For the first time in the company’s history, Victoria’s Secret has hired, and will feature, a plus-size model in one of their ad campaigns. Ali Tate Cutler, a size 14 model, announced on Instagram that she would be Victoria’s Secret’s very first plus-size model.
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The news is great and does inch Victoria’s Secret closer towards becoming a more inclusive brand. But, is it too little too late? The move comes shortly after the company hired its first transgender model. Other lingerie retailers like Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty were inclusive from launch. Perhaps Victoria’s Secret missed their opportunity?
Ali Tate Cutler deserves her time in the spotlight.
Although Victoria’s Secret was late to the game, they made an excellent choice in casting Ali Tate Cutler in their ad campaign. Cutler is working with Bluebella, a London-based retailer that’s collaborating with Victoria’s Secret.
In a press release, Victoria’s Secret said, “Designed for women who wear beautiful lingerie to please themselves, the collection is showcased on diverse, empowered women in the brand’s #loveyourself campaign.”
Cutler made the announcement on Instagram and said, “At the launch today for @victoriassecret and @bluebella at their flagship store in NYC. I believe I’m the first size 14 on @victoriassecret? Regardless I’m pretty stoked to work with a brand I idolized when I was a teen. Great step in the right direction for bodies.”
Cutler has been modeling for some time, but it took time for her to truly feel confident.
In an interview with Bluebella as part of Victoria’s Secret collaboration, Cutler described her journey: “I would never talk about fatness,” she said. “I thought if I don’t say anything about it, then maybe no one will notice. Maybe no one will know that I’m bigger than everyone else.”
For Cutler, modeling was a form of empowerment. “The more and more I started to model and expose my body, I started feeling less and less shame about it,” she explained. “Like, if I saw a fat roll, I’d think, ‘Actually, that looks kind of cute. That’s kind of sexy.’.”
Cutler gets even more candid in a personal Instagram post.
She posted the photo with the caption, “Getting real about how I never acknowledged my body when I was younger because I never wanted people to really look at mine and realize I was fat. I thought if I didn’t acknowledge it, no one would notice.”
The post continues, “Then when I started ‘plus size’ modeling, I had so many mixed feelings because now everyone knew I was the very thing I had been trying to hide.”
“The most beautiful thing happened after I had been modeling for a while and started seeing models who were above size 14s that were unbelievably gorgeous,” she admits.
It’s amazing that Cutler is so open about her own journey.
This is great news for Cutler and we hope her time with Victoria’s Secret is equally rewarding.
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