It’s no secret sex sells
Apparently we can’t like hot women anymore.
Seriously, there seems to be a pushback against the very nature of men’s desires by a certain segment of the population. Hetrosexual men’s desires that is.
If you look at a woman with lust in your eyes you are a terrible, toxic person.
You. Are. The. Problem.
This is the basic premise behind Victoria Secret’s re-think, which the New York Times covered well today.
The LBrands (NYSE: LB) owned company is hoping that a dramatic change in strategy can revive the brand ahead of an attempted split of the company and IPO offering for Victoria Secret, along with its teen-focused Pink brand.
That re-think is such a departure it barely seems like the same company. This was a brand that was synonymous with sex and sexiness for years. They famously hired models to represent the company as Angels and the angel wings you could see throughout their stores were better known than the actual logo of the company.
Young men the world over would eagerly wait to receive the annual catalogue in the mail. It sat on my coffee table in the house I shared with five other dudes in their early 20s back in the day, for instance.
That’s all gone now. Instead it’s being replaced by a collection of accomplished women. Every type is included — except for the type of woman that would have been an Angel. Sex is being replaced with functiality.
The woman currently doing most of the talking is US women’s football star Meagan Rapinoe. An odd choice. She has admitted herself that she doesn’t wear lingerie and people that are inspired by her typically don’t either.
That’s just it. Victoria Secret sells lingerie. You can’t separate the sex from it, or ignore that the people that are buying their product want to look sexy, or look at someone sexy. It’s deluded to think you can make Victoria Secret some kind of progressive, woke, activist company. No one is going to buy it.
No one might be their customer base too if they alienate all their customers by moralizing to them about the damages of the “male gaze.” One of the strengths of Victoria Secret over the years is they made the experience of buying lingerie easy for young men.
Now they seem to want to make those same young men feel guilty for wanting to look at their girlfriends. How many are going to sign up to be judged? Exactly.
I’m also not convinced that women want this either. Some do, probably — and expanding the size line and being more accommodating to different body types is smart business — but the idea that every woman in the world is offended by being thought of as attractive is just not true.
Everyone likes to look at beautiful women. Victoria Secret is overcorrecting here and overestimating how many people agree with the personal politics that they are attaching themselves to.
I suspect they will learn this pretty quickly.