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Complaints over H&M advert dismissed

Nearly 50 people have complained about an advert for H&M’s lingerie range, saying the shots are offensive and demeaning to women.

The campaign, featuring actress Laetitia Casta in push up bras and knickers, was used to promote H&M’s lingerie collection in the run up to Christmas.

But 47 people complained to the Advertising Standards Authority that the advert was offensive, adding that it was unsuitable for public display as it could be seen by children.

In its defence the retailer said the campaign was “flirtatious and sensual [but] in no way meant to be sexy or provocative”. It added that posters were placed in locations designed to reach its core audience of women aged 18-39, and that the team had told media owners to ensure posters were not placed within 100 metres of schools.

The ASA did not uphold the complaints, noting that “whilst some consumers may have found them distasteful, the images were unlikely to be seen as offensive or demeaning to women”.

Regarding the complaints around children, the ASA added that as the posters were “only mildly sexual… a placement restriction was unnecessary”.

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