The world of modeling is restless. There’s always something new going on – new faces appearing, new trends becoming popular – so you can never really keep track of everything that’s happening. However, if you go through the history of modeling, there are some names that you’d have to be an alien not to recognise.
Although all models have a lot in common – beauty, popularity, and a turbulent dating history – each of them has a unique story, and they all took different paths to get where they are today and achieve their supermodel status.
10. Alessandra Ambrosio
We have no one to blame for Alessandra Ambrosio’s career but the wave of Brazilian models that took over the world –that and the Elite Model Look contest.
Victoria’s Secret, the lingerie giant, worked with Alessandra for over ten years, but that’s not the only major brand that signed her – she was the global ambassador for huge names such as Moschino, Dolce and Gabbana, Dior, Armani, Oscar de la Renta, and practically every other brand worth mentioning.
Today, Alessandra is a loving mother and an ambassador for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, and she constantly appears on various charity events.
9. Gisele Bundchen
Like Alessandra, this supermodel also became popular during that notorious wave of Brazilian models in the late 90s. Gisele has been the highest-paid model since 2004, and she’s also the 16th richest women in the entire entertainment industry. She’s slowly, but steadily becoming the first supermodel billionaire.
Gisele has a twin sister, but that’s not all the siblings she has – she has four others as well! Her mother insisted that both Gisele and her twin sister joined a modeling course. She was then discovered at the age of 14 while eating a Big Mac, right after which she was selected to compete in the Elite Look of the Year. In 1996 she moved to New York, and the rest is history.
Gisele is a mother of two, Vivien and Benjamin, and she’s very grateful for experiencing the miracle of birth and all the joys of motherhood.
8. Karolina Kurkova
This gorgeous blond appeared on the cover of Vogue at the very young age of seventeen. The very next year, she won the Model of the Year Vogue Award. She was also selected to be a part of Victoria’s Secret fashion show special. Other than that, she’s worked for major brands like Yves Saint Laurent, Valentino, Louis Vuitton, Hugo Boss, Versace, H&M, etc.
During the Victoria’s Secret fashion show in 2002, she wore a $10 million worth bra designed by Hearts on Fire, and beside Heidi Klum, she was the only model to wear the fantasy bra twice. Karolina was featured on almost twenty Vogue covers worldwide.
Although Karolina had some weight issues recently, she’s still one of the world’s highest paid top models. In 2008, she was voted the world’s sexiest woman, beating both Angelina Jolie and the rest of the Victoria’s Secret Models.
7. Heidi Klum
Did you know that Heidi actually wanted to be a designer? However, her career took a quick turn when she won a contest in her native Germany at the age of eighteen and moved to New York shortly after. Naturally, her career skyrocketed after she joined Victoria’s Secret Angels.
But Heidi is a lot more than just a supermodel – she also works as a television host, and she’s an accomplished businesswoman and actress. However, she had the most success with her own reality television series called Project Runway that received several Emmy Award Nominations.
Her personal life isn’t any less interesting. “I’ve been heartbroken. I’ve broken hearts. That’s part of life, and it’s part of figuring out who you are so you can find the right partner”, says Heidi. She’s also a proud mother of four – and yes, she managed to remain absolutely gorgeous after that many pregnancies. Actually, she hit the runway only two months after her first birth.
6. Adriana Lima
Adriana had never thought about becoming a model, but after some convincing she agreed to sign up for a contest. She was soon the winner of Ford’s Supermodel of Brazil. Shortly after she came second on Ford’s Supermodel of the World and her portfolio filled up very quickly.
We all know her as one of Victoria Angels. Other than being a crucial part of all the shows, she’s also appeared on several different commercials like Angel in Venice. She also wore the fantasy bra created by Martin Katz, an American jewelry designer, which contained over 3, 575 black diamonds and was worth over $5 million.
At the age of 25, she stated that she was a virgin because her strong Catholic beliefs prohibited sex before marriage, and that men who don’t understand and respect her wishes, don’t respect her.
5. Tyra Banks
After being a classic mean girl, this gorgeous confident woman had a really bad phase in high school. As her height increased in a very short period of time, her classmates were ruthless when it came to coming up with hurtful nicknames. Tyra says that this was a really bad period of her life, but it also helped her understand what it is like to be on the other side of trash-talk and gossip.
Tyra’s career started with Elite Model Management. By then she already had a few unsuccessful attempts to join other agencies – she was usually rejected because of the color of her skin. However, shortly after going to Paris, she booked twenty-five shows, which was a really amazing number for someone who had just started.
After she began gaining weight, the runway wasn’t a place for her anymore, so she moved to swimwear and lingerie modeling. Major cover appearances for magazines like GQ and Sports Illustrated helped her climb to the top of the supermodel world.
The Tyra Show was a great success, as well. However, her reality show reached its maximum popularity after she was critiqued for her weight. This confident supermodel responded with “Kiss my fat ass!” and decided to spend the rest of her career promoting a healthier body image for women in the entertainment and fashion industry.
4. Naomi Campbell
Naomi is mostly known for her career in modeling, but that’s far from everything that she’s done.
She became famous when she first appeared on the covers of the British and French Vogue, but the thing that skyrocketed her career was the cover of Time, where she appeared as the first African-American supermodel ever.
She released her debut album called Baby Woman, and although the critics weren’t impressed, it sold over one million copies. Naomi appeared in several films and music videos, she did controversial modeling and she even managed to write a book during all of this.
Her legal issues have made her even more famous worldwide, and she’s known to have a bad temper. Naomi was charged for three assaults – two police officers, one maid and an employee, but fortunately she managed to settle and work everything out with some community work. Fame isn’t that easy to handle, is it?
3. Kate Moss
At the age of fourteen, Kate was discovered at JFK airport and she made a quite a stir in the modeling industry. Because of her childlike body, her modeling was both widely praised and strongly criticized. But, that didn’t stop her from working for brands like Calvin Klein, Christian Dior and Chanel.
Kate is also known to be a party girl, and she kept up her adventurous lifestyle after her career took off. However, her bad habits caused many problems with the press and the law. No serious charges have ever been filed against her, and she manages to keep her problems under control with some help from rehab clinics.
2. Claudia Schiffer
From a deeply insecure and shy girl, Claudia morphed into a world-famous star thanks to a scout that convinced her to go to Paris and simply give it a go. Unsatisfied with her height and overall appearance, she went to try it out and was completely sure that they would send her back after they saw her photos.
Obviously, that didn’t happen. Claudia appeared on more than five thousand different covers of prestigious magazines like Vogue, Rolling Stone, and Cosmo. With full support of her loving family, she managed to reach the top.
1. Cindy Crawford
There used to be a time when Cindy ruled the supermodel world by promoting an athletic figure, approachable beauty and humility. Thanks to the fact that she has been open to the press about her childhood and that she’s had impressive academic achievements, she is well-loved all around the world.
She was one of the first models that became famous in this industry – before her, only nameless girls appeared in the magazines, calendars and on fashion runways. The Elite Modeling Agency was responsible for the success of this iconic supermodel, as well, but that was just a start for her. Cindy continuously appeared on TV shows as a host and a guest, and discussed various subjects including sex, health and body image.
Now you see that there really is no pattern here. Each one of these beautiful women built their own destinies in quite unique ways. However, one thing is undeniable, and I believe everyone will agree with me on this – all of them are incredibly hot.