The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the US has asked
Reebok to pay up $25 million as fine for claiming that its shoes give the perfect posterior. Advertisement of a particular product line shows close up shots of models’ bottoms and claim that with Reebok shoes on, one can achieve the type of shape one wants their bottoms to flaunt… whether a round one or even heart-shaped. The company asserted that these toning shoes are based upon a scientific theory and the products have the capability of strengthening the muscles of the thighs, legs and buttocks. Their tall claims without evidence are banned by the FTC.
David Vladeck, Director, FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection asserts avertisers cannot make claims about their products without having some basis for it. If one is going to make specific claims, particularly about health benefits, the product should have adequate substantiation about those claims.
This isn’t the first time toning shoes have courted controversy. In the past, wearers have suffered from twisted ankles, sore muscles and even shin splints. Though Reebok has agreed to pay the fine, its statement says: “Settling does not mean we agree with the FTC’s allegations. We have received overwhelmingly, enthusiastic feedback from thousands of EasyTone customers.”
The company has a whole range of toning products like RunTone running shoes, EasyTone walking shoes, flip flops and toning clothing that will apparently turn you into a svelte goddess like Eva Mendes, Kim Kardashian, Kelly Brook, Bipasha Basu and Shazahn Padamsee. Earlier, companies such as New Balance and Skechers have also faced similar lawsuits over their advertising claims.