The Victoria Secret Fashion Show: Empowerment or Uneasy

The annual Victoria Secret Fashion Show was filmed and will be airing in just a few weeks. What comes to mind when you hear about the VS Fashion Show? Do you feel empowered? Or are you left with an uneasy and anxious feeling that you aren’t good enough because you don’t look like the Angels?

I admit that I do like to watch the fashion show every year. I think the lingerie is stunning and I think the women are absolutely beautiful. The thing that I enjoy the most about the show is the segments of the Angels bonding. I think that’s why I probably enjoy it more than if they didn’t have that. However, I recognize that VS and the show have their major flaws.

But have you noticed that it airs right after Thanksgiving and before Christmas when you’re probably consuming more food than you normally do because it’s the holidays, duh? Then you flip on your TV to see beautiful, toned, and thin women strutting down the runway in the most beautiful lingerie. And it just leaves you feeling kinda meh about yourself. 

Where I’m At

It wasn’t up until the past few years that, even though I enjoy the VS Fashion Show, I have started to think that wait why don’t I look like that? I’m around the same age as some of these women and I still look like I’m 12-years-old. I recognize that I am thin and that I shouldn’t be bothered by these women because my body type is the one portrayed in media. But in case you weren’t aware, thin people have body insecurities too. I’m thin, but I’m not toned nor do I have the perfect glowing tan or legs for days like the Angels do.

When I first met my boyfriend and we started following each other on Instagram, I ended up hiding this picture from my account because the caption was very vulnerable and I didn’t want him to see that side of me. I wanted him to see me as someone who was confident. I didn’t want him to know something about me that early on because I feared he would walk away because that could be too much for someone to handle.

But what I’ve learned – or rather still trying to get through my head – is that I will never be too much for the right person. Those from my past may have thought my anxiety and whatever else I had going on with me was too much, but the right one will hold my hand through it as I work through it. That post means and I’m quite proud of it so I ended up putting it back on my feed.


Realize you too can have the same confidence and power that the VS angel models exude in whatever endeavor you decide to pursue.

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Shifting Our Mindset

I’m guilty of falling into the mindset that I’m not good enough because I don’t look like Taylor Hill or Candice Swanepoel. It would be more powerful to shift how we perceive the show.

For years, the show catered more towards men and them drooling over the women strutting down the catwalk in their underwear. The past few years that dynamic has started to shift and be geared towards the women. Men don’t appreciate the months of effort spent on the Fantasy Bra or the collection. They also don’t appreciate the hours a day the Angels spend on training for these shows. Or as many people do, they like to joke about how models just don’t eat which is a disgusting joke on eating disorders and also discredits all the work that the models do put into their craft- because this is their career.

Young Women are Watching

Not only are younger and impressionable women watching the show but they are watching how you react to it. They’re watching how men fawn over these beautiful women. They are watching women act like their above the models in dignity and sophistication. And they are watching how you react to it; they hear when you say negative things about yourself in regards to the show. They internalize things like that.

We need to be more mindful of our actions. Not only for the sake of your own well-being but for the new generation of women that are growing up right now. If we want to see a shift in how women are portrayed in media and how women should see each other as a support system rather than the competition then we need to start being more aware of how we react to things like this. Children watch and learn how to react to situations.

See Women Empowerment

Like I mentioned before, one of my favorite things about the show is that they show behind-the-scenes of the Angels hanging out and bonding. They also show them cheering each other on when they walk down the runway and something about those moments are so inspiring to me. I love the idea of having a badass girl tribe behind you cheering you on and supporting you when you need it.

In a world so focused on pinning girls against each other especially with appearances, it’s so important to show women supporting each other. It’s important to unlearn that we are not each other’s competition because it’s hard enough being a female in this world that we don’t need our own gender also trying to tear us down. As well as it’s important that we teach the younger generation about girl power and lifting one another up. 


So, yes I still have things I don’t like about myself even though I’m thin. Victoria Secret as a company needs to be much more inclusive and do better than what has recently come out about them. I don’t think we need to be mad about the Angels because they do work hard for their career and that’s something they should be proud of, and rather we should be questioning the way the media portrays it to us.

We have the power to change the way the show is viewed; less for men to drool over and more a celebration of female friendships and incredibly talented designers.

We are all our own type of beautiful even when we don’t think we are. All women are Angels. Women are strong and no matter what your body looks like it’s capable of some really incredible things. And at the end of the day, looks are fleeting and who you are is all the matters.

And so I leave you with this:

“It’s ok VS. 
I don’t need you or your runway. 
I need to love my body. I need to remind others to love theirs. 
Your fantasy isn’t my fantasy. 
And my money isn’t going to be your money. 
All women are angels. 
We all deserve the wings.
#EveryWomanIsAnAngel” 💕

@thebirdspapaya

What are your thoughts on the VS Fashion Show?

I was inspired to write this because of this Facebook post from an amazing organization that I have so much love for and I encourage you to check them out!

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