When she enrolled in modeling school, Amber Valletta was only 15 years old. Two years later she became the face of Calvin Klein's Eternity fragrance, and quickly became a magazine regular—both in editorials and on covers.
Today Amber can still be seen in the pages of glossies, but has added actress to her list of talents as well. Look for her on the silver screen alongside Gerard Butler in
Gamer, in theaters now.
Brooke Shields holds the title as the youngest model ever to grace the cover of
Vogue at just 14 years old in the early eighties.
Today Brooke's beauty is still on display as she is regularly seen on the small screen—both in acting roles and TV commercials.
Born in 1967, Carla Bruni began modeling when she was 19 and was considered to be one of the 20 highest-paid models of the nineties.
She continues to have her picture taken by photographers as this cover of
Vanity Fair displays, but it was her recent marriage to French President Nicolas Sarkozy that really put Carla back in the spotlight.
Discovered while waiting tables at a Long Island restaurant, Carol Alt landed the first of over 700 magazine covers at the age of 20.
Still seen in magazines after almost 30 years in the business, Carol is also a successful writer. She's written about her raw food diet, as well as a series of fiction books about the modeling industry. The second book,
Model, Inc., was just released August 2009.
Carolyn Murphy started modeling in 1991 at 16 in Florida, posing for local ads and magazines distributed in her home state and Alabama before moving to Milan and making it big.
The ultimate accolade, Carolyn proved she's still got it by landing the cover of
Sports Illustrated in 2005, and appearing a second time for the glossy behemoth the following year in a group shot.
Christie Brinkley graced not one but three covers of the iconic
Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition and was a CoverGirl favorite, signing a 20-year contract with the brand, the longest-running cosmetics contract of any model in history.
Since she started modeling, Christie has been able to parlay her beauty into acting roles. She's also created a perfume, is an author, and illustrated not only the cover of Billy Joel's album
River of Dreams, but also her own New York Times bestseller, Christie Brinkley's Outdoor Beauty and Fitness Book.
Discovered while horseback riding when she was 13, Christy Turlington waited until she finished high school to take up modeling full time.
Today Christy is one of the most widely recognized models in the business since securing her supermodel status in the nineties as one of the Trinity, a title she shares with fellow models Naomi Campbell and Linda Evangelista.
Who would have thought that a farm girl from Indiana who shucked corn all day would become as infamous as Cindy Crawford has proved to be?
Aside from the countless runways and magazine covers Cindy has graced, she was also the first host of MTV's
House of Style, was featured in George Michael's "Freedom" video, has put out a beauty book as well as a workout video, and has her very own home-goods line for Raymour & Flanigan.
Elaine Irwin-Mellencamp left home at 16 to pursue a modeling career, soon finding herself on the covers of magazines like
Cosmopolitan, Glamour, and Vogue, getting to work with photographer greats like Irving Penn, Herb Ritts, and Steven Meisel.
Elaine has had contracts with big names like Victoria's Secret, and done high profile campaigns for designers like Calvin Klein and Versace. Most recently you've probably seen her on TV in Almay Cosmetics commercials, as she is currently the spokesperson for the beauty brand.
Heidi Klum's big break came in 1997 with Victoria's Secret. Once she signed with the lingerie giant, Heidi soon landed the covers of top fashion magazines, and has been featured in
Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition nine times.
Today Heidi is more than just a model. She's a mom, a wife, an Angel, and, of course, the host of the reality competition
Since entering the Miss Universe competition representing her country as Miss Denmark, Helena Christensen became one of Victoria's Secret's signature Angels alongside other models Tyra Banks, Rebecca Romijn, and Stephanie Seymour.
Still modeling today, Helena Christensen also owns an antique shop in New York City and is also the cofounder of the fashion magazine
After she was recruited by photographer Peter Beard, Iman arrived in the States to do one thing: model. It was obvious from her first assignment,
Vogue, that this would not be a face that would fade into obscurity.
It's been over 30 years since Iman's first assignment, and she continues to have her photo snapped. Plus she is also the CEO of IMAN Cosmetics, spearheaded the I AM AFRICAN campaign, and is actively involved in many other charities.
When Kate Moss was discovered in JFK airport in 1993, who would have thought that one girl from London could change the entire face of fashion? With her delicate frame, Kate's look ushered in a new era of models: the waif.
Kate still regularly lands covers, and her unique sense of fashion has made her the ultimate trendsetter, something she's translated into her own designs for Topshop.
After being discovered in 1966 by Diana Vreeland,
Vogue's then editor-in-chief, Lauren Hutton became a regular cover girl for the magazine. She would go on to front the fashion bible more than 25 times.
It's been over 40 years since Lauren's first photograph was published and she's still getting work: Lauren was J.Crew's featured model throughout its February 2009 catalog!
After she became a top model in Paris, Paulina Porizkova moved to the States, where she landed her first of two consecutive covers for
Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition in 1984, becoming the youngest model ever to do so at the age of 19.
Paulina conquered the runways and magazine covers during the eighties, and landed roles in movies as well. Most recently she was a guest judge on
America's Next Top Model and has made appearances on TV shows like Late Night with David Letterman and The Colbert Report. Plus she also guest blogs for Modelinia and Huffington Post!
Before Tyra Banks became a household name, she was making serious strides as a model—and making history. Not only did she secure covers for
Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition in 1997 and the January 2000 issue of GQ, but she was the first woman of color to appear solo on either of these magazine titles.
Tyra has since retired from her days on the runway, but she hasn't left it completely behind. Since it aired in 2003, Tyra has been the host of
America's Next Top Model, making it her mission to find the modeling industry's next It girl.