Ah the 90s.
A decade reflected upon with equal parts fondness and equal parts cringe… Much like all the others I suppose. While every decade has it’s trends that are either celebrated or shunned in the present day, there is one thing that makes the 90s special – it was the final (sadly) decade of the true supermodel.
Let’s be brutally honest. Today’s it-girls don’t hold a candle to the likes of Cindy, Naomi and Christy (to name a few). They are not bad models by any means, but they are simply not supermodels – a term that I’ve noticed is being thrown around a lot these days.
Being hailed a supermodel has to mean something. They all had spark, a sense of drama and energy. There was something special in the stare and the sharp, elegant struts that seems to be lost on the catwalks of today.
While those qualities may now be lost forever in the 90’s, there is one good thing we have in this decade…The internet! Our beloved supermodels are now only a google/youtube search away! We can ooh and ahh to our hearts content whenever we’re feeling a little nostalgic. So, let’s bask in their Amazonian limbed, jagged cheek-boned, glossy haired glory shall we?
1. Linda, Naomi and Christy – Speak no evil, hear no evil, see no evil.
2. Helena Christensen at Gianni Versace’s Fall 1992 “Miss S&M” show. Her face is everything.
3. That time Kate Moss made a ghostly comeback at Alexander Mcqueen’s 2006 ‘Widows of Culloden’ show in Paris. Having seen a replica at the Savage Beauty exhibition a couple of years ago I can confirm that it is indeed epic. So much so that I personally was moved to tears at it’s eerie beauty.
3. This one needs no introduction. Cindy Crawford’s iconic 1992 Pepsi commercial. Watch it here.
4. When Naomi Campbell almost killed a man on the runway.
4. This beautiful shot captured by Herb Ritts in 1989. There’s an aura of trust and vulnerability here, no?
5. Tyra walking for Victoria’s Secret. We should all aspire to this level of confidence.
6. Naomi making sure nobody forgets that she is the undisputed queen of the runway.
7. Christy: giving us resting bitch face before it was even a thing.
8. Hair flip goals anyone?
9. Linda Evangelista. Needs no comment really.
10. Yasmeen Ghauri. Discovered while working at McDonalds – true story.
Perhaps one the lesser known of the supermodels but no less iconic. Which is why I feel she needs a little introduction as she is arguably one of the best runway walkers of all time (youtube her to check out her famed walk). Yasmeen’s debut in the late 80s was right at the height of the ‘All American girl’ type of models (a la Elle Macpherson) that were highly sought after at that time. Her entrance influenced a new era where designers began casting what they called ‘exotic’ models on their runways. Her career, while booming, was short lived. In 1996 she choose to retire, get married, start a family and live a normal life out of the spotlight and off the runway.
I believe the point has been made. Those were the days. The 90’s without a doubt heralded the last true supermodels.
While the last true supermodels will remain untouchable, I suppose we can always hope that the future will hail a new era?
Watch this space.