- Former Victoria’s Secret model Bridget Malcolm criticized the lingerie brand on TikTok.
- The Australian model labeled its rebrand “performative allyship.”
- Victoria’s Secret announced it will replace Angels with more diverse female brand ambassadors.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Former Victoria’s Secret model Bridget Malcolm accused the lingerie brand of “performative allyship” in a TikTok video that now has over 2.5 million views.
The comment was made in the fifth video of a TikTok series Malcolm started on June 19, which she called: “Times the fashion industry has sucked.” Captioning the latest video, “Too little too late Victoria’s Secret,” the 29-year-old described the experience of modeling in the 2016 annual show.
In the video shared on Sunday, the Australian model said while trying on her outfit from one of the shows: “I found my bra from the 2016 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, it is a size 30A. I am now a size 34B, which is healthy for me.”
@bridgetmalcolm too little too late Victoria’s Secret ##victoriassecret ##victoriasecretshows ##CompleteMyLook ##MyColoredHair
She said she was rejected from the show in 2017 by Ed Razek, former chief marketing officer at Victoria’s Secret’s parent company L Brands, because “he said, ‘My body did not look good enough.'”
Razek stepped down from his position in August 2019 days after facing backlash for telling Vogue in an interview that he didn’t believe the Victoria’s Secret fashion show should feature “transsexuals” because the show is a “fantasy.” Razek made a formal apology before leaving the company.
Commenting on photographs from her appearance in the show later in the TikTok, Malcolm said: “Look how big it was on me. The sadness behind my eyes breaks my heart.”
“Victoria’s Secret, your performative allyship is a joke,” she concluded.
In June, Victoria’s Secret announced it would be replacing its Angels with a diverse group of female brand ambassadors known as the VS Collective, including Megan Rapinoe, champion freestyle skier Eileen Gu, and actress Priyanka Chopra.
In a statement sent to Insider on Thursday in response to Malcolm’s comments, a representative for Victoria’s Secret said: “There is a new leadership team at Victoria’s Secret who is fully committed to the continued transformation of the brand with a focus on creating an inclusive environment for our associates, customers and partners to celebrate, uplift and champion all women.”
Speaking to The New York Times in June, CEO Martin Waters said change within the lingerie brand was overdue: “When the world was changing, we were too slow to respond.”
It’s not the first time Malcolm, who began modeling for Victoria’s Secret when she 18, has spoken about her issues with the fashion industry; in a blog post from April 2018, she revealed she was once put on an 800-calorie a day diet.
In her most recent TikTok post on Wednesday, Malcolm addressed questions about why she’s choosing to speak up again.
In the video, she details traumatic experiences from her early modeling career such as being told to use cocaine and have sex to “lose weight,” as well as dealing with severe anxiety, PTSD, suicidal ideation, and eating disorders.
@bridgetmalcolm My Q and A is open to anyone who wants to ask me anything. But this is why I haven’t spoken up before now.
“That was four years ago,” she said. “Today I am two-plus years sober and four years in recovery from an eating disorder.”
“I’m in solid recovery. I am strong enough for any backlash and I wasn’t before this,” she added.
“I am a strong believer that the fashion industry needs to change,” Malcolm said. “I’m one of the lucky models. I was able to make a long career out of the fashion industry, but my job should not include abuse, and that is why I’m speaking up now.”
Representatives for Malcolm did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.