The ads caused a flurry of outrage on social media
One of the adverts features a reclining woman clad in a fur coat and fishnet tights with her legs spread wide, while the other shows a model in a skin-tight leotard with roller skate stilettos bending provocatively over a stool.
Both ads caused a flurry of outrage on social media, where people called on Saint Laurent to tear down the posters.
More than 50 people complained to the Autorité de Regulation Professionnelle de la Publicité (ARPP), France’s advertising watchdog, which then asked the fashion label to change or remove the ads.
More than 50 people complained to the French advertising watchdog
We asked the brand and the ad displayer to make changes to these visuals as soon as possible
Stephane Martin, the head of ARPP, said: “We asked the brand and the ad displayer to make changes to these visuals as soon as possible.
“Some people complained that the ads were degrading to women and promoted anorexia.
“Others said in their complaint that the ads objectified women and incited rape.”
The French watchdog asked the fashion label to change or remove the ads
Mr Martin added that the ads were a “serious breach of rules” set by the advertising industry to maintain “dignity and respect in the representation of the person”.
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The ARPP, he added, bars all “degrading and humiliating representations of people”.
Raphaëlle Rémy-Leleu, spokesperson for Osez le féminsme, France’s leading women’s rights group, told Le Monde that the offensive ads “ticked all the sexist boxes”.
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She said: “The women have been hypersexualised, made to pose in submissive positions and reduced to a mere object. The subtext is incredibly violent.”
Saint Laurent, which is part of the luxury group Kering, could not be immediately reached for comment.
The advertising ethics jury, a body tied to ARPP and independent from the advertising industry, will rule on the complaints on Friday.
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