Missguided ad 'offensive' to women, watchdog rules

Poster crossed line into objectification.

Missguided: ASA banned ad on left
Missguided: ASA banned ad on left

The Advertising Standards Authority has upheld complaints that a poster ad for fashion brand Missguided was offensive in being overtly sexualised.

The complaints were made against two executions, each featuring the same model in a different pose, but were only upheld in the case of one of the them.

In the ad, as described by the ASA, the model is wearing a blazer with nothing underneath, exposing the side of her breast, and accompanied by sheer tights, sheer gloves and underwear.

"We considered she would be seen as being in a state of undress and that the focus was on her chest area and lower abdomen rather than the clothing being advertised," the judgment stated.

"We also noted that her head was tilted back, with her mouth slightly open, and her leg was bent and raised, which we considered was likely to be seen as a sexually suggestive pose. We considered that the sexually suggestive styling and pose would be seen as presenting women as sexual objects."

Missguided said that promoting and encouraging female empowerment was extremely important to its business and, as such, it designed and promoted collections that enabled their customers to stand out from the crowd in memorable outfits and poses. They said both ads were based on those themes, which they believed were positive and enabled its customers to be bold and brave.

Global, the media owner, said it reviewed the ads in accordance with its copy-approval guidelines and also submitted it to the CAP Copy Advice team for review. The CAP Copy Advice Team believed the ads were likely to be acceptable.

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