Victoria’s Secret loses its appeal
The New York Times
“The push-up bra may be finally going the way of the corset,” said Tariro Mzezewa. Victoria’s Secret is still the leading U.S. lingerie brand, but it’s out of touch, its market share has plummeted, and its stock price plunged 41 percent this year. The CEO, Jan Singer, stepped down this week from a brand that’s clearly lost relevance. Victoria’s Secret has stuck with strappy stilettos, push-up bras, and thongs when women no longer want to buy souped-up sexiness just to impress men. It’s now competing with a “slew of new bra startups that offer products meant for comfort and ease.” The chief marketing officer of L Brands, Victoria’s Secret’s parent company, made headlines this month when he said the brand’s annual televised fashion show is a “fantasy” and he’d never cast plus-size or trans models. That fantasy isn’t selling anymore—the show has lost almost half its audience in five years. Women are tuning out the “overwhelming pinkness” and “glamazon” images of Victoria’s Secret in favor of brands that offer more sizes and practical use and promote more diverse visions of what it means to be beautiful. Ultimately, regardless of their branding, the company’s bras, as one former Victoria’s Secret shopper said, aren’t really comfortable, and they aren’t well made.