ASA pulls Clairol hair dye ad

LONDON - A TV ad, by Grey London, for Clairol Nice 'n' Easy hair dye featuring a woman pondering the purchase of a pair of red stilettos, has been banned by the Advertising Standards Authority.

The voiceover said: "93 per cent of Red magazine readers would recommend Nice ’n’ Easy to a friend." Onscreen text added:"Participants in a survey of 245 Red magazine readers, April 2008."

The survey participants had been selected via an e-mail sent out exclusively to Red subscribers who had registered as members of the magazine’s reader panel.

The ASA noted that readers had responded to the survey in return for entering a competition to win a trip to New York or a £50 gift voucher for John Lewis. Participants were sent a sample of the hair dye to try and then asked to submit a photo of themselves and a short story detailing their foray into life as a redhead.

The regulator noted that the competition had been used as an incentive to encourage participation in the survey and thus participants may not have been impartial in their survey responses.

The ASA ultimately concluded that the ad was misleading as the survey’s results did not substantiate the claims communicated in the ad. The ad must not be shown again in its current form.