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Victoria’s Secret Casts Valentina Sampaio As Its First-Ever Transgender Model

Angelique Anne Villa

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  • Valentina Sampaio was asked by the company to model for their lingerie brand for the very first time in history
  • Victoria’s Secret first transgender model will appear on the cover of Vogue.

Victoria’s Secret blockbuster fashion may have been canceled for 2019 due to transphobic and fatphobic comments from last year, but the company has just taken a step to breaking barriers. Victoria’s Secret just hired 22-year-old Brazilian transgender Valentina Sampaio to model for them.

The news went public after Valentina posted a behind-the-scenes photo of herself for a photoshoot for VS Pink of Victoria’s Secret. A fellow model Lais Riberio also tweeted, congratulating Valentina.

The interest of other trans models like Carmen Carrera and Leyna Bloom to walk the runway for Victoria’s Secret led to a petition. In 2018, L Brands (parent company of VS) chief marketing officer, Ed Razek disagreed to feature transgender models in Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show.

“Shouldn’t you have transsexuals in the show? No. No, I don’t think we should, well, why not? Because the show is a fantasy, It’s a 42-minute entertainment special. That’s what it is. It is the only one of its kind in the world, and any other fashion brand in the world would take it in a minute, including the competitors that are carping at us. And they carp at us because we’re the leader.” 

Razek was backlashed by a trans influencer, Nikita Dragun with a tweet and a video mocking her own Victoria’s Secret ad. 

After gaining more hate than hearts and kisses, L Brands CEO, Les Wexner released a memo to employees stating that the business they are in, Fashion, is a business of change. He added that they must evolve and change to grow.

The company is also thinking about revamping the traditional Victoria’s Secret Show. He also stated that moving forward, they will be developing more exciting and dynamic content for the events to come.

With this memo, the brand is slowly gaining the love back and the hope that this change towards positivity and growth will get their sales and marketing back on track.

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