Ann Summers 'sexy' ad faces censure

Ann Summers facing a potential investigation by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) after claims that its latest TV ad is “too sexual”.

The ASA has received four complaints that the content of the ad was too sexual. It has not yet decided whether it will launch an official investigation into the ad.

The ad, which aired for the first time last week during a live episode of the Only Way is Essex, is part of the sex toys retailer’s Christmas For Grown Ups campaign.

Ann Summers claims the post 9-pm ad is the “sexiest TV ad ever”. It depicts a traditional festive scene including a Christmas tree, presents and Christmas crackers, before taking a “sexy Ann Summers twist”.

The ad features a couple including a woman wearing festive themed lingerie and a semi-naked man.

An “uncut” version of the ad aired post-11pm and online.

A spokesperson for Ann Summers says: “We have not been made aware of any complaints following the airing of our Christmas advert throughout the last week. Our current advertising campaign was designed in the spirit of Christmas For Grown Ups, and as a responsible retailer we have worked in conjunction with the approving body and the advert has only been aired after the watershed.”

Readers' comments (9)

  • This ad should not be on tv at any time uncut or the full version. Everyone knows there are shops and online ways to buy. The ads are TOTALLY UNNECESSARY!!! I soooooo do not like these ads on tv. DISGUSTED! and i'm no prude!!

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  • Stop. Your. Winging.

    It sells Ann Summers, that's what advertising does you know. It inspires people to go out and express their sexuality.

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  • hahaha you say you're no prude.

    Every company has the rights to advertise their products, and since it's post 9pm the content shouldn't be a problem... it's no worse then half the perfume ads, at least Ann Summers ad is relevant to their products.

    If it offends you that much might i suggest not watching TV post 9pm.

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  • Quite sexy, but I'm a grown up so I can cope with it :) Post 9pm TV is not targeting Cbeebies public... I don't see reason for all the fuss but I'm sure Ann Summers is getting great results from the polemic mentions!

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  • I think the ad is fine, I really don't think it is at all pornographic. I love the Aunty Ethel calling and the remote that has had its batteries removed!

    Get it on air is what I say.

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  • I think it's a bit in your face and I'm not entirely comfortable about it. Most women can't achieve that body image and it equates sex as a performance that women act out. It's bland and overly sexual at the same time. Like so many girl bands. At least the Spice Girls had personalities unlike Girls Aloud! Women are too keen to exploit themselves these days.

    Wrapping it all up in some Christmas luxury/excess doesn't change my perception that Anne Summers products are cheap and tacky. Maybe I'm wrong but I'm not inspired to find out.

    I think we should be cautious; this ad might seem benign/acceptable but what will follow? The cumulative message of advertising is that women are vacuous, narcissistic consumers who need affirmation from sex. Credit us with having some brains and an interest in the world.

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  • 4 complaints of it being to sexual and this is from people who where watch Only Way is Essex hmmm I do not get this at all

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  • "Most women can't achieve that body image and it equates sex as a performance that women act out."

    It's actually DE-sexing women, because they feel inhibited.They are expected to act out the role of a sexual plaything, rather than discovering and enjoying their own sexual expression.

    Sex is something that many different kind of people enjoy in many different ways with one another, and narrow media-defined ideas of sex are objectifying and contribute to eating disorders and rape culture where women feel obligated to men in regards to how they live out their sexuality.

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  • Oh yes it definitely is sexy and i must say very sexy ad by Ann Summers keeping in mind the Xmas theme for grownups. Just Brilliant!

    If it's not aired pre 9 pm then i don't think there should be any problem in the way they have said they sell lingerie, it's amazing and plays the right chords.

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