Thursday, November 14, 2013

a (not-so-formal) break-up with Victoria's Secret

Dear Victoria’s Secret,

I’m breaking up with you.  I don’t even know if I can really call it that, seeing as how we haven’t had much of a relationship since I turned a pregnancy test positive approximately five years ago. 

I thought I had deleted myself permanently from the secret lists you store that send me tantalizing offers for free undergarments.  The catalogues stopped coming quite some time ago and I assumed that was because you had been notified that I was expecting my second child and you believed chances were slim that I would ever step foot in your store again.

I was grateful. For once I wasn’t concerned that your catalogue of women’s products (that is so clearly targeted for men), would find its way into my home stashed between the Aldi’s ad and our mortgage bill.  Sure, there was still the occasional “free” offer that only required me to get my children fed & dressed, drive to the mall, find a decent parking spot & haul all my children into your store to secure the “free” offer.  Those offers were nice and a little less boisterous then your nauseating catalogues.

It’s been a while since your half-naked women have graced my mailbox.  I’d almost forgotten what it was like to open that mail and wonder why no one thinks to use models that look like real women.  I don’t need a half-naked model that has clearly never given birth, posing in a seductive manner to encourage me to purchase your products.  An ad with a picture of underwear and bras on a table that reads, “Hey! We sell these pretty things!”, would probably be more effective advertising to a woman like me.

Alas, you hadn’t forgotten about me.  Three babies later and you still are working to win my affection and bank account.  Amidst the latest hospital statement, Christian bookstore catalogue & obligatory Bed, Bath & Beyond coupon---there you were.  For a moment I was excited and began to reminisce the days when these offers would grant me an excuse to pop into the mall, just to browse of course.  I didn’t have to have an agenda—carefully planned around naps and feeding times.  There was not a need to pack enough for a small vacation just to visit your store.

Yes, it was fun to remember.  And then, little voices quickly snapped me back to reality as my little ones started to fight over the mail.  And your offer, like so many offers before it, was shredded and discarded in the trash just as quickly as it came in.

 They say that sex sells.  Well, not in this household it doesn’t. 

You see, I have a husband that I am happily married to…and that I care deeply about.  We work hard to safeguard our home against threats such as half-naked photos showing up in our mailbox.  Your ads often end up shredded and in our trash…because I don’t even want your coupon (that also contains half-naked women on it) sitting in my wallet.  It’s not something we want in our home…and it’s not something I want in my heart.

But more than that, I have a son now…and while he is only two years old, I need to start thinking about his heart and his mind & what we will need to do to continue to safeguard our home to do our part to protect him.

BUT, EVEN more than that…I have two daughters.  Two beautifully sweet and perfectly made little girls.  One who already has knowledge of” beauty” and wants to “be” beautiful, as if simply being herself isn’t enough—and I hate that.  I know the impact your ad can have on women who are hard on themselves.  What you consider beautiful is not what I consider beautiful and I want my daughters to hear that message loud and clear.

No, sex does not “sell” in this household.  I am thankful for your quality products, but not the way in which you choose to sell your products.

In closing, I appreciate you continuing to reach out to me month after month with your free offers.  Anyone who knows me will tell you I can’t turn down a bargain, but I’m willing to make an exception…just this once.
-a former fan.



  1. Appreciate your thoughts on this Rachel. Well said and a good reminder for me...

  2. Yes! Well said! Bravo! I love this! I always think the same thing, but luckily after our move, I was forgotten about. I completely agree about needing to have real women in their ads if they need to keep going that direction. BUT your idea of just showing them on a table is great! I can tell by just that if I like it out not. I don't need a tall skinny women (no offense to tall skinny women) to model it for me and remind me of how I have went from that to my now 5 kids and twins on the way body. You are my hero!