Why Shoppers Are Boycotting Victoria’s Secret’s Idea of Sexy

Why Shoppers Are Boycotting Victoria’s Secret's Idea of Sexy

Once upon a time Victoria’s Secret was champion of the lingerie game, but nowadays, less and less people are buying into their idea of sexy.

Diversity is on the rise, and fallen sales along with 50+ announced store closures imply that Victoria’s Secret is falling behind with shoppers.

Nothing seems to be working, not even heavy brand promotions and sales, so the loss in consumers can only be pegged down to the brand’s outdated image.


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The garden party is officially ON.

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While other brands like Aerie have been adopting more body positivity in their campaigns for years now, VS sticks to the same ideal—and let’s be real—an ideal that was appropriated by men in the first place.

Campaigns run on the idea of making women feel sexy, but does a man really know what that is? Probably not, but he could definitely start by promoting the type of real bodies women actually want to see.


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i’ve had so much pasta since this day

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The market and sales don’t lie, and neither do ratings. The most recent televised Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show suffered the worst ratings in its broadcast history, meaning women are feeling outed by the body ideal it promotes.

As one blogger, Courtney who is a professional bra fitter, states, “I’m here to tell you that Victoria’s Secret is actually one of the worst places to go to buy your bras,” as she unpacks the 4 reasons why Victoria’s Secret bras are bad. Its sizes are limited, its sales clerks aren’t certified in bra fitting, its bras are poor quality and the kicker, “I don’t like how VS objectives women and teenage girls in an overtly sexual way.”

The bottom line, as stated in the aforementioned Forbes article, is that VS creates bras for men to look at, not for women to wear. While VS continues to parade this message on the runway and in campaigns, new companies have sought to fill the gap. Along with Aerie, other disruptors to the market like startups ThirdLove, Knix, and Lively focus more on things like fit, and comfort, as well as featuring plus size models and size ranges.

While Victoria’s Secret still maintains 30% of the underwear market today, Forbes continues to point out that the share is rapidly being eaten up by these new startups. Comfort and realness is taking precedence over sex appeal, and rightfully so, because who really wants to wear a lace underwire cage that is probably the wrong size for the entire day? Sure, maybe you’ll still purchase something from VS for a special occasion, but you’re likely not to wear it on the daily.

Along with adopting a new message and women-centric ethos, there’s also been some awesome initiatives within these new age lingerie companies. Probably the most well known is Aerie’s un-retouched campaign, while ThirdLove and Lively provide more extensive sizes and tools to help find the right size, and Knix has even patented leak proof underwear.

The cherry on top of it all is that their campaigns and websites use a variety of women with different sizes and body types so you can actually have a better if idea of what it will look like on your body.


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That post-shopping glow.

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So while VS continues to chug along for now, only time will tell whether the store can continue to stay relevant. It’s not to say that CEO of parent company and creator of VS, Leslie Wexner, isn’t a visionary. It’s just that his vision of women’s sex appeal is fast becoming outdated and out of touch.

In order to keep up with the change and attitudes and present cultural shifts, Victoria’s Secret would have to remodel their DNA. Whether that’s possible is hard to say, but at least Victoria’s Secret carved the way for other lingerie brands to-date.

Featured Image: Instagram/@deffiantor

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