The famous Victoria Secret Fashion Show last Thursday exhibited a multitude of models and lingerie, but what really stole the show was a published interview Vogue submitted on the same day.
Chief marketing officer of L. Brands Ed Razek and executive vice president of public relations at Victoria Secret Monica Mitro discussed diversity. Mitro discussed the diversity at first of Victoria’s Secret, with models using their natural hair and being encouraged to speak for themselves. Razek then mentioned how Victoria’s Secret has models that most lingerie companies would never want to use due to the models being bigger or pregnant. Lane Bryant, the sister company of Victoria’s Secret focuses on plus size models and people, and Razek explained that Lane Bryant has its own plus size fashion show.
The Internet broke with the interview, focusing on some quotes Razek made.
“Lane Bryant still sells plus-size lingerie, but it sells a specific range, just like every specialty retailer in the world sells a range of clothing. As do we. We market to who we sell to, and we don’t market to the whole world.”
“We attempted to do a television special for plus-sizes [in 2000]. No one had any interest in it, still don’t,”
“Shouldn’t you have transsexuals in the show? No. No, I don’t think we should. Well, why not? Because the show is a fantasy. It’s a 42-minute entertainment special.”
Razek took to Twitter to apologize, claiming transgender models applied as models but didn’t make the cut. It was never about gender, he insists.
Please read this important message from Ed Razek, Chief Marketing Officer, L Brands (parent company of Victoria’s Secret). pic.twitter.com/CW8BztmOaM
— Victoria's Secret (@VictoriasSecret) November 10, 2018
Models and celebrities alike took to social media to urge consumers to stop supporting the company and to shame the company for its ideals that are focused on cisgender, thin women.
When I first started my transition I couldn’t WAIT to go to the @victoriassecret store & shop for more bras, panties, bodysuits, and cute clothes that made me feel good. But now I just want to throw all of that shit out knowing that they don’t support me or my plus size girls??
— Gigi (@TheGigiGorgeous) November 10, 2018
I’m cisgender and relatively thin. If @VictoriasSecret is saying they don’t want trans women or fat women in their clothes, they must not want ANY women in their clothes.
All of us or none of us, Vicky. #cancelVS
— Blair Imani (@BlairImani) November 9, 2018
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The FULL FANTASY can always be sold, regardless of a woman's gender identity, size or shape. I guess now we know what Victoria's secret is… She's actually a douchy cis white guy with outdated opinions on what makes a woman sexy… #edrazek @victoriassecret you've been exposed ☕ *sashays coin over to @savagexfenty 💅🏾*
Why is this relevant if the show was filmed last week? Because people are still using social media to vent their frustrations at the company, which has had declining sales for years, and whose competitors are moving forward in a more inclusive route such as Rihanna’s Savage x Fenty which offers options for people of all body types, orientations, and ethnicities.
Victoria’s Secret may have trailblazed lingerie, but the trail has ended and her secret revealed: she led the conversation on women for years, when her mentality is that of a cisgender heterosexual man.
Photo: Getty Images