by Matt Weik
First, let me say how annoyed I am about the past tense of “break off”. I had to do some research and found out that the US version was canceled while the UK version was canceled. So there you have it … the more you know, right? Anyway, I stumbled upon a story the other day and my head exploded. It has been reported that Victoria’s Secret models will change quite a bit. Everyone has a right to their opinion, and I have mine.
In this article, I’m going to scold a little about how America woke up to being insulted by Victoria’s Secret models, and they have now been CANCELED.
Dear Victoria’s Secret Models, eat a cheeseburger (says Americans)
I have no problem with brands using spoken models to promote their brand, they have the right to do whatever they want. But let’s sit back for a minute and think about what Victoria’s Secret has been known for since, well … FOREVER. They are thin models who wear next to nothing – and present sexy lingerie. Law?
Now they are changing their position and moving more towards inclusivity (which is fine), but they are moving away from the foundation on which their brand was built. They now feature women like Megan Rapinoe, the outspoken US women’s soccer star, along with another person on the completely opposite side of the spectrum, Paloma Elsesser, a size 14 model who you might find on the cover of an issue of Vogue in. have seen the past.
Her $ 5 billion business is built on the hope that ALL women will endorse her new look. There is a saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Look, there was nothing wrong with their old business model. Women of all sizes bought their items. They sold sex, and as we all know, SEX SOLD.
Does Victoria’s Secret sell lingerie and clothing for women of all sizes? Mostly yes. Do the women who pay for their overpriced pieces feel sexy wearing their clothes? Probably. I mean, why else would they dump the coin on Victoria’s Secret stuff when they can buy something at Target or Walmart to cover it up?
The bigger picture I see here is that the social “norm” is shifting. America has now adopted a BIGGER body image and accepts obesity as “OK”. Look, it’s not “OK”. We now have over 40% of American adults walking around obese and over 60% are overweight – those are scary and serious statistics.
Where’s everyone’s outcry about how this will affect health? Being overweight is NOT healthy. There is absolutely nothing healthy about it. Well, putting the shoe on the other foot, being toothpick thin and almost anorexic is not healthy either. There has to be a happy middle.
Victoria’s Secret has long been a niche brand. Your shift in your brand image is now opening up. Could that be good for you? Sure, only time will tell. But we all know the riches lie in its niches, and Victoria’s Secret was at the top of the food chain when it came to lingerie.
The former head of Victoria’s Secret international business was quoted as saying, “We had to stop caring about what men want and what women want.” Hey women can want what they want, it’s their choice. But the last time I checked, weight loss product sales are skyrocketing because people don’t want to be overweight and people (including women) are not happy with their looks and weight.
I would find it difficult to interview women and find that they answer that they would rather be fat and overweight than fit and healthy. And if someone says they want to be fat and overweight, I wouldn’t believe them for a second. No sane woman of healthy weight would ever say, “I want to be fat and morbidly obese.” This is nonsense.
But America accepts that size and number because nobody wants to talk about the subject – health, fitness and nutrition. However, I understand it’s easier to eat whatever you want and sit on the couch all night and watch The Bachelor than it is to leave your lazy ass and go to the gym or work out. Hell, there are times when I don’t even want to exercise, but I know the alternative if I choose to live an unhealthy lifestyle. It’s about choices. And Americans choose to be overweight (sure, some medical conditions play a role, but they are a small percentage of the obese population).
What if this flows into men’s clothing companies?
Let me open things up and take the bus back a little. Check out male models being hired for clothing companies. You can use Calvin Klein, Armani, Gucci, etc. How do you look? They look like … models. Just the way you’ve been looking for as long as I can remember. Fit, muscular, thin, abdominal muscles, strong jaws, perfect hair and shiny white teeth, right?
To illustrate what I’m getting at, let’s replace all of these brands of their current model with some overweight fud with a beer belly, grizzly bear hair covering his body, a mullet, and old school porn. Is that sexy For some people maybe, but they will be the minority. If Calvin Klein started their business with the model outlined above, would you still be in business today? No way. They might be lucky to make $ 100,000 a year in sales, if they could make it that long at all.
Do you think women would look at an ad or commercial with a man described above and say, “Damn it, get me some!” I do not think so. Both men and women want to look sexy. You want people to find you attractive. And the ads and mockups used for these types of brands show an “ideal” body image. Never in the history of evolution have we ever been obese. It’s just how society has evolved due to inactivity and unhealthy eating habits.
How will this affect fitness models?
If the demolition culture has already reached Victoria’s Secret models, what exactly can we expect with fitness models? If America thinks the “Angels” are too thin or too sexy, what about women who are extremely fit, fake breasts, narrow waists, visible abdominal muscles and showing some muscle? We already know that society views bodybuilders as freaks. What’s next?
Everyone has their own vision of what is “sexy” and Victoria’s Secret has changed their brand vision and what is sexy. Is that because of all the fuss about the “body image” movement where someone who says just a single word about weight is canceled and publicly shunned?
I’m the first to admit that if I had a choice between Victoria’s Secret models and female fitness models, I would ride the fitness model all day. But that’s just my preference. I don’t see anything wrong with the appearance of the “angels” who used to walk the catwalk. Are you thin? Yup. But that was the VS look from the start.
If you look at any random woman who is fit on Instagram, she probably has hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of followers. Now look at a random obese person and see how many followers they have. And that’s not supposed to belittle anyone, it’s just the facts. Attention shifts to the person with a healthy weight.
My point is the fact that we are going in the wrong direction as a society. We have to stop accepting unhealthy behavior and weight. We need to help educate people (both men and women) and provide them with the tools they need to improve their lives. If we don’t, then as Americans get older, not only will the quality of life decrease, but life expectancy will decrease as well. And it’s terrifying to think about and accept.