DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES star EVA LONGORIA still can't believe she found the courage to wear a barely-there tangerine bikini to introduce Mariah Carey at Sunday's (28AUG05) MTV Video Music Awards.

The actress had a nervous episode backstage just before she stepped out to thrill at Miami, Florida's American Airlines Arena in her sexy little outfit.

She recalls, "My stylist had to literally push me out. I did not want to do it and all my girlfriends are here and they were like, 'Do it, do it, do it.'

"It (the outfit) was classy and beautiful and looks almost like a dress - if you just put the bottom on... I was visually vulnerable."

Longoria admits her fetching outfit also had MTV producers concerned - because they wanted to know why she requested a robe to wander around backstage.

She says, "They wanted to know, 'What is she wearing? Why does she need a robe?... This is live TV. We need to know these things.'"