For centuries, and for many people today, the word angel connotes innocence, spirituality, and purity. In fact, in biblical times angels were masculine--images of strength, power, and holiness. They are a connection between the divine and the mortal. So what happens when an angel, to be specific, a female angel, meets the world of men, lingerie, and sex?
Victoria's Secret has successfully transformed their "angels" into symbols of eroticism. The are perfectly sculpted, bronzed, tall, thin models wearing the scantiest undergarments and largest of wings. The labeling of their models as "angels" works for the company in two ways. First, it takes advantage of the long upheld notion that angels are sweet, innocent, and pure. The company has their models blow kisses on the runway, as they strut in their corsets and high heels. And because they are angels, they avoid being labeled with derogatory terms such as "sluts". Secondly, as angels, the models uphold the notion that this image is fantastical, unattainable. Just as biblical angels bridge the gap between the mortal and the divine; Victoria's Secret lingerie bridges the gap between an "average" female body, and the divine, sexy, Victoria's Secret Angel.