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21st Sep 2018

This ‘Sexy’ Handmaid’s Costume Caused Massive Controversy Online


If you live on planet Earth as many of us do, you’ll no doubt feel a shudder of intense anger when you see what was passed as a ‘great idea’ for American retailer Yandy lately.

The retailer, who has since taken down the costume, attempted to sell the garment for $64.95 with the following description: “An upsetting dystopian future has emerged where women no longer have a say. However, we say be bold and speak your mind in this exclusive Brave Red Maiden costume.”

If you’re not familiar with the Handmaid’s Tale book by Margaret Atwood or the compelling series starring Elizabeth Moss, it depicts a world where women are forced into narrow roles of wife, servant or prostitute indicated by strict dress codes.

While most of us can accept that Halloween costumes are no longer scary, we think it’s bloody obvious that the reality of a handmaid’s life is scary enough without some bright spark coming along making it worse by attempting to make it “sexy”.

Unsurprisingly, the reaction online was swift and harsh.

In a further completely predictable turn of events, the retailer removed the offending costume and issued a statement.

It reads: “Yandy always has stood, and will continue to stand, at the forefront of encouraging our customers to ‘Own Your Sexy’. We support our customers being comfortable in their skin, regardless of who they are or what they choose to wear. Our corporate ideology is rooted in female empowerment, and gender empowerment overall.

“Over the last few hours, it has become obvious that our ‘Yandy Brave Red Maiden Costume’ is being seen as a symbol of women’s oppression, rather than an expression of women’s empowerment. This is unfortunate, as it was not our intention on any level. Our initial inspiration to create the piece was through witnessing its use in recent months as a powerful protest image.

“Given the sincere, heartfelt response, supported by numerous personal stories we’ve received, we are removing the costume from our site.”

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