‘90s Icon of the week: Kate Moss

From her waif and “heroin chic” look, to Johnny Depp, and more, Kate Moss is our ‘90s icon of the week

It’s Monday! This means we have an amazing ‘90s icon for you and this week it’s Kate Moss. The British model and businesswoman rose to fame in the mid-’90s and is regarded as one of the most iconic supermodels of all time. Born 16 January 1974 she was recruited when she was 14 at the JFK airport in 1988 by Sarah Doukas, founder of Storm Management. A year later she starred in her first cover shoot and was featured in The Face and a Levis campaign.

Calvin Klein Spring 1993©GettyImages
Kate Moss, Calvin Klein 1992

Moss became unstoppable and became the face of Calvin Klein in 1992. She appeared topless with Mark Wahlberg, who was “Marky Mark” at at the time and an aspiring hip hop artist and model. Wahlberg and Moss were vocal about their lack of care for each other. Wahlberg later said, “I wasn’t into the waif thing,” adding, “She kind of looked like my nephew.” Moss was only 5’7, had a thin figure and regardless of what Walhberg thought, she was praised for her “waif look.” The definition of a “waif” young person is “thin and looking unhealthy or uncared for” and was used to describe models like Twiggy in the 1960s. Moss also became the poster child for the popularized look called “heroin chic.”

Todd Oldham Fashion Show©GettyImages
Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Kate Moss and Shalom Harlow 1995

The sought-out model went on to appear on the cover of more than 300 magazines and has starred in ad campaigns for most of the top fashion houses. She became the “anti-supermodel” of the 1990s and her grunge, slim, figure contrasted the tall and curvy models around her like Cindy Crawford and Naomi Campbell.

Just like our past 90’s icon of the week, Winona Ryder, Moss found love with Johnny Depp. They met through a mutual friend in 1994 and became an inseparable “trainwreck.” Their high-profile relationship remains an iconic part of ‘90s culture. Depp was famously arrested the first year into their relationship after he destroyed the Presidential Suite at the Mark Hotel in New York City during their stay. The bill for their stay and damages was $9,767.12. The judge let Depp who was presumed drunk when police arrived pay the money and promise to behave for six months. Moss wasn’t arrested, harmed, or presumed drunk, according to Ranker.

Sinatra: 80 Years My Way Birthday Celebration©GettyImages
Johnny Depp and Kate Moss

The English model became known for her partying ways and eventually received media scrutiny for her lifestyle and drug use. Depp and Moss broke up after they moved in with each other in 1997. She was at the height of her partying when they split and was reportedly “out of control.” She tried to get help for her addiction and spent five weeks at the Priory rehabilitation and mental health facility in London. As noted by Ranker, this came weeks after it was announced Depp was having a baby with his girlfriend Vanessa Paradis.

Supermodel Kate - Court case - London©GettyImages
Kate Moss leaving court/ Pete Doherty

Things started to go south for Moss’s personal life in the ‘00s. She made headlines in 2005 when photos were published of her doing what looked like cocaine with her boyfriend at the time and known addict Pete Doherty. After the allegations, she was dropped by brands like H&M, Chanel, and Burberry. She was able to come back from the “cocaine Kate” scandal after British police dropped charges against her for lack of evidence.

Her infamous quote “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels“ was published in 2009 by WWD and is still echoed today. Years later, she has expressed her regret over the quote and is glad to see the industry is changing. In 2018 she told NBC’s Megyn Kelly, “There’s so much more diversity now, I think it’s right.” She added, “There are so many different sizes and colors and heights. Why would you just be a one-size model and being represented for all of these people?”

Now, Moss is the head of her own modeling agency and says her partying days are behind her. ‘I take care of myself now, I‘m a good girl,” she said. “I go to bed, I drink lots of water, not too much coffee, and I’m trying to cut down on cigarettes.”

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