'Misleading' Sanex shower gel advert banned


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The Independent Online

An ad for a Sanex bath gel has been banned for suggesting that it contains no man-made chemical ingredients, a regulator said.

The television ad for Sanex Zero% showed naked people applying various coloured substances to their bodies with a voice-over saying: "We put so many different chemical ingredients on to our skin."

It then showed a woman in the shower using the advertised product accompanied by a voice-over stating: "New Sanex Zero% contains just the ingredients you need for clean, healthy skin. Sanex Zero%. Keep skin healthy."

One complainant challenged whether the ad misleadingly implied that the product contained no man-made chemical ingredients, while another believed the gel contained ingredients such as perfume which were not necessary for clean, healthy skin.

Defending the ad, Colgate-Palmolive said the Sanex Zero% range contained between nine and 11 ingredients compared to the market average of 23 ingredients.

The ad made no references which might have led the consumer to believe the product was composed entirely of natural ingredients and made no claims about whether the chemical ingredients were man-made or natural, it added.

Upholding the complaints, the Advertising Standards Authority said: "Since we understood that the advertised products contained man-made chemical ingredients, we concluded that the ad was misleading and breached the code."

It ruled that the ad must not appear again in its current form and told Colgate-Palmolive to ensure future ads were not likely to mislead.