Mini Waist garment ad banned for implying women should have 'tiny little waists'

A teleshopping ad for Velform Mini Waist has been banned by the ads watchdog for implying that women desire - and should be aiming for - a smaller waist.

The presenter in the ad for the waist compression garment, shown on The Shop Channel UK, made references to celebrities and girls in magazines whilst showing images of women with and without the garment on.

The presenter said: "Have you ever wondered how celebrities get those tiny little waists they flaunt on the red carpet?"

The ad implied that a very small waist is a body that women should aspire to, stating, "Women are supposed to look like this, and men like this".

One viewer, who complained to the Advertising Standards Authority, thought that the ad promoted unhealthy body perceptions.

When contacted by the ASA, Clearcast said they did not believe the ad encouraged an unhealthy body perception and that viewers were not encouraged to use it instead of exercise or dieting.

Chromotion Ltd, the owner of The Shop Channel UK, told the ASA that Velform Mini Waist was a temporary way for consumers to achieve a slimming effect when wearing it, and that the ad did not specify any specific levels of tightness to use the product.

In its ruling, published today, the ASA concluded that a lot of the statements in the ad breached BCAP Code rule 1.2 of social responsibility.

The ASA told Chromotion Ltd the ad must not appear again and that their marketing communications should not imply a small waist should be aspired and take extra care when displaying the use of the product.

The watchdog said: "Although the statements were made in the context of an ad for a waist compression garment, we considered it was irresponsible to imply that a very small waist should be aspired to and that all women should aim for that figure.

"We considered that in the context of advertising the product it was reasonable to show it being used. However, we were concerned that in some shots the women were shown compressing their waists to appear extremely small and that, particularly in the context of the aforementioned claims, this added to the impression that women should aspire to very small waists."

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