Victoria's Secret, this famous lingerie brand based on catwalks, has always been deeply rooted in the hearts of the people as a representative of sexy.
The Victoria's Secret Show, which has been held regularly since 1995, is a fashion show that combines lingerie catwalks and musical performances. The Victoria's Secret Angels of perfect figure let people know that underwear can be displayed generously on the stage, and they are so beautiful and fresh to wear.
However, in an era where more and more attention is paid to multiple aesthetics, the sexy defined by Victoria's Secret is gradually being replaced, and the poorly-rated Victoria's Secret show has also been suspended for two years.
Recently, the Victoria's Secret Show announced that it will return in 2022, but there will be no more Victoria's Secret Angels. In the future, what we will see on the Victoria’s Secret stage is no longer supermodels with outstanding appearances, but female spokespersons from all walks of life around the world telling their stories and experiences, including photographers, football players, skiers, and Bollywood women. star……
When the famous sexy lingerie brand no longer uses the perfect figure as the label, will this be a good transformation?
When Victoria's Secret began to oppose Victoria's Secret
The wave of "anti-Victoria's Secret" actually started a few years ago, and the deity of Victoria's Secret is somewhat dull.
During the New York Fashion Week in September 2018, Rihanna's lingerie brand Savage x Fenty invited models of various shapes, ages, races, and even pregnant women.
The day before the Victoria's Secret Show in 2018, London, England, hosted a lingerie fashion show called "We are all Angels", which directly challenged the Victoria's Secret Show. The show was hosted by supermodel and big size advocate Robyn Lawley and invited Models in sizes 10-22 (L, XL and XXL) will run the show.
▲ Underwear brand Savage x Fenty. Picture from: Vogue
In contrast, in November of the same year, Ed Razek, the chief marketing officer of L Brands, the parent company of Victoria’s Secret, stated after the Victoria’s Secret show that Victoria’s Secret had considered hiring large-size and transgender models, but “no one had this issue. Interested, still not there."
He believes that the Victoria’s Secret Show should not use these non-standard or transgender models. The reason is that "The Victoria’s Secret Show is a fantasy show, a 42-minute entertainment special." Selling around the world."
Ed Razek is known as the godfather of Victoria's Secret Angels. He has been promoting the sexy image of Victoria's Secret since the early 1980s, but his remarks are now conservative and outdated.
This is a dramatic moment for Victoria's Secret. Sexy is always beautiful, but the audience seems to be tired of watching the drama that sex is used to bundle consumption. Since then, Victoria's Secret has taken more measures to seek transformation.
In May 2019, Victoria's Secret stated that the company would create a brand new form of activity to replace the classic but somewhat outdated underwear show; in early August 2019, Victoria's Secret announced that it would use the Brazilian transgender model Valentina Sampaio to shoot the Pink series of commercials.
▲ Model Valentina Sampaio.
In October 2019, Victoria's Secret and British underwear brand Bluebella launched a cooperative series of underwear, and for the first time large-size model Ali Tate-Cutler was used to shoot magazines. Ali Tate-Cutler's clothes size is 14 (equivalent to L), 14 It is the average size for American women. However, although Ali Tate-Cutler's figure is different from that of Victoria's Secret Angels, her face still conforms to the traditional aesthetic of Victoria's Secret.
▲ Model Ali Tate-Cutler.
On May 10 this year, Victoria's Secret announced that star manager Yang Tianzhen, THE9 girl group member Zhao Xiaotang, and photographer Chen Man are three best friends of the brand. The slogan is "Be yourself and support you."
Among them, the most controversial Yang Tianzhen has its own traffic and popularity. Her figure is much different from the previous model, and it is also very different from the 14-size plus-size model. It can be said that Victoria's Secret has the most extraordinary time. But Yang Tianzhen is confident enough that he is also operating large-size women's clothing, which meets the needs of Victoria's Secret image reshaping. Therefore, Victoria's Secret's move is not surprising. It not only shows that Victoria's Secret's image reform is continuing, but also that it is working hard to open up the Chinese market.
▲ Yang Tianzhen.
The purpose of Victoria's Secret change is nothing else, but to save both the declining sales and reputation. But this is not an easy task, and Victoria's Secret's problems are not limited to this.
Stereotyped aesthetic? This is not the only problem with Victoria's Secret
From the initial unknown to the amazing world, Victoria's Secret has probably experienced a glorious fifteen years, but its traditional marketing method on the traditional sexy road has reached the ceiling of the industry. The viewership rate of the Victoria's Secret Show in 2018 was the lowest in history. The first broadcast on ABC TV was only 3.3 million viewers. Both the Victoria's Secret Show in 2019 and 2020 were closed.
To describe the Victoria's Secret Show simply and crudely, this is just a marketing, not to show off the show clothes, but to promote the brand and feminine charm. However, in recent years, the Victoria’s Secret Show has paid too much attention to traffic rather than quality. The Victoria’s Secret Show is no longer interspersed in underwear shows, but rather like interspersed in underwear shows in platter concerts. Many Internet celebrity models are far inferior to the original generation. angel.
▲ Naomi Campbell, the Victoria's Secret model who teaches you how to behave with tassels.
However, Victoria's Secret does not reject "black and red are also red." In 2008, the red dress of the supermodel Karolina Kurkova's finale broke on the day of the catwalk. There is no catwalk scene in the official video, only the staff sewed her clothes in the background. However, the Victoria's Secret show is recorded and broadcast every year, and the normal show can be edited. Victoria's Secret just wants to release panic scenes of the accident. No responsible brand will focus on backstage scandals regardless of the appearance of the show, which shows that Victoria's Secret hopes to attract more attention.
Similarly, in 2017, Xi Mengyao fell on the Victoria's Secret stage. When everyone thought that her Victoria's Secret career was about to end, she was exempted and was nominated for the 2018 Victoria's Secret Show and served as the brand ambassador of Victoria's Secret Greater China with He Sui. Although this matter has caused widespread controversy, it has indeed helped Victoria's Secret to open up its visibility in the Chinese market. Victoria's Secret may be happy to see it.
▲ Xi Mengyao.
Controversies and scandals have always stayed with Victoria's Secret. On July 25, 2019, the New York Times reported that Jeffrey Epstein, a wealthy American businessman suspected of organizing sex transactions with minors, had harassed women for interviews with Victoria’s Secret models, while Les, founder and CEO of L Brands, the parent company of Victoria’s Secret Wexner is also involved.
Victoria's Secret, which has always been selling women's beauty and sexiness, has become a representative of sexism and sexual harassment, which is very ironic. Also mentioned above, Ed Razek believes that Victoria's Secret should not be endorsed by a transgender model, which has also triggered overwhelming condemnation.
Obviously, Victoria's Secret paid a price for this. Since 2018, Victoria's Secret performance has begun to decline, and the body care brand Bath & Body Works is the performance leader of the parent company L Brands. For the full year of 2020, Bath & Body Works' total sales were US$6.434 billion, a year-on-year increase of 20.1%; Victoria's Secret total sales were US$5.413 billion, a year-on-year decrease of 27.9%.
In terms of brand awareness, Victoria's Secret is one of the most famous fashion brands in the world, but in terms of brand level, Victoria's Secret is a cheap underwear brand in the United States, not very high-end. Victoria's Secret's flagship store on Taobao also has many bad reviews of poor quality, uncomfortable wearing, and hair loss during washing, but the price is not low, and it shouldn't have so many omissions.
▲ Consumers' evaluation on Taobao.
In July 2019, supermodel Karlie Kloss said in an interview with the British version of "Vogue" that the cooperation with Victoria's Secret did not reflect her true self, nor did she convey her own views on beauty. Therefore, in 2015, she cooperated with Victoria's Secret. Secret termination.
The reason for the series of problems of Victoria's Secret is that it has not given up on the examination of the female body. While using the female body as a symbol and resource, it has not given enough respect and understanding. Instead, it puts flow and heat first, which is the most undesirable. of. The core of the brand upgrade of Victoria's Secret should be to correct this.
As Victoria’s Secret CEO Martin Waters said recently, Victoria’s Secret hopes to become the world’s leading advocate for women’s empowerment. This is a huge change for the brand. “When the world changes, our response has been too slow. , We need to stop paying attention to what men want, but to pay attention to what women want.”
Does sexy have more diversified meanings?
"Comfort" is the entry point of many emerging underwear brands in recent years.
Jiaoui emphasizes that he is a "basic product", which means a product that is indispensable in daily life, that everyone needs, and is commonly used and necessary. Ubras, the main underwear brand with no size and no steel rims, is also being welcomed by domestic women. In Victoria's Secret Taobao store, steel-rimless underwear is also the top-selling category. According to a market survey conducted by iiMedia Consulting, up to 76.6% of consumers in China in 2020 prefer non-steel-rim underwear.
At the same time, the criteria for selecting a replacement speaker are also changing. In the past, this standard was Victoria's Secret Angels. The current standard is a spokesperson who is getting closer and closer to ordinary people and farther and farther away from standard models.
Dongyu Zhou is also the brand spokesperson for Victoria's Secret and Jiao. The former represents sexy, the latter focuses on comfort, but when the two brands choose spokespersons, they overlapped.
Zhou Dongyu has a clean appearance and thin body, which is not related to the traditional definition of sexy. It can be seen that both brands intend to interpret the new connotation of sexy with a new face full of vigor and encourage consumers to accept their imperfect self. The most comfortable self. Similarly, Ubras, which features products without size, is spokesperson Ouyang Nana, and her artistic girl's personality is also in line with current trends.
The value ranking of "sexy" gradually lags behind "comfort", and women's underwear is changing from "pleasant" to "pleasant oneself."
But after the CK advertisement of gay black plus size model Jari Jones was released, there was an uproar at home and abroad. Supporters believe that CK's approach is to promote aesthetic diversification, and the brand is listening to the voice of ordinary fat girls. Opponents believe that this is too "political correct." Advertising is primarily to promote consumption. Jones's image is very "hot eyes", but it damages the brand image and makes consumers lose the desire to buy CK products.
▲ Model Jari Jones.
Similarly, after Yang Tianzhen was questioned, he posted such a Weibo. Hot comments in the comment section mentioned, "You have a misunderstanding about sexiness" and "Where did the courage make you say this?"
Therefore, the compatibility of comfort and sexy is also different from person to person. Even if Zhou Dongyu and Ouyang Nana are not traditional sexy, their images conform to the mainstream aesthetics of the masses, so they can become new interpreters of sexy and disseminators of comfort concepts. And women like Yang Tianzhen, who think they are sexy, are often seen as an expression of self-confidence or even conceit.
The BM style that advocates thin body is in the ascendant. BM advocates "one-size-fits-most", tailored to the standard of 25-inch waist and 32-inch bust, and only women who are thin enough can wear them.
Like the previous Victoria's Secret, it follows a single aesthetic standard. Many people think that it creates anxiety, divides the crowd and even humiliates the ordinary body, but there are also many women who are proud of being able to wear BM. Whether BM caters to the deformed aesthetic of "no good women but a hundred" or means women's freedom to dress is also a matter that has been discussed over and over again.
▲ BM wind.
We can see multiple and contradictory aesthetics from these discussions. "Sexy has more diversified meanings." This is a prerequisite proposition in the consumer society. Various figures should be respected, but objectively speaking, not all figures will be welcomed in advertisements. Every time a large-size model, especially It is a real plus-size model who has to face more violent storms, and is given the criticism of "excessiveness is not enough." This is a very helpless reality.
But we can look at these controversies more eclectically. Most underwear brand advertisements feature sexy models, but its underwear offers a variety of sizes to meet the needs of consumers of different shapes. Therefore, one key should not be forgotten-most of the audience of underwear brands are ordinary people of ordinary body.
When we are watching underwear ads or Victoria's Secret Show, what do we want to see? Is it a perfect figure and beautiful fantasy, or more possibilities and a more tolerant cultural atmosphere? The two coexist and collide, just respect each other.
The problem is not the figure itself, but the brand's excessive use of figure as a gimmick and product. It doesn't matter if you are accused of being stubborn and not stubborn to stick to sexiness, it doesn't matter if you have been questioned about catering to diversity, they are commercial methods that want consumers to pay more. Whether consumers want to pay for this pocket, it depends on the brand's own storytelling skills and whether it can be accepted and convinced by the audience it targets. This is a business logic that puts interests first.
For individuals, aesthetics are free. You don’t need to stick to the vague vocabulary of “sexy”, and you don’t need to be restricted by advertising and marketing within the framework of beauty and unbeauty. Just make your own choice.
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