The secret is certainly out: Victoria’s Secret is in hot water with parents.
It all started when Business Insider released a story claiming the sexy lingerie retailer was targeting teens and tweens in their new “Bright Young Things” campaign for their PINK line, which is aimed at college-age women. The ads feature young women frolicing in bikinis, and the product line reportedly includes underwear printed with “dare you,” “feeling lucky,” and “call me” — although these products are no longer visible on the company’s website.
A comment by Victoria’s Secret Chief Financial Officer Stuart Burgdoerfer at a conference in January certainly didn’t help matters. He said, “When somebody’s 15 or 16 years old, what do they want to be? They want to be older, and they want to be cool like the girls in the college, and that’s part of the magic of what we do at Pink.”
While using the word “magic” in this case is highly questionable, he does have a point that kids do want to be older. And it’s Victoria’s Secret’s job to sell lingerie. But here’s the real question: If kids can get their parents to purchase sexy little panties, bras, or what have you, is it Victoria’s Secret’s problem, or mom and dad’s?
We can tell you what a lot of parents out there think about that question. The Internet is blowing up with comments from parents who find the campaign and the products hard to stomach. Some parents wrote open letters to the company, with one dad saying it “gives off the message that women are sex objects… [and] promotes it at a dangerously young age.”
Another outlet called ForceChange.org posted an angry letter addressed to Lori Greenley, the CEO of Victoria’s Secret. The letter encourages people to sign at the bottom to petition the end of the company’s campaign.
Following the backlash, Victoria’s Secret quickly released a statement on their Facebook page, admonishing the idea that they are targeting teens and tweens. “In response to questions we recently received, Victoria’s Secret PINK is a brand for college-aged women,” the statement reads. “Despite recent rumors, we have no plans to introduce a collection for younger women. ‘Bright Young Things’ was a slogan used in conjunction with the college spring break tradition.”
We want to hear from you! Do you think the Victoria’s Secret “Bright Young Things” campaign is inappropriate, or is all fair in love and marketing?