A website for L(A)B Life and Beauty and three posts on their Facebook account:
a. The website www.lab-lifeandbeauty.com, seen on 26 June 2020, featured a listing for a "Cryolipolysis Belt" that stated "Fat Freezing & Inch Loss Belt … The … belt works by cooling down to -6 Degrees Celsius to freeze stubborn fat cells which the body then expels naturally. It reduces the layer of fat under the skin with a short treatment time of 30 minutes once a week. The technology of Cryotherapy is used only by the top spas and professionals but is now available at home with the L(A)B Belt”.
b. The first post, seen on 23 June 2020, featured an image of a woman wearing a “cryo belt” with a caption that stated “Lose inches in a few weeks without changing your diet or exercise, spot target areas you want to lose weight from like stomach, thighs all at home”.
c. The second post, seen on 24 June 2020, featured an image of a woman wearing the same belt shown in ad (a) with a caption that stated “… lose inches while you relax with a coffee”.
d. The third post, seen on 26 June 2020, featured an image of a woman wearing the same belt shown in ads (a) and (b) with a caption that stated “… Chill and Lose inches. Get you L(A)B cryo belt … to lose inches in a few weeks”.
IssueThe complainant challenged whether the weight loss claims for the “cryo belt” in ads (a), (b), (c), and (d) were misleading and could be substantiated.
ResponseL(A)B Life and Beauty Ltd did not respond to the ASA’s enquiries.
The ASA was concerned by L(A)B Life and Beauty's lack of response and apparent disregard for the Code, which was a breach of CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 1.7 (Unreasonable delay). We reminded them of their responsibility to respond to our enquiries and told them to do so in future.
We considered that consumers would understand the claims made in ads (a), (b), (c) and (e) to mean that by using L(A)B Life and Beauty’s “cryo belt” they could lose weight without exercising or making changes to their diet. We also considered that consumers would understand that the belt would allow them to lose weight from specific parts of their body through targeted weight loss. However, we received no evidence from the advertiser to substantiate those claims. In the absence of such evidence, we concluded that the claims had not been substantiated and were therefore misleading.
Ads (a), (b), (c), and (d) breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules
Marketing communications must not materially mislead or be likely to do so.
Objective claims must be backed by evidence, if relevant consisting of trials conducted on people. Substantiation will be assessed on the basis of the available scientific knowledge.
Medicinal or medical claims and indications may be made for a medicinal product that is licensed by the MHRA, VMD or under the auspices of the EMA, or for a CE-marked medical device. A medicinal claim is a claim that a product or its constituent(s) can be used with a view to making a medical diagnosis or can treat or prevent disease, including an injury, ailment or adverse condition, whether of body or mind, in human beings.
Secondary medicinal claims made for cosmetic products as defined in the appropriate European legislation must be backed by evidence. These are limited to any preventative action of the product and may not include claims to treat disease. (Medicines, medical devices, health-related products and beauty products), and 13.9 13.9 Marketing communications must not contain claims that people can lose precise amounts of weight within a stated period or, except for marketing communications for surgical clinics, establishments and the like that comply with rule 12.3, that weight or fat can be lost from specific parts of the body. (Weight control and slimming).
The ads must not appear again in the form complained about. We told L(A)B Life and Beauty to ensure, in the absence of sufficiently robust supporting documentation, their future marketing communications did not claim that their products could help consumers lose weight, or that their products could help with targeted weight loss.