What Victoria's Secret Fashion Show Models Tell Themselves to Feel Confident Before Their Runway Walks

The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is basically the Super Bowl for models. If you're wondering what the key to their confidence is, the ladies told us exactly what they whisper to themselves before they walk the runway.

Victoria's Secret
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show (opens in new tab) is basically the Super Bowl for models. And this year, it was better than ever with performances from The Chainsmokers and Adriana Lima's last VS walk ever. (The model is retiring after 20 years with the brand, and had an emotional farewell (opens in new tab) on the runway.)

Before all the madness, we headed backstage to chat with the models while they were eating, getting their hair and makeup done, and goofing around with one another. (They all wore their trademark pink VS robes (opens in new tab), of course.) If you're wondering what the key to their confidence is, the ladies told us exactly what they whisper to themselves before they walk the runway. They also divulged the one song they can't stop listening to, because hey, that helps with feeling good and powerful too, right? (You can watch the show December 2 on ABC.)

Bella Hadid

Bella Hadid

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: Ariana Grande is my life right now. I love "Thank U, Next." I also love Halsey’s new song "Without Me." She’s performing today and I get to walk to it.

Words of confidence: I think we all have to tell ourselves that we’re supposed to be here because we worked so hard to get here. No one can take this away from us. That’s the mindset we have to have because there’s a lot of different energies going on, so you have to keep your center. I usually just go to the girl in front of or behind me and tell them they will do great, hoping everyone around me is happy.

Sara Sampaio 

Sara Sampaio

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: I’ve been obsessed for a few months already with Sean Mendes’ "There’s Nothing Holdin' Me Back."

Words of confidence: Just to breathe. Don’t forget to breathe and to enjoy the moment. The hard work is already done, this is the part where you have fun.

Winnie Harlow 

Winnie Harlow

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: "Thank U Next" by Ariana Grande.

Words of confidence: I just pray that God blesses my feet.

Lameka Fox

Lameka Fox

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: "Thank U Next" by Ariana Grande. It’s such a powerful song and I love the message behind it because at the end of the day, self-love is important and the song's catchy.

Words of confidence: There’s a lot of thoughts going on right before, but ultimately I say thank you and embrace the moment.

Estelle Chen

Estelle Chen

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: The one playing backstage right now.

Words of confidence: I can do it.

Grace Elizabeth

Grace Elizabeth

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: Dancing in the Moonlight by Toploader.

Words of confidence: You’re smart, you’re kind, and you deserve this.

Jourdana Phillips 

Jourdana Phillips

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: "Money" by Cardi B.

Words of confidence: I say to myself you belong here. It’s hard because there are so many amazing, powerful women who have graced the Victoria's Secret stage, so you get a little insecure sometimes. It’s important to remind yourself that you belong here and there’s a reason you’re here, so rock it.

Jasmine Tookes

Jasmine Tookes

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: "Lost in Japan" by Shawn Mendes.

Words of confidence: I always tell myself to own it and smile.

Taylor Hill 

Taylor Hill

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: My favorite song right now is "Youngblood" by 5 Seconds Of Summer.

Words of confidence: Before I head out I like to tell myself, you’ve worked really hard and you can do this.

Lais Ribeiro

Lais Ribeiro

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: It’s an African song, it’s called "Pana."

Words of confidence: You’ve got this, Lais.

Adriana Lima

Adriana Lima

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: "Taki Taki" by DJ Snake.

Words of confidence: Just be yourself and have a good time. Show your personality on stage. Tonight, I will be looking out for my children because they’ll be in the audience watching. I want to make them proud.

Melie Tiacoh

Melie Tiacoh

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: I've been singing since I was very young, so music is my obsession. The one song I have stuck in my head lately is "Unbreak My Heart." It’s not new, but because I love to practice singing, I’m working on it now.

Words of confidence: Today is the day. Today is the day, really enjoy it! That’s all I have to keep telling myself, so that I can have fun and live in the moment. I have to pinch myself to remind me that today is the day I’ve always been wanting, so I’m very happy to be here.

Lorena Rae 

Lorena Rae

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: I’m always obsessed with Ed Sheeran. 

Words of confidence: Don’t trip.

Frida Assen 

Frida Assen

(Image credit: Getty Images, Sansho Scott/BFA/REX/Shutterstock)

Song: "Thank U Next" by Ariana Grande and "Without me" by Halsey. 

Words of confidence: I feel like I don’t think that much before I go out there. I just try to be in the moment and take it all in.

Barbara Palvin 

Barbara Palvin

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: I don’t have an iPad and I don’t have music on my phone, so anything that my boyfriend plays I’m cool with. 

Words of confidence: I’m here because they want me to be here. They chose me and I did everything that I could. I gave everything I had.

Myrthe Bolt

Myrthe Bolt

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Song: Anything from Ed Sheeran.

Words of confidence: You can do this. I haven’t experienced it yet, so I feel like just go for it. Enjoy it as much as possible.

Marina Liao
Fashion Editor

Marina Liao is the former fashion news editor at MarieClaire.com, where she covered celebrity style (from Meghan Markle to Katie Holmes), fashion trends, and shopping advice, plus conducted original interviews with industry insiders. She's also had many opportunities to write content in other areas such as beauty, food, tech, and even home. Her previous fashion stints include POPSUGAR and Cosmopolitan.