Victoria’s Secret is working with former Angels even as it drops scantily dressed models for activists and entrepreneurs

Victoria's Secret ditches its Angels
Angels at the Victoria’s Secret runway show in 2018. Photo by J. Lee/FilmMagic
  • Victoria’s Secret will keep working with some former Angels, its new creative director told the New York Post.
  • It’s abandoned the Angels concept but some former Angels will still model for the brand.
  • Victoria’s Secret is in the middle of a major rebrand after years of struggle.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Victoria’s Secret will continue to work with former Angels even after it abandoned the concept last month, its new creative director has said.

In an interview with The New York Post, Raúl Martinez said: “The word Angel is retired but that doesn’t mean the women we worked with as Angels are retired.”

Martinez told the Post that at least three former Angels will continue to model for the brand, including 25-year-old Taylor Hill, 24-year-old Grace Elisabeth, and 52-year-old Helena Christensen.

Victoria’s Secret announced in June that it was scrapping its Angel brand because it was no longer “culturally relevant.” It said that instead, a group of seven activist and entrepreneurial women – including Indian actor Priyanka Chopra Jonas and the professional soccer player and gender-equality activist Megan Rapinoe – would become spokeswomen for the brand.

This announcement was part of the brand’s major overhaul under a new management team.

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Martinez took on the position of creative director at the start of the year and has been tasked with bringing the brand to life visually. He works closely with the design and marketing teams and has the final say over anything from what photographers Victoria’s Secret hires to shoot campaigns, to what fonts it uses in its ads.

The name Angel was first coined in 1999, when models Helena Christensen, Karen Mulder, Daniela Peštová, Stephanie Seymour, and Tyra Banks appeared in an ad to promote the Angels underwear collection.

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, the Angels and the annual Victoria’s Secret runway show had a powerful role in defining “sexy” in the modern day. More recently, it has been criticized as outdated and out-of-touch.