Sep 20, 2017
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PrettyLittleThing ad banned with 'sexualised' models looking too young

Sep 20, 2017

Boohoo-owned young fashion brand PrettyLittleThing has had an ad banned by the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority after it was deemed to feature models who looked too young for the overtly sexualised content.


The ASA told the brand to ensure that in future its ads do not “sexualise those who appeared to be children”.

Despite, the Manchester-based firm saying the two models were actually aged 23 and 24, and although only one complaint had been received, the ASA said the women in the video ad were posing, “twirling” and “swinging” in a way that could be seen as “juvenile and mischievous”.

The ads watchdog also said the clothes the models were wearing were “reminiscent of 1990s teenagers’ fashion” and said the shots were very sexual with the models lookign like they could have been under 16.

The ad had been seen on the ITVBe channel earlier this year and was aired before the 9pm watershed.

It all added up to the creative breaching responsible advertising rules, the ASA said and in its ruling, when discussing one model, it added: “Although we understood that she was over the age of 21, we considered that she appeared younger because of her appearance and mannerisms. Further, we also considered that the outfits shown, the colourful props and set, and the name of the brand, contributed to the overall impression that that model was a child.”

However, it did not uphold complaints about two other ads for the brand, one of them a poster and another TV commercial.

PrettyLittleThing denied the accusations and said the banned as had a “bright and happy theme” with the fashion items featured being “on-trend pieces” for the festival season.

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