Savage X Fenty’s competitive edge and current pace and standing, are some of the brand’s potential indicators of the brand’s future performance in the market.

Competitive Edge

  • Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty brand was launched in May 2018. The brand is in partnership with Techstyle Fashion Group, but the guiding principle follows Fenty Beauty, Rihanna’s make-up company.
  • Unlike its competitors, Savage X Fenty uses authentic models that are relatable as models are encouraged to look like the best versions of themselves instead of looking like conventional models.
  • Even though other brands have attempted to be inclusive, Savage X Fenty has created a more practical lingerie inclusive market. “I’m looking for unique characteristics in people that aren’t usually highlighted in the world of fashion as it pertains to lingerie and sexy — what society sees sexy,” Rihanna said at the launch of Savage X Fenty fashion show.
  • The Savage X Fenty has also managed to attract investors that have increased the brand’s edge. Wall Street Journal reported that the brand received new funding from investors such as Jay-Z’s venture from Marcy Venture Partners LLC and Avenir Growth Capital, a growth equity firm. These investors brought a $70 million funding after a strong first year in May 2019.

Current Pace and Standing

  • Industry experts expect Savage X Fenty to soar and become an even bigger brand. So far, Savage X Fenty is taking over household brands such as Victoria Secret. Savage X Fenty prides itself as an empowering alternative to Victoria’s Secret, although the former dominates the market because of its awareness in movements such as #MeToo. More so, its 40-piece debut collection sold out in a month, an indicator that the brand can only soar higher.
  • In its first year in business, the brand attracted investors and funding and made sales nearing $150 million. Rihanna’s involvement gives the brand an edge, as evidenced by shoppers that waited for hours in line to access the brand’s ecommerce on launch day. Industry experts observe that the brand made an outstanding mark in its first year, which could translate into a better future for the brand.
  • Research shows that even though celebrities have an edge whenever they launch or endorse a brand, Rihanna’s fans are 3.7 times more likely to shop from the brand than fans of other celebrities. Savage X Fenty is expected to hold a competitive space even in the near future as consumers are attracted to a brand’s story. Currently, Rihanna is the most marketable brand endorsement ambassador as consumers are drawn to her story, a successful and beautiful immigrant from Barbados.

Drivers of Savage X Fenty Brand’s Shift

Inclusivity and promoting social change have seen Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty brand become a trendsetter. These factors have also been the drivers of the shift, partnerships, and have resulted in improved brand performance.


  • When Savage X Fenty first launched, the presentation attracted a lot of attention from consumers, industry players, and leaders because of the diversity inclusion in Rihanna’s brand. Inclusivity has been more than just a marketing gimmick and more of the brand’s DNA. In the initial Savage X Fenty fashion show, Rihanna prioritized inclusivity by hiring entertainers and models that were diverse in body size and race. By including various body types, sizes, and races, the brand sets a tone that is considered an alternative to the cheery and homogeneous aspect of beauty, as has always been exhibited by traditional brands such as Victoria’s Secret.
  • The Savage X Fenty premier focused on celebrating women’s bodies and sexuality in a diverse and inclusive environment. The brand sets a precedent to other brands by including women of all sizes, ethnicities, races, disabled, and transwomen. The inclusivity move was widely applauded across the board, which resulted in an impressive performance of the brand right from its launch. “Every woman deserves to feel sexy. We are sexy, we are multi-faceted, and I want women to embrace that to the fullest,” Rihanna explained in the launching intro to the Amazon special.
  • While Rihanna’s inclusivity move was translated by some as an “anti-Victoria’s Secret” move, seeing that Victoria’s Secret is strict on hiring only thin ambassadors, Rihanna’s all-inclusive line was well received by the majority. The brand includes women of all sizes for lace-up corsets, sheer floral underwear, boyshorts, and high-neck bralettes.

Promoting Social Change

  • By incorporating diversity and inclusivity, the Savage X Fenty brand has indirectly taken a positive stand movement. One of them is #MeToo, a move that has trampled its competitors who have been criticized for being too inactive in the era of social change. As brands such as Victoria’s Secret continues to get criticized for failing to resonate with women and over-sexualizing their ads, Savage X Fenty has continued to zero in on these criticisms and showcasing its collection.
  • Rihanna is known for promoting social and cultural positivity. When launching the Fenty brand, she used images from the 1960’s ‘Black is Beautiful’ movement. Thus, when she launched the Savage X Fenty brand, consumers and the audience did not have a hard time reconciling her need to prioritize inclusivity, social and cultural movements in her brand.
  • Rihanna’s involvement in social movements has seen the Savage X Fenty brand become a game-changer. Previously, there was an unspoken standard for what a ‘woke’ woman should wear or look like, which saw the lingerie market lag behind in diversity and overall meaningful body-positivity discussions. However, the Savage X Fenty is changing these standards by actively getting engaged in movements and productions promoting diversity and body-positivity beyond the traditional norms. Movements such as #MeToo and Times Up have triggered a seismic shift in the lingerie industry, and the Savage X Fenty is perfectly placed to take over from traditional lingerie brands.

Impacts That Savage X Fenty Brand Has Had on The Lingerie and Fashion Industry


Using new channels and staying updates are some of the impacts that Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty brand has had on the lingerie and fashion industry and particularly, on its key competitors such as Victoria’s Secret, Aerie, and ThirdLove.

The Importance of Using New Channels

  • Savage X Fenty fashion show was the first ever to be streamed on a streaming service. By having Amazon Prime stream the fashion show, it was not only a game-changer but a lesson to key competitors such as Aerie, Victoria’s Secret, and ThirdLove, on the need to sample new channels. Using Amazon Prime to stream the fashion show, Savage X Fenty became the ‘talk of the town,’ which also created a buzz and awareness of the brand.
  • Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty has used the need for social change as a platform and channel to propel its brand, a lesson that should be emulated by competitors such as Victoria’s Secret, Aerie, and ThirdLove. There has been continuous criticism, particularly for Victoria’s Secret obsession with outdated fashion and beauty ideals that have seen Savage X Fenty’s rise, as Victoria’s Secret declined 7% in the last quarter of 2019.
  • Partnering with the largest luxury conglomerate globally, LVMH Moet Hennessy, in May 2019 was also a game-changer for the Savage X Fenty brand. As the first woman of color to be accorded the honor to lead an LVMH label, propelled Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty to be among the fashion industry’s prolific names. Further, it proved how the right partnering could positively impact a business.

The Importance of Staying Updated

  • Traditional fashion brands such as Victoria’s Secret, ThirdLove, and Aerie are notorious for upholding conventional routines and standards in their runways and selecting their models. When Savage X Fenty joined the scene in 2019, it changed the game by flaunting models of all shapes and races, regardless of their sexuality and physical ableness. Amputee models were almost unheard-of until Savage X Fenty included them in their fashion show in 2019.
  • Victoria’s Secret identity crisis catalyzed by the female body’s antiqued view could take a lesson as new rivals, particularly Savage X Fenty, present clear, focused, and updated messages that resonate with today’s consumer. Even though there were petite and conventional models to run the Savage X Fenty fashion show, Rihanna chose to include women from all walks of life that were relatable to an updated audience.
  • Savage X Fenty is teaching brands, and mainly its competitors, the importance of staying versatile when zeroing in on a target audience today. Unlike in the yesteryears, consumers do not want to be dictated on what size to be. Savage X Fenty knows its target audience varies in size, shape, and even color. By understanding this, Savage X Fenty has managed to maximize size ranges, lingerie styles, and even diverse models to represent a wide variety of its target audience.
Glenn is the Lead Operations Research Analyst at The Digital Momentum with experience in research, statistical data analysis and interview techniques. A holder of degree in Economics. A true specialist in quantitative and qualitative research.


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