Raunchy ‘Office Party’ lingerie ad slammed

Honey Birdette's new line Office Party.
Honey Birdette's new line Office Party.

LINGERIE company Honey Birdette has come out swinging in response to claims its new advertising campaign is "sexualising women".

For 10 years, the creator of Honey Birdette Eloise Monaghan has been battling people who complain about the popular lingerie brand's ads, and this time is no different.

Earlier this week, the company launched an advertising campaign for its new line "Office Party" which depicts models dressed in lingerie dancing in an office and drinking champagne while surrounded predominantly by suited-up businessmen.

Honey Birdette's new line Office Party.
Honey Birdette's new line Office Party.

Australia's Advertising Standards Bureau confirmed there had been some objection to the advertising campaign, saying the agency had received "a few" complaints about posters in store windows. An ASB spokeswoman said the bureau had heard no complaints about the label's TV ads or its Facebook campaign.

The video for the new Honey Birdette line has received a number of negative comments on Facebook, all of which were written by women.

"This ad is terrible. Who thought it was a bright idea to further sexualise women in the workplace? Meanwhile fully dressed men pour champagne and gaze at their female colleagues?" one woman wrote.

Another woman labelled it "pathetic".

A model poses for Honey Birdette.
A model poses for Honey Birdette.

In response to the backlash, the company's owner said "the whole thing is really very ridiculous" and labelled it "a backwards step for women".

"We're not living in the Middle East. We are a lingerie company and therefore we have models that are dressed in lingerie. We want to empower women and should be embracing female sexuality and their bodies. It blows my mind that this could be a narrative in 2017," Ms Monaghan said.

Ms Monaghan said the backlash coming solely from other women was "sad".

"Unfortunately it's women attacking women because they look fabulous. I don't think it should be that way but sadly it is," she said.

The creator of the popular lingerie ad said "the entire narrative is outrageous", pointing out that the ad features both men and women dressed in office clothes and in one scene includes a male model dressed in underwear.

"The consistent message is if the guys have their nipples out it's totally fine but women are always held to completely different standards," she said.

The male model dressed in only underpants.
The male model dressed in only underpants.

The company claimed the campaign had led to a spike in sales, making the Office Party line second only to the release of their Issy Black lingerie line which sold 2,500 units in three hours.

Topics:  honey birdette lingerie office sexuality

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