Rimmel got into hot water with the Advertising Standards Authority in the UK last year for putting false lashes on Georgia May Jagger in its 1-2-3 Looks Mascara ad. So it's little surprise that fellow cosmetic companies are being careful.
But CoverGirl has gone from cautious to comical in its latest mascara ad, which stars America’s Next Top Model winner Nicole Fox.
The print commercial for LashBlast Volume promises a false lash effect. However a small print disclaimer running alongside the image states that lash inserts were applied to Miss Fox's eyes before the product was applied.
False claims: The ad for CoverGirl's LastBlast Volume mascara promises a false lash effect - but a small print disclaimer states that lash inserts were applied to model Nicole Fox's eyes before the product was applied
The disclaimer is at complete odds with the copy in the ad, which reads: Is your volume true? Or false? LastBlast gives you true volume.
'If your mascara promises volume but delivers clumps - that's false! True volume comes from our big brush, not from big clumps. Try LastBlast Volume for yourself. You may never go "false" again.'
The small print, however, which is barely visible in the bottom left-hand side on the model's neck, reads: 'Lash inserts were applied to both of Nicole’s lashes to add lash count before applying mascara.'
Sally Greenberg from the National Consumers League called the ad 'outrageous'.
Promises: The copy of the ad suggests that users may never need to wear false lashes again
Disclaimer: The small print, which is barely visible in the bottom left-hand side on the model's neck, reads: 'Lash inserts were applied to both of Nicole's lashes to add lash count before applying mascara'
She told MailOnline: 'It is in such tiny print that it amounts to deceptive advertising. The average person is not going to read the fine print.
'They are asking you to buy a product that cannot do and does not do - the model needs false eyelashes. The whole premise of the product is called into question.'
She added: 'CoverGirl should take the ad down.'
The CoverGirl disclaimer echoes a situation in the UK last November, when a Rimmel mascara commercial was banned because it failed to make clear that the effect was enhanced with artificial lashes.
Both the TV and print ads showed Georgia May Jagger, the daughter of Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall, in profile.
Misleading: The UK's Advertising Standards Authority banned Rimmel London's 1-2-3 Looks Mascara ad in November because it failed to make clear that Georgia May Jagger's eyes were enhanced with artificial lashes
The text and voiceover gave the impression that turning a dial on the mascara would provide thicker, longer lashes on a scale of one to three.
In fact, the longer, fuller eyelashes seen in each image were actually created using artificial inserts.
Vertical small print on the magazine advertisements stated the images were 'shot with lash inserts'. A similar line was run on the TV commercial.
But the ASA banned the cosmetics giant from running the ad because its disclaimers were not clear enough.
Whether CoverGirl faces the same fate at the hands of the Federal Trade Commission remains to be seen, though the Federal Communications Commission's website indicates that it is the TV station or publication's responsibility to ensure that advertisements are not misleading.