Author Topic: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries  (Read 12571 times)

JediMaster

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Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« on: January 30, 2017, 11:38:54 AM »
There is a VS right in the middle of downtown near where my partner and I live. We have lived in that town for most of our lives and spend a lot of our time there. Right on a corner where everyone can see, sits VS with its very provocative and unrealistic pictures of their models hanging in every window. My partner and I feel that is is highly inappropriate. Not only difficult for me, but it makes so many women feel self-conscious, hurts self-esteem and exposes children of all ages to pornographic depictions of women. This is a huge problem for obvious reasons, exposing kids, and anyone to pictures that say "it's ok to objectify us" and says to many women that that is what guys want does nothing but damage peoples minds.

We are thinking of trying to make them get rid of them or at least be required to turn the pictures to face inward to the store. Or, something
I think would be better would be for them to have to cover up their windows as would a sex shop or a P store so that the image associated with VS would be a bad one and maybe would raise the issue with their advertising and they way they portray women.

What we are proposing, is to bring this issue to town hall and try and get a petition to get them to rectify this problem. And we're hoping that in doing so, it will raise awareness of the problem of how society is trying to shape what is acceptable. Also to show that what they think is acceptable, showing women off as is at a car show, is absolutely ludicrous to any rational person. We want people to think about how ridiculous it is for a company to be able to openly show that to anyone walking by. Non of those pictures are anything close to being real. They edit out the hair, boniness and imperfections on the skin so that it looks perfectly smoothed and airbrushed, they round off their bottoms and their chests to make them look more round and "perfect" and completely change what they look like. We want people to see that not only is it far too inappropriate to display something like that to possibly such young children but also how it does nothing good for anyone to see and try to achieve what's not possible but the fact that they make it seem possible if you buy their products.

They also don't even size right so nothing fits correctly and their materials don't last so even if they didn't do any of that their products still suck.

We would appreciate any feedback, advice or opinions that would help us pose the issue with town hall and anything that we may say to help our case. 

Emerald Blue

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2017, 02:03:49 PM »
Thankfully VS doesn't have these stores in this part of the world but I think they are planning to. I take your points about the imagery too. Of course they're unrealistic etc, and I suppose you could say that about the fashion industry in general. It's not good for young women's self esteem and body confidence either, being bombarded with these unrealistic 'standards' to live up to.

I was particularly annoyed about a story about a breastfeeding mother who was told if she wanted to feed her baby she'd have to do it in the bathroom. The woman was quite rightly outraged, I mean who has their meals hidden away in a bathroom? Anyways, VS backtracked once they were outed for their double standards. You know, life size pictures of cleavage and near nudity are used to promote their brand but what are breasts actually for? Colonising women's breasts for marketing your product or their biological function i.e. feeding babies? I wouldn't buy their products on that basis alone.
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JediMaster

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2017, 03:40:10 PM »
My partner has been reading up on what exactly they do before a photo shoot. We've already looked at their diets. I can't exactly remember what they were but they aren't anything a real human being could live off of for very long and I think i remember reading that they don't eat a day or two before a shoot.

Apparently, according to an article we were reading, they not not only round off everything to make them look smoother even protruding bones, If they aren't satisfied with the model they will edit out their body parts and Photoshop new one's on. The article mentioned a specific instance where the women be interviewed(who remained nameless) said that she was asked to replace a model with another women's arms.

The amount of work these people go through to f*** up everyone's lives is astounding and pretty sad but also horrifying that people actually want to put this stuff out. This isn't advertising this is just straight manipulation. Attempting to put women so far down about themselves so they buy their products to attempt at looking that good. It's a pretty twisted business plan and it's quite sad to see people stooping that low for money and to sell more.

Yeah that's pretty ridiculous that they make it seem that they're all for women but then shame them for doing something a million times more natural than any one of there pictures that they put in and around their stores.

Emerald Blue

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2017, 07:37:43 PM »
I recommend Killing Us Softly 4, the most recent version. It's a lecture by Jean Kilbourne which is critical of how women are presented in advertising. The original version of the lecture was made around 1979. Instead of things getting better for women - the media stereotypes, sexualisation and objectification etc – it's actually a lot worse now. You can find Jean Kilbourne's talk on YouTube. It's about 40 minutes. There's a cut down version on TED but I recommend the full talk.

If I remember correctly, JK specifically mentions these composite bodies, using an example of a cover model made up from images of 4 different models.

Yes, I've read about these models dieting excessively beforehand and as you say, not eating for days before a shoot. I can't remember where I read or heard about a catwalk model backstage at a fashion show eating tissue paper to stop her feeling hungry because it swells in the stomach. It's not healthy for anyone to live this way.

To me, thus extreme and body-punishing dieting is an act of cultural violence against one's body, and medically unnecessary surgical procedures like breast implants are a form of mutilation. It's like a woman isn't supposed to be a woman at all. She's supposed to be a plastic doll, and empty on the inside just like a doll would be.

I don't really know where we will go from here as a society but there is a groundswell of activism taking shape. There are younger women who are revisiting the feminism of the 60s/70s and reading the texts by the key writers within the movement, which gives me great hope. There are young women today, just like young women in 1968 or whenever, who are saying, We don't want this shit! At the women's protest against Miss America was when women turned up bringing objects which they said were part of the problem – false eyelashes, curling irons, girdles, etc – and I wish women would do the same again. Trashing their VS lingerie would be brilliant! But will we see the like again? Or will we just roll over and take it? I think something has to change though. Or at the very least there has to be the voice of resistance.
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Loleekins

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2017, 10:23:22 PM »
This happened while I was pregnant with my son. And it wasn't the first time it's happened.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01/16/victorias-secret-breastfeeding-mom-_n_4611310.html&ved=0ahUKEwjEl-rCtOvRAhVB52MKHTvUD7QQFggdMAE&usg=AFQjCNFC7JptqW2F71zMCwvUgf7-JguU_A


I'm sure I don't need to tell you I don't shop VS anymore. Ever. They have the "tits are toys" mentality.

I belonged to a 28,000 member birth group on Baby Center at the time. Our group boycotted VS and I'm sure we weren't the only group to do so.
Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities --- Voltaire

Kimba

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #5 on: January 30, 2017, 10:49:38 PM »
Pretty sure all the major airports around the world have a VS store, I avoid like the plague.  VS on foxtel was one of my partners favourite Porn sub, the go too girls for him when he wanted to look legit.  Not realistic at all, I heard stories of models eating tissues to fill their stomachs up... What The :o
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Gracie

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2017, 12:19:59 AM »
Something I did in a mall was have my grand daughters look at the H &M windows.  Guys dressed in jeans standing normal legs together.  In girl window, girls had legs apart hips forward.  I asked why do u think legs are apart?  We had good discussion. 

By the way w/ VS who needs an hour show to show underwear? 

Emerald Blue

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #7 on: January 31, 2017, 04:52:07 AM »
"Tits are toys" mentality, LOL. Yes, I know what you mean. In the run up to Valentine's AND the cinema release of 50 Shades Darker I'm seeing all these promotional ads for "sexy" lingerie. We've reached the point where women are expected to look and dress and act (as in perform) as strippers, and porn "stars" as if these limited and limiting portrayals of sexuality are the only way to be sexual.

I guess I feel strongly about the presentation of this one dimensional sexuality – and VS definitely promote that limited narrative – because I was effectively 'retired' by my husband logging on to those goddam porn sites to get his sexual fix and not even acknowledging my sexuality. I became invisible and asexual to him, and eventually to myself. He also watched lingerie videos, I found them in his viewing history, so I know he was definitely watching stuff like that before d day. He bought into all that sexist imagery and despite what he says about treating women as equals, this kind of imagery does not promote equality and healthy attitudes to women. So I would happily boycott VS if we had those stores.
« Last Edit: February 03, 2017, 07:14:05 AM by Emerald Blue »
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AnonymousAnnaXO

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #8 on: January 31, 2017, 08:22:49 AM »
Wow, this topic got a lot of responses! Glad you posted Jedi since I didn't have time yesterday :P I agree that Victoria's Secret is overly-sexualized. The "tits and toys" mentality is true! I can't believe the horrible stories about the breastfeeding. That is just wrong. Also, VS doesn't have accurate sizes for breasts. I recently shopped at a different bra store because I couldn't mentally handle going to VS with my anorexia issues plus the pornified images in the store... too overwhelming. My therapist recommended a store in the town over that had these old women who run it. I went there figuring I wasn't going to find anything for someone in their twenties. I ended up realizing that VS bras are terrible. The women there were talking about the factories and quality of the VS bra's and how VS doesn't care about breast health but what looks sexy. I was a 32 DDD at VS but at this new store, they told me I was a 32 G (34 F for the strapless bra). I had been wearing the wrong size for the past year and a half! My mind was shocked and also angry because VS only caters to teens who aren't always as developed. I mean have you seen their pushup bras?? There isn't really room for any breast in some of them. VS is just very fake and superficial.

It's true that the way society portrays "sexy" is over the top. Women can be sexy in dresses, in skirts, in business clothes, or even casual clothes, it doesn't have to be just lingerie or revealing tight clothes. I think society is getting "sexy" and "trashy" mixed up. I know that I used to be a girl who bought into society's idea of what I had to look like. It was only when I met Jedi that my whole mentality changed on my wardrobe. Ironically he didn't want me in "sexy" clothes, and preferred me in casual... didn't make sense to me since every guy before me always loved my dressed up sexy outfits. I have realized that I can be sexy without being revealing or provocative. I think true sexiness is subtle.
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Emerald Blue

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2017, 09:32:54 AM »
I'm fortunate in that my partner prefers me in jeans and sweaters and doesn't really like the so-called'sexy' lingerie, which as you say isn't particularly sexy at all.

Yes, I've also heard that VS are poor quality and the bra sizes are badly fitted too, but even if they were to open stores over here I wouldn't buy from there on principle from what I've read on the porn addiction sites. Secondly, I've picked up on bits of internet info about the way they cast models, how they starve themselves before a shoot or runway show, or even to get through the auditions for the casting.

I'm with you on this narrow definition of 'sexy'. I don't see anything remotely sexy in most of these images of women. They aren't sexy, they're just following the rules and acting out cliched poses and pouts. Someone's sexuality is an innate part of themselves but in our culture only a very narrow demographic is "allowed" to be express their sexuality, and even then it's in a cliched rule book sort of way. Thats the thing about porn, it really is cliched. From the repertoire of poses, many of which are physically uncomfortable, to the clothes they wear (a uniform like any other), there's nothing in it that is the slightest bit 'sexy'. I really feel sorry for those couples where the man buys lingerie or whatever and expects the wife to wear it when they have sex. Why can't they just have sex that is pure and untainted by commercial products? And why is it the woman who is expected to dress up "to please her man"? If putting on some shitty nylon/polyester push up bra from VS makes someone 'sexy' we've really lost our way. People I knew years ago - because I've never liked all that trash and Ive always thought porn was shit - they used to ask me "well, what do YOU find sexy?" And I'd say, The naked human body, the sense of touch, sensuality, becoming one with someone. You can't buy it or dress it up.
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JediMaster

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #10 on: January 31, 2017, 10:11:07 AM »
Thank you guys, this is great feedback. I hope there are a lot of similar feeling people around here. If we can advertise it I think we can get a lot of people on board.

However, the unfortunate part is that this town sucks because it's in one of the top 5 richest counties in the country. And the wealth must really be good because this town, one of the wealthiest (but still not the wealthiest) in the county borders a city that is not only very poor but is in the top 10 most dangerous cities in the country (in fact our state has 3 of the top 10 most dangerous). The kind people in this town are very entitled. I believe there are a lot of parent's that bring there kids specifically to VS. There opinions may be skewed because they themselves are very possibly sucked into the societal ideals. I would not be surprised if we came up against a group of parent's that believe it is completely normal to over-sexualize their kids. 

In my high school, I hated the fact that almost everyone wore either something that was "in style" at the time or anything that was name brand. The amount of abrocrombie and fitch, VS and other stupid brands were the only thing they wore. Even the guys wore a&f aero-who f***ing cares and other "popular" brands.

Another hurdle may be the other bordering town which is considerably more wealthy than our town. They do a lot of business in our town and there is no VS to my knowledge in that town so they probably do a lot of shopping there too. If you walk down the street of this horrifically prissy town, most all the people look fake, covered in make-up and expensive brands and the most common cars, and I used to work in this town it's all I saw, are Porsche Carrera GT's and range rover sports, with a ton of lexus's and the occasional Ferrari and other super cars and the largest population of Tesla's you'll ever see.

This area is full of people that may be sucked into the ideal societal lie which could make this difficult. But I do believe it's possible.

Loleekins

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #11 on: January 31, 2017, 01:46:34 PM »
"Tits and toys" mentality, LOL. Yes, I know what you mean. In the run up to Valentine's AND the cinema release of 50 Shades Darker I'm seeing all these promotional ads for "sexy" lingerie. We've reached the point where women are expected to look and dress and act (as in perform) as strippers, and porn "stars" as if these limited and limiting portrayals of sexuality are the only way to be sexual.

I guess I feel strongly about the presentation of this one dimensional sexuality – and VS definitely promote that limited narrative – because I was effectively 'retired' by my husband logging on to those goddam porn sites to get his sexual fix and not even acknowledging my sexuality. I became invisible and asexual to him, and eventually to myself. He also watched lingerie videos, I found them in his viewing history, so I know he was definitely watching stuff like that before d day. He bought into all that sexist imagery and despite what he says about treating women as equals, this kind of imagery does not promote equality and healthy attitudes to women. So I would happily boycott VS if we had those stores.

We went a bit further than boycotting. We got organized and printed down some flyers to drop in their stores. The first was:


The second was:

Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities --- Voltaire

Emerald Blue

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #12 on: January 31, 2017, 08:19:46 PM »
Excellent! Well done  :)

The more I have learned about other cultures the more I believe that our own western consumer cultures have actually fetishised the human female breasts. There are countries in Africa where it's normal for women's breasts to be exposed. There's no taboo surrounding breastfeeding. No VS stores either, lol!  8)

My partner was into big XXL tit porn. I've never seen anything so hideous, like these giant cows udders swinging about and some headless man jizzing on them. I can't believe he was into watching that shit. I felt really bad after discovering that was his thing and how my own breasts were subjected to a 2 second courtesy grope, IF I was lucky, and usually I wasn't. I just thought he was weird, like a man who didn't like breasts or something. Only to find out that he was practically a fetishising perv when it came to other women with large ones. I never felt bad about my size and shape. I'm not large but I'm certainly not flat either. Yet mine evidently did nothing for him. So after d day, and when I found the videos, I was nauseated.

What helped me enormously was a site that showed photographs of real women's breasts in all their variety. No, they don't all look like porn tits because porn presents only very specific sizes and shapes on very specific body types. Real women are far more diverse than the images porn serves up. But the sad thing was so many women of all ages and sizes felt unhappy with their breasts. Large, small, whatever the size and shape, I reckon about 80-90% of the women were unhappy to varying degrees.

I was always happy to be as I am. It was that fool and his stupid porn addiction that caused my distress at not being what he wanted, sought out and masturbated to. He also had music videos and clips of actresses with cleavage and big tits. I don't know who who is the bigger idiot. Him with his stupid fetish that's more like how a 12 year old pubescent boy sees women, or am I the idiot for ending up with such a stupid immature man who would rather jerk off to performing prostitutes? There have been other men who appreciated my body, but looking back, he didn't show that same appreciation. What a fucking fool. (I can't decide which one of us is THE fool.)

Oh, and the hilarious thing was, one of those big tit women had fakes, but he was fooled. Ha fucking ha! OK, I've decided. He's the fool.

So, it took that website with images of normal women to restore my body confidence. It also confirmed that this current obsession and fetishisation of women's breasts is largely cultural.

Which brings us back to VS and how it was unacceptable for a woman to breast feed her child in an environment surrounded by images of airbrushed, sexualised and fetishised breasts. What a fucked up world this is.


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Sopie123

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #13 on: February 02, 2017, 10:42:04 AM »
It's absolutely ridiculous. I get emails from VS and i see women's asses hanging out and women in provocative poses. My boyfriend doesn't like going to VS without me cuz he feels awkward in there. My boyfriend thinks it's crazy how much sex there is being pushed onto people. After 3 months with no porn and just looking at sexy pictures of me he realizes how it's not necessary and not normal to wanna look at other naked people. He enjoys my pictures a lot more now because he isn't constantly being pushed to compare me to others.
Partner of a recovering addict. He's 10 days clean as of 11/14/16.

olafthewise

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2017, 01:40:14 AM »
Jedimaster,

You want feedback? 1) what does partner mean? I think I know but really, if you are in same sex relationship, why fret over explicit pics on a building window? 2) If your morality is self proclaimed in one area, why listen to you about another?

Bottom line: we all know the VS pics-girls  are representative of an unrealistic woman we all DON'T know. But really, its about selling clothing. I certainly want to buy my wife some of that stuff and she looks pretty good over 50 in sexy lingerie. I think that a reasonable type of pics in the windows is good enough but it is up to corporate management, who may very well be women too.
As for myself, I am not bothered by the sexy pics and I am not enticed to pornography from them either. Letters to corporate CEO work.

Jedimaster(1)

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #15 on: February 03, 2017, 07:47:23 AM »
First of all, why do you think I'm gay? By partner, I mean life partner. I can't call her my wife yet and a girlfriend is not necessarily a serious relationship. We use partner to stress our seriousness in the relationship. I get that a lot of guys like their wives/partners etc. in lingerie, but it is absolutely not about selling clothing. They are doing more than just enticing you to buy their products. Putting their product out on mannequins would be just fine. And just because they can be women too but that dos not make it right.

just because women are the ones being objectified by these corporations, doesn't mean that they can't be sucked into the societal whirlpool that is insecurity. They can objectify women just as much as men, especially if they are trying to sell clothing. They was VS does there ads is like they are trying to sell the women too. They reinforce that it's ok to look at a women and just see her body parts. Which, weirdly enough might not even be there body parts if it's a VS ad.

It's good that those pictures do not trigger you in any way, I personally don't get triggered either. Unfortunately, that's not the case for everyone. When a corporation does something like that, they are being very selfish. All they care about is selling product and putting out a false image of what women should look like to try and get people to buy more of their cheap quality, expensive, and horribly made clothing.

The pictures they have are absolutely not reasonable. They photo shop the hell out of them to the point that it may not even all be the same person. That is NOT selling clothing, they wouldn't try so hard to make an image. They would have healthy models wearing their product in backdrops that look like bedrooms because that's what it's for. They wouldn't be standing on street corners wearing lingerie trying to show that it can be worn in public, they wouldn't be making their models have horribly unhealthy diets and tell them that they can't eat the day before or the day of the photo shoot. They treat women like they are objects made for mens satisfaction. They made a christian women that modeled for them flirt with other men if she wanted to be a VS model, and she was married. They are not just selling clothes, and the way they do their ads makes so many people feel insecure, like they have to look like that to be wanted or to be good enough to a guy. It gives people such a false image of what a women looks like by creating fake "perfect" women. It's feeding into the insane societal standards that no one can meet. Not everyone id affected by this, but it is still a big issue for so many, and the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. It makes people think that it's ok to dress like that to try to get guys' attention and it reinforces to guys that it's ok to treat a women like an object which can shape very negative associations with other women in there life which can then feed into things like the "glass ceiling". In case you don't know that, it's a term describing what happens to some women trying to work their way up a company. Eventually they will get to where they can see where they can advance to(manager, director CFO etc.) but because of the way they are viewed for being a woman, they will never get there.

It may not be a problem for you but it is a huge problem for society and for so many individual people whether they realize it or not

Emerald Blue

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #16 on: February 03, 2017, 01:13:23 PM »
Well said, Jedi. I'm with you on this one. It's beyond selling clothes. It's portraying a narrowly defined and unrealistic image of women and a false representation of female sexuality. Hypersexualised imagery has an impact on girls and women. It's a societal issue, and the exponential rise in eating disorders and rates of cosmetic surgery procedures are symptomatic of the unease that young women and girls are experiencing now. That how they look is what matters most. VS and their notoriety over what they expect of their models, to the extent that they are forbidden to drink water several hours before a show because they can get their weight down by as much as eight pounds – that's just ridiculous, that an already starved woman is of more value to them when she is dehydrated.

If you add to that their the fact that they directed a nursing mother to an alleyway - yes, an alleyway - to breastfeed her baby, and after having spent money in the store – then I think they really need to get past their "tits are toys" attitude and start understanding that sex in the real world leads to new life and it's a woman's body that makes this miracle happen. So a nursing mother is directed to an alleyway, out of sight? That's just wrong.

Here are the links to Killing Us Softly 4 by Jean Kilbourne
https://youtu.be/mxfmdfj_KhQ
https://youtu.be/FnfR_AeGptU
« Last Edit: February 03, 2017, 01:15:19 PM by Emerald Blue »
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AnonymousAnnaXO

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #17 on: February 03, 2017, 01:28:20 PM »
In my photo class at my old college, we watched the killing us softly, and I was barely holding on. I was highly triggered by the series, but also in awe! It really opened my eyes. Given that I was in the middle of my anorexia at the time I couldn't believe that everything I had been seeing was SO fake. I knew to some extent some stuff might be fake, but that documentary opened my eyes to just how fake everything is. Yet, we are bombarded with these images! I can't tell you how anxiety provoking, and how hellish it can be to just walk down the street with my anorexic mind. These images fuel insecurities. These images make everyone feel bad about themselves. This culture we live in is so toxic to all of our mental health. It's honestly sickening. It's true, with all the treatment centers I've been in, I was in treatment at age 22 with girls who were in middle school! I was so horrified that girls that young were in treatment centers, missing out on school, friends, and having a "normal" life at that age. It's heartbreaking. Eating Disorders and the mentality of dieting and all that is made out to be "cool" but it is the most harmful thing. I never got into dieting (which doesn't work! I've heard it from many nutritionists who actually know food content, what your body needs, and how things are digested). In fact, dieting works in reverse! If one restricts their intake they actually Gain weight because their body holds onto everything it takes in because it's in starvation mode. The way to stay healthy is to eat everything in moderation. Just keep a balanced eating routine. So, these whole "models have to starve to be attractive" is disgusting! It's hurting everyone.

VS and other brands like it are so unhealthy in all aspects. They damage their models by stupid restrictions, then photoshop the pictures beyond recognition and put it out to the world, the world sees that and feels inadequate, and then they, in turn, do things that are unhealthy. It's a whole vicious cycle.
"Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive" - sir Walter Scott

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #18 on: February 03, 2017, 02:15:55 PM »
I also think that the ads facing outside the store affect men and their sons.   These sons are then learning their women should be exactly like the ones in the pictures which then paves the way for looking for more and ending up on the hamster wheel of porn. 

I do buy my bras there.  But the advertising and pictures are over the top.  If they would advertise as the best bras, they would sell.   I have random muscle spasms and they have the softest sided bras.

Make no mistake all their advertising is sexually motivated

olafthewise

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #19 on: February 03, 2017, 06:35:08 PM »
I apologize if I offended.

Its about the money and marketing. remain silent and they go on. say something, write letters, email.
touch up is possible but really doesn't matter. The girls are young, pretty and chosen. They go to Hollywood events in riske' clothing to show themselves off. 

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #20 on: February 03, 2017, 06:47:52 PM »
I think you might be missing the point. Even if they are attractive, the point is that they restrict, and are photoshopped beyond recognition and don't always have their own body parts in their photos. Sure touch up with lighting and contrast is a great use of photoshop, but when they take different photos and put them together to make one photo that is ridiculous and beyond necessary. When they wear push up bras under the bikini and it's photoshopped out that is freaking ridiculous. The topic of this thread is how VS and other brands oversexualize themselves to the point of it being damaging to all parties involved (individuals and society). Whether they are naturally attractive is not the point of this thread.
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Emerald Blue

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #21 on: February 03, 2017, 07:27:22 PM »
Olafthewise, the tragedy is that there are many girls who are pretty and beautiful, have "good figures" – but more importantly have HEALTHY BODIES to begin with – who feel they have to "diet" (read "starve") and put their bodies under stress, who risk their health, lose their menstrual cycles, and become anxious and depressed by these constant visual messages. More and more teenage girls and young women have such anxieties about their looks and their figures, more so than ever before. They regard their own bodies more like a problem that must be managed and controlled in order to look in certain ways- as I said earlier, a narrowly defined version of female beauty which doesn't really exist in the real world, and a narrowly prescribed version of female sexuality which is pretty much a man-made fiction.

Anna, I'm so sorry to hear what you've been through. Your experiences sound so distressing. If Killing Us Softly was triggering your anxieties, your condition must have been awful to live with. I hope that you are in a better place now. I consider Killing Us Softly to have been such a crucial text in my own recovery as a partner of a PA because of its impact on my self image, my sexual identity and my self esteem. To be replaced by imagery and make believe and to have your sexuality discounted was such a mindfuck, and how on earth do I come to terms with that?

The documentaries and the books I read, podcasts etc, to be absolutely crucial to come out of that maze of confusion and disorientation. There was a time when I felt good about myself, I had a positive body image and sexual confidence. We can't rely on our porn addicted partners (recovering or not) to give us that kind of self belief. Obviously it helps when they tell us we're sexy and beautiful etc, but we have to be the ones responsible for our own emotional health too.

With regard to VS, we can shop there or we can shop elsewhere. They're not over here yet, but we have other stores and brands, and some use highly sexualised imagery whereas others are less overtly sexual, perhaps more tasteful and upscale. I like my lingerie. There's nothing wrong with being sexy and enjoying the experience of dressing up. In fact, if I'm spending an evening alone I wear my pretty lingerie and nightwear just for my own indulgence and enjoy the luxury. There doesn't need to be a man to see it and there doesn't need to be anything sexual going on.

I don't know where we are heading as a society if girls are growing up with such toxic messages about how they should look, dress, act, if it leads to increasing anxieties about poorer mental health outcomes. If people are still offended by the presence of a breastfeeding mother we've still got a long way to go.
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AnonymousAnnaXO

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #22 on: February 03, 2017, 07:53:59 PM »
Yeah, anorexia is honestly the worst thing in the world I wouldn't even wish it on my worst enemy. The mental battle every day is exhausting. I am iffy at the moment, the past two weeks I've been severely body conscious and being negative and super sensitive to ads and tv. Killing Us Softly, as triggering as it was to be in class and watch that was one of the best things I could have ever watched. It really challenged the anorexic mentality to be able to see what the anorexic voice told me to be was actually fake and unattainable no matter how much I starved myself. It is so hard to be replaced by pixels. It's so painful and still is. I don't know how to come to terms with that. I am now hyper sensitive to being replaced and I hate it because it triggers all my insecurities.

Honestly I love your idea of wearing lingerie for yourself, I have to try to do that. I usually feel really good in lingerie alonee, I feel confident.

Honestly with how things in society are going I pray I don't have a daughter when I'm ready for kids. I can't imagine the pressures that might be around in a couple years if things don't change for the better.
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Emerald Blue

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #23 on: February 03, 2017, 09:12:42 PM »
Anna, thanks so much for giving an insight into your own difficulties with anorexia. I definitely want to learn more about how it is affecting the present generation of girls and young women. I have found a documentary that I've bookmarked to watch later this week. This one also discusses the role of the pro ana/thinspiration websites and online social networks that seem to create something more akin to an underground cult that perpetuates the problem for individuals and acts against them seeking medical intervention and the support of parents and families.

The general consensus is that media imagery, advertising, celebrity culture, etc, definitely plays a negative influence in many girls who are vulnerable to the disorder. When you consider that it's now "normal" in our culture for women to feel bad about themselves, thanks to the constant diet of media and advertising that tell us we will never be good enough as we are, a lot more girls and women are going to be more vulnerable to eating disorders and psychological problems about their body image than ever before. I mean, I speak of someone who didn't develop those issues but after my husband more or less ditched me for free online porn that was always just there - plus the fact that porn totally warped the way he began to look at women as if they were all potential click bait on a porn site, I too fell into all those feelings of being repelled by my own body because I felt it was the cause of everything that went wrong. It's probably quite a different set of issues for a more mature adult woman than for a teen, but I googled it and found that some women can develop issues around body image or weight or other similar issues at a later stage in life even with no past history.

As you say, Killing Us Softly and other documentaries such as Missrepresentation are out there. They exist. They question our visual culture, they question sexism, racism, homophobia and sexual violence that it references and glamourises. And no more are these attitudes more apparent than within the world of pornography. Sexism, yes. Objectification, definitely. Violence, frequently. Preying on the vulnerable? Almost always.

As women, as partners of PAs, we need to reclaim our bodies and our minds from this cultural pollution. I am so sad and dismayed that my partner fell into all that mindless empty garbage. But he did, and here we are.
His porn addiction: you didn't cause it - you can't control it - you can't cure it

AnonymousAnnaXO

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Re: Victoria's Secret has overstepped its boundries
« Reply #24 on: February 03, 2017, 09:20:15 PM »
Oh my god, the pro ana stuff... I never was into that, but when I would relapse so to speak I would go to those sights to remind myself of ways to lose weight and restrict and try new things to restrict. But honestly those sites aren't "true" anorexics, those are girls that are glamorizing a disease. There is NOTHING sexy about anorexia. I luckily never got to "skin and bones" but I was at a low weight for my age and height at the time. I remember the doctors telling me that I was below the average and that made me very proud at the time. Those sites are a cult and honestly horrifying. Real people with eating disorders don't want to have the eating disorder. I remember having anorexic thoughts that made me think I wanted to restrict, but my logic mind knew that I would do anything not to have those thoughts and be plagued with all the pressure of looking perfect that the anorexia created.

Societies media, celebrities, and ads very much can do a lot of harm, and it's very subtle. Eating disorders have been on the rise, and especially for males. It's true that women can later in life develop issues surrounding body image and weight, especially with porn addiction, it's apparently common for women to start to develop disordered eating to some extent.
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