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Victorias secret drops their "angels" in favor of "powerful women"

jetboatperformance

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Mayor Lori Lightfoot in a bustier, now thats a powefull "woman" statement right there ! (makes me shudder)
 
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traquer

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I keep seeing this kinda woke stuff and all I can think is *market opportunity*. Some sexy Italian or French lingerie company is gonna swoop in and eat their lunch. Oh well I will miss my girls wearing their stuff..
 

Loo Dog

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I just learned something from that article, though. LGBTQIA+ ??????? A couple new letters I wasn’t aware of, and now a symbol even!
 

was thatguy

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I keep seeing this kinda woke stuff and all I can think is *market opportunity*. Some sexy Italian or French lingerie company is gonna swoop in and eat their lunch. Oh well I will miss my girls wearing their stuff..
Gotta figure so.

The whole gay stuff represents about 1% of this country’s population. Even with sympathizers it still would seem like a suicidal market move for a company geared toward sexy lingerie for women?
Even the non stop barrage of black this and black that and the ENDLESS patronizing with the commercials using easily 75% black actors seems to go against the population demographic?
 

HBCraig

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traquer

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Gotta figure so.

The whole gay stuff represents about 1% of this country’s population. Even with sympathizers it still would seem like a suicidal market move for a company geared toward sexy lingerie for women?
Even the non stop barrage of black this and black that and the ENDLESS patronizing with the commercials using easily 75% black actors seems to go against the population demographic?
Exaaactly!
 

rivermobster

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Valentina Sampaio, an LGBTQIA+ activist who became Victoria's Secret's first openly transgender model two years ago, has also joined the firm's "collective" alongside plus-sized model and "body advocate" Paloma Elsesser.

Good luck with that.
 

lakemadness

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My MIL was an exec there, c level suite. According to her things changed there years ago. It takes a while for big companies to change. She saw the path years ago. Here’s where they ended up.
Btw they’re owned by Limited Brands. They have a few other lines. All going that way.

Too bad. Her and my FIL have good stories of the old days and the “fashion show”
 

coolchange

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Gotta figure so.

The whole gay stuff represents about 1% of this country’s population. Even with sympathizers it still would seem like a suicidal market move for a company geared toward sexy lingerie for women?
Even the non stop barrage of black this and black that and the ENDLESS patronizing with the commercials using easily 75% black actors seems to go against the population demographic?
You noticed that also.
 

Mcob25rg

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U can market all you want, as be as woke as they come, but u CAN'T change human nature - ask the people who tried prohibtion / out law drugs / out law prostitution. Guys are going to be visual till they die. Can't wait for somebody to come in, take their share, and put them out of their misery.
 

Ziggy

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U can market all you want, as be as woke as they come, but u CAN'T change human nature - ask the people who tried prohibtion / out law drugs / out law prostitution. Guys are going to be visual till they die. Can't wait for somebody to come in, take their share, and put them out of their misery.
Exactly. Christmas and Valentines sales are gonna tank. Ain't many true red blooded American husbands gonna think any outfit modeled by these new "representatives" will look hot on their wives. You will not be able unsee it.
In my opinion, they just smacked a large percentage of their clientele in the face. I know I won't patronize VS again. Plenty of other, less expensive(aka=not full of themselves) options.
 

530RL

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Exactly. Christmas and Valentines sales are gonna tank. Ain't many true red blooded American husbands gonna think any outfit modeled by these new "representatives" will look hot on their wives. You will not be able unsee it.
In my opinion, they just smacked a large percentage of their clientele in the face. I know I won't patronize VS again. Plenty of other, less expensive(aka=not full of themselves) options.

Their business has been in a decline dropping from 7 billion a year to 5 billion a year. They have been closing stores and profitability is waning as sales PSF of existing stores continues dropping.

The everyone wants to look like an Angel schtick from the early 90's will no longer grow or sustain their business. Just look at your average buffet in Vegas, the Angel body image is long gone.

Yes, they will lose some of the male shoppers on certain holidays but the bulk of their business is to women for everyday items. The teddy's and bustier stuff is not the real business. It would appear they are willing to give that up in an attempt to sustain the bulk of their business.

Who knows if it will work? But they had to do something as the old play was no longer working as reflected in their continuing sales and profitibility declines.
 

Mandelon

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The Victoria’s Secret Angels, those avatars of Barbie bodies and playboy reverie, are gone. Their wings, fluttery confections of rhinestones and feathers that could weigh almost 30 pounds, are gathering dust in storage. The “Fantasy Bra,” dangling real diamonds and other gems, is no more.

In their place are seven women famous for their achievements and not their proportions. They include Megan Rapinoe, the 35-year-old pink-haired soccer star and gender equity campaigner; Eileen Gu, a 17-year-old Chinese American freestyle skier and soon-to-be Olympian; the 29-year-old biracial model and inclusivity advocate Paloma Elsesser, who was the rare size 14 woman on the cover of Vogue; and Priyanka Chopra Jonas, a 38-year-old Indian actor and tech investor.

They will be spearheading what may be the most extreme and unabashed attempt at a brand turnaround in recent memory: an effort to redefine the version of “sexy” that Victoria’s Secret represents (and sells) to the masses. For decades, Victoria’s Secret’s scantily clad supermodels with Jessica Rabbit curves epitomized a certain widely accepted stereotype of femininity. Now, with that kind of imagery out of step with the broader culture and Victoria’s Secret facing increased competition and internal turmoil, the company wants to become, its chief executive said, a leading global “advocate” for female empowerment.

Will women buy it? An upcoming spinoff, more than $5 billion in annual sales, and 32,000 jobs in a global retail network that includes roughly 1,400 stores are riding on the answer.

It is a stark change for a brand that not only long sold lingerie in the guise of male fantasy, but has also been scrutinized heavily in recent years for its owner’s relationship with the sex offender Jeffrey Epstein and revelations about a misogynistic corporate culture that trafficked in sexism, sizeism and ageism.

Paloma Elsesser, center, who calls herself “a 29-year-old mixed Black fem in a size 14 body,” said her decision to work with Victoria’s Secret “goes back to the sheer metrics of the situation.”Credit...Zoe Ghertner
“When the world was changing, we were too slow to respond,” said Martin Waters, the former head of Victoria’s Secret’s international business who was appointed chief executive of the brand in February. “We needed to stop being about what men want and to be about what women want.”

The seven women, who form a group called the VS Collective, will alternately advise the brand, appear in ads and promote Victoria’s Secret on Instagram. They are joining a company that has an entirely new executive team and is forming a board of directors in which all but one seat will be occupied by women.

Rarely has a company so dominant in its sector been exposed as trailing so far behind the culture as Victoria’s Secret was in the wake of the #MeToo movement.

It was, Ms. Rapinoe said bluntly, “patriarchal, sexist, viewing not just what it meant to be sexy but what the clothes were trying to accomplish through a male lens and through what men desired. And it was very much marketed toward younger women.” That message, she said, was “really harmful.”

Victoria’s Secret’s cultural influence is a product of its industry standing. Though the company’s share of the U.S. women’s underwear market dropped to 21 percent last year from 32 percent in 2015, according to Euromonitor International, it is still a powerhouse. Its next closest competitor is Hanesbrands, with a 16 percent share.

Founded in 1977 as a store where men could feel comfortable shopping for lingerie, even the name referred to male fantasies of prim Victorian ladies who became naughty in the boudoir. The retail billionaire Leslie H. Wexner bought Victoria’s Secret in 1982 and turned it into a phenomenon that helped shape society’s view of female sexuality and beauty ideals. Central to its ethos were the “Angels” — supermodels like Heidi Klum and Tyra Banks who posed exclusively for the brand, often in G-strings, stilettos and wings. In 1995, it introduced the Victoria’s Secret fashion show, a sort of cross between a runway show and a pole dance that aired on network television for nearly two decades.

It has taken years for Victoria’s Secret to acknowledge that its marketing was dated. In that time, the value of the brand eroded and a slew of competitors grew in part by positioning themselves as the anti-Victoria’s Secret, complete with more typical women’s bodies and a focus on inclusivity and diversity.

The brand has also come under fire after Mr. Wexner’s close ties to Mr. Epstein came to light in 2019 and a New York Times investigation last year showed that Mr. Wexner and his former chief marketing officer, Ed Razek, presided over an entrenched culture of misogyny, bullying and harassment.

“I’ve known that we needed to change this brand for a long time, we just haven’t had the control of the company to be able to do it,” Mr. Waters said. As for the Angels? “Right now, I don’t see it as being culturally relevant,” he said.

Mr. Razek and Mr. Wexner will not be a part of the new Victoria’s Secret, which will split from L Brands and Bath & Body Works to become its own public company this summer. (The pandemic scuttled a sale to a private-equity firm and swallowed $2 billion in revenue.) There are more women in charge, including a new chief marketing officer, Martha Pease, who has led the Collective initiative. The stores that survived a year of culling are becoming lighter and brighter, and mannequins — which have typically been a size 32B — will come in new shapes and sizes. The Angels imagery, which once even appeared on store bathroom TVs, will be phased out. The company will still sell products like thongs and lacy lingerie, but its purview will expand, especially in areas like sportswear.

“In the old days, the Victoria brand had a single lens, which was called ‘sexy,’” Mr. Waters said. While that sold for decades, it also prevented the brand from offering products like maternity or post-mastectomy bras (not considered sexy) and prompted it to sell push-up sports bras (sexy, but not so popular). It also meant, he said, “that the brand never celebrated Mother’s Day.” (Not sexy.)

There are plenty of people who do, in fact, find motherhood seductive, but the myopia of the Victoria’s Secret lens was such that they were never acknowledged, let alone listened to.

“As a gay woman, I think a lot about what we think is sexy, and we are afforded the ability to do that, because I don’t have to wear the traditional sexy thing to be sexy and I don’t think the traditional thing is sexy when it comes to my partner or people I’ve dated,” said Ms. Rapinoe. “I think functionality is probably the sexiest thing we could possibly achieve in life. Sometimes just cool is sexy, too.”

Victoria’s Secret, which did finally introduce a Mother’s Day campaign last month and even featured a pregnant model, will soon begin selling nursing bras. It also said it would work with its new partners like Ms. Rapinoe and Ms. Chopra Jonas on product lines set to appear next spring.

While it was “probably time for the Angels to go,” the lingerie powerhouse will have to strike a balance between moving forward and maintaining existing customers, said Cynthia Fedus-Fields, the former chief executive of the Victoria’s Secret division responsible for its catalog.

“If it was a $7 billion business pre-Covid, and much of that $7 billion was built on this blatant sexy approach, be careful with what you’re doing,” she said.

According to Raúl Martinez, who joined as creative director in January, every aspect of the brand is being reconsidered.

“It has to have a purpose, a reason, be there for the consumer to say: Wow, they’re really evolving,” he said, acknowledging that it was his 15-year-old daughter who persuaded him to join Victoria’s Secret. “She said, ‘Dad. Do it for us. The Gen Zs,’” he recalled.

Still, the question remains: Why would women like Ms. Rapinoe and Ms. Chopra Jonas want to risk their names by placing their stamp of credibility on Victoria’s Secret? The line between selling out and infiltrating from within can be hard to discern.

“Of course there will be people who are like, ‘Does this make sense?’” said Ms. Rapinoe, who acknowledged that when she was first approached, “I, too, was like, ‘What? Why do you want to work with me?’” She said she had been convinced by the willingness of the brand’s executives to acknowledge their mistakes and history, and by the fact that her role is not limited to the typical “brand ambassadorship,” but extends to consulting on language the company uses, the assortment of products it offers and narrative it’s putting out.

Ms. Elsesser said her decision to join Victoria’s Secret “goes back to the sheer metrics of the situation.”

“I didn’t start modeling to just do all the cool stuff; I did it to change the world,” she said. “With platforms like VS, where you enter the living rooms of all people, that’s where you make radical change.” She saw part of her role as lobbying for Victoria’s Secret to increase its sizing to XXXXXL, she said. (It currently carries up to 42G in bras and XXL in nightwear.)

The VS Collective also includes Valentina Sampaio, a Brazilian trans model; Adut Akech, a model and South Sudanese refugee; and Amanda de Cadenet, the photographer and founder of #Girlgaze, the digital platform for female photographers. All of them, in the words of Ms. Rapinoe, are people who were not “typical brand targets in the past.” As for the fashion show, Mr. Waters said it would most likely return in 2022 in a very different form. What the brand will offer soon is a podcast featuring the women in the collective, a medium that requires no visuals.

“To rebrand is going to take a lot of steps to ensure that they have the consumer trust, that this isn’t just inclusivity-washing,” said Erin Schmidt, a senior analyst at Coresight Research.

Victoria’s Secret is betting a chunk of its marketing budget that persuading such unexpected personalities to join its cause will in turn convince consumers, and potential investors, to similarly believe in its shift, giving a new meaning to halo effect.
 

ka0tyk

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site said:
She saw part of her role as lobbying for Victoria’s Secret to increase its sizing to XXXXXL
why do we celebrate morbid obesity and diabetes? "hey everyone lets showcase what heart failure looks like!"

is it really because someones feelings get hurt? death aint gonna care about your little pitty party.
 

Chili Palmer

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Just what men fantasize about, manly, dykey women like a Olive Oyl or shaped like a kiwi fruit with legs and arms. Next you know VS will be selling flannel shirts, Dickies pants, and Birkenstock shoes. Better sell off your stock while it’s still worth something.
 

530RL

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can't wait for the ugly fat chicks and tranies
This was allegedly their first transgender Angel.

Hell of a surprise for whomever ends up on third base. 😲😲😲

AA595876-F59E-4C50-B2D3-04B2B34534B1.jpeg
 

SixD9R

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Oh no.

I can’t tell you how shocked I’m not. Most of those liberal a-holes that claim to be on high moral ground are actually far more racist and bigoted than the rest of us.
 

Cdog

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Meh! Woke companies swan diving into an empty pool., I call this “when assholes collide”.

And all those unfortunate “elite models”.Lol! Gonna have to learn a useful skill set or hit the pole/find a sugar daddy to buy them 2k purses.

It’s not like these women replicate their “elite genes”. 9 times out of 10 when theyre all done with the bar scene and ready to settle down they shack up with some genetic nightmare because he has money.

I’m just here for the LOL’s!
 

Taboma

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Seems to this ole boy, when out and about checking out the scenery. The pickins of those for whom I feel it would be appropriate to be shopping at V's-Secrets, seems to be few and far between.
Of course based on many of the shared pics I see from the Havasu Channel and other popular lake events, " Big and Bold" is the new look and most aren't trying to hide it.
 
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