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L'Oreal receives ad ban for misleading UVA claim on kids' sun cream


By Imogen Watson, Senior reporter

October 8, 2019 | 2 min read

L'Oreal has received an ad ban from the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for misleading claims on the UVA protection in its Garnier Solaire Sensitive Advanced Kids sun cream.

The ASA received two complaints about a TV ad and a radio ad that appeared in June.

The TV ad that was challenged in regards to the voiceover, that stated: "To protect your little architects, tumblers and divers, new Garnier Ambre Solaire Sensitive Advanced Kids has very high SPF, five-star UVA protection and is water-resistant but did you know we're the only sun care brand partner of the European Cancer League."

This was joined with on-screen text that stated 'five-star according to Boots rating system' which was alongside an image containing the text 'UVA' alongside five stars. The radio ad made similar five-star UVA claims.

Both complaints to the ASA questioned the five-star rating, believing the sun cream in fact only provides three-stars.

In its defence, L'Oreal said there was no legal or regulatory obligation for Garnier to show a star ranking system for UVA protection.

It argued that the product that appeared in the ad was reformulated, and now had a five-star rating, instead of their previous three-stars.

Despite this, the ASA said it understood that, at the time of the ads, a significant proportion of the three-star Ambre Solaire Sensitive Advanced products were still available in-store and online. While the three-star bottles did state the rating, it said the packaging was almost identical to the new one, and consumers may become confused.

A statement from the ASA reads: "We considered that because the ad implied consumers who bought an Ambre Solaire Sensitive Advanced product would benefit from five-star UVA protection, when in fact a significant proportion of those products available at the time the ad appeared had only a three-star rating, the ads were likely to mislead."

Both ads were therefore banned for misleading UVA claims.

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