Iconic swimwear brand Speedos has been accused of sexism after encouraging men to “rediscover their race pace” while women are offered bathing suits that “compliment their shape”.
Postcards from the Pool blogger Sally Goble called out Speedos on Twitter for being a “disgrace” for its “sexist” marketing.
“What century does Speedo live in?” the blogger posted on social media.
In a series of scathing posts on social media, the blogger commented on the blatantly different marketing messaging to men and women.
She posted photos from the Speedos UK website showing men being encouraged to rediscover their “race pace” while female customers were lured with images of women with the captions including “new season, new style” and “compliment your shape”.
“I despair that this needs to be OVER and OVER again @SpeedoUK but your sexist website is a disgrace,” she wrote.
“MEN are encouraged to “Rediscover your race pace” while WOMEN to “Compliment your shape (and) Feel good”,” she wrote.
“Furthermore, men are standing by the blocks with goggles and hat, about (presumably) to dive in and race, whereas women are floating, inactive, (presumably) meditating rather than swimming, on top of the water, no goggles, no hat. Just F**k OFF.”
In another post, she wrote: “Women are endlessly told that the most important thing about their bodies is how they look rather than what they can do (apart form childbirth). It’s such a bore.”
She also wrote: “Let’s remind ourselves _again_ in case we forgot about the trails to Speedo’s blog and how they appear on the Men’s homepage and the Women’s homepage: Men get ‘how to swim further faster’ and women get ‘Find the right swimsuit to flatter your body shape’.”
Some Twitter users agreed such as @jocrossick who wrote that sexism was still raging in many areas of sport, saying skiwear marketing sends messages on how skiing gear makes women look on the slopes. “Urgh, I have the same stuff with ski clothes and equipment. So frustrating,” the Twitter user wrote.
A spokesperson for Speedo said the company “strongly refuted” the sexism claims.
“At Speedo we believe the water is for everyone. We make swimwear for a wide range of reasons, from racing competitively to swimming for fitness and wellbeing,” the Speedo spokesperson said.
“We strongly refute any claims of sexism and our website and social media content reflects the diversity of our customers and celebrates all swimmers who enjoy the water, whatever their motivation.”