Adriana Lima is a Brazilian model, best known as a Victoria’s Secret Angel since 2000, and as a spokesmodel for Maybelline cosmetics from 2003 to 2009. At age 15, Lima finished first in Ford’s “Supermodel of Brazil” competition, and took second place the following year in the Ford “Supermodel of the World” competition before signing with Elite Model Management in New York City.
Lima is probably best known for her work with Victoria’s Secret. Her first fashion show for the company came in 1999, and since being contracted as an Angel in 2000, she has appeared on subsequent shows ever since, opening the show in 2003, 2007, and 2008, in which she also closed the opening segment. Lima has appeared on several television ads for the brand, including the praised and criticized “Angel in Venice” commercial of 2003 with Bob Dylan and her solo Victoria’s Secret’s Super Bowl XLII ad, the single most-seen ad of the game, watched by 103.7 million viewers.
2008 continued for Lima with hosting the What Is Sexy? program for the E! Entertainment Network and a July tour for the BioFit Uplift Bra launch, with stops in Long Island, Boston, and Miami Beach. She was also featured in November’s Miracle Bra relaunch. Topping the year off, Lima wore the “Fantasy Bra” for the 2008 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. The bra, created by American jewelry designer Martin Katz, was set with 3,575 black diamonds, 117 certified single-carat white round diamonds, 34 rubies, and two black diamond drops totaling 100 carats. Valued at over $5 million, the bra carried more than 1500 carats. In 2009, Lima launched the company’s new makeup line, “Christian Siriano for VS Makeup.”
Lima’s first acting role was the wife, alongside Mickey Rourke and Forest Whitaker, in The Follow (2001), a short film in BMW’s series The Hire, starring Clive Owen and directed by Wong Kar-wai. She also appeared with her fellow Angels in a guest spot playing herself in the series How I Met Your Mother in November 2007.
In 2008, Lima appeared on the American television series Ugly Betty, where she played herself and made friends with the series’ title character, played by America Ferrera. According to her publicist, Liza Anderson, “Adriana has always been a huge fan of Ugly Betty and is thrilled for the opportunity to make a guest star appearance.”
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