By Canesha Thompson
Popular brand Victoria’s Secret has seen a recent decline in consumers: store-perspective sales have declined by 5% within the first quarter of 2018. Now, industry experts are predicting the brand will soon have to close its doors, as women simply don’t want the image they are selling.
According to Mary Hanbury of Business Insider UK, the high street lingerie brand has been accused of failing to appeal to customers with its racy ad campaigns, which also threaten to negatively impact its brand.
They have seen a drop in value of 65% in the past 3 years, and are accused of completely ignoring movements like #MeToo.
The brand has been accused of targeting primarily male consumers, as opposed to women. Female shoppers of the brand have voiced their outrage of the elevation of male consumer influence over the brand’s marketing campaign strategy. The image of thin, scantily clad supermodels no longer makes the cut for the everyday women shopping for lingerie.
However, women are opting for brands that appeal more to real women. They are seeking out more realistic and image conscious lingerie brands such as American Eagles Aerie. Aerie has skyrocketed: they had a sales increase of +38% in the first quarter this year. The brand’s recent campaign features women with different disabilities, seemingly feeling and looking confident in their lingerie. Tellingly,
Aerie are now selling as much as 40% of the comparable lingerie sales in stores which stock both brands – while Victoria’s Secret are hovering around the 1% mark as of the latest figures.
Following suit is the release of Rihanna’s recent lingerie line, Savage X FENTY, which is more sexy yet appeals to real women with real curves who dare to feel sexy. The brand has 36 sizes and 90 styles to choose from.
Furthermore, other companies are also standing out, displaying the same positive messages of affirmation that upholds the essence of a real women. They also happen to be leading online retailers in the lingerie sector, such as Adoreme, Lively and Thirdlove.
These various lingerie companies are changing the message behind lingerie from one of oversexualized fantasy to empowerment, confidence and comfort. This once stagnant market is growing due to the feminist movements taking place in our current political landscape. Women are now boldly choosing for themselves what is acceptable, even when it comes down to the lingerie they wear and why.
Meanwhile, Victoria’s Secret is still portraying the glamorous, Amazonian woman that powered them to fame in the 90s. If they can’t move with the times, then the reign of Victoria might just be over.