Not even Victoria’s Secret models look like Victoria’s Secret models in real life. The dehydration and diets that happen before the fashion shows and the hours of painstaking Photoshop that go into every catalog image create an illusion that not even the models themselves can live up to. So, when an actual woman tries on the all-new Very Sexy Pushup and the image in the mirror isn’t quite airbrushed perfection, she can feel very un-sexy.
Thankfully, several lingerie brands are taking a stand against the perpetuation of unrealistic beauty standards with new kinds of products, more realistic advertising, and an underlying belief that all women’s bodies are beautiful just as they are. Now, that’s Very Sexy.
“For women who wear lingerie as a love letter to themselves” is Lonely Lingerie’s one-sentence manifesto about body positivity. You won’t find any padding, push-up, or pretending in their line, nor airbrushing or unreality in their advertising. Earlier this year, they launched The Lonely Girls Project, a campaign featuring customers and unconventional models wearing their designs in natural environments. Even Lena Dunham joined the movement by sharing a photo of herself sporting a lime green Lonely bra and panty set on Instagram along with a message about loving your body just as it is.
Me and You
If you’ve been looking for granny panties with the word “feminist” written across them, then look no further than Me and You. Founded by best friends, Mayan Toledano and Julia Baylis, the up-and-coming lingerie brand has gotten the attention of young women who are embracing feminism and femininity on their own terms. The playful and subversive line of t-shirts, panties, and dresses looks a little like a psychedelic collaboration between Lisa Frank and Gloria Steinem. Cool girl photographer Petra Collins shot her best friend, Tavi Gevinson, for one of their look books. That’s a lot of feminist street cred.
Neon Moon Lingerie
Frustrated with the way mainstream lingerie companies objectify and sexualize women, UK-based Hayat Rachi decided to take matters into her own hands, literally, by making her own line of lingerie that fit her better both physically and philosophically. Her Kickstarter campaign for Neon Moon became fully backed earlier this year. She’s calling it a “feminist lingerie brand that’s empowering women in all phases of womanhood!”