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Olay issues skin retouching ban in ads

By John Glenday | Reporter



skincare article

February 20, 2020 | 3 min read

Procter & Gamble owned skincare brand has responded to a growing backlash against skin retouching by vowing to cease the practice in all of its advertising by the end of the year.

Skin retouching entails the fine-grain manipulation of make-up to banish blemishes, but this pursuit of perfection has powered a counter-reaction among those concerned at the promotion of unrealistic ideals.


Olay shows the colour of its money with skin retouching ad ban

Acknowledging those concerns head-on Olay will adhere to a ‘skin promise’ pledge of authenticity across the brands print, digital, out-of-home and influencer output across North America from 2021, guaranteeing that no featured model will undergo the technique.

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The first glimpse of this new era comes in the form of the brands Make Space for Women Super Bowl return as well as My Olay, a new print campaign by Badger & Winters starring unretouched images of Busy Philipps, Denise Bidot and Lilly Singh.

As the brand commits to this new vision it has warned it is willing to jettison anyone who doesn’t share these ideals, with Kate DiCarlo, Olay’s senior communications leader, stating: “We are willing to walk away from influencers that are not interested in producing content that meets these standards.”

This approach has been embraced by CVS Pharmacy, Asos and American Eagle Outfitters which have each employed unretouched models in their promotional material.


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