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An Overview of the Earliest Victoria’s Secret Fashion Shows

When considering the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, it’s best to focus on its early days. (The brand abandoned its longtime tradition three years ago, around the time former CEO Leslie Wexner’s ties to Jeffrey Epstein were made known.)

In 1995, Stephanie Seymour, Beverly Peele, and plenty more supermodels walked a makeshift, Livestream-free runway set up in the Plaza Hotel

It’s an event that couldn’t be more different from its more recent iterations, which found Kendall Jenner and her winged cohorts parading down the runway to the tune of performers like Shawn Mendes. In fact, some of the cast was even fully dressed back then. Things escalated from there; by 1997, the fashion show had transformed into a celebrity attraction, with Jon Bon Jovi among the crowd watching the runway fill with early regulars like Gisele Bündchen, Tyra Banks, and Heidi Klum. Here’s a look at the early history of the runway.


Beverly Peele at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Beverly Peele at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York, 1995.


Frederique van der Wal backstage at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Frederique van der Wal backstage at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York, 1995.


Natane Adcock at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Natane Adcock at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York, 1995.


Beverly Peele backstage at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Beverly Peele backstage at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York, 1995.


Angelika Kallio at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Angelika Kallio at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York, 1995.


Veronica Webb backstage at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Veronica Webb backstage at the first Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York, 1995.

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Rebecca Romijn at the 1996 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Rebecca Romijn at the 1996 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Tyra Banks backstage

Tyra Banks backstage at the 1996 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Stephanie Seymour at the 1996 Victoria’s Secret Valentine Fashion Show

Stephanie Seymour at the 1996 Victoria’s Secret Valentine Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Naomi Campbell backstage at the 1996 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Naomi Campbell backstage at the 1996 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Tyra Banks backstage at the 1996 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Tyra Banks backstage at the 1996 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Heidi Klum backstage at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Heidi Klum backstage at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Naomi Campbell backstage at the 1998 Victoria’s Secret Pre-Valentine’s Day Fashion ShowNaomi Campbell is backstage at the 1998 Victoria’s Secret Pre-Valentine’s Day Fashion Show, with Jeff Probst, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Claudia Schiffer backstage at the 1997 Victoria’s Secre

Claudia Schiffer backstage at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Rebecca Romijn-Stamos at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Rebecca Romijn-Stamos at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Naomi Campbell at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Naomi Campbell at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Georgianna Robertson in a Valentine’s Day ensemble

Georgianna Robertson in Valentine’s Day ensemble at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Spring Revelations Fashion Show in New York.


Naomi Campbell at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Spring Revelations

Naomi Campbell at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Spring Revelations Fashion Show in New York.


A model wearing a black scuba-diving femme fatale corset

A model wearing a black scuba-diving femme fatale corset at the 1997 Victoria’s Secret Spring Revelations Fashion Show, inside the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Naomi Campbell on the runway of the 1998 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Naomi Campbell on the runway of the 1998 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show at the Plaza Hotel in New York.


Kirsty Hume wearing a silk handkerchief and a satin thong

Kirsty Hume wearing a silk handkerchief and a satin thong at the 1999 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in New York.

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Heidi Klum, who wore that year’s $10 million “millenium bra,”

Heidi Klum, who wore that year’s $10 million “millenium bra,” and Karen Mulder backstage at the 1999 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show.


Laetitia Casta at the 1999 Victoria Secret’s Fashion Show

Laetitia Casta at the 1999 Victoria Secret’s Fashion Show in New York.


Tyra Banks at the 1999 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Tyra Banks at the 1999 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in New York.


Stephanie Seymour at the 1999 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in New York.

Stephanie Seymour at the 1999 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in New York.


Gisele Bündchen at the 1999 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Gisele Bündchen at the 1999 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in New York.


Heidi Klum in front of a Concorde jet

Heidi Klum in front of a Concorde jet after arriving for the 2000 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show and charity gala for amfAR during the Cannes Film Festival.


Adriana Lima at the 2000 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Adriana Lima at the 2000 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show and amfAR charity gala during the Cannes Film Festival.


Gisele Bündchen at the 2000 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Gisele Bündchen at the 2000 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show and amfAR charity gala during the Cannes Film Festival.


Alessandra Ambrosio backstage at the 2001 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Alessandra Ambrosio was backstage at the 2001 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show at Bryant Park in New York.


Karen Elson backstage at the 2001 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Karen Elson backstage at the 2001 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show fittings in New York.


Gisele Bündchen backstage at the 2002 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Gisele Bündchen backstage at the 2002 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show at the Armory in New York.


Gisele Bünchen and company at the 2002 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Gisele Bünchen and company at the 2002 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show at the Lexington Avenue Armory in New York City.


Gisele Bündchen backstage at the 2003 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Gisele Bündchen backstage at the 2003 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show at the Lexington Avenue Armory in New York City.

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