On the 24th August 2017, we were all going about our daily lives as normally as you’d like – unknowing that as you were burning your tongue on your morning coffee, jogging through the local park, or loading the washing machine for the first load of the day, somewhere else in the world, something VERY DIFFERENT was happening.
One of the biggest and highly regarded events of the year, where some of the worlds biggest names resonate for ‘one night only’, had just announced its full casting.
But what is this event you say?
The Annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show
You’re probably thinking;
‘Come on Jade, bore off. Seriously, this isn’t an important subject’
But Before you dismiss this blog post like you probably dismissed the idea of a touch screen phone back in the day – hear me out here.
Because this more important than you realise
For the sanity of my own self esteem, for the young girls aspiring a certain aesthetic, for the men and their deluded fantasies and for the future of diversity in this day and age
This. Is. Important
Now, I’ve been following the famous fashion show for the past few years and I can honestly hold my hands up to the heavens and admit it is a complete and utter guilty pleasure. The typical glitz and glamour, Bruno Mars singing his little heart out enough to serenade me through the TV screen, the lingerie, the legs, the heels, the outfits, the runway, the sparkle, the WINGS
If there’s any girl or woman out there who hasn’t invisioned themselves wearing a pair of them angel wings; then I question your imagination. And if you haven’t – well you’re a liar.
HOWEVER with all this hypnotic power the extravagant event holds, the main elephant in the room has been covered in glitter and given his own pair of fully feathered wings to mask the real problem – that has just been swept under the stage, with your gaze distracted by a 6ft tall blonde, bronzed goddess.
WHERE THE HECK IS THE DIVERSITY??
I literally feel like the directors at the casting towers of VS sit around their pristine white tables drinking straight gin at 2pm, in their safe little cocoon of familiarity, secretly frightened to break the mould of this gigantic empire of a brand JUST IN CASE it goes tits-up
Even though just outside the window, protestors are screaming for more diversity!
(Anyone else imagining someone having a Ron Burgundy moment??)
Victoria’s Secret has been branded the ‘sexy’ lingerie company since the word GO. Thanks to a slightly heftier price tag than other leading brands, they become sets you go and buy when you want to ‘treat yo self’ – or somebody else *wink*
VS has thrived on the idea of combining high quality underwear and sex (in an obviously classy, yet teasing way) that we now all associate the pieces with that particular combo. And now you can add to the fantasy and illusion by purchasing such seductive add-ons like silk robes and pyjamas, inciting scents, sprays and the most microscopic panties you’ll ever find in your lifetime.
Because whether we like it or not, sex sells.
But with all this publicity and popularity, there’s one burning question that is itching to be extinguished at the back of everyone’s mind;
Why Do They Use Only ONE Type Of Model??
Now, I released a post very recently about using the word ‘skinny’ and how it still equates to body shaming – so I’m not going to spend the next 400 words slamming these women – as I’m probably deep-down still a teeny-weeny bit jealous that they look like they do!
In retrospect, these women are absolute goddesses, and most likely made me question my sexual preferencing at one point during my early 20’s
Leading lingerie and swimwear companies around the world are continuing to tear through the wall of society standards and introduce more and more women with different shapes and sizes – because apparently they didn’t see that they were there the WHOLE TIME BEFORE…
Aerie (by American Eagle), Adore Me, Negative Underwear, True & Co, Third Love – these are all leading brands that use models of all different shapes and sizes – because their underwear in fact comes in all shapes and sizes!
Am I right??
But whilst these companies are striving to do the morally right thing; sell their product to ‘real’ women and show the world that the use of the word sexy does NOT equate to ONE type of woman…VS are still raking in $1.1 billion a year in revenues, and dominating the entire lingerie market with their share of 61.8%!!
So why would they need to change anything?!
But it’s not just the women this brand are affecting too.
Boys, I’m looking at you..
I was unknowingly introduced to the wondrous world of sexual fantasy with Victoria’s Secret when I became insanely addicted to FRIENDS. The loveable Lothario Joey Tribbiani memorably made a comment about how his favourite ‘read’ was the monthly VS magazine and continuously dated woman after woman who ended up resembling our typical leggy catwalk model.
The hyper-sexualisation and consistent airbrushing of these women is all well and good for them and their wage packet, yet causes a much bigger problem outside of the winged-bubble. Lets face it, these models cater for everyone. They sell the beautifully designed lacy bras and panties to the women (and anyone else who may want them) and they fabricate the ultimate fantasy for the men (or women) of the world.
And who can blame them? These Goddess-like models are sprawled over magazine covers, posing bending over backwards on billboards or strutting the runway – wearing barely there underwear (which id struggle getting over my right thigh let alone my whole ass) whilst still maintaining minimal wobble.
It’s glorious moments like this where your entire build up of bodily confidence that you’ve been working on for a considerable amount of time comes crashing back down to the ground faster than you can say ‘fallen angel’
By displaying these beautiful specimen of humans labelled ‘ultimate fantasy’ in and around our lives 24/7, we are wired to believe that THIS is the ONLY definition of ‘sexy’.
And the spectrum of this belief suddenly erupts into a whole kaleidoscope of societal problems that are just swept under the rug and disguised behind a brand attempting to uphold their ‘reputation’.
As a young model, the VS fashion show is one of the biggest career and life honours you could hope to accomplish. But for young girls the aspiration can turn from sweet to sour extremely quickly by having only a particular type of woman to idolise.
As a lingerie-wearing woman, walking into a Victoria’s Secret store and browsing amongst the Angel wings and costumes seems like a dream come true. But Angel quickly turns to Devil when you feel ashamed and judged for requesting a Size L panty. Feeling ‘sexy’ in the industry’s favourite fantasy underwear is no longer an option. Better hop on down to Primark’s low-cost equivalent range, as that’s where I belong in this game.
As a female-loving man or woman, Victoria’s Secret has provided you with all the fantasy you will ever need. Because THIS is the ideal woman; one shape, one size, one template. You don’t need to look around, they have it right there on a plate ready for you to lap it up like a bloodhound. You won’t get better than this.
And even if YOU don’t believe this,
your other half is probably thinking it…
You may have gotten your partner into a set of this lingerie, but how long before her body dysmorphia starts setting in again? Is she the same size as the ones on the posters? Because if not, i give it 10 minutes before the mental comparison between her and them begins.
(Told you this was important)
Dear Victoria’s Secret
As a valued customer in previous years and as a lacy lingerie lover
Maybe next year, aim to lead by example, not just by revenue and celeb names
I assure you, nobody gives a rats ass about Gigi Hadid or Kendall Jenner
Try investing a bit more wisely, a bit more ‘2017’
Basically VS, we know your dirty little secret
Sort your s**t out