Brazilian supermodel Adriana Lima, the longest-tenured Victoria's Secret Angel who joined the brand in 1999, is extremely apologetic about being slightly late for our phone interview. Her minor tardiness is really no big deal — she's an international icon, beauty influencer, and mother of two with a new reality competition series, American Beauty Star, premiering on Sept. 21. She has every reason to be running late.
When talking to Lima, her warm and friendly manner immediately puts you at ease. Soon you'll find she isn't much different than you, especially when it comes to her beauty go-tos.
As a veteran of the fashion and beauty scene, Lima isn't coy about sharing some of her secrets. But it turns out she doesn't have one particular hero product, just several staples that are likely already in your makeup bag, too.
Now, you can take inspo from Lima on how to use these items like a supermodel.
"I have a few things, like BB Cream, because I use it as a foundation and it has SPF 30 to protect my skin," Lima says. "It is like a natural form of foundation since it's breathable and you don't lose the texture of natural-looking skin."
She makes a critical point — always use products with SPF. It's passive protection, doesn't require additional steps, and it's beyond worth it.
Lima also co-signs Maybelline's Baby Lips Balm as one of her makeup faves, like any good brand ambassador. But her go-to, every day lipstick is red. Her signature shade? Maybelline's Siren in Scarlet. But Lima does say she likes to switch up formulas, undertones, and shades to fit her mood.
"I can go from orange red to burgundy red to pinkish red to cherry red," she says. "I can go from matte to liquid to glossy to creamy. I like to play around with the reds."
Another Lima beauty "must?" Mascara — and loads of it. She says she piles mascara "on and on and on" and deals with a common frustration that so many of us struggle with — leftover mascara that is near impossible to remove.
"I wash my face, but I don't rub [mascara] off with makeup remover," she says. "Makeup girls know that's not enough to take off mascara. So, whatever is leftover, I just apply more over top."
Maybe not the most hygienic tip, but who hasn't done that? Now you can definitely say you've taken your bad beauty habits from a supermodel.
While Lima's career as a runway strutter has given her access to a plethora of new products, trends, and styles, she doesn't allow anyone or anything to dictate her look. Ever.
"I don't follow trends," she says. "I make my own trends." #Preach.
But with American Beauty Star, the supermodel is showing the world how mainstream beauty trends are made. The show pairs makeup artists and hairstylists to collaborate on the overall look of a singular model, just like in the beauty biz. Each episode's challenge finds contestants paired with different teammates from the opposite skill set to create a cohesive style — and no doubt navigate some drama along the way.
Lima says she didn't set out to create another cutthroat, competition-based series. So, if you are looking for a beauty-themed reality show with a soul, American Beauty Star is it.
"The show gives the artists full exposure for their talents, and we see them grow, who they were before, what is behind their creation, how they get inspired, and how they turn that inspiration into real life," she says. "It shows who they are as people and not just as talent."
Lima says fans will be drawn to the show since it pulls back the curtain on the creative thinking that goes into bringing beauty looks to life. And who doesn't like uncovering all that mystery?
While Adriana Lima may be an upper echelon supermodel, her beauty perspectives are so down to earth. With these tips, it's easy to elevate your look to supermodel status.