Aside from the illustrative fact that Brazil has yielded a sizeable percentage of the supermodel community, there’s the obvious aspect of the country’s environs: How many superfoods and “miracle” products have been sourced from the Amazon? Blame it on açai, but it’s practically cliché at this point. (Almost as cliché as claiming that all Brazilians are destined for model superstardom.)
Either way, it’s undeniable that the word beauty is practically synonymous with Brazil. And there are numbers to back that up: Forbes reported in 2014 that Brazil was the fastest-growing beauty industry worldwide. Embracing the incredible plant ingredients the region has to offer, Brazilian women strike a balance between tropical glamour and a more natural sensibility—and their go-to products reflect that. So whether the Olympics have sparked your interest or you’re perennially fascinated by the country’s best-kept secrets (both, in our case), we thought it only fitting to count down the best Brazilian (and Brazilian-inspired) products to help you find your inner Gisele.
Linha Seve Natura – Oleo Corporal Amendoas Doces Intensa 200 Ml
Natura is Brazil’s resident cosmetics giant—far and away the biggest beauty company on the local market. Fans particularly love the brand’s bath and body products, like this sweet almond bath oil.
Sol-de-janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum Cream (£18.00)
If you’ve seen this cellulite-fighting cream on Byrdie a lot lately, it’s only because it really is that good. USA-based company Sol de Janeiro harnesses the power of Brazilian plant ingredients for formulas that truly deliver, and this is its best seller. Come for the intoxicating scent, stay for a dimple-free bum.
Best Bronze ($18.00)
True Brazilians know that in their tropical clime, SPF is non-negotiable—so to get their goddess-like bronze, they rely on this particular formula, which happens to be the top-selling self-tanner in the country.
Pure Brazilian Raw Coconut Water (SOLD OUT)
If we had a nickel for every time a Brazilian Victoria’s Secret Angel told us that she washes her hair and skin with coconut water… well, we’d buy more coconut water, because it’s clearly doing something.
Sol Janeiro Brazilian Golden Body Veil by Sol De Janeiro (SOLD OUT)
We also have to vouch for this genius, albeit slightly lesser-known product from the brand behind that cult-beloved Bum Bum Cream. It’s basically bleach-meets-depilatory, so when you use the cream combo on, say, your arm hair, you’re left with an impossibly flattering layer of glimmering peach fuzz. Trust us—you’ll want to try this.
We’ve heard enough good things about this revitalizing body lotion to be officially intrigued—it gets top reviews for its non-sticky texture and deeply moisturizing capabilities.
Haircare by Rahua Conditioner 275ml (£34.00)
We have to show some love to another American product sourced from Brazilian ingredients, Rahua, our go-to all-natural hair brand. Just one whiff of the delicious palo santo scent might convince you enough to douse your strands, but you’ll keep it around for the addictively glossy finish it leaves behind.
Brazilian women: bronzed skin, beachy hair, and a countrywide gene pool that must be filled with unicorn tears. Truly, I’ve never once met or seen a woman from Brazil who didn’t instantly strike me with her beauty. So what’s the secret? Aside from amazing genetics, Brazilian women follow beauty practices that are inspired by their tropical surroundings—simple, rooted in nature, and highly effective. In an effort to get as close as we can to the otherworldliness of Brazilian women, we’ve rounded up some of their best beauty secrets.
Cool as a Cucumber
Peter Thomas Roth Cucumber Gel Mask (£6.72)
Brazilian model Lais Ribeiro tells PopSugar that her favorite hometown buy is one that de-puffs and hides dark circles: “You know the mask that you put on when you go to bed or when you’re sleeping? The cucumber mask? That’s the one I use,” she explains.
Get Earthy. Another genius hack for nixing dark circles? Potato slices—really. Brazilian model Victoria Brito says, “To get rid of dark circles, take a potato, cut it into slices like a pepperoni, and put one slice over each eye for about 15 to 20 minutes once a week. I swear, after doing it about five times, you’ll start to see a drastic reduction of dark circles. The potato literally starts to get dark and shrivel up while you use it—it’s crazy!”
Massage It Out. Blogger Victoria Ceridono of Dia de Beauté says massages are big in Brazil. But not just any massage—one that includes lymphatic drainage. Ceridono tells The Cut, “It’s a way to avoid water retention. You can have the light version, which is a sculpting massage. Many Brazilians have this type of massage weekly as part of their beauty routine. Normally, masseuses go to their house or they go to a clinic, but it’s not a relaxing spa thing; it’s a beauty treatment. The sculpting massage hurts more.
It kind of makes your arms a bit thinner. Your thighs can get a bit thinner. It can make your waist more defined.” A massage that also tones your body? Yes, please.
Soak Up Some Coconut
Jax Coco Coconut Water (£21.00)
Everyone’s nuts for coconut oil, but what about its liquid counterpart: coconut water? Adriana Lima swears by the sweet drink, but instead of ingesting it, she soaks cotton pads in ice-cold coconut water and presses it into her skin. She gets the good stuff back home in Brazil, but if she’s a far cry from home, she’ll venture over to the Chinatown markets.
Skip the Brush
Garnier Grow Strong Conditoner (SOLD OUT)
Aside from her enviable gams and perfect complexion, Gisele Bündchen’s expertly coiffed hair is easily one of her most notable features. Her trick for getting it to look so perfect every single time? Not brushing it. “After I apply conditioner, I pass my fingers through my hair and let it dry naturally,” she says. “Every once in a while, I comb my hair in the shower, but I don’t comb or brush after that,” she explains.
SkinCeuticals CE Ferulic (£140.00)
Ilana Kugel, creative director at Koral Activewear, swears by this serum for a more youthful complexion. “I use CE Ferulic pure vitamin C serum on my face each day for healthy skin. I swear by it because it tightens my skin while keeping it bright.”
Smooth it out
Sol-de-janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum Cream (£18.00)
Camila Pierotti from Sol de Janeiro says Brazilian women always prioritize their bodycare: “Caring for the body is as important as caring for the face. [Brazilian women] moisturize with only the best ingredients and show off their touch-me skin.” She suggests Brazilian Bum Bum cream (pronounced “boom-boom”), a rich lotion fortified with guaraná, an Amazonian plant “whose fruit contains one of the most potent forms of caffeine on the planet.” It smooths and tightens the skin to take care of problem areas, namely on and underneath the “bum bum.”
Tom Ford Black Orchid (£59.00)
“To be cheirosa [pleasant-smelling], take lots of showers and always wear a fragrance,” says Pierotti.
Put Your Best Feet Forward
Sol de Janeiro Samba Foot Fetish CReam (£25.00)
Says Pierotti, “Brazilian women always keep feet soft and smooth by exfoliating and moisturizing, wearing cute shoes, and getting foot massages from someone special as often as possible.”
Stay Long and Strong
Davines Minu Hair Mask (23.00)
One of the things we notice most about a Brazilian woman’s aesthetic is her enviable flowing locks. Says Pierotti, “Keep hair long, silky, and shiny: Deep hair conditioning masks and getting a blow dry are part of a Brazilian woman’s weekly regimen.”
Requirements of being a model: height, genetically gifted features, and natural poise. Requirements of being a Brazilian model: height, genetically gifted features, natural poise, and an innate sultriness that makes women everywhere buy lingerie (and makeup, skincare, and, hell, even vodka-infused coconut water) in the hopes of bottling said sultriness. When it comes to the Alessandras and Adrianas of the world, all we can do is stand back and admire the glory that is their beauty: sun-kissed skin, hair that seems to fall into naturally windswept waves, and eyes that seduce with a simple glance
Though we realize our own legs will never be as long and our skin as poreless and golden, we can still hope to channel our inner Brazilian bombshell via their beauty routines. Ahead, you’ll find six beauty tips from some of Brazil’s most envy-inducing models—Alessandra and Adriana included, obviously. Keep scrolling to see them all!
Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat (£17.00)
Ambrosio gave us a peek inside the depths of her makeup bag—and the contents did not disappoint. Our favorite tip the Brazilian supermodel shared? For her signature nude lip, she says she’ll trace her lips with a nude liner (try Charlotte Tilbury’s Lip Cheat, $22, in Pillowtalk), and then just apply a lip balm on top.
The secret to Gisele Bündchen’s flowing mane? Saying bye to your hairbrush. “After I apply conditioner, I pass my fingers through my hair and let it dry naturally,” she says. “Every once in awhile, I comb my hair in the shower, but I don’t comb or brush after that.” Another surprising beauty secret: Bündchen says she shares lotion, shampoo, conditioner, and toothpaste with her quarterback husband, Tom Brady. Stars—they’re just like us.
Lima—queen of bedroom eyes—recently spilled her beauty routine, and we zeroed in on one genius tip in particular: The Victoria’s Secret Angel says that after a tough day, she recommends soaking your skin with cotton pads steeped in ice-cold coconut water. “I prefer natural coconut water,” she says. “Every time I go to Brazil, I get a chance to try it.” BRB—buying all the coconut water in the world.
klorane soothing makeup remover wipes (SOLD OUT)
Ribeiro’s skin always has an otherworldly glow—and she chalks it all up to a simple piece of advice she received early on in her career. “I carry Klorane Makeup Remover Wipes ($13) with me at all times,” she tells Harper’s Bazaar. “[I take my] makeup off as soon as the shoot is finished.”
Olay Regenerist Luminous Facial Oil (£15.27)
It’s hard not to stare at Brazilian bombshell Izabel Goulart—partly because of her perfect bone structure and partly because of her ethereal skin. She told Vogue that the secret to keeping her skin hydrated, bright, and alive after a 12-hour flight is simple: face oil. “Any brand,” she says. “I just go for one that’s more heavy than what I usually use, and I really put a lot on.”
With her strawberry-blond hair, porcelain skin, and freckles, Dicker might not look like your typical Brazilian model—but her coquettish gaze suggests otherwise. The Brazil native says she drinks a green juice every day, made with cucumber, spinach, lemon, apple, and ginger to keep her skin glowing, and she swears by Brazilian haircare line Dios.