Adriana Reloaded

Givenchy F/W 09 Backstage – Image Courtesy of

Sex is a skill – or at the very least it can be. With the right application of bronzer, a push up bra and coyness anyone can be “sexy”. That is the hidden message behind Victoria’s Secret. The fruity body lotion and cotton panties don’t speak for themselves – they’re pushed into our lives via a calculated marketing gimmick that has elevated the brand from catalog mainstay to billion dollar industry. With its lineup of attractive, affable Angels the company strives to make the point even clearer. While every one of their girls is a knockout in her own right they’re all helped by a little bit of VS magic.

Karen Elson & Adriana Lima by Steven Meisel – Vogue US December 1997

Maybe that is why Adriana Lima has been the perfect ambassador for the brand. Follow her career trajectory and you’ll find she didn’t start out as “sexy” at least not in the uber accessible, highly commercial sense. Those with an especially keen memory may recall Adriana sporting a buzz cut and black liner during her early years when her look was decidedly editorial in its allure. Back in ’97 when she was paired alongside atypical beauties like Karen Elson as she posed for Steven Meisel, Lima was a part of a very different crowd. Hers was an edgy and unconventional beauty that matured into something accessible. While she may not have straddled the line between the artistic and the commercial as well as some of her peers (well played GIsele) every so often she’s made her presence felt via interesting work.

Adriana Lima by Ellen Von Unwerth for Vogue Italia, September 2000

Perhaps then the collective industry eyebrow waggle when Lima resurfaced on the Givenchy runway and between the pages of Love Magazine is a bit uncalled for. As the boundaries break and the differences between editorial and commercial girls become more tenuous we’re liable to see many more return to their high fashion roots. Victoria’s Secret (and its bikini clad crony Sports Illustrated) may raise a girl’s profile but it’s a well timed turn on a selective catwalk that keeps it pristine.

Adriana Lima for Love Magazine S/S 09

  1. I’m sorry, but with Ms Lima’s So-full Pouty lips, Cherubic face, and Liquid green eyes…..she’s destined to be “Sexy”. No amount of Push-up Bras and VS Magic can make Karen Elson, Stella Tennant and Kristen McMennamy sexy. at least in ads.

  2. This is just a extrvagance from Madamme Roitfeld to spice up the season, I think is not reasonable at all expect that such a comercial model like her could represent well the high fashion…I will take this as a funny surprise but not a serious thing!

  3. This shows how amazing Adriana is. She can do the comercial job but also looks great at fashion runway as well to Fashion magazines (dont forget her latest Vogue Paris editorial as well cover + editorial at Elle Italian). Plus, She have a great catwalk.

    Hope to see even more from her.

  4. Adriana looks great and did an awesome job at Givenchy runway. Just because she is a Victoria’s Secret Angel doesnt mean that she cant do different jobs, and now she prove it. YAY Go Adriana!

  5. I still remember when I first laid eyes on Adriana in a Bebe campaign when she first hit NYC and was with Ford.

  6. I really hope that this is just the beginning of much more to come for Adriana because she definitely deserves it! I’ve missed her on the runway and she’s obviously still got it. Designers need to take note.

  7. im so happy to see her in high fashion
    lets hope she keeps it up
    i love it
    i love her

  8. Great to see her doing high fashion. Carine Roitfeld is bringing us something different, not obvious and I love this. That editorial at Vogue Paris with Adriana was really beautiful. I want more!!!

  9. I love Adriana Lima!

    This was very well written. I love seeing your posting.

  10. Adriana has KILLER eyes!!! and she has a face to die for.

    Parabens!!!! Eu te amo Adriana!!!

  11. Adriana is one class act! She defines the word “sexy” in my book.

  12. wow she looks like an Angel standing next to Isabeli(who is also breathtaking) and that says a lot, no wonder Victoria’s Secret loves her so much. But they constantly dolled her up too much making her looking like a blow up doll, and im just glad she is doing something beside that. I love that Givenchy put her in suit and pant yet put other models who arent as sexy and femme in dresses and gown, totally brilliant!

  13. Love her…the truly most beautiful girl in the world. No comparison. All the best baby!!!

  14. I think that those people who thinks that Adriana is just a comercial model they simply don`t know her career. She has done so manny fashion shows,so many editorials for VOGUE AMERICA, VOGUE ITALY, VOGUE SPAIN,VOGUE BRAZIL,ELLE all around the world,Flaunt. She just stopped her fashion career for while because right in the beginning of her modeling career VS called her to signed a contract with her but she only stopped doing fashion in 2005. She is a great fashion model and for sure one of the best catwalkers that ever existed in fashion.
    she rules the runway

  15. They need more models like adriana on the runway no more of these stick figures.

  16. Excellently written, and a strong case.

    Adriana will always fall more onto the sexy side of the fence but it’s true, the odd high editorial spot is refreshing and deserved.

  17. I guess what I haven’t been able to understand in recent years is the tendency to keep so-called “sexy” models out of editorials and runways. Actually, Adriana seems to fit in quite well with the rest of the “edgy editorial” girls at the Givenchy show. And an extra amount of hip and bust actually help fill in those clothes a lot nicer, in my opinion. If the boundaries between Victoria’s Secret and high fashion are breaking down, I say WONDERFUL! Those boundaries are silly anyway. Thanks Janelle for a post that’s not only positive but also makes us think.

  18. I love Adrianna so much She is the Hottest and Most Naturally Beautiful Model I have ever seen. I am her biggest fan and I support anything she touches.

  19. Not only did Adriana walk for Givenchy, she’s going to appear in their FW09 campaign! Wow it’s just great to have more of the millenium models coming back. I remember she walked for quite a few shows like Valentino, Dior, Ralph Lauren, Alexander McQueen but she was picked up by Victoria’s Secret pretty early in her career but never got to really be super well known as a HF model. She did have a couple of high fashion campaigns like Blumarine but everyone only knew her as a commercial model because Victoria’s Secret was what got her recognized.

    Walking the Givenchy show was a huge yet pleasant surprise since this has been her first major runway show in years and it’s amazing that she’ll be in the ads now too =D!

  20. I think its a great thing that adriana is entering the high fashion area. she is extremly beautyful and thats what fashion is about. beauty!!! and fashion is also about change. why only eastern european girls with doll-faces, clear and blank, have to be high fashionly??? remember that we had times were other kind of girls dominated the runways and high fashion editorials. yasmeen ghauri, brandy quinones, veronica webb,helena christensen…..the supermodels…! beautiful but not expressless dolls. gisele was the first sexy model after the heroine chic and minimalism. she had the body but her face was not most beautiful. she was a mix of the end of 90s heroine chic with sexiness. her face is not the most beautiful.adriana is everything. beautiful and sexy. i think gianni would choose her as his favourite. she and karolina could be a supermodel duo who could revive the supermodelsmania…

  21. Adriana is a Goddess on earth and shows the world that ‘exotic’ is simply beautiful.

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