Every year, Victoria’s Secret, multi-billion dollar lingerie empire, hosts an annual fashion show for their products by marketing and promoting them with models also known as the “Victoria’s Secret Angels.” The show features guest artists to provide music for the models strutting down the runway. This year’s show, airing Dec. 10, will feature guests Taylor Swift, Fall Out Boy, A Great Big World, and Neon Jungle. While some people eagerly wait for the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show to roll around each year, others nearly cringe at the thought of people idolizing skinny and sexualized girls, as well as the supposed promotion of negative body image. As I’ve watched the show over the years, I’ve never been offended by the content, and I’ve actually found it very entertaining.
Although, many argue that the media has played a big role in the mindsets of today’s young girls to be a certain weight or look a specific way.
Senior Jenna Gallello believes that the typical figments media places in everyone’s heads are that women have to appear, “skinny, tan, and have no body fat.”
However, I think this particular mindset and image is slowly starting to change, starting with Victoria’s Secret models. They have more defined muscle tone, as well as visible curves compared to high fashion models. They are starting to portray more of what real women should look like and their athletic builds have arguably emphasized a shift towards women wanting to become fit, not just skinny, promoting a desire to be healthy.
From my experience with watching the show last year, I was motivated to have a toned and healthy body. I didn’t want to become the models, but I wanted my body to reflect my fitness.
When I asked an unnamed source who worked backstage for the show if the
models have a workout regimen, she replied, “Yes, they all work-out far in advance of the shows, often two times a day in the weeks leading up.”
All models, regardless of who they are working for, are trying to cater to a certain image. Not every aspect of a Victoria’s Secret model is real, and while they are not what an average woman should look like, they are displaying the glory of a woman’s body. As long as it is not being taken too seriously, and girls are not trying to make themselves look like the models, the show can be looked at as a beautiful thing. The company is often criticized for the negative body image it puts out there for normal girls, but I think it’s supposed to be a fun show.
Besides promoting the Victoria’s Secret company, “it’s to celebrate the fun and femininity of being a woman,” states the backstage worker.
The other negative persona many see while watching this show is that the models are clearly shallow or anorexic. They are under scrutiny for the many stereotypes brought upon them, and I don’t think they are true for all models.
As I watched previous shows, I’ve noticed how much fun they seem to be having compared to other runway shows. Now I’m not saying any of these models don’t have problems, but they sure look better than those stick thin models with hard cold stares.
The backstage worker claimed, “There’s always food around for munching on the day of the show -- I've seen a plate of brownies disappear in no time -- and they're all very sweet personality-wise. And energetic and nervous and truly excited to be there. Dance parties back-stage happen often!”
Gallello stated, “I don't see it as degrading to women because everyone knows that's not reality, that's not what an average person looks like. It's not a true depiction of what real women look like.”
I think these models can be respected in the sense they are good at doing their job and take their line of work seriously.
The models are “hardworking, focused, and often pretty quiet during rehearsal -- they want to make sure they learn their part,” according to the backstage worker who has gotten to know them.
If you plan to watch this show, enjoy the artistry the Victoria’s Secret brand showcases, and realize the models don’t look like they just got off the runway Photo courtesy of karlascloset.com (fair use)
every day of their lives. As long as women don’t hold themselves to the standards displayed by the models, it’s entertaining, imaginative, and celebrates the female physique.