June 4, 2014 at 12:10 PM ET
The public placement of a new advertisement featuring a naked Rihanna with her legs in the air and high heels resting on a bottle of perfume has been restricted by officials in the United Kingdom because of its racy image.
The U.K.'s Advertising Standards Authority ruled Wednesday that the posters featuring an advertisement for the pop singer's perfume, Rogue, should be restricted from appearing in certain areas "to reduce the possibility of it being seen by children." The ASA called the ad "provocative" and "sexually suggestive" even though the image was "not overtly sexual." The organization said it received complaints about the ad being too sexual, demeaning to women, and inappropriate to be viewed by children after it appeared on the doors of an elevator at a British shopping mall.
The ASA's ruling came two days after Rihanna's dress raised eyebrows when she received fashion's highest honor on Monday from the prestigious Council of Fashion Designers of America as this year's Fashion Icon. At the awards ceremony, she wore an extremely sheer gown by designer Adam Selman that was practically see-through, accessorized with 200,000 crystals, gloves, a thong and a strategically placed pink fur stole.
Fragrance company Parlux Ltd., the maker of Rogue perfume, told the ASA it had received no other complaints in the U.K. or elsewhere and said that the ad "sought to capture" Rihanna's provocative persona "without featuring improper nudity or offensive, suggestive or demeaning imagery." The company argued that she is presented in a position of power in the ad rather than a demeaning pose, and that the ad was consistent with previous ones she has done for perfume launches that received no complaints.
The ASA agreed that the ad is not demeaning to women, but ruled that it cannot appear again unless it's in a place with a reduced possibility of being seen by children. The organization, which is an independent regulator of advertising across all media in the U.K., has issued strict rulings in the past. In 2011, it banned an airbrushed Julia Roberts makeup advertisement for being "overly perfected" and misleading to the consumer. The same year, it also banned a Miu Miu ad featuring actress Hailee Steinfeld, then 14 years old, sitting on railroad tracks because it depicted a child in an unsafe position.