One country, many stunning, sexy supermodels
By Jessica Mahler
Brazilian models have taken the fashion and modeling industries by storm. This South American country has been the origin of some of the highest-paid and most admired supermodels like Gisele Bündchen and Adriana Lima. The Brazilian brigade added curves and a sun-kissed glow to a stale palette of waif-like models, helping to change the shape and look of modeling, stomping out the old standard as they took their turns down the catwalk. Once considered unknowns, today these beauties are some of the most sought-after models in the business as they continue to dominate runways and ad campaigns alike.
• Pioneering the way for her Brazilian brethren, Gisele Bündchen came onto the scene in 1996, walking runways and landing magazine spreads. Her supermodel status was confirmed in 2000 when she became a Victoria’s Secret star, and has since landed roles in movies like Taxi and The Devil Wears Prada. In February 2009, Gisele married New England Patriot’s quarterback Tom Brady, and the couple confirmed in September that they are expecting their first child. Gisele may be from Brazil, but her token catch pose is a universal sign.
• Alessandra Ambrosio joined Gisele in the ranks of Victoria’s Secret girls in 2000, and became the first spokesmodel for its Pink collection. Her fame helped land her some time on the silver screen for Casino Royale as well as a cameo in Entourage. But Alessandra isn’t all business: She’s also the national ambassador for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, an honor Alessandra wears with pride since her father has been struggling with the disease for over 15 years. She has some tips she’d like to share on staying beautiful.
• The year 2006 was a good one for Adriana Lima. The Brazilian made People’s 100 Most Beautiful People in the World list, FHM’s Sexiest Women list, and Maxim’s Hot 100 list. Oh, yeah, and she’s been walking the Victoria’s Secret runway since 1999. Take a peak inside Adriana’s closet to find out what she likes to wear.
• Apparently Brazilians are bred to be Victoria’s Secret models. And Isabeli Fontana became the youngest model—at 16—to appear in a VS catalog. Even though she’s been in the business for over a decade, she still gets a little anxious before shows. Find out what makes her sweat.
• Vogue is obsessed with Caroline Trentini. If you’ve picked up a recent issue, you’ve probably seen this Brazilian beauty “jumping” through the spreads. Plus, she was one of the models featured on the May 2007 cover as one of the Next Top Models. And with Caroline gracing the cover of the iconic May 2009 Model issue, it’s clear the fashion bible was accurate. View some of her most memorable Vogue covers here.
• It’s safe to say that Ana Beatriz Barros has got the enviable Brazilian genes. A veteran catwalker for Victoria’s Secret with five shows under her belt since 2002, she’s also been featured in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit editions for seven consecutive years (2002-2008). Plus, she’s best friends with fellow Brazilian beauty Alessandra Ambrosio. Chat with Ana on the beach to find out more about the beginnings of her career, get some beauty tips, and discover a few of her favorite things.
• Yet another Brazilian Victoria’s Secret Angel, Izabel Goulart was shopping in a grocery store with her mother when a fellow customer told her she should take a stab at modeling. Izabel took the advice to heart, and life for this Angel has been like a fairy tale come true ever since. And she’s got some beauty tips that every girl should take heed.