...By Joseph Benjamin for TDPel Media.
Instagram posts featuring Botox treatments by former reality TV contestant Carl Woods have been banned for various reasons.
The posts were found to promote a prescription-only medicine, utilize celebrity endorsement, and fail to clearly indicate that they were advertisements.
In June, Woods, known for his past relationship with glamour model Katie Price, shared six Instagram stories for Lift Aesthetics, a facial aesthetic clinic.
The stories depicted Woods undergoing Botox injections, with him commenting on the process and expressing excitement about the expected results.
The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) determined that these posts went beyond providing factual information and instead served as promotions for Botox, making it more enticing to consumers.
Lift Aesthetics confirmed that Woods did not pay for the featured Botox treatment and stated that they did not require him to post about it.
However, Lift Aesthetics acknowledged to the ASA that referring to Botox breached advertising rules since it is a prescription-only medicine.
They were unaware that mentioning anti-wrinkle injections was also not permitted.
Woods defended himself by stating that he was not promoting an aesthetic treatment but merely sharing his personal experience on social media.
He assured the ASA that the posts had been removed.
The ASA concluded that there was an implicit agreement between Woods and Lift Aesthetics to repost the content created by the clinic.
They also found that Lift Aesthetics exercised editorial control over the language used by Woods in the posts.
Citing Woods’ status as a reality TV star with a significant following of approximately 230,000 on Instagram, the ASA determined that he qualified as a celebrity under the Committees of Advertising Practice Code.
Consequently, his endorsement of a medicine breached the advertising guidelines.
As a result, the ASA ruled that the banned ads should not be published again.
The ASA instructed Carl J Woods and Lift Aesthetics to ensure that their future ads were clearly identified as marketing communications, potentially through the inclusion of a prominent identifier like “ad.”
They were also advised against promoting prescription-only medicines to the general public and using celebrities, including reality TV stars, to endorse such products.