Have you seen Victoria’s Secret new campaign? They are promoting their Body by Victoria bra and it is getting A LOT of attention. I had planned to blog about something completely different today but it will have to wait until next week. I tend to be a reactive blogger and I can’t let this issue slide by without saying something about it. Victoria’s Secret has a picture of super thin models in their bras and underwear with the title The Perfect “Body.” The word body has quotation marks around it. Well played, Victoria’s Secret, well played. Here it is:
What do you think of when you see this ad? Are you offended? Are you indifferent? Some students in the UK started a petition against this said advertisement. They want Victoria’s Secret to apologize and “take responsibility for the unhealthy and damaging message that their ‘Perfect Body’ campaign is sending out about women’s bodies and how they should be judged.” You can check out the change.org campaign here. Part of their campaign is to encourage women to tweet Victoria’s Secret with the hashtag #iamperfect. If you are on twitter, do a search of that hash tag. You will see all of the public tweets with #iamperfect. There is no doubt that Victoria’s Secret has sparked a nice debate. Many people agree with the petition against the advertisement, others do not think it is a big deal while some are annoyed by all of the #iamperfect tweets. One girl pointed out that they are advertising their Body by Victoria bra and are not suggesting that these women are perfect. Hmmmmm, yeah no. Yes, they are advertising their bra but they made sure to use the name of their bra as a play on words. I am sorry but when I see that picture, I see them advertising their models as being the ideal, perfect body. Victoria’s Secret is known for using super thin models. If you missed my thoughts on their models, check it out here. I have a hard time believing this play on words was not done on purpose, that they are JUST advertising their bra. A good friend of mine works in advertising so I asked him his thoughts on advertising in regards to Victoria’s Secret new ad. Here is what Josh said, “Advertising sells aspiration. People buy based on emotion so when they’re impressed they want to buy and become what they see.” BINGO. He went on to say, “All the things we buy are a reflection of who we perceive ourselves to be and who we want to be.” YES.
I shop at Victoria’s Secret. I like their sport bras because they work for me and they are cute. I have some of their work out capris and I really like them. They hold up well and, again, are cute. Victoria’s Secret does a great job by keeping up with the current trends. I like their Pink line so I have some of their hoodies and sweat pants. Do I buy into Victoria’s Secret advertising? In a way, I do. I want to look cute. I like bright colors and that is what they sell so why not? Do I buy into this perfect body crap? NOOOOOOOO. Would I have bought into it in my twenties? YES. THANK GOD I am older and wiser! Ha. Seriously, I would have totally played into this perfect body advertisement when I was younger. That is why I feel this new advertisement is wrong. They are not just advertising their bra. They want you to look at their models and think, “I want to look like them.” They want you to aspire to look like those models AND buy their bra. It is the whole point of advertising. I completely agree with Josh. We buy based on emotions. I would have loved their advertisement if they had provided a picture of various body types wearing their Body by Victoria bra instead of just their models. Those ladies pictured above are lovely but they ALL LOOK THE SAME and of course that picture was photoshopped to achieve a certain look.
I am not naive. I know that Victoria’s Secret is going to continue using a certain body type when advertising. They are not going to use various body types for this perfect body ad. The word perfect really bugs me. What is the perfect body anyway? Does it even exist? What I may see as the perfect body will most definitely be different than what you may see as the perfect body. Like my post on being skinny, our individual definitions of the perfect body are going to be different. I guess that is why I am bothered by this advertisement. I am not bothered to the point where I will stop buying their products but I am disappointed in them. I do believe that we are being misled by ALL of their advertisements. The models they use are not the average body type or size. I am not interested in looking like any of their models. I would be more interested in knowing exactly how healthy their models are instead of striving to look like them. Do not buy into the perfect body, whatever that may be for you. Eat well and exercise. It is that simple.