February 9, 2010
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Well, this isn’t the most flattering pose of cute skier Lindsey Vonn. However, neither is it the worst. But people are talking about it because sites like WomenTalkSports believe the cover objectifies women. Listen in:


“Vonn is first a GREAT athlete, but she also represents norm of feminine attractiveness. The combination of athleticism and attractiveness make Vonn the likely poster girl of the US Olympic Team, and the media hasn’t disappointed in constructed her as such.

Not to be left out, Sports Illustrated is featuring Vonn on their Feb. 8, 2010 cover. For those of you who follow SI Covers, know that female athletes are RARELY featured on the cover.

Over the last 60 years researchers have shown that about 4% of all SI covers have portrayed women.

When females are featured on the cover of SI, they are more likely than not to be in sexualized poses and not in action-and the most recent Vonn cover is no exception.”


As I call it, let’s look at the facts. Lindsey Vonn is a downhill skier. She skies downhill, crouched, poles tucked under her arms, tush in the air, right? Arguably, she’s not doing anything out of the ordinary. She’s a superior athlete, cute (great makeup, hair and ski suit!) and marketable, so why would anyone want to hide her face behind goggles in an action shot. (See a male skier cover.) Very cool shot, but we can’t really see his face.

Does it hurt her credibility? Not really. Sport Illustrated crowns her in boldface type “America’s Best Woman Skier Ever.” Please, this is not an example of mockery or sarcasm like the Palin cover on Newsweek. Not by a long shot.  Well, could SI have shot her straight forward? Yes, but it is SI’s call and that is what the ruckus is about. Is it also that SI shot her in a bikini for its Swimwear edition? (see below). And all covers are on newsstands within a span of a week.

They speak like SI held a gun to her head. Lindsey Vonn consented to be shot on the Olympic Preview cover and the Swimwear edition. C’mon, who wouldn’t pose for SI knowing it could catapult your career, your marketability, your bank account. It is not sleazy, sarcastic, or demeaning. You are included with the top athletes of the world. Yes, SI should be better about having more female athletes on covers. Yes, SI does show the female form in sexy ways, but a woman should never try to be a man. How confining! Be yourself. Obviously, Lindsey Vonn shows her smart, playful, girlish side that loves to dress up, feel pretty, but let her accomplishments speak for itself.

Will SI probably sell magazines with Lindsey Vonn on the cover? You bet.



The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show (2009)…STRUT WITH CONFIDENCE!

December 3, 2009
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VIDEO: The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show (2009).

Ladies, watch and learn! While entertaining, (and I love the BEP!), Victoria’s Secret is a top-notch marketing machine spinning a bigger and stronger Victoria’s Secret brand, despite not being a top luxury undergarment. However, Victoria’s Secret has brilliantly branded itself as pure sex appeal and the fashion show did not disappoint. Well, here’s top 10 things to learn from the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show 2009:

10. Never underestimate the power of undergarments. Always have sexy ones, Ladies!

9.   Marketing to women and men is first and foremost visual! Top models! Top theatrics! Top production!

8.  Create a “reality show” by having a casting call for the next Victoria’s Secret model by having loads and loads of contestants in lingerie. It’s Top Model crossed with a casting for the biggest fashion show in the year.

7. Send out a press release stating that this year it will have its first Asian descent model (from China) gracing its runway. (China also has more than a billion people.) (Part II on this subject to come in the next post).

6. Create the fantasy by having “angels” wearing the Victoria’s Secret underwear. Angelic, yet not so. Hmmm…

5. Have the Black Eye Peas sing live at the show!!! (I love the Black Eye Peas and Fergie!)

4. It’s a fashion show, but what is really the fashion? The pieces are not really seen, unlike an Oscar De La Renta show during New York Fashion Week, where the designs are celebrated and awed. It is just selling the concept, an idea.

3. Victoria’ Secret has attached the color pink to its marketing campaign, the color of romance, sweetness, and love. Not too hot, but not too dull. But, just sweet enough. Awww.

2. Show that even ordinary people can be a Victoria’s Secret model or at least part of the making of the Victoria’s Secret fashion show by displaying footage of their casting call in over four major cities and having the people choose their favorite model.

1. Ladies, above all, STRUT WITH CONFIDENCE. Take charge and be confident and that will jump start any sex appeal you have.

Stephanie (@honadvsmstyle)

Strut with confidence!

stephred email

©2009 by stephaniematsumotoSTYLE.

Call 9-1-1: Oscar De La Renta’s 2010 Spring Runway Show has left me breathless

September 16, 2009
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Everyone has a heart stopping moment when they just revel in beauty. Maybe it may be a painting to you, or a play in a game, or the story of a book. You escape for one brief moment. There are so many things to find beautiful if we look for it. However, Oscar De La Renta produced 53 looks for New York Fashion Week where the only words I could only say were “OMG” over and over with each look. It’s like partaking in a decadent meal and your senses take over. His style is absolutely breathtaking! The fabrics were lush and the designs exquisite. Ahhh, I want every one of them.  See for yourself and escape into the moment.

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Photos by Getty Images

See the full collection and larger photos here.


June 29, 2009
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Can we have a passionate heart all the time? I believe so if we focus on it and practice living it. While we often associate our passions with our loves, our activities that make us high on life, and qualities we treasure, novelist Isabel Allende shows us a passionate heart can also overcome adversity, injustice, and pain. It may not always be painless, but as she says “heart determines our fate.”  In a video speech at a TED conference, she tells us tales of passions and also urges us to help the women and children who are the “poorest of the poor”  squashed by injustices and abuse but who survive by having strength of spirit and a passionate heart.  Listen. Feed your energy. And live with passion.  

SM STORY: Passion is loving what you do

June 17, 2009
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“You’ve got to find what you love…If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking, and don’t settle.”

-Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple


As part of his 2005 commencement speech at Stanford (see here), he spoke about his life experiences that has shaped him to be the person he is today. He is passionate about his work…and life! I am on a quest to find passionate people about their work because honestly, I think it is rare. Why do some people know from a very young age and others find it much later in life? Why do people stay in it if they do not love it? Well, for starters, I heard that there maybe too much of a time investment to just abandon it. Maybe people learn to love their work. They may become comfortable. Or they just may settle. I want to hear from people who are passionate about what they do. Send me an email:

Check back for upcoming profiles of those living life with passion and style!


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    My Mantra

    DEFY FEAR™ Be open to change. Take risks. Revel in adventure and new experiences. Travel. Read. Engage your senses. Learn from your mistakes, your successes, and from the wisdom of others. Unravel a puzzle. Create and use your imagination. Be active. Find the positives. Keep it fun. Be EXTRAORDINARY. Love. Live the good life. Enjoy the ride. - I AM. Copyright 2009 by Stephanie Matsumoto STYLE. All rights reserved.