The European Union's top court rules that disinfectants can't be advertised as 'skin friendly'

The logo of the drugstore chain 'dm' is pictured on the entrance of a store at the Kurfuerstendamm shopping boulevard in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2022. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn) (Michael Sohn, Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

BERLIN – The European Union's top court said Thursday that products such as disinfectants can't be advertised as “skin friendly.”

The European Court of Justice issued its ruling after a German federal court sought its opinion in a case against a drugstore chain that sold a hand, skin and surface disinfectant with a label that, among other things, declared it “skin friendly.”

Recommended Videos

In that case, the German Association for Protection against Unfair Competition argued that drugstore chain dm failed to comply with an EU regulation on biocidal products. The court said the regulation prohibits promoting such products by calling them a “low-risk biocidal product,” “nontoxic,” “harmless,” “natural,” “environmentally friendly" or “animal friendly” — “or any similar indication.”

The EU court found that “skin friendly” has positive connotations that avoid suggesting any risk, and may imply that the product could be beneficial for the skin.

“Such an indication is of a misleading nature which justifies the prohibition of its use in the advertising of the biocidal product at issue,” the court said in a statement.

Recommended Videos