By Morgan Lundquist
A woman’s self confidence is something that can be damaged very easily. It is something that plummets after puberty and is extremely hard to raise once it is brought down. A very popular women’s brand in 2014 launched a campaign that suggested there was only one type of “The Perfect Body” and the controversy sparked from the beginning. According to Huffington Post, Victoria’s Secret released a campaign that featured 10 of their models with the words “The Perfect Body” written over top of them. The purpose of this ad was to show that there were different types of items in the brand with each model wearing a different type of their bras and panties. However, many people did not look at the picture this way at all.
This created an uproar all around the world, with an individual even starting an online petition that ended up receiving over 30,000 signatures to change the campaign, according to ABC News. Women and critics began saying that it was very offensive to women of all different body types, especially ones that did not resemble the models in the pictures.
This came as a shock to Victoria’s Secret, who quickly pulled the plug on the old campaign and released a new one using the same picture that had the slogan “A Body For Every Body” instead, Business Insider reports. This was necessary for the company to do if they wanted to keep their loyal brand followers and people who purchased things from their stores because body image and a woman’s self confidence is something companies are trying to promote right now rather then bring it down.
Time magazine stated that the way the campaign was conducted was very irresponsible and the marketing of the products was done without thinking of other women in the process. Though I am sure Victoria’s Secret did not believe it would cause this much controversy, this helped Dove’s Real Beauty campaign take off and show that they are promoting negatively with a “perfect body” rather then real beauty.
This campaign was a very big social fail in my eyes because it is confirming everything women resent the media for in the biggest way possible. The media shines women in a light that you have to be one size and be stick skinny to be considered “perfect” and this is why girls starve themselves or even continually hurt their bodies to the point where they die. By changing their slogan, it painted a whole new picture for the brand because it showed that their bras and underwear are for every body size, rather then just one. According to Adweek, women even began a trending hashtag, #iamperfect, to show that they are happy with their body and everyone is perfect in their own way.
I would significantly change this campaign by never using the word “perfect” in the first place because it is such a double-sided word; who are they to state what is perfect and what’s not. I would also use different body types in the picture, every woman in the picture is the stereotypical model that you would expect to be in a Victoria’s Secret ad, however I believe if they implemented some different body types it would get a lot more positive feedback then using women with all of the same figure. All in all, being a woman in college and seeing the pressure that women put on themselves to be perfect and being an avid Victoria’s Secret customer, it disappointed me greatly to see that they would promote something so hard to achieve.
Stampler, L. (2014, October 31). Thousands of People Want Victoria’s Secret to Apologize for ‘Perfect Body’ Ad. Retrieved February 11, 2016, from http://time.com/3551892/victorias-secret-perfect-body-ad-backlash-petition/
Bahadur, N. (2014, November 6). Victoria’s Secret ‘Perfect Body’ Campaign Changes Slogan After Backlash. Retrieved February 11, 2016, from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/11/06/victorias-secret-perfect-body-campaign_n_6115728.html
Peterson, H. (2014, November 6). Victoria’s Secret Ditches ‘Perfect Body’ Campaign After Outrage. Retrieved February 11, 2016, from http://www.businessinsider.com/victorias-secret-perfect-body-campaign-2014-11
Brown, G. S. (2014, November 6). Victoria’s Secret Changes Controversial ‘Perfect Body’ Slogan. Retrieved February 11, 2016, from http://abcnews.go.com/Lifestyle/victorias-secret-controversial-perfect-body-slogan/story?id=26735138
Ciambriello, R. (2014, October 30). Real Beauty? Nah, Victoria’s Secret Would Rather Celebrate the ‘Perfect Body’ Retrieved February 15, 2016, from http://www.adweek.com/adfreak/real-beauty-nah-victorias-secret-would-rather-celebrate-perfect-body-161114