The advertisements in question show a group of young models in their underwear, sitting on a bed and dancing while drinking, with accompanying slogans such as, "Whatever your choice, you can be sure it's what's underneath that counts" and "Midnight Mischief". The brand denied that the images, which were sent out to subscribers in February, promoted sexual activity, adding that the brand targets 18 to 24 year olds, not younger teenagers, and that its website has an under-18 restriction for receiving any literature. The ASA, however, took exception.
"Because we understood that younger teenagers could have both direct and indirect access to the catalogue, and because we considered the images and text were sufficiently sexualised to be inappropriate for that audience, we concluded that the ad was irresponsible and that it breached the code," read a statement from the ASA.
Jack Wills responded, saying that it would in future ensure that all of its envelopes containing catalogues state, "Please note: You need to be over 18 years old to sign up for Jack Wills' correspondence" on the outside.
It's the second time recently that a high-profile brand's advertisements have been called into question. Last month, Calvin Klein released an image taken looking up model Klara Kristin's skirt. Commenters on the photographer Harley Weir's Instagram page criticised the shot for its glorification of "rape culture" - Kristin, however, took to her own social media to defend the image.