Irina Shayk hit the big leagues back in 2007 when she was tapped to be the new face of the Italian lingerie brand Intimissimi. “I remember I was in Moscow working for this big shopping mall. I was doing a modeling job there before I moved to Paris and they came to find a new face,” Shayk told The Daily in Verona during Intimissimi On Ice, the lingerie brand’s annual ice and lingerie show in Verona, Italy. “They were like, We want her. I thought, I am not the one! I was very insecure and had never done a lingerie campaign. I was very inexperienced to shoot lingerie and be naked. I remember my first day on set and I was so scared. They basically taught me how to be self-confident. You know it doesn’t matter if you are big or small or if you are wearing a size zero or size 16. We all are not 100 percent confident. I think confidence comes with age and experience. So I definitely got myself confidence through this company. Here we are 10 years later and I am still here.” [Laughs] That same year she went on to star in the Sports Illustrated Swimwear issue. She would eventually sign with IMG in 2009 and would walk the runways for big fashion brands like Miu Miu, Bottega Veneta, Versace, Marc Jacobs, and Givenchy and star in campaigns for Givenchy, Roberto Cavalli, Alberta Ferretti, and more. Of course, the biggest news lately is her relationship with Bradley Cooper and while she was reluctant to discuss her personal life, she did say that becoming a mother to her daughter with Cooper in March had been wonderful. “I really believe every woman was born to be a mother one day,” said Shayk.
This was Shayk’s fourth time at Intimissmi On Ice–she is currently their brand ambassador—and she said by far Andrea Bocelli has been one of her favorite performances at the annual show and it was easy to see why when his iconic voice boomed throughout the arena. Bocelli also performed last year, but the brand has also attracted top mainstream talent like Pharrell Williams and Ellie Golding. The mega European lingerie brand is part of the Calzedonia group owned by Italian entrepreneur Sandro Veronesi, who is worth a reported $2.2 billion according to Forbes in 2017. To say that Intimissimi On Ice, which has been held each year for the last seven years in Verona’s Roman colosseum Arena di Verona, could rival any Victoria’s Secret show might be an understatement. The immensity of the operatic performances combined with top talent from the world’s best Olympic figure skaters in such a setting cannot be underestimated. One fellow guest had described an encounter pre-show in a remote region at the top of the mountainous landscape of the Dolomites, where a local ran their fingers up their arm to indicate chills when she tried to express the grandiosity of the spectacle. The event is open to the public through ticket sales and this year top Olympic talent like Shizuka Arakawa, Stéphane Lambiel, Evgeni Plushenko, Meagan Duhamel, Eric Radford, Meryl Davis, and Charlie White performed in costumes designed by Chiara Ferragni.
Along with a slew of “it” girls and bold-faced names from around the world, actress Katie Holmes and tennis legend Ana Ivanovic also showed up to the celebration and the after-party nearby was a posh who’s who of local Veronese and Italian elite. The brand has big plans for expansion in the U.S. and will unveil its first-ever flagship stateside in New York City on October 18th in a private event hosted by Dakota Johnson, Irina Shayk, Ana Ivanovic, Ella Mills, and Sarah Jessica Parker. In a time in which competitor brands like Victoria’s Secret are skating on thin ice, Intimissimi could be positioned for a very big breakthrough in the U.S. market.