Target's CEO defended the company's controversial 'tuck friendly' clothing line

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Target's CEO defended the company's controversial 'tuck friendly' clothing line

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Target takes 'emergency' action to 'avoid a Bud Light situation' and removes 'tuck-friendly' women's swimwear and LGBTQ products from display in Southern stores - as CEO DEFENDS the line
Target's CEO defended the company's controversial 'tuck friendly' clothing line
Brian Cornell said the store is focused on 'all' families with its products
Critics have said the marketing line 'deserves the Bud Light treatment'

PUBLISHED: 18:22 BST, 23 May 2023
Target's CEO has defended the company's controversial 'tuck friendly' female swimwear line, insisting the woke product rollout will be a success.

The retail giant sparked backlash after releasing a new line of clothing to celebrate Pride month in June, which includes a label advertising 'tuck-friendly construction' and 'extra crotch' coverage. The design is made to help conceal a person's private parts.

Despite facing sharp criticism for the release, which also includes items for babies and children, CEO Brian Cornell told Fortune's Leadership Next podcast he approved of the campaign.

'When we think about purpose at Target, it’s really about helping all the families, and that "all" word is really important,' he said.

'Most of America shops at Target, so we want to do the right thing to support families across the country.'

The 'tuck-friendly' swimsuit is sold online for $40 in the adults section

The swimsuits, which appear in sections set up for Pride month in June, include a label which advertises the 'tuck-friendly construction' and 'extra crotch' coverage. The design is made to help conceal a person's private parts

Cornell's remarks came as he was pressed on criticisms the company faced in the aftermath of its rollout.

'I think those are just good business decisions, and it’s the right thing for society, and it’s the great thing for our brand,' Cornell said.

'The things we’ve done from a DE&I (diversity, equity, and inclusion) standpoint, it’s adding value.

'It’s helping us drive sales, it’s building greater engagement with both our teams and our guests, and those are just the right things for our business today.'

His comments come as some southern Target stores have reportedly been forced by the corporation to move its LGBTQ merchandise from view as customers revolt against the brand.

The Pride product selection includes a variety of clothes and home goods, including a lime green adult romper suit with the word 'gay' emblazoned on the back, and a mug with a label reading: 'Gender Fluid.

Criticisms were also levied against the company after it was believed the 'tuck friendly' clothing was also for children, however a spokesman for the company told the Associated Press the swimsuits are only offered in adult sizes.

Target has been contacted by for further comment.

The Pride collection also includes items for babies and children. Many of the pieces are emblazoned with slogans and feature the rainbow colors of the Pride flag

Target has supported Pride - celebrated throughout the month of June - every year since 2013. Pictured: A book on sale in Target's Pride section for children and toddlers

Cornell insisted that the release would fuel profits despite the backlash, saying: 'I know that focus on diversity and inclusion and equity has fueled much of our growth over the last nine years.'

However, some critics have said the brand 'deserves the Bud Light treatment' - a reference to the devastating boycott of the beer giant after it partnered with trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney.

Target's campaign also comes amid criticism of Adidas for its decision to use biological males to model its women's swimwear.

The sportswear giant has faced calls for a boycott after it used the male models to advertise its female product line for their Pride 2023 collection, leading to accusations the marketing campaign was 'erasing women'.

Both models, who are described as 'they' online, have hairy chests, visible bulges and their description says they are 6ft 2in with a 34' chest and 27' waist. Additionally, one of the biological male models posed in a sports bra.

The recent push from some major brands to use woke marketing campaigns led ex- NCAA swimmer Riley Gaines to tell that she is 'hopeful that athletes will do the right thing and come out and denounce it.'

'As a female swimmer, seeing these men and seeing these companies put these men in a position where they are advertising women's clothing is not just heart-breaking, or belittling, but it feels like betrayal.

'It's something that we are seeing time and time again, but we are only seeing it one way. We only see men advertising women's clothing and not vice versa.'

Gaines, a spokesman for Independent Women's Forum, has become a leading voice against the inclusion of transgender athletes in women's sports, after tying for fifth against controversial trans swimmer Lia Thomas at last year's NCAA championship.
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