Saturday, September 18, 2021

Brandy Melville's Young, Thin, Pretty & Topless Teens in Thongs

On Business Insider, Kate Taylor posted the piece "Brandy Melville: Behind the scenes at the 'evil' fast-fashion empire" (Sep 8, 2021). At least three matters stood out about Taylor's article:
1. Brandy Melville's CEO, Stephan Marsan, is very racist and very anti-Semitic. 2. Brandy Melville slash Stephan Marsan prefers nymphets employees. 3. Nonetheless, teens "aspire" to be Brandy Melville's models\employees.
According to Brandy Melville employees, CEO Stephan Marsan, wants his staffers to be young, thin, pretty, and white [i.e., white nymphets.] 
[Nonetheless] [t]eenage girls aspire to be like the [often braless] models on Brandy Melville's Instagram [...]
Brandy Melville, the "go-to brand' for high school girls slash Gen Z, requires that their nymphet employees (e.g., 14-year-olds), text "full-body" photographs - typically in crop tops and miniskirts:
Every day, girls who work at the fast-fashion stores are required to send a full-body photo to executives. Some are as young as 14. 

Brandy Melville is the go-to brand for the type of high-school girls who spend hours on TikTok and worship Bella Hadid. [...] the line has developed a loyal following among teenagers who arrive by the thousands to a store opening. It's Contempo Casuals for the Gen Z set: crop tops, miniskirts, and a controversial "one size fits most" tagline.
"In retrospect ... it's really fucking weird that we all — as underage people — had to text this mid-to-late-30s guy photos of what we were wearing," the former employee who worked in California and New York said. 
Ruby Lyn's "Being an In-Store Model at Brandy Melville (YouTube)

Interestingly, per Taylor, Brandy Melville executives slash teen voyeurs at the SoHo flagship store surveilled shoppers for nymphets (i.e., skinny, white, blond and pretty).
In the New York City flagship store, Marsan and fellow executives have an elevated work area from which they watched shoppers, according to an employee who quit last year. If they saw someone who fit the Brandy Melville look, they pushed a button, setting off a light that prompted the cashier to ask for the girl's photo and contact information so she could be recruited. 
"There was no sugarcoating it," a former New York regional manager who left in 2017 said. "It was, 'She is skinny, white, blond, and pretty — let's hire her.'

Still, and this is no surprise to readers of this blog who have read posts about, say, teen prostitutes in Rome and Japan, many of Brandy Melville's teen employes considered the store a "sorority" and the "coolest" - despite the "fucking weird" and "horrible things".

But for many, anything was worth it if it meant being able to work at Brandy Melville. 
"We call it a sorority ... so many horrible things are happening, but at the time it was the coolest thing to be a part of," a former New York employee who started working at Brandy Melville in 2015 said. "Like, I would go back to school and be like, 'Yeah, I work at Brandy.' And they're like, 'Oh my God, you work at Brandy?!'"

But why would a nymphet continue to work under such conditions? Was it to be considered a "special snowflake", was it for a Brandy Melville $1,000 shopping spree, was it for an all-expenses paid trip to Hawaii or Italy, or was it to gain access to the "Brandy apartment"? #rhetorical question
Some former employees in Santa Monica dubbed executives' favorites "special snowflakes." 
According to current and former staffers, these special employees got access to the company credit card for $1,000 shopping sprees, were invited on work trips to Hawaii or Italy, and were allowed to use the "Brandy apartment," a lavish two-story, five-bedroom apartment in New York's SoHo neighborhood.
Isa.Bella.Ricci "23 [Brandy Melville] Outfits Later" (TikTok)

Even Though it was "sus", some employees, "as young as 14", would go topless in a teen thong to "get those privileges" (e.g., "get paid more"). 
People said that teenage employees as young as 14 would frequently undress in front of male executives to try on new clothing for them. Four former employees in California and New York told Insider there was a belief among some retail workers that if you went fully topless in front of the executives, you might get paid more. 
Mina Marlena, who started working in the Santa Monica store in 2012 at age 17, said that the first time she tried on clothes for Marsan and Longo, she went to the bathroom to change. After she did this a few times, they told her to "just stay down here and change here," she recalled. In an effort to stay in their good graces, she began to change in front of the executives, typically wearing nothing but thong underwear. 
"Even though it was sus, everybody wanted" to be one of the favorites, one of the former employees who started at Brandy Melville in 2013 said. "You'd hear about it and be like, how do you get those privileges?"

Interestingly, and justifiably so, Taylor and her interviewees were highly critical of Brandy Melville's executives, but, per usual, Taylor didn't dish out any admonishments for the teens who stripped for privileges. What about something like, "The next time you feel pressured by men and materialism into stripping down to your fountains and your thong - talk to someone first."

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