NEW YORK (CNN Wire) — Start with 19 gorgeous half-naked models, throw in a $2.5 million bra and a few wings that weigh up to 50 pounds a pair, and you have the elements of this year’s Victoria Secret fashion show.
The 2011 show airs Tuesday night at 10 p.m. on KPIX-TV CBS 5 and will also be seen in more than 90 countries, proving that the definition of “sexy” may be the same on all seven continents.
Dazzling women in glitter, wearing sky-high heels with elaborate underwear, are some of the obvious reasons more than 9 million viewers tuned in to last year’s show.
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But with this year’s scheduled performances by Jay-Z, Kanye West and Nicki Minaj, who knows how many fans are also anticipating the celebrity showcase? Joining the group of stars, Adam Levine will perform as he walks the runway with girlfriend and Victoria Secret model Anne Vyalitsyna.
Nine million viewers may sound like an large number of people gazing at pretty women in bras and panties. But who wouldn’t want to see this spectacle?
“The show fulfills a fantasy, and not just the obvious one of gorgeous women in their underwear,” said Glamour magazine contributing style editor Tracey Lomrantz.
“Everything about it is over the top, from the performances to the sets to the shoes. It lets the audience have a kind of escapist moment to a place where everything is sparkly and idyllic,” Lomrantz added.
Glitter won’t be the only thing glistening on the New York runway.
This year, model Miranda Kerr will be wearing the traditional $2.5 million Fantasy Treasure Bra. That’s right, this Angel will be gleaming in a bra encrusted with more than 3,400 hand-placed gems.
Aside from the million-dollar rocks, beauty products from the Victoria Secret collection will be used on all 19 models. If you’re keeping track, almost 40 cans of hairspray will be used, and 21 makeup artists will use products exclusively from the VS makeup collection, according to HollywoodLife.com.
The combination of the fashion, makeup and celebrity performances will help create this year’s spectacle on a grand scale. Pretty faces on bodies with killer curves don’t hurt.
Famous VS models — or should we say Angels — like Adriana Lima, Chanel Iman and Erin Heatherton have some of the most envied bodies that both men and women admire.
“It’s interesting how many women say they use the show as a motivator to hit the gym or to finally start their diets,” Lomrantz said.
And although men often gaze at the toned bodies strutting the catwalk, some are sure not to confuse fantasy with reality.
“It is important to remember, as with all fashion shows, that what you see on the runway is not what you will see in a store — it’s a projection of desire,” Esquire magazine’s Matt Sullivan said.
These angels aren’t always naturally blessed with the bodies they have. Many of the models follow a strict diet and exercise regimen. Lima admited to The Telegraph that she has been working out with a personal trainer every day since August.
Fast-forward to nine days before the show, and the only thing she eats or drinks are protein shakes made with powdered eggs. Speed up to the final 12 hours, and Lima doesn’t consume a speck of anything — not even water.
“No liquids at all, so you dry out. Sometimes you can lose up to eight pounds just from that,” Lima told The Telegraph.
Although they put in hard work, the VS Angels end up envied. Not only do these tall beauties effortlessly balancing heavy decorated feathers in nothing but lingerie and a smile attract Nielsen ratings, but the taping of the show enjoys its fair share of media coverage.
“When there is an event this big, people pay attention,” fashion blogger Mark St. James said. “When models look this flawless and graceful, you can’t help but fall victim to their provocative lingerie, powerful femininity and, of course, sex appeal.”
Ladies, it’s almost time to whip out your little pink bag, pump up the hair and put on your best “Vicky C” garments in anticipation of this year’s show. Men, pop the popcorn, call your friends and get ready to gather around the TV to admire the models and rock out to the musical guests.
According to St. James, “Victoria Secret is the Cirque du Soleil of lingerie. The ever-increasing popularity of the Victoria Secret shows comes from the excitement of being apart of a world where Angels are stunningly beautiful, the industry’s top musical talent performs live, and power and sexual energy pour from the runway every year.”
And thanks to the Victoria Secret fashion show, we’re even closer to seeing a real-life heaven on Earth.
(Copyright 2011 by CNN and CBS San Francisco. All rights reserved.)