A break-through has been made following the ASA’s ruling on the 3rd February. Source: Laura Choette on Unsplash

Filters should no longer be applied to social media adverts if they exaggerate the effect of the product, says the recent ruling from the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

This came as a response to the #filterdrop campaign that was launched by Sasha Pallari in July 2020 which called for full transparency from users with a large following when promoting cosmetic products.

Stories posted by Skinny Tan Ltd and Tanologist Tan were examined and banned as they “misleadingly exaggerated the effect the product was capable of achieving.”

From now on any influencer that use filters in a similar way when promoting products will have their posts taken down and they will not be permitted to re-post.

Jenni Tilling, from Nottingham, who has amassed over 15,000 followers, was “delighted” by the ruling.

She said: “I feel like when you have large audiences watching what you post, authenticity is so important.

“Of course there is an element of self-consciousness and vulnerability in taking away that filter … but you equally have to remember that you’re not just promoting these things for financial gain, you have a moral responsibility to be truthful and show real results.

“You can have a truly negative effect on your followers otherwise.”

Instagram influencer Jenni Tilling tries to avoid filters in her posts and stories. Source: Jenni Tilling, Instagram

A recent poll taken by students at Nottingham Trent University revealed that even when they were aware of a filter being used on an advertised product, 60% still had a false expectation on its results and reflected negatively on their self-image when it was not similar to that of the story.

Elesha Arnfield, a Nottingham influencer who has closely followed Pallari’s campaign, praised the ruling but claims it is a small step in a long journey ahead.

“It goes beyond advertising.

“Filters as a whole are giving unrealistic expectations to both men and women and are enhancing insecurities as people almost become addicted to the filtered versions of themselves”, said the 23-year-old.

She added: “It was only three months ago that I stopped using filters entirely and I feel happier because of it.

“That’s not to say it is always easy – but the sense of encouraging realness and being my natural self outweighs any gratification a filter could give.

“This ruling is a great start, but there is much more to be said.”