This Former Victoria's Secret Model Says She Was Fired for Gaining 1/2 an Inch
Bridget Malcolm described working for the company as "traumatic."
Victoria's Secret has been the subject of serious scrutiny over the past couple years. Now under new ownership, the company is deliberately trying to shift directions, but it can be challenging to escape one's past. In the wake of the controversy, one former Victoria's Secret model has been emboldened to come forward with dark stories about her time at the company. Now, she's revealing that she was fired for gaining half an inch on her waist. Read on to see what Bridget Malcolm had to say about her "traumatic" experience.
Bridget Malcolm was fired from Victoria's Secret for gaining half of an inch in her hips.
During a Sept. 12 episode of 60 Minutes Australia, former Victoria's Secret model Bridget Malcolm got candid about her time working with the brand. She was asked, "How clear was the message from Victoria's Secret that you needed to be super skinny?" Malcolm replied, "Pretty clear."
The model walked in the 2015 and 2016 Victoria's Secret Fashion Shows in the hopes of eventually becoming a Victoria's Secret Angel. However, she never reached that goal, because she says that after gaining half an inch on her hips, Victoria's Secret let her go, deeming her too big.
Although she has had plenty of modeling experience, Malcolm said she never experienced anything like what she went through with Victoria's Secret, and she hopes to never encounter anything similar again. "It was truly quite a traumatic experience," she recalled. Although four years have passed since she last had contact with the company, Malcolm said she's still trying to wrap her head around it.
Malcolm's health deteriorated while modeling.
While working at Victoria's Secret, Malcolm was not in great health. "I had an eating disorder. I was relying on anxiety medication. I was having panic attacks constantly. I was exhausted. My body was malnourished. My mind was malnourished," she said. During this chaotic time, Malcolm stopped menstruating, her hair was falling out, and she had difficulty climbing the stairs.
The model said her relationship with Victoria's Secret was very controlling and unhealthy.
Malcolm now understands the toxicity of the company she then idolized. "What that company represented for me and for so many other women was extremely exploitive at the time," she said. Malcolm added that the demand for models to constantly be thinner "felt like controlling women, getting women as small as possible, and then even [that] not being small enough."
Critics may wonder why Malcolm continued to work for the company for so long if she felt it was a toxic environment. The model acknowledges that she was not forced to remain at Victoria's Secret. However, she noted that these critics are "incredibly privileged to not have had the experience of being in an unhealthy relationship like that."
Malcolm has spoken out about Victoria's Secret before.
This is not the first time Malcolm has spoken out against Victoria's Secret. The model began sharing insight into life behind the scenes at the company on her TikTok account. In one video, she reveals that her bra size was a 30A during the 2016 fashion show. The next year she was a 30B. According to Malcolm, Ed Razek, a top executive at Victoria's Secret, told her that her "body didn't look good enough," and she was rejected from the 2017 show. Malcolm now wears a 34B, which she says is healthy for her. "The sadness behind my eyes from the 2016 show breaks my heart," she says.
In another video, Malcolm says, "There was this culture that was created that was very like, 'If you just stay, if you just get a little bit skinnier, if you just keep doing what we want you to do, you're going to be an Angel, and you're going to be world-famous, and it's going to be amazing." She explains that she was young at the time, so she believed it. However, she soon realized it was never enough, no matter how thin she got.