Before the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show became a bastion of glossy waves, A-list musical acts, and light-up lingerie, it was just that: a fashion show. At its inception, the event was less about sparkly eyeshadow or self-tanner. Models did their own makeup backstage, and — believe it or not — the fabled angel wings did not yet exist.
Supermodels like Naomi Campbell, Helena Christensen, and Claudia Schiffer walked the runway in simple underthings and heels — no props, no confetti, and no body bronzer. Some of them even wore bobs and ponytails instead of the signature waves that came to define the brand. Over time, the show evolved to represent a specific, narrow beauty ideal — one that is actually, thankfully, beginning to shift this year.
We decided to take a look back at the biggest beauty moments of the show over the past few decades to see just how much it's changed. From Tyra Banks to Maria Borges, each model has played a part in making every event more memorable than the last. Click through the slides ahead, then set your DVR for December 5 to see how this year's show stacks up.