Tea detoxes, gummy bears that ~magically~ give you gorgeous hair—we've seen these celebrity-endorsed products all over the Instagram profiles of everyone from the Kardashians to former Bachelor contestants. But have you ever met someone who's actually tried FitTea or SugarBearHair, who can tell you how it's really worked for them? Probably not, and the government isn't okay with this influencer-based advertising anymore.
Though each post is tagged with hashtags like #spon and #sp, this subtle disclaimer isn't enough for the Federal Trade Commission, Bloomberg reports.
"If consumers don't read the words, then there is no effective disclosure,"explains Michael Ostheimer, a deputy in the FTC Ad Practices division. "If you have seven other hashtags at the end of a tweet and it's mixed up with all these other things, it's easy for consumers to skip over that. The real test is, did consumers read it and comprehend it?"
According to the FTC, it's okay if the hashtag #ad comes at the beginning of a post. And if the sponsored content is a video, celebs will need to give a verbal disclosure, or clear indication that the content is an ad will need to be displayed on the screen. When it comes to Snapchat, sponsored snaps are already being featured with the words "ad,""paid" or "sponsored" prominently on top of the image or video.
Celebrities and influencers won't be the ones to get in trouble with the government for misleading sponsored posts, though—instead, it's the advertisers who'll face the disciplinary action. So don't blame the Kardashians for trying to trick us into thinking they're *really* on these 28-day detoxes.