Last week, the world was abuzz with news that Lily AldridgeNina Agdal and Chrissy Teigen had each snagged the title of this year’s cover girl for the iconic Sports Illustrated 50th anniversary swimsuit edition. For the issue’s major milestone, the magazine chose to feature three women on the cover instead of just one supermodel—and now we have a behind-the-scenes look at how the stunning and sexy photos came to be.

Shot in the Cook Islands, the cover features the gorgeous trio knee-deep in crystal blue waters with their arms around each other, clad in itsy bitsy neon bikini bottoms. “It’s all about the white sand and blue water. So obviously you’re working with these two beautiful elements,” Teigen says of the shoot. “It’s really nice to have really poppy suits and the neons with the background of this glorious, beautiful color and this beautiful white sand, which makes it just spectacular.”

Each of the girls were taken with the brightly colored swimwear chosen for the cover. “It creates something special and something vibrant. It just stands out,” Agdal states of the neon hues. The vibrant bikinis paired with the near perfect backdrop makes this cover one you can’t miss. “There’s nothing sexier than a neon bikini and super tan skin and super blue water, and you just kind of look around like ‘I can’t believe I’m here, I can’t believe I’m shooting Sports Illustrated in paradise,'” Aldridge says.

The 50th Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition goes live across the web, mobile, tablet and newsstands today.

Want more swimsuits? See the most iconic suits modeled by Brigitte Bardot, Angelina Jolie, and more!

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