Victoria's Secret has become synonymous with beautiful women and lingerie. The iconic premium lingerie brand hosts an annual fashion show which has been described by some as the "Super Bowl of Fashion". In it, the Victoria's Secret Angels dazzle millions of viewers, some with their looks and others with their garments. Either way, the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is an event most choose not to miss.
Although the brand is mostly interested in selling products, its models, or "Angels", end up being the real stars of the show. Being a Victoria's Secret Angel opens up a world of possibilities. Some will be high-earning opportunities within the fashion industry but, given how utterly gorgeous these women are, the world is in the palm of their hands. From creating their own television shows and landing roles in blockbuster hits to leading human rights advocacy efforts and fronting social justice campaigns, these stunning women don't settle for the world Victoria's Secret gives them - they go out of their way to get what's theirs.
Jealousy of what they have brings some to criticise them for making millions by taking their clothes off for money. The freedom to do what they want with their lives gives them the right to ignore those critics. And here we stand, marvelled in applause and awe of their beauty.
15 Stunning Brazilian, Adriana Lima
The gorgeous Brazilian supermodel is one of the most accomplished stars in the fashion business. Adriana Lima has been a Victoria’s Secret Angel since 1999, a treasure of the brand and its most valuable personality. She has had multiple Super Bowl commercial appearances and is a brand ambassador for household names such as Kia Motors, Desigual, Calzedonia and Sportmax. She married basketball player Marko Jaric in 2009, but the couple parted ways in 2016.
In addition to her wildly successful modelling career and promotional work, Adriana Lima has also appeared in treasured television shows such as How I Met Your Mother and Ugly Betty. But there’s more to her than meets the eye. The Brazilian superstar is a practising Roman Catholic and donates her time and money to charitable organisations such as orphanages and children’s hospitals.
14 Gorgeous Namibian, Behati Prinsloo
This Namibian model is a household name for Victoria’s Secret, having appeared in nine consecutive Victoria’s Secret Fashion Shows while opening the 2014 and 2015 editions of one of fashion’s most important events. Behati Prinsloo was first discovered by a scout while on holiday with her family in Cape Town, after the latter followed her and her family out of a church and into a convenience, in what must have been a creepy encounter.
Married to Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine in 2014, Behati has worked with virtually all the big names in the fashion industry including walking shows for Alexander Wang, Louis Vuitton, Calvin Klein, Givenchy and Chanel, while also doing multiple covers for Vogue, Elle and Marie Claire among many others. In addition, she’s also designed a couple of fashion lines for HMV and Juicy Couture while also helping out the victims of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti.
13 Dutch Angel, Candice Swanepoel
When a 15-year-old Candice Swanepoel was discovered by a model scout at a flea market in her native South Africa, her life changed forever. Since then, her modelling career leaves little reason to think there was anything else for her to do on this planet, a fact that is best understood when you take into account her 8th place in Forbes “World’s Top-Earning Models” list.
She’s been a Victoria’s Secret Angel since 2010, has also walked the runway for many of fashion’s most recognisable names as well as having starred in advertising campaigns for diverse brands from Nike and Miu Miu to Tommy Hilfiger and Swarovski. Candice is also known for her charitable work with Mothers2Mothers, a charity which aims to eradicate HIV in Africa.
12 Disney Princess, Elsa Hosk
Elsa Hosk’s life could have been very different had she stuck to her professional basketball career in Sweden, where she was born in 1988. Her father submitted her photo to several modelling agencies in the country, and Elsa started modelling for a living at the tender age of 14. She bears a striking resemblance to Queen Elsa from Disney’s hit film Frozen and has been a Victoria’s Secret Angel since 2015 after having appeared in all of the brands shows since 2011.
In addition to her work with Victoria’s Secret and its brands, Elsa has also modelled for Dolce & Gabbana, Guess, Ungaro, Anna Sui, Lilly Pulitzer, and Dior. The Swedish top model is dedicated to stopping human trafficking, having worked with FAIR Girls to raise awareness of this issue.
11 Striking Athlete, Jasmine Tookes
With a celebrity stylist for a mom and breathtakingly beautiful, it is no surprise Jasmine Tookes is one of the most successful supermodels of our time. Born in California with a mix of African and British ancestry, she was an active young athlete until she started her modelling career at 15. Young Jasmine’s role model while growing up was Tyra Banks, a former Angel herself.
Jasmine has been a Victoria’s Secret Angel since 2015 and has walked the runway for virtually every big name in the fashion industry, picking up compliments and recognition from Oprah Winfrey to Vogue. She has also appeared in CBS’s Hawaii Five-0 in addition to fronting several campaigns for brands like Ugg, GAP, Ralph Lauren, Jimmy Choo, and Calvin Klein among countless others.
10 Precocious Beauty, Josephine Skriver
Josephine was only 15 when she was discovered by a model scout while her soccer team visited New York on a trip, but she decided to finish school before starting her modelling career in 2011. Born in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1993, Josephine has already made her mark in the fashion industry, having walked in over 300 shows for essentially every big name in the industry – the list of brands she's worked with reads like a list of Hollywood sexual harassers.
She’s no stranger to magazine covers and fashion advertising campaigns, but she’s perhaps most recognised for the work she’s done in favour of the LGBT community since both her parents are gay. Josephine has gone on the record stating she hopes her case loses its appeal as non-traditional families become more widely accepted by our, still in many aspects, conservative society.
9 Stunning Mom, Lais Ribeiro
Lais Ribeiro is certainly one of the most unique cases in terms of supermodels at this level since her fashion career only started after she had a kid in 2008. A friend suggested she could model for a living, at it wasn’t long until this stunning Brazilian woman was wowing the masses on the most significant international fashion shows from 2009 onwards.
She has appeared on Vogue in addition to having worked in several advertising campaigns for brands such as Dior, Tom Ford, GAP and Ralph Lauren. She’s been a Victoria’s Secret Angel since 2015 after being present in every edition of the brand's iconic fashion shows from 2010 until 2017, except when she injured her ankle in rehearsals for the 2012 show and had to sit it out.
8 Dazzling Brit, Lily Aldridge
Born to an English artist and a former Playboy Playmate, Lily Aldridge was always destined for big things. Her modelling career kicked off when she was 16 with Abercrombie & Fitch, Vogue the following year and Lily hasn’t stopped since. The Californian-born supermodel is both a Victoria’s Secret Angel and a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue model.
She walked her first Victoria’s Secret Fashion show in 2009 and became a fully-fledged Angel the following year. Alongside her many projects with internationally recognised fashion brands and shows, Lily Aldridge has also starred in several music videos from artists such as Limp Bizkit and Taylor Swift. She has a thing for musicians, having married Kings of Leon frontman Caleb Followill in 2011.
7 Born To Shine, Taylor Hill
21-year-old Taylor Marie Hill was born in Illinois and was discovered by a photographer in a barn when she was 14 in Colorado. Two of her siblings are also models clearly showing that stunning looks run in the family. Since starting her modelling career in 2013, Taylor has worked with H&M, Forever 21, Intimissimi before becoming a Victoria’s Secret Angel in 2015 after a couple of appearances in the brand’s fashion show.
Taylor didn’t stop there, becoming the face of the French brand Lancome as well as walking the runway for immediately recognisable names such as Armani, Chanel, Versace, among many others. Also, she’s also been in Vogue, Elle, Madame Figaro, Glamour and Marie Claire.
6 Beautiful Fighter, Martha Hunt
Diagnosed with scoliosis, Martha Hunt was able to triumph in the fashion industry in spite of the scars she has on her back and abdomen. Excluding that, her trajectory to the top was similar to many of her colleagues – discovered by a photographer who then put her in contact with the big modelling agencies who helped her launch her career.
A Victoria’s Secret Angel since 2015, Martha has walked more than 180 fashion shows for all the big names in fashion you can think off the top of your head (and then some). She’s starred in advertising campaigns for Miu Miu, Ralph Lauren, Prada, and Juicy Couture among many others, music videos for Taylor Swift and The Chainsmokers, and posed for Vogue, Wonderland, Harper’s Bazaar and V.
5 Dutch Muse, Romee Strijd
Romee Strijd was born in Zoetermeer, Holland in July 1995, and given her gorgeous blue eyes and blonde hair, it’s hard to think of a profession she’d be better suited for other than being a supermodel, and more specifically, a Victoria’s Secret Angel. She became one in 2015 after making her debut in the brand’s fashion show in 2014 – clearly, they were convinced to make her an angel after just one performance.
In addition to her work with Victoria’s Secret, Romee has starred in campaigns for H&M, Marquesa, Donna Karan, Alexander McQueen, Carolina Herrera, and Stradivarius. Much like her fellow Angels, Romee boasts an impressive list of clients for both runway and print work – definitely too many to name every single one!
4 Dreamy Dreamer, Sara Sampaio
Born and bred in Porto, Portugal, Sara Sampaio grew up wanting to become a Victoria’s Secret Angel, and after winning a nationwide modelling competition at the age of 16, it seemed like that dream would come true sooner or later. Although her parents made her finish high school before allowing her to pursue her dreams, it appears that didn’t hurt her chances at all.
After several advertising campaigns for well-known brands like Calzedonia, she had a failed audition for Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, but she persisted, and, after two consecutive appearances in the annual show, she became a fully-fledged Angel. Since then, she’s done countless shows, campaigns and editorials for all the big names in the fashion industry including a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue – dreams do come true.
3 Celebrity Seductress, Stella Maxwell
Perhaps best known for being in a relationship with Twilight start Kirsten Stewart after dating Miley Cyrus, this British fashion model has been a Victoria’s Secret Angel since 2015 after making her debut in the previous year’s fashion show. Stella Maxwell is the perfect example of the international generation that has made the world its home. Her parents are Northern Irish, she was born in Brussels, Belgium, moved to Australia, then New Zealand where she was discovered.
Outside of her work with Victoria’s Secret, her high-profile relationship and international background, she’s been the face of Max Factor (cosmetics brand), and she came top of Maxim’s iconic ranking “Hot 100 List”, in addition to the traditional modelling work with brands like Fendi, Roberto Cavalli and Versace.
2 Versatile Beauty, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley started her fashion career when she was only 15 in her native England and has used it as a platform to launch a successful acting career alongside other entrepreneurial endeavours. In addition to becoming a Victoria’s Secret Angel, she’s been the face of Burberry and walked the runway for all the top brands you can think of, including but not limited to Givenchy, Oscar De La Renta, Michael Kors and Louis Vuitton.
After conquering the fashion industry, Rosie set her sights on the acting world. She replaced Megan Fox in the multi-billion dollar Transformers franchise and starred in the critically acclaimed Mad Max: Fury Road 2015 hit. She’s no stranger to bullying if you can believe it as she was picked on for having curves in her school years, but she’s managed to prove her bullies wrong in the end.
1 Certified Goddess, Alessandra Ambrosio
Alessandra Ambrosio’s face is arguably the face most associated with Victoria’s Secret brand, at least in recent years, and it’s not hard to see why. The gorgeous 36-year-old Brazilian is one of the most well-known names in the fashion industry, where she got her start at the tender age of 15 before becoming an angel in 2010.
As a supermodel who’s been around for a long time, you can risk saying there isn’t a brand that’s worth anything that she hasn’t walked for, done editorials with or on whose advertising campaigns she hasn’t starred in. Alongside her modelling work, she’s had appearances in shows like HBO’s Entourage and films like Casino Royale, Daddy’s Home and the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles films.
Sources: vogue.com, victoriassecret.com, elle.com, dailymail.co.uk
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