Using YouTube’s skippable ads feature called TrueView, the cosmetics company tested three ads – a glossy TV ad, a make-up tutorial with a beauty blogger and a simple straight to camera video.
YouTube classifies a skippable ad when the user clicks the skip button before watching 30 seconds of the video.
The simple film, which shows a woman sat in front of the camera explaining how to put the make-up on, was the one that 18-to 24-year-olds were able to recall. It also had the highest click-through rate.
However, the traditional ad was the most unskippable ad, no matter the age group.
Ben Jones, the head of agency at Google, said that the challenge for L’Oreal is now to create an ad that appeals to both audiences.
He also said: "The creative community tends to polarise answers about what has changed. TV purists claim everything is the same and digital is just a distribution channel.
"Digital folk claim everything is changed and babies should go out with the bathwater. I think this experiment shows us that neither is right.
"More may carry over from the storytelling craft of TV than we suppose; and digital, social and mobile may be influencing our taste in ways that the most hardened TV creatives should consider."