Ok, I know I’ll be instantly accused by Anons of not being impartial when it comes to Rodial, but there is a very interesting feature in the Sunday Times Style written by Lois Rogers. To cut a long story short, she too questions Rodial’s claims. However, one thing that really stands out is that The Daily Mail on 14th July claimed that 50 bottles of Rodial Stretch MX was sent to Victoria Beckham with the header ‘Victoria Beckham Spends £3000 on Stretch Mark Cream’. Yet, in the Sunday Times Style article, it is claimed that not only has Victoria Beckham never heard of Rodial, but neither have Sienna Miller, Eva Longoria or Kylie Minogue, all of whom have been mentioned on Rodial’s site as users. More interestingly still, the Daily Mail feature claiming Victoria’s mega-order from Rodial has now been removed and there is no mention of VB on the Rodial site.
And then we have Maria’s blog (owner of Rodial), where she hazards a guess at what Demi Moore might have used to look amazing at the Met Gala Ball. “Demi looked utterly divine. At the age of 48, Demi has managed to capture her youth and is looking better than ever. Being a true fan of Rodial I suspect she has used brazilian tan LIGHT and glamoxy snake serum to achieve her glow.” She also held an event at which the celebrity was Joey Essex. “Revealing to me that Rodial and Nip+Fab were both key players in his daily routine….his smooth complexion is one of the reasons why he is in such high demand and need I say but is incredibly photogenic.” Well, yes, he would kind of say that really, given that he was paid to promote the products.
To put these claims into context, you simply aren’t allowed to make claims about celebrity use unless you have had proof from the celebrity themselves. Catherine Zeta Jones famously took umbridge in 2003 with Caudalie for saying she was a user of their products. At the time, Zeta Jones was under contract with Elizabeth Arden. She sued for £9 million so you can see it can be a very costly mistake to make. In fact, it was that case that really brought an end the constant celebrity tie-ins. When I used to write for a well-known daily paper, I couldn’t actually feature a product unless it had a celebrity fan. Copy would read like this: “X brand, loved by X celebrity, tones and firms the skin. Y Celebrity and Celebrity are also fans of the range.” It was just a standard way to write about beauty. Naturally, magazines and papers never linked Caudalie and CZJ again for fear they might also be brought to the courts.
Some celebrities are genuinely pleased to be linked to something that works for them – often, they’ll get their publicist to send a letter – carefully worded along these lines: “X Celeb was delighted to receive B Brand”. If that’s all it says, you can then say in print, “X Celeb took delivery of B Brand at her beautiful home in Slebville on Thursday.” You cannot say, “X Celeb uses B Brand all the time and loves it” on the back of this. However, if you get a letter saying, “X Celeb was delighted to receive B Brand and thinks it has truly improved her acne and is happy to share that” you can then say legitimately that they are a user. Another permutation is that you may still get a letter saying they loved the product but would like their privacy protected – particularly in the case of cellulite treatments, anti-wrinkle and hair removal that no celeb particularly wants to be twinned with – and you can then say absolutely nothing.
As a footnote, I know perfectly well which brand VB and DB adored back in the day, and they personally rang the publicist for new supplies and ALWAYS offered to pay.