ASA warns against use of celebrities in treatment marketing

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has upheld a ruling against a beauty salon that advertised a “Kylie Jenner Package” of treatments on its Instagram page. 

Queen of Aesthetics, a salon in Parbold, Lancashire, posted an advertisement for the treatment package in December 2018. It was advertised to include “1ml lips 1 ml cheeks 1ml jawline [sic]”. 

The ASA challenged the misleading nature of the post in its suggestion that clients’ faces would closely resemble that of reality TV celebrity Kylie Jenner after the procedures. 

Queen of Aesthetics responded to the investigation by telling the ASA that “the package was popular because Kylie Jenner and other members of her family had lip enhancements, cheek enhancements and jawline enhancements in the liquid volumes stated in the ad. 

“Queen of Aesthetics said it would be almost impossible for a customer to look like anyone other than themselves after a non-surgical cosmetic procedure.”

However, the ASA upheld the ruling on the grounds that the post included a picture of Jenner with the text “Kylie Jenner Package” written around it. 

The ASA said: “We considered that consumers would therefore understand from the ad that they could achieve similar results to those of Kylie Jenner and that the photos accurately represented what could generally be achieved through use of the advertised cosmetic procedures.

“…We considered the ad should not misleadingly exaggerate the effect those products could achieve. Therefore we expected to see that the person in the ad, Kylie Jenner, had used those products and the ad was a realistic depiction of what the products could achieve. 

“We had not seen evidence that the products’ effects on Kylie Jenner, as featured in the ad, could be achieved through use of the product only.”

The ASA advised Queen of Aesthetics that it could not suggest celebrities had undergone their treatments if they hadn’t. 


False claims  

This is the latest in several recent incidents where the use of celebrities and suggestions about procedures they’ve had in aesthetic treatment marketing has come under fire. 

In July, Kensington Palace issued a rare statement – the Palace seldom comments on what is written in the media or the commercial realm – denying that the Duchess of Cambridge had “baby botox”. 

It was in response to an Instagram post by Dr Munir Somji of Dr Medi Spa Clinic in London, who wrote, “Our Kate loves a bit of baby botox” under suggested before and after images of the Duchess. 

A spokesman for Kensington Palace told the New York Post that Dr Somji’s claim was “categorically not true” and “in addition, The Royal Family never endorse commercial activity.”

Image: Instagram/ @linda_queen_of_aesthetics. Supplied by The ASA

In August, the ASA ruled against several aesthetic treatment training providers for making misleading claims to potential students.