The National Advertising Division (NAD) recommend that Intraceuticals LLC discontinue certain efficacy claims for its anti-aging products because the advertiser failed to provide adequate substantiation to support those claims.

Specially, the advertiser’s online advertisements claimed that its Atoxelene Skin Care Products “instantly reduce the visible signs of premature aging” and its Atoxelene Line Wand “contains a concentrated skin smoothing complex that targets the appearance of expression lines and wrinkles without loss of facial expression.”

Though the advertiser provided test results on active ingredients in the products in an effort to support its claims, the NAD stressed that the best evidence to support product efficacy claims is testing on the product itself and not on one or a combination of the ingredients in the product, as such testing does not necessarily demonstrate what consumers can expect to experience when using the products.

The NAD also determined that the qualitative evidence submitted by the advertiser was unreliable since the advertiser, among other things, used a small testing population (e.g., 10 subjects) and failed to disclose useful information about the testing demographics (e.g., age, skin type, severity of wrinkles) to enable the NAD to determine whether the tested population was representative of the population that is being targeted.

TIP: Companies should ensure that they have adequate substantiation in the form of testing based on industry standard methodologies conducted on populations that are relevant to the target population in order to support product efficacy claims.