Milex, the seller of the Ab Transform Ab Belt, claims in its ads that you can easily go from "tubby to toned" just by strapping on its $100 As Seen on TV gizmo. But an industry group that reviews ad claims says the belt may not exactly deliver on those six-pack abs.
Featuring a series of before and after images, the commercial claims: "Now you can transform your abs from tubby to toned, from saggy to sexy, from flabby to flat, quickly and easily."
After reviewing the infomercial, however, the Electronic Retailing Self-Regulation Program (under the auspices of the Council of Better Business Bureaus and the National Advertising Review Council) asked the company to discontinue certain claims, including one that the belt is "FDA cleared."
The ad review noted that future commercials should clarify that the technology has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration for "temporary strengthening" of abdominal muscles.
The company was also found to omit certain key pieces of information. For example, the ad says abdominal sculpting is achieved just by wearing the Ab Transform belt, which uses "advanced electro muscular stimulation," but it fails to mention that users would also need to stick to some sort of diet or exercise plan. One woman in the commercial even claims that the belt made it feel as though she was doing "crunches" while standing up. The ERSP recommended to the company that it stop making such claims in future advertising.
The marketing company told the reviewers that they had discontinued the ads, but the same ad was still on the official web site Monday afternoon. Milex responded in a release distributed by the National Advertising Review Council: "(While) we may not completely agree with your analysis and conclusions we will strongly consider your recommendations as we modify certain aspects of the video spots. We will also look to adjust our future advertising so that the claims are presented in a manner that eliminates the potential misinterpretation by the consumer."
Ab Transform Ab Belt claims found to be misleading