CAP Code (Edition 12)

1.3     12.12     4.9    

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