But other claims were deemed OK.
The National Advertising Division has recommended that Bausch & Lomb Inc., maker of PeroxiClear Contact Lens Peroxide Solution, modify or discontinue certain advertising claims, including claims of superior comfort over Clear Care, a competing product manufactured by Alcon Laboratories Inc.
NAD determined, however, that Bausch & Lomb could support claims that its product “keeps lenses moister for longer,” according to a press release from the Advertising Self-Regulatory Council.
NAD is an investigative unit of the advertising industry’s system of self-regulation. It is administered by the Council of Better Business Bureaus.
NAD opened an inquiry into claims made by Bausch & Lomb following a challenge by Alcon. During the course of NAD’s review, Bausch & Lomb said it had voluntarily and permanently discontinued a number of claims, including:
- 85% of Clear Care users agree PeroxiClear provides superior all-day comfort.
- PeroxiClear is preferred by patients 5:1 over Clear Care for “all-day comfort;” “overall comfort;” “comfort upon insertion” and “comfort at end of day” compared to Clear Care.
- “85% of Clear Care users agree PeroxiClear provides superior end-of-day comfort.” PeroxiClear “keeps lenses cleaner for longer” or “cleans lenses better” than Clear Care.
- “83% of Clear Care users agree PeroxiClear keeps their lenses cleaner for longer.”
- 83% of Clear Care users agree PeroxiClear keeps their lenses moister for longer.
- “80% of users agree that PeroxiClear keeps their lenses moister for longer than the leading peroxide formula Clear Care.”
- “85% of Clear Care users said PeroxiClear is better at preventing the feeling of debris and deposits building up over the day.”
- “86% of Clear Care users agree they are more satisfied with PeroxiClear.”
NAD did not consider those claims on their merits, according to the release. However, the voluntarily discontinued claims will be treated, for compliance purposes, as though NAD recommended the claims be discontinued and the advertiser agreed to comply.
Regarding the remaining claims at issue, NAD found that a clinical study and consumer preference studies submitted by the advertiser were insufficiently reliable to support superior comfort claims. NAD recommended the advertiser discontinue claims that PeroxiClear “provides superior all-day comfort,” “superior overall comfort,” “superior comfort upon insertion” and “superior comfort at end of day” compared to Clear Care. NAD also found that the advertiser’s evidence did not support the claim that PeroxiClear is the “most advanced” peroxide solution compared to Clear Care, and recommended that Bausch & Lomb discontinue the claim.
NAD determined that the advertiser provided a reasonable basis for its objective claim that PeroxiClear “keeps lenses moister for longer” than Clear Care. And finally, although NAD found that the advertiser provided a reasonable basis for its claims that PeroxiClear is “unique” and “innovative” compared to Clear Care, NAD recommended that the advertiser use the “unique” and “innovative” claims in a manner that avoids conveying an unsupported message that PeroxiClear delivers a superior comfort advantage over Clear Care.
Bausch & Lomb, in its advertiser’s statement, said the company would comply with NAD’s recommendations. However, the company said it respectfully disagrees with “NAD’s conclusion that the randomized clinical trial submitted by Bausch & Lomb is insufficient to substantiate the comparative comfort claims at issue.”
A recommendation by NAD to modify or discontinue a claim is not a finding of wrongdoing and an advertiser’s voluntary discontinuance or modification of claims "should not be construed as an admission of impropriety," according to the release. It is the policy of NAD not to endorse any company, product, or service, and decisions finding that advertising claims have been substantiated should not be construed as endorsements, the release stated.