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Sara Sampaio’s Favorite Beauty Products — and Why She Swims With Sharks

If you think you’ve seen Sara Sampaio before, it’s because you 100 percent have. The Portuguese model walks for the likes of Balmain, Moschino, and Tommy Hilfiger during fashion week, and last December, she strapped on her Angel wings for the third Victoria’s Secret show of her career. But Sampaio is a bona fide badass off the runways, too: She has a brown belt in karate, boxes until her wrists hurt, and loves red lipstick. A girl after our own heart.

On what’s on her mind when walking the Victoria’s Secret runway: “You get to the runway and you do nothing that you practiced at home. I remember one time I was planning a pose, and then I got offstage and was like, ‘I don’t even remember what I did!'”

On her workout routine: “I haven’t done karate lately. I’ve been doing a lot of weight training and high-intensity interval running. I used to box a lot, but I punch the bag so hard that my wrists will hurt the next week. But when I feel really stressed, I just need it. It’s such a great workout.”

Can’t get enough VS? Get all the details on this year’s show:

On her biggest beauty dream: “I love red lipstick, so I would love to create the perfect shade. Not too orange, not too blue, has to be perfect.”

On finding her own voice: “When I first start modeling, I had agencies saying, ‘Don’t go in the sun. We don’t want you to look tan.’ They wanted me to look as pale as possible, which I don’t like. I’m not a pale girl. I’m darker. I’m tanned. As time goes by, you get to a point in your career where you stop listening to how other people think you should look. You can actually take stands on the way you want to look. And you know? My skin is dark, tan, olive. And I really like that.”

On getting her glowing skin: “It’s really hard to find foundations [for my skin tone]. They’re either too yellow, or they’re too orange, or they’re too white. It really helps [to] get two — a darker foundation and a lighter foundation — and mix them. Lately I’ve been using Nars Tinted Moisturizer in 1 and 1.5. I always mix both of them. The colors are actually really similar to my skin tone. I like how they do some coverage but not too much.”

On her makeup obsession: “Definitely highlighter. It just transforms your face, brightens it, and makes you look fresh. Even if I don’t have time to do my hair and makeup, I’ll just conceal little spots and dab a little highlighter on my Cupid’s bow, the apples of my cheeks, my inner eyes, a little on my nose.”

On what’s always in her purse: “I always have lip balm with me. Lately I’ve been using one from Aquaphor. It’s so rich, it’s like a little treatment.”

On why she swims with sharks: “I’m obsessed with sharks. I mean, they do scare me, but I just love to learn about them. I think they’re such fascinating creatures. I’ve gone swimming with sharks three times. Twice in South Africa in a cage with great whites, and again with reef sharks in Bora-Bora. It was incredible.”

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