Victoria's Secret model Kylie Bisutti says that she "felt like a piece of meat" working for the lingerie giant and now the company is firing back saying that she was never an "Angel."
"I was being paid to strip down and pose provocatively to titillate men. It wasn't about modeling clothes anymore; I felt like a piece of meat," the 23-year-old model said in a first-person piece published in the New York Post on Wednesday.
In the article, she rails against the lifestyle she led as an up-and-coming model living in New York and her issues with eating disorders and insecurities.
"The curves that made me 'too fat' by runway standards were perfect for Victoria's Secret. And even though I was only 19, a newlywed and growing in my relationship to God, I didn't think twice about strutting my stuff in skimpy bikinis and underwear in the TV contest," she said.
The model, who is a devout Christian, beat 10,000 other models in the 2009 Victoria's Secret Angel Search competition, which bore with it a one-time walk in the 2009 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, which subsequently launched her modeling career.
"During the Angel competition, I was encouraged to play down my marriage to Mike, because I was supposed to be flirting with everyone all the time. A lot of models don't talk about their relationships unless they're married to a celebrity, like Miranda Kerr and Orlando Bloom, which is more of a draw to the brand," she wrote.
Bisutti, who has been photographed for FHM and Maxim and was offered a gig in Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue, said she decided to quit modeling soon after racey images from a lingerie shoot were uploaded to a porn site. The shoot didn't seem to be associated with Victoria's Secret, but was one she was contracted for with modeling agency IMG.
"I quit being a VS model to be a Proverbs 31 wife," she tweeted about her decision to quit modeling. Her Twitter handle, @VSKylie, bears the company's initials.
And now she's penned a book called "I'm No Angel: From Victoria's Secret Model to Role Model," to tell her story and explain her decision to quit her career because she didn't want to promote anything that "sold sex." But Victoria's Secret isn't too happy about its involvement in her coda.
"Ms. Bisutti has made numerous fabrications and misstatements of fact regarding her brief association with Victoria's Secret," the company told People in a statement.
Victoria's Secret said that after she won the "amateur" modeling competition in 2009, she hadn't worked for the company much since except for participating in a swimsuit shoot.
"That was the extent of Ms. Bisutti's involvement with Victoria's Secret. She was never a Victoria's Secret 'Angel' as defined by the terms of our Angel model contract," it said. "And contrary to Ms. Bisutti's claims, she was never offered any subsequent modeling contracts or opportunities with Victoria's Secret despite her multiple appeals for further work. She has repeatedly fabricated her work experience with Victoria's Secret — including a relationship that simply did not exist."
Well, they sure know how to make a girl feel like fashion roadkill.
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