Victoria’s Secret is reportedly leaving the swimwear business, with a source telling BuzzFeedthe brand will be “exiting out of all current inventory by the end of this year.”
While the company hasn’t offered an official public statement confirming the change, it issued a press release earlier this month that suggests the rumors are true. Specifically, parent company L Brands(LB) – Get Report said it was restructuring the organization into three core business units — Victoria’s Secret Lingerie, PINK and Victoria’s Secret Beauty. The release also noted that the company is “focusing resources on core merchandise categories, where the company believes the greatest growth potential exists,” which will “involve the elimination of certain merchandise categories.”
While fans of the line might be upset by the news, this is a smart move. Swimwear hasn’t been accounting for a significant portion of the brand’s sales. This comes amidst heightened competition, including many online only companies. Victoria’s Secret saw overall sales rise and might have pressed on. But it has succeeded in the past in refocusing on core businesses.
According to a BuzzFeed reported, swimwear contributed roughly $500 million — only about 6.5% – in sales. Moreover, the company reported a decline in swimwear sales in August. It attributed the drop to “the decision to chase a fashion trend and roll out a swimsuit line that featured complicated, lacy elements.”
It’s logical that the company would cut items that aren’t selling well to make more room in stores for those that are likely to do so. This is to avoid markdowns on excess inventory.
In addition, the swimwear market is becoming saturated. Victoria’s Secret is likely to face more competition in the future. That’s especially true when it comes to e-commerce. There are several swimwear brands that sell exclusively online, like Triangl and Solid & Striped. Swimwear lends itself well to digital marketing.
J. Christopher Burch, an investor in both Solid & Striped and Chubbies, a line of men’s swim trunks, recently told Women’s Wear Daily, that swimwear plays well in content-rich digital environments like Instagram and is often featured in travel and vacation photos. These images tend to resonate with consumers.
Consumers shopping online don’t have the option to try on the suit in a store. So they might be more likely to convert on the spot.
New brands like Cocodune have made buying swimwear online more appealing by allowing shoppers to try on four items over the course of five days for free. Shoppers simply return the items they don’t want and are only charged for what they keep. Returns are always free.
According to a recent Onestop Internet survey, 70% of consumers said free returns are the most critical factor in deciding whether buy online. Furthermore, 65% of consumers said they would be willing to accept a shorter return period if it meant they could order multiple sizes of an item while only being charged for one unit. As such, Cocodune’s strategy will likely appeal to shoppers and help the young brand shine in the saturated swimwear space.
Could Victoria’s Secret swimwear have rebounded this year by simplifying designs and shifting back toward the suits that sold well in past years? Yes. However, when you have three other divisions of a brand that are significantly outselling another combined with increased market competition, abandoning swimwear seems like a wise move. Analysts at Stifel told Fortune that L Brands has “made trims where the company was bloated — leaving behind a strong core product offering that has in past years, driven growth.”
That seems likely to occur again.
This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.
- Victoria’s Secret made an unprecedented decision — and it might be the savviest move it’s made yet
- Victoria’s Secret Is Bringing Back Swimwear in 2019 as Brand’s Size-Inclusion Debate Rages On
- 1) PrettyLittleThing
- 2) Romwe
- 3) Zaful
- 4) Missguided
- 5) boohoo
- 6) Cupshe
- 7) SheIn
- 8) Lulus
- 9) Nasty Gal
- 10) Forever 21
- Do you know any brands that have swimsuits like Victorias Secret? Leave us a comment in the section below!
- Swimwear Like Victoria’s Secret
Victoria’s Secret made an unprecedented decision — and it might be the savviest move it’s made yet
Victoria’s Secret has axed swimwear. Facebook/Victoria’s Secret Victoria’s Secret dominates the lingerie market. But since CEO Sharen Jester Turney abruptly left in February, the company has made several moves that have sent consumers reeling — namely, ditching its iconic catalog and dropping its famous swimwear sector.
Swimwear is, on the surface, at least, tantamount to lingerie, so this change in particular left consumers scratching their heads.
But according Gabriella Santaniello, analyst and founder of A Line Partners, nixing swimwear was a brilliant decision. It’s evidence that Victoria’s Secret is adapting to an evolving time.
“I think they over-assorted the stores and they probably reassessed … Their swimwear last year was not the best performing category for them,” she said, adding that it’s also seasonal, whereas undergarments and athleisure apparel are not.
Basically, the company had too much going on and needed to trim the fat. Still, cutting such an iconic part of the brand could send a troubling signal to consumers. Was everything falling apart?
“I could see how it raises a red flag and it … would be cause for concern for the people who are looking at Victoria’s Secret as a brand and what they stand for, “Santaniello said. “But I think at the end of the day, they know where their growth opportunity is, and they see the competition out there, and for them, right now it’s to look inward and say, ‘Okay, let’s really focus on what we do best,'” Santaniello said.
Victoria’s Secret hasn’t officially declared the end of swimwear, but the plan has been widely reported. It was first disclosed by BuzzFeed.
Since Victoria’s Secret’s core product is lingerie, it’s more important than ever for the brand to zero in on undergarments, particularly since the ‘in’ type of bra right now is the bralette — a lacy bra without padding — something that Santaniello said any retailer could execute.
Bralettes have recently become more fashionable as more women want a natural, more comfortable look without any padding, and Victoria’s Secret has been visibly promoting its version.
Live in the moment. The Triangle Bralette. #AllMe
With numerous companies trying to grab a piece of the lingerie market, Victoria’s Secret needs to prove exactly why it’s been dominating the market for so long.
“I think for them, the bigger challenge is … they’re out in the malls, they see what’s going on and they see that everyone’s moving into intimate apparel. Everybody’s got their hand in that pot, American Eagle in particular … American Eagle by sheer size is nowhere near a formidable competitor for Victoria’s Secret, but they could get there,” she said.
Aerie’s comparable sales grew an impressive 20% in fiscal 2015, and the retailer still has plans to grow. But it still has nothing on Victoria’s Secret, which in total (including e-commerce) brought in nearly $7.7 billion in sales in fiscal 2015. At the end of fiscal 2015, Aerie’s parent company, American Eagle, had brought in just over $3.5 billion in revenue, and Aerie is a fraction of that business.
BuzzFeed had reported that Victoria’s Secret would be zeroing in a new activewear line in lieu of swimwear. While activewear is a saturated market, it’s likely to be a stronger sell for the Victoria’s Secret brand than swimwear.
Being active is becoming central to marketing the “Angels,” who, as Megan Garber of The Atlantic pointed out in December, have become hailed for being “fit” versus “thin.” Their athleticism, Garber explained, is a keystone of the company’s marketing schemes — how strong they are, how much they work out, the arduous aspects of being an Angel.
“It’s about not only being sexy, but being fit strong …. Focusing on the athletic wear is a better fit for the total brand and their 360 vision of the brand than swim,” Santaniello said.
Show an image of an Angel working out instead of flouncing around in a bikini? Appeal to a mindset and sell clothes.
Get ready to RUN—all sport pants are 50% off, in 🇺🇸 stores for a limited time!
There’s a financial boon, too. Although BuzzFeed reported that last year the company said its swimwear sales totaled $500 million, it noted they were down at the end of the summer in August. At the same time, analysts estimated that Victoria’s Secret’s activewear line had a $1 billion potential.
And should Victoria’s Secret stop spending its time on swimwear, Santaniello pointed out the brand could focus on its beauty section, a sector with a much higher margin. Further, that appears to be a part of Victoria’s Secret’s plan; when L Brands, Victoria’s Secret’s parent company, announced it was streamlining and restructuring its business, the company noted it would turn itself into three core businesses — lingerie, beauty, and PINK, which is Victoria’s Secret’s younger sister brand.
Despite criticism surrounding its marketing schemes, Victoria’s Secret doesn’t have to worry about losing its place as of now. Store sales totaled over $6.1 billion in fiscal 2015, during a time it’s practically impossible to get people into stores thanks to the rise of e-commerce and the death of malls. In total, the company’s sales were nearly $7.7 billion.
According to IBIS World, it holds 61.8% of the lingerie market. Amid a troubling time for traditional retailers, no one is impervious to troubles, but those that fail to evolve are more at risk.
It’s evident Victoria’s Secret knows that.
“Coming off a record year, now is the best time to make improvements … going from best to even better,” recently appointed CEO Les Wexner said earlier this month.
Victoria’s Secret Is Bringing Back Swimwear in 2019 as Brand’s Size-Inclusion Debate Rages On
After Victoria’s Secret announced it was discontinuing its swimwear line, as well as its famous swimwear catalog, in 2016, in order to focus on more profitable lines, the brand has decided to change course entirely and bring back bikinis and one-pieces for spring 2019.
The news was announced this morning during a Victoria’s Secret earnings call with Stuart Burgdoerfer, the CFO of L Brands (Victoria’s Secret parent company) PEOPLE confirms. Burgdoerfer also announced that Victoria’s Secret will also release eyewear and footwear next year as well.
This move comes at a time when Victoria’s Secret is struggling to find its footing in a changing retail landscape.
Sales are down. According to CNBC, shares at L Brands, which also owns Bath & Body Works, Henri Bendel and PINK plummeted about 38 percent this year.
At the same time, leadership is wavering. On Tuesday, L Brands also announced John Mehas as the new chief executive of Victoria’s Secret. He’s set to replace former CEO Jan Singer in early 2019, according to WWD. Singer resigned last week after two years with the brand.
Image zoom Victoria’s Secret’s outgoing CEO Jan Singer. Evan Agostini/Invision/AP/REX/
And, there has been increasing backlash against the brand for its lack of inclusion, which was glaringly evident at its annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, which taped in N.Y.C. this month.
RELATED: Lingerie Brand ThirdLove Slams Victoria’s Secret for Lack of Inclusion in Powerful New York Times Ad
Following the taping of its annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, Ed Razek, the Chief Marketing Officer of L Brands said in an interview with Vogue that the brand would not hire trans or curvy models because they did not fit into the “fantasy” of the show.
“Shouldn’t you have transsexuals in the show? No. No, I don’t think we should. Well, why not? Because the show is a fantasy. It’s a 42-minute entertainment special,” Razek told the magazine.
Image zoom Donato Sardella/WireImage Image zoom Alessandra Ambrosio and Behati Prinsloo at the 2014 Victoria’s Secret Swim reveal. Mediapunch/REX/
RELATED: Adriana Lima Is Retiring from Victoria’s Secret After 20 Years: ‘Thank You for Teaching Me to Fly’
Celebrities including model Tess Holliday and Rihanna slammed the brand for Razek’s remarks and the size-inclusive line, ThirdLove, voiced its disapproval in a big way.
Heidi Zak, the founder and CEO of ThirdLove, penned a letter to Victoria’s Secret in the New York Times to address all of her concerns with Victoria’s Secret.
She wrote that she was “appalled” by Razek’s comments that “no one had any interest in it” when they pursued the idea of curvier models in the show in 2000.
“I’ve read and re-read the interview at least 20 times, and each time I read it I’m even angrier,” Zak said. “How in 2018 can the CMO of any public company — let alone one that claims to be for women — make such shocking, derogatory statements?”
“You market to men and sell a male fantasy to women,” she continued. Adding, “Haven’t we moved beyond outdated ideas of femininity and gender roles? It’s time to stop telling women what makes them sexy — let us decide.”
Please read this important message from Ed Razek, Chief Marketing Officer, L Brands (parent company of Victoria’s Secret). pic.twitter.com/CW8BztmOaM
— Victoria’s Secret (@VictoriasSecret) November 10, 2018
Razek has apologized for his comments.
“My remark regarding the inclusion of transgender models in the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show came across as insensitive. I apologize,” Razek said. “To be clear, we absolutely would cast a transgender model for the show. We’ve had transgender models come to casting… And like many others, they didn’t make it…But it was never about gender. I admire and respect their journey to embrace who they really are.”
Victorias Secret’s swimsuit selection is RIP’d, and although we do miss it, I think a lot of us can speak for the fact that it was hard to afford! If you wanted to buy a swimsuit it was “splurging” and who knows if that style would even be popular the following year. However, now that Victorias Secret swimwear no longer exists we’ve created a list of alternate websites like Cupshe, SheIn, PrettyLittleThing, boohoo and more that are not only trendy, but inexpensive! Take a look at some of these cheap swimsuits like Victorias Secret!
With the most trendy styles that play up your curves, you are assured to find the swimsuit you need on PrettyLittleThing’s website. With plenty of fits, colors and patterns, you will definitely find some cheap swimsuits like Victorias Secret!
The average priced swimsuit on Romwe is about $15, and that includes both the top AND bottom! What a steal! Oh, and did I mention they have over 700 of these affordable suits to choose from? If you don’t find cheap swimsuits like victorias secret on this website, then I’m afraid you’re out of luck!
This Hong Kong based brand offers tons of trendy and affordable bathing suits. Whether you like bikinis, tankinis, one pieces or cover ups, Zaful has it, and for an affordable price!
Perfect for beach parties or lounging by the pool, missguided has cheap swimsuits like Victorias Secret that you will never want to get rid of. Missguided’s selection offers bandeau bikinis, crochet bikinis, high legged bikinis and more!
With super cute one and two piece bathing suit sets, you are bound to find something on boohoo’s website! Not to mention they’re always running incredible sales where you can expect to get at least 40% off!
Cupshe is a website strictly dedicated to your swimwear needs! Their low price range and wide variety will guarantee you to find some cheap swimsuits like Victorias Secret!
With over 700 swimwear options and the highest price tag being $27, this New Jersey based brand has some of the best cheap swimsuits like Victorias Secret! In addition to their inexpensive clothing, SheIn offers student discounts on orders over $50!
Another affordable one stop destination for clothing, Lulu’s has the cutest bathing suits to fit your budgetary needs!
9) Nasty Gal
High cut, high-leg, one-pieces, bikinis and more! Nasty Gal has lots of swimwear options to fit every and any body type and flatter what you’re working with!
10) Forever 21
A clothing brand known for its trendy and affordable clothing options, Forever21 offers swimsuits in all size ranges that will make you the talk of the party!
Do you know any brands that have swimsuits like Victorias Secret? Leave us a comment in the section below!
Comments, Questions & Rants
Swimwear Like Victoria’s Secret
Love the look of Victoria’s Secret styles? You’ve come to the right place. Magicsuit swimwear is the one piece slimming Victoria Secret swimwear that used to be sold at Victoria’s Secret stores. Now, you can shop for Magicsuit Victoria Secret swimsuits any time you want online and try on sexy styles at home to find the looks you love.
Just like flattering shapewear that’s worn under clothes to perfectly play up curves and hide problem areas, Magicsuit and Miraclesuit swimsuits use an innovative fabric to accentuate your best features and make you feel amazingly confident in any swimsuit style you choose.
Classic, elegant, timeless, and oozing with sex appeal are just a few of the qualities we’re crazy about when it comes to Victoria’s Secret. At Miraclesuit, we have swimwear styles that are the perfect complement to the Victoria’s Secret lover, including our gorgeous Amoressa swimwear line that enhances busts while delivering the support and coverage you crave.
The best part about shopping at Miraclesuit? You get free shipping on any style that’s ordered in the U.S., which means you can skip the hassle of the mall and pushy salespeople and try on suits where you’re most comfortable, in your home. Buy Victoria Secret swimwear here today.
The most slimming and flattering swimwear like Victoria’s Secret swimsuits are:
- Amoressa Solitaire Misty
- Magicsuit Scuba Jessie Tummy Control Bandeau
- Magicsuit Solid Yvonne Tummy Control One Piece Swimsuit
- Magicsuit Cypress Rita Top
- Amoressa Never Say Never Vesper
- Magicsuit Fringe Blaire Tummy Control One Piece Swimsuit
- Miraclesuit Caravan Odyssey
- Magicsuit Solid Serena Tummy Control One Piece Swimsuit
- Miraclesuit DD-Cup Solid Madero Underwire One Piece Swimsuit
Victoria’s Secret recently announced that it’s phasing out its swimwear.
And while you’re covered for this season, it may leave you wondering: Where should you shop for women’s swimsuits once the styles at Victoria’s Secret run dry?
Have no fear, we found seven great alternatives.
From bikinis and one-pieces to cover-ups and flip-flops, Forever 21 has a huge selection of stylish swimwear. Plus, some tops and bottoms cost less than $10 apiece. The apparel and accessory store offers free shipping on orders over $50.
Abercrombie & Fitch
Surf’s up at Abercrombie & Fitch, where there’s a swimsuit style for every taste. Tops and bottoms are sold separately, so shoppers can mix and match to create their own looks. The store’s also a one-stop shop for cover-ups and towels.
Personalize your shopping at American Eagle. Swimwear is divided by trend and type, and there’s even a bikini mix-and-match tool where you can essentially design your own suit and see how it’ll look. Complete your look with the store’s selection of sunglasses, flip-flops and beach totes. Plus, for a limited time, get free shipping on all orders with the purchase of one or more AEO or Aerie swimwear items.
” MORE: Victoria’s Secret Semi-Annual Sale Guide
Keep your beach style on point with the help of Venus. The store’s vast selection of swimwear is categorized by the latest trends. You’ll find an assortment of tankinis, halter tops, swim wraps and more. Use code FS2016 at checkout to score free shipping on orders over $100.
PacSun makes snagging your perfect suit simple, especially if you know just what you’re looking for. Refine your search by top, bottom, one-piece or cover-up, then get even more specific with filters for crop tops, side-tie bottoms, hipster bottoms and more. Plus, get free shipping over $50 or pay a $5 flat rate for orders under $50.
If designer beachwear is your thing, head over to the swimwear and cover-up section at Dillard’s. In addition to the sheer volume of products, the store sells bikinis and swimsuits from big-name labels like Betsey Johnson, Kate Spade New York, Michael Kors and Jessica Simpson.
Lululemon is known for its yoga apparel, but the retailer is also a perfect fit for those who like to exercise in the water. While the selection isn’t huge, the store has a handful of quality swim-suitable apparel, including tops, bottoms and rash guards. Standard shipping is free.
In the meantime
Victoria’s Secret swim styles aren’t history just yet. You can stock up on sale-priced swim essentials now before they’re gone. We’re currently seeing up to 60% off hundreds of styles online in the swim section.
And before you buy swimwear from any store, always consult the retailer’s return policy (it may take some combing through fine print on your part). In some instances, swim styles are final sale.
Courtney Jespersen is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: . Twitter: @courtneynerd.