What’s a bombshell bra? Victoria’s Secret opens on Grafton Street tomorrow

Opening on Tuesday, the lingerie brand‘s Dublin shop ‘takes sexy to a new level’

Victoria’s Secret Angel Taylor Hill in the lingerie brand’s 2017 fashion show.

Victoria’s Secret Angel Taylor Hill in the lingerie brand’s 2017 fashion show.

 

Victoria’s Secret, the American lingerie brand, opens the doors of its flagship Dublin store on Tuesday. Every bit as traditionally feminine as you imagine, the 2,700sq m lingerie emporium comes with shocking-pink accents and glamorous art-deco details. Walls will be covered with a gallery of supermodel imagery and video screens playing footage from the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show.

Although there will be more fuchsia furnishings than even the biggest fans of Victoria’s Secret could wish for, the interior also has a Dublin twist: “The store design is unique to Dublin and takes sexy to a whole new level. The facade seamlessly combines charm with glamour, reflecting the building’s original midcentury character,” said a spokesperson.

Even if you have never stepped foot in a Victoria’s Secret store before, its well-manufactured reputation precedes it. The brand has made billions across the world by selling brightly coloured bras and turning its catwalk show into an annual televised spectacular.

The company has a flock of “Angels”, a select group of supermodel spokeswomen, including Bella Hadid and Josephine Skriver; Heidi Klum, Gisele Bündchen and Naomi Campbell have also all been Angels. They take to the catwalk in one-off pieces of Victoria’s Secret lingerie while stars like Rhianna, The Weeknd and Harry Styles perform.

In a departure from its usual US or European locations, the show took place this year in Shanghai, an entree into China’s €33 billion lingerie market and the brand’s first foray into Asia.

Got my wings! 🦋💐🌈😜 .. my #AdditionElle wings! #thickthighssavelives

A post shared by A S H L E Y G R A H A M (@theashleygraham) on

The show was plagued with problems even before the Angels strutted their stuff. Katy Perry, the main performer, had her visa denied days before the show, and had to be replaced. And the same thing happened to Gigi Hadid. Four other Victoria’s Secret models – Irnia Sharipova, Dasha Khlystun, Kate Grigorieva, and Julia Belyakova – were allegedly denied the paperwork they needed, too. Rumours of red tape, strict censorship and delayed tickets circulated days before kick-off.

But the show must go on – and it was filled with gravity-defying wings and push-up bras covered in crystals. For more than an hour a bevy of lithe, lean supermodels like Taylor Hill, Alanna Arrington and Romee Strijd powered down the catwalk watched by more than 6.5 million viewers around the world.

Although diversity has been the buzzword in 2017, with the fashion industry slowly moving towards size inclusivity, the Victoria’s Secrets catwalks seemed to distinctly lack anything other than sample-sized models. Ashley Graham – who has just debuted on Forbes’s list of the world’s most highly paid models, making her the first plus-size model to earn a spot on the ranking – took a shot at Victoria’s Secret for its lack of curvy models. In an Instagram post she showed herself walking down the runway in lingerie and wings – with the caption “Got my wings! and #thickthighssavelives”.

In another pointed move to push for more representation in the fashion industry, the plus-size model Tabria Majors earlier this month took to re-creating Victoria’s Secrets advertisements.

“Maybe I’ll be a Victoria’s Secret Angel this year for Halloween, since it aint happening in real life lol,” she wrote as her Instagram caption, showing a side-by-side shot of her and a campaign photo in the same lingerie set.

The brand also seems not to support boob diversity. Despite booming demand from growing busts, it has no bra options for women over a DDD.

But what else can we expect from the Dublin store in shopping terms?

Although you may not magically turn into a Victoria’s Secret Angel as soon as you slip into one of its boob-boosting bras or underwear briefs, you’ll be able to get your hands on a huge array of lingerie, from the Bombshell bra, which promises to instantly add two cup sizes, to the Dream Angels collection, which is finished in lace. The range of knickers is equally impressive, from shorties, which are basically large briefs, to cheekies and hiphuggers. There’s also loungewear, pyjamas and beauty products. Signature scents include Very Sexy and Scandalous.

Filling the gap between lower-price lingerie from the likes of Marks & Spencer and high-end brands such as Myla, Victoria’s Secret charges decidedly high-street prices for its fancier-than-everyday underwear.

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