Victoria’s Secret is to many women what a light is to a moth. We just can’t stay away. We walk by and we’re instantly drawn in no matter how badly we need to get home or how little money we have to spend or how much our arms hurt from the bags we’re already carrying. It makes no sense. What is it? Is it the smell? It does always smell fresh and yummy and cute in there. Is it the bright lights? It is bright in there. But not too bright, like the Apple store. The Apple store scares me and hurts my eyeballs. Victoria’s Secret is not like that. There’s got to be something about the colors and the way everything’s laid out and the patterns on the fabrics and the smell and the way it all combines together that makes that place intoxicating. And I’m talking about both Victoria’s Secret and the Pink store. Actually in my mall they’re connected into one giant Mecca. It’s bad and awesome at the same time. I can’t stay away.
Victoria’s Secret is not shy about selling sex appeal. They run racy ads, and their signature event is a fashion show featuring beautiful women marching down a glittery runway in lingerie as superstars perform huge pop songs. But they sell it in a different way than other American brands. Unlike this ridiculous video game commercial featuring Sports Illustrated model Kate Upton (why the eff is she talking in that ridiculous voice? Speak normally! People will still listen!), we aren’t expected to think that if we buy Victoria’s Secret then Miranda Kerr will want to sleep with us. No. We are expected to believe that if we buy that $52 bra–a bra I was eyeing last night was actually priced at $52– then we will simply become Miranda Kerr. Even better. I guess that’s the difference between brands aimed at men and brands aimed at women.
But despite my knowledge of marketing and advertising… I believe the trickery of Victoria’s Secret. And I love it! Something in my head makes me think, “Why, yes. Yes, if I buy this bra or this pair of underwear or this lip gloss, I will in fact have hair like Alessandra Ambrosio. I will have abs like Erin Heatherton. WOOHOO!” And then I spend too much money and walk out of the store with my eyes glazed over wondering what in God’s name just happened.
The other thing that kills me is the Victoria’s Secret Pink yoga pants. Why do I love them so? I don’t know. They’re overpriced. They’re not that special. I’ve found yoga pants like the ones Victoria’s Secret offers at other stores. Target has similar ones. So does Sports Authority. But somehow they’re not the same. I need the bling. I need the leopard print. I need the words “PINK” across my lower back. Why? I’m 23-years-old. I should realize that a $15 pair of pants from Target will do the trick just as well as their pair of $40 pants but…but no. Somehow, they won’t. And I’m drawn to their light like the little moth I am. And then I go and buy these while my boyfriend awkwardly shifts his weight and prays for me to be done so we can leave. Are you sippin’ the Victoria’s Secret Kool Aid like I am? Is their rehab for this sort of thing? Or is it just called maturity and self-control?