That Time Fashion’s Favorite Bikini Model Wound Up Nude on the Runway

A chat with Thais O Martins.

Thais O Martins is always tan. But when you model swimwear year-round—showing off sexy brands like the Brazil-based Lenny Niemeyer as well as Beach Bunny and LuliFama—it’s kind of a prerequisite for the job.  Starting Sunday, she’ll be showing off her bronzed, leggy body on runways in Miami for Swim Week. Undoubtedly one of the most booked models at last year’s event, the LA-based bombshell chatted with Maxim about what she likes in a guy, her favorite place to live, and nipples.

So how did you get into modeling?

I was always super tall and supper skinny—you know, I got the pretty classic “You should be a model” thing because I was way too tall to do anything else. So I started modeling in Rio and then I was traveling a lot to Miami so I started modeling there too. Then I got signed in New York as well, so I moved there and lived for four years.

 Which city do you like the most?

New York, for sure. I really love the energy and the people. Everyone is from all over there world. I also have so many friends there and have always been obsessed with the place.

A photo posted by Thais M. O Martins (@thaismom) on

Feb 25, 2015 at 7:42pm PST

What about in terms of guys?

Not Brazilians! They are the worst. They are definitely not on my list of favorite guys. In New York it’s really cool because there’s an international mix; you have a little bit of everything. I really like that. I’m not really into guys from LA either, that’s not really my style

What’s the craziest shoot you’ve done?

Last year, I did this shoot under water in LA. We were in this 100-foot-deep pool and so we had to train to hold our breath for as long as we could to stay under.  It was very cool. To this day I use the techniques to swim longer.

A photo posted by Thais M. O Martins (@thaismom) on

Jul 6, 2015 at 11:45am PDT

So, let’s talk about last year’s Minimale Animale runway show!

Oh, yeah! I had on this swimsuit that was totally see-through. My nipples and my butt were showing. The thing is, I didn’t know, because when you have the bikini in your hand it’s not sheer. But when the lights came on while I was on the runway and I saw the pictures, it was pretty clear I was naked. Full on nipples showing.

Sounds uncomfortable… 

Not uncomfortable, I was fine. I just didn’t know I was going to be naked up there. But you’d be surprised about how many of my Brazilian friends give me shit and stuff because of a pose. Brazil is really Catholic. People think in Brazil everyone is always naked, but we don’t do topless. I always joke that in Brazil my nipples never saw the sun.

A photo posted by Thais M. O Martins (@thaismom) on

Feb 26, 2015 at 8:12am PST

Does style matter in terms of what draws you to a guy?

Of course! It makes the guy more attractive if he knows how to dress up and put things together. It makes him look good. If I had to choose, I’m always going to go for a guy who looks nice and put together over someone who looks messy…unless it’s like Ryan Gosling or something.

Then again, some overdo it, right?

It can almost never be too much, but if he’s into fashion more than I am, that’s too much. If he wants to window shop more than I do, that’s a problem. If he pays more than I do for stuff, that would be an issue.

A photo posted by Thais M. O Martins (@thaismom) on

Jun 10, 2015 at 2:46pm PDT

What about for swimming? What sort of suit catches your eye?

I’ve never been a fan of those small Speedos, even on the hottest body. Definitely go for the short shorts, that’s my favorite.

What’s your position on guys flirting on social media?

No! Guys should never approach girls on the Internet. You have no idea how many guys send us direct messages and stuff. Me and my girlfriends never even look at the messages. If I don’t know you in real life I don’t feel comfortable getting to know you on Instagram.

A photo posted by Thais M. O Martins (@thaismom) on

Mar 31, 2015 at 12:52pm PDT

So what is the best way to get your attention?

Personality! A guy that’s funny and has an outgoing personality. Confidence for sure!

Cool, so once a guy has your attention, what’s an ideal date?

Nothing specific. But something unique would be nice. I mean a dinner and movie is great, but take me somewhere different. Maybe like a Jet Ski date or something out of the ordinary.

When do you feel  sexiest?

For sure in tropical weather, you know, when the weather is hot, when your skin is glowing from the humidity and you just have a few clothes on. Of course, I don’t mean being too revealing. But showing a little skin when you’re tan and glowing.