Adidas this week launched its “Pride 2023” swimwear collection, advertising bathing suits on its web site under the “women’s” section with the help of a model that appeared to be male.
One of the bathing suits — a colorful one-piece called the “Pride Swimsuit” that was being advertised for $70 — was being shown off by an apparently male model who also was also displaying a noticeable bulge in the crotch area.
An accompanying video on Adidas’ site shows the model sashaying in the one-piece, with the camera at one point zooming to reveal a patch of chest hair rising above the neckline.
It was unclear if the model identifies as a male or is transgender.
Internet personality Oli London tweeted the screenshots from Adidas’ site on Wednesday morning with the caption: “The new Adidas Women’s Swimwear Range modeled by…men.”
By the afternoon, more than 1.1 million Twitter users saw the tweet — many of which were quick to slam the brand for going “woke.”
Among the replies was one former NCAA swim star and women’s rights activist Riley Gaines. “Women’s swimsuits aren’t accessorized with a bulge,” she tweeted.
Gaines continued: “I don’t understand why companies are voluntarily doing this to themselves. They could have at least said the suit is ‘unisex,’ but they didn’t because it’s about erasing women. Ever wondered why we hardly see this go the other way?”
In another reply, a user tweeted: “I have breasts, hips and no need for an extra pouch of fabric around my labia. I guess that means this bathing suit isn’t for me.. or most women. In which other instance do companies advertise to a demographic of ~1%? Women make up ~50% and we’re struggling lol! Make it make sense.”
The same user, who goes by June on the site, later responded that she “can accept” Adidas not wanting “real women as a customer,” but instead urged the brand to “sell it in an LGBT category” rather than marketing it as a women’s bathing suit.
The swimsuit isn’t the only clothing item in Adidas’ new Pride line labeled under “Women’s,” but seemingly modeled by males.
Women’s dresses, T-shirts, shorts and soccer jerseys touting “Love Wins” are also seen online being worn by models who appeared to be male.
Read the full story here.
Scroll down to leave a comment and share your thoughts.