L’Oréal ads to alter anti-aging claims to settle dispute with U.S. regulator
Federal Trade Commission says cosmetics firm can't say skin cream's effects 'scientifically proven'
L’Oréal has agreed to change wording on some of its high-end skin care products in an effort to settle complaints from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission that it is engaged in misleading advertising.
The French cosmetics company was threatened with legal proceedings over its ads that say its Lancome Génifique and L’Oréal Paris Youth Code featured “scientifically proven” defences against signs of aging.
A campaign for its Génifique products claimed its products would lead to "visibly younger skin in just seven days" by targeting the users' genes.
"It would be nice if cosmetics could alter our genes and turn back time," Jessica Rich, director of the FTA’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, said in a statement.
"But L’Oréal couldn't support these claims," she added, saying the company could not produce scientific studies on the effect of the products.
As part of the settlement, L’Oréal USA is barred from making any anti-aging claims unless it has "competent and reliable scientific evidence substantiating such claims", the FTC said.
L’Oréal said the U.S. regulator had targeted claims that the company no longer makes in its ads and the company has admitted to no impropriety.
"The safety, quality and effectiveness of the company's products were never in question," said L’Oréal USA spokeswoman Kristina Schake in a statement.