While we can definitely say that 43-year-old Julia Roberts still looks pretty darn good, it’s safe to say that no one on this planet, regardless of age, has the flawless glow of the woman pictured in the Lancome ad seen here. In fact, the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority found the retouching work on this ad, and others, so misleading that it has banned them.
The print advertisements, which feature digitally enhanced images of actress Julia Roberts and supermodel Christy Turlington, didn’t accurately represent what Maybelline’s the Eraser and Lancome’s Teint Miracle foundations could achieve based on information supplied by the brands, the watchdog said today in separate statements on its website. Neither ad can appear again in its current form, the regulator said.
“Excessive airbrushing and digital manipulation techniques have become the norm,” said the member of Parliament who brought the ad to regulators’ attention. “This ban sends a powerful message to advertisers: Let’s get back to reality.”
A rep for Lancome says, “We do not believe that the ad exaggerates the effect that can be achieved using this product.”
In defending the ad, Lancome provided lab results for the products and detailed information on the retouching, but would not supply the Standards Authority with copies of the original photographs for comparison.
“We acknowledged the pictures supplied from laboratory testing were evidence that the product was capable of improving skin’s appearance,” wrote the ASA in statement, “but on the basis of the evidence we had received we could not conclude that the ad image accurately illustrated what effect the product could achieve, and that the image had not been exaggerated by digital post production techniques. We therefore concluded the ad was misleading.”