Publication: Racked

Touched by an Angel

December 8, 2015

Why Victoria’s Secret is still thriving in America’s malls

To wring all that I could out of said store experience, I arranged to walk through the brand’s Fifth Avenue flagship store with Anthony Deen, the creative director of branded environments for CBX, an agency that’s worked with everyone from Duane Reade to Saks Off Fifth to M&M’s. On the walk over to the store, he admits he has always been skeptical of how Victoria’s Secret panders to the male gaze while selling to a customer base of millions of women.

“Obviously, there’s an aspect of the Angels that is just totally geared toward this male audience,” he tells me. “And I always saw that as somewhat cynical. But in going into the stores, you realize that there’s actually something more to it, which is this proximity to beauty, and wanting women to associate beauty with this product, so that they feel beautiful when they purchase it and wear it.”

As soon as we step into the store, he starts to point out the store’s signature touches, like the framed pictures of Angels hanging from the walls, which feed into this idea of beauty proximity. “This is like a rich person’s […]

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