For models, the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show is the pinnacle of pinnacles — the fashion world’s Super Bowl, Olympics, Oscars, and Emmys all rolled into one.
And scoring a place on that coveted runaway as a model — newcomer or veteran — is a feat to be respected. Not all who try out for the position are given a place on the catwalk — after all, only around 50 women are selected from a pool of hundreds.
But getting knocked down once or twice shouldn’t deter models from trying again. In fact, several models have been rejected at one point or another, before going on to walk in later shows, and even — in some cases — become Angels.
Here, our favorite VSFS comeback stories.
Bella told Paper Magazine she didn’t make the cut in 2015. On her 2016 casting, she said: “I was really surprised, but definitely excited. I tried last year [to be cast in] the show [but] I think everything happens for a reason.”
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Gigi failed to get the job in 2014. She told Live With Kelly and Michael: “I was working out every day, and I felt my body was really ready. I was healthy, athletic and ready for the show but I think that the only thing that got in my way was genuinely how nervous I was. I can’t tell you how scary it is walking into that room, it is so scary.”
Although she’s now an Angel, Sampaio didn’t book the gig straight away. She told Vogue: “The first year I didn’t get picked it was okay. The second time I didn’t make it, it was like a knife. It is something you work all year for and when you don’t make you it you really start doubting yourself. The third time I thought ‘I’m not giving them any excuse not to pick me’. This is a very special booking, you have to earn your way into it.”
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Aussie model Bridget Malcolm auditioned twice before being cast on her third try, she told the Daily Mail: “This was the third year I cast for the show… The first two years I was turned away. The first year was because I wasn’t in good enough shape and the second year I wasn’t confident enough to pull it off.”
In a video for the show, Tookes explained: “The first time I auditioned, I didn’t end up making the show. I didn’t take it personally because I knew I just needed to grow up a bit more. I was 18.”
On her failed auditions, Taylor told Vogue Australia: “I think it means more when you are rejected and then you do get it. And so many girls go year after year and they don’t get it and put so much work into it for nothing. I mean it’s quite shattering and I’ve spoken to girls that are devastated, just crying. There’s so much that goes into getting your body ready and getting mentally ready for that confidence for 30 seconds while you’re at the casting so it’s quite stressful.”
From: Harper’s BAZAAR US