Three Leeds students have launched a campaign calling for a lingerie company to apologise for “irresponsible” adverts suggesting its skinny models have “the perfect body”.
Thousands of people have signed a petition started by Frances Black, Gabriella Kountourides and Laura Ferris demanding Victoria’s Secret amends its marketing campaign for the new Body bra range.
The adverts show a line of waif-like models with the phrase “The Perfect ‘Body’” emblazoned across their torsos.
Miss Black, 22, said: “I just think it’s a really, really damaging message to send to young women.
“A brand like Victoria’s Secret is hugely popular in America and in the UK, and they mainly market to young women.
“It’s really hurtful to women’s self-esteem. I’d like them to apologise and take accountability for choosing the wrong words for the campaign.
“I’d like them to amend the wording and pledge not to use such harmful language in the future.”
The American lingerie company now has seven shops in the UK, including in the Trinity Shopping Centre in Leeds.
The three women started the petition on the Change.org website after seeing the advert in the Trinity shop’s window.
It states: “Every day women are bombarded with advertisements aimed at making them feel insecure about their bodies, in the hope that they will spend money on products that will supposedly make them happier and more beautiful.
“Victoria’s Secret’s new advertisements for their range of bras Body use this tactic, and send out a damaging message by positioning the words ‘The Perfect ‘Body’’ across models of exactly the same, very slim body type.”