‘Why I hate the Victoria’s Secret show’

Written By komlim puldel on Kamis, 11 Desember 2014 | 20.01

Models Lily Aldridge and Candice Swanepoel on the runway at the 2014 Victoria's Secret fashion show in London. Photo: Karwai Tang/WireImage. Source: Getty Images

WHENEVER I watch supermodel and Victoria's Secret angel Adriana Lima walk down the runway at the lingerie giant's annual fashion show, all I can think about is the food that she hasn't been eating.

I glaze over the legs and abs that Forbes magazine estimates earned Lima $8 million in 2014. I see past her glossy tresses and her (quite fabulous) butt. All I can think about is that Adriana Lima probably hasn't eaten solid food in nine days.

In an interview with The Telegraph in 2011, Lima admitted that she will only consume protein shakes in the nine days leading up to the Victoria's Secret show — "no solids". (The protein concoction includes powdered egg). She will not drink a single drop of water in the 12 hours prior to the show starting, to prevent bloating.

Brazilian models Adriana Lima (R) and Alessandra Ambrosio (L) walk the runway during the 2014 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show. Photo: Leon Neal. Source: AFP

My local nail salon plays old Victoria's Secret shows on a loop and whenever I see Lima stomping down the runway, grin plastered all over her face, all I can see is what the mother-of-two has sacrificed in order to look the way she does.

And I worry about what I, and the other women sitting in the salon, will sacrifice in order to look like her.

Even for "the most beautiful women in the world", looking like a Victoria's Secret model is a full time job. They deny themselves the basic tools for survival - food and water - that doctors and nutritionists say we need to function. So what hope does the average woman (with a different full time job) have at looking like that?

I'm baffled that despite revelations from Angels such as Lima about the hours of work and deprivation that goes into looking like a supermodel (even the company's creative director Sophia Neophitou-Apostolou acknowledges the casting processing is "terrifying" for the young models", we still hold these women up as the ultimate examples of aesthetic beauty.

So why does Victoria's Secret keep marketing itself as such? The company came under fire last month for this 'Perfect Body' campaign:

'The Perfect Body' campaign got slammed on social media. Source: Supplied

Thousands signed a petition calling for Victoria's Secret to "apologise for and amend the irresponsible marketing of your new bra range 'Body.'"

"Victoria's Secret's new advertisements play on women's insecurities and send out a damaging message by positioning the words 'The Perfect Body' across models who have exactly the same, very slim body type," the petition said. "This marketing campaign is harmful. It fails to celebrate the amazing diversity of women's bodies by choosing to call only one body type 'perfect.'"

The company was forced to change the campaign slogan to read 'A Body For Every Body'.

When I emailed my group of girlfriends to canvas their thoughts on the VS spectacle, most of them said they viewed the show a performance and that it does not affect their self image.

"Their bodies are amazing, but I understand it's their job to look like that 24/7. Power to 'em. I just like to watch the sequins and bright lights while eating chocolate and a cup of tea," one of my friends said.

Lily Aldridge walks the runway. Photo: Karwai Tang/WireImage. Source: Getty Images

Another disagreed: "Girls and women shouldn't aspire to be beautiful stick thin, unattainable creatures. What about all the smart chicks that do awesome s***? At the end of the day they are selling a product. I like brands that encourage women to feel sexy and proud of their body. But I don't think VS do this."

The common arguments in defence of the VS show ('They're paid to look that way' and 'It's just a show') are weakened when the whole purpose of the show is to encourage women to buy a product. This show isn't for our entertainment or our pleasure. It's to manipulate us into buying diamante-encrusted underwear.

When I look at photos of Victoria's Secret angels, I don't feel empowered. I don't feel inspired. And I definitely don't feel like going out an buying a pair of bedazzled panties.

It makes me, and millions of other women, feel like crap. Let's not pretend otherwise.

The show will air on FOX8 at 7.30pm (AEDT) this Thursday.

What do you think of the Victoria's Secret fashion show? Comment below.

Follow @beck_sullivan on Twitter.

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