A press release featuring a new line of lingerie in the style of Victoria’s Secret made its way onto the web this week, featuring a slew of slogans and phrases heralding the importance of communication and consent between sexual partners. And while it would be lovely to imagine that this is evidence of Victoria’s Secret responding to recent criticism by making an effort to push a consent-based message, the phantom line of panties appears to be an unaffiliated knockoff.
The single webpage for this bizarro collection is titled Pink Loves Consent, and bears the Victoria’s Secret logo as its banner. Also included on the site are a copyright notice in the name of Victoria’s Secret, fonts and lettering similar to those used for the company’s iconic PINK line of underthings, and even an icon of that little pink dog that serves as the line’s inexplicable mascot.
But peruse the website of Victoria’s Secret, and you’ll find no mention of this Pink Loves Consent. Hell, try searching the word “consent” on their site, and the closest match it’ll spit out is “corset”. The Pink Loves Consent campaign is clearly a fake, but it’s an intriguing fake, indeed.
The primary webpage and subsidiary social media accounts for the faux brand were all created within the last few weeks, and the domain name is registered to an address in Paris, France. The content on the site includes statistics from RAINN regarding rates of rape in American colleges and calls for visitors to “Join the next sexual revolution”. You can’t actually buy anything on site, but you can get a whole bunch of tips for talking to your partner about doing the nasty.
Another surprising departure from the Victoria’s Secret aesthetic is the choice of models featured on the site. Of the women modeling the wares of Pink Loves Consent, most are curvy, busty, and seemingly un-photoshopped. In fact, the few photos picturing models who fit into the Victoria’s Secret mold appear to have had mottos of consent slapped across their asses in post-production. As for the panties themselves, the eclectic collection of cuts and styles look to have been adorned with iron-on letters that champion consent with lines like “No Means No” and “Ask First”.
So, what’s the big idea, mystery panty purveyor? The site encourages visitors to spread the message of consent through social media and practice safe sex IRL. But the overall effect of the site is a speculative reimagining of the Victoria’s Secret brand that takes as its center the empowerment of women, rather than objectification. Even if Pink Loves Consent is one person’s Neighborhoodies-esque attempt to capitalize on girl power this holiday season, it would still behoove Victoria’s Secret to borrow some tactics from its playbook.
All photos via Pink Loves Consent