Victoria’s Secret Show Is Cancelled For This Year
Shanina Shaik confirms: fashion’s lingerie extravaganza isn’t happening this year.
If you’d ask 100 models what their dream job is, you’d probably get at least 80 models answering “walking in the VS show.” Well, this year, those 80 models will have to think of another answer as the infamous Victoria’s Secret show has reportedly been canceled for this year.
The 28-year-old supermodel Shanina Shaik told Australia’s The Daily Telegraph back in July that, “it’s something I’m not used to because every year around this time I’m training like an angel.” She continued by saying that she’s sure that this isn’t a permanent cancellation and that VS will be back soon. We hope you’re right, Shaik!
The brand, which used to be the lingerie hotspot, has been struggling for quite some time now, making this cancellation (which, by the way, wasn’t confirmed by the VS team itself yet) a rather inevitable continuation of events.
With the rise of lingerie brands such as Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty and CHROMAT, the industry has started reacting more and more to the consumers’ demand for diversity and inclusivity on the fashion catwalks.
While VS has slightly dabbled into ethical diversity over the past years, they’ve still been completely ignorant of the fact that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. Example: while other retailers reportedly carry panties up to a size 28, Victoria’s Secret doesn’t exceed a US 16, which is classed as an XL in their stores. All petitions and requests of expanding their range in-store as well as representing more body diversity on the catwalk have been utterly ignored.
Or maybe ignored isn’t quite the right term. Let’s rather say, fully rejected as Ed Razek, who used to be the chief marketing officer of VS, thought it was a good idea to voice his rather limited and insulting opinion in an interview with Vogue in late 2018. When asked about whether he’s considered including some plus-size and transgender models in his upcoming shows, Razek responded that while he’s considered it, he would never go through with it. "Well, why not? Because the show is a fantasy. It’s a 42-minute entertainment special. That’s what it is. It is the only one of its kind in the world, and any other fashion brand in the world would take it in a minute, including the competitors that are carping at us. And they carp at us because we’re the leader.", he continued. Ouch...
And even though Razek has resigned shortly after those comments were made public, the brand image has suffered immensely. According to reports published earlier this year, they’re closing 53 stores in North America alone and Les Wexner, CEO of VS’s parent company L Brands Inc, confirmed that “going forward, we don’t believe network television is the right fit (for Victoria’s secret anymore)”. Considering that broadcasting this catwalk extravaganza is what actually made VS stand out from all other fashion shows and events, it’s needless to say that the brand is still struggling with media backlash.
But you know what they say: once you hit rock-bottom, the only way to go is back up. So, let’s hope Victoria’s Secret’s rebranding is going to include a strong reflection on why excluding such a huge range of potential consumers and supporters was a bad idea. And who knows, maybe 2020 is going to be the year we’ll witness the first plus-size or transgender model taking the runway to present the newest fantasy bra…
Image credit: Fashionista.