Claudia Schiffer was one of the most famous faces of the ’90s; as one of the original “supermodels”–along with Cindy Crawford and Linda Evangelista, among others–she became a household name fairly quickly, especially after landing the coveted Guess? job. But recently, Schiffer said she wasn’t at first comfortable with the supermodel title because she wanted to be taken seriously for what she did.
“When they started talking about ‘super’ and ‘supermodel’, I thought ‘this is really insulting’—I want to be taken seriously in the high-end world of Chanel, Yves St Laurent,” she said. “I don’t want to be some supermodel…We all got a bit annoyed, which in retrospect was ridiculous,” said Schiffer, who considered herself “really, really shy” during her heyday in the ’90s. “‘Supermodel’ sounds like a tabloid name, but then we realized, ‘Hold on, maybe actually this is a good thing,’ because when we left fashion shows, suddenly there were thousands of people. I’m not exaggerating! You had to have security people get you to your car—it just went crazy…It was like [being] a rock star,” the 5-foot-11 stunner added. “I loved it.”
But being that famous came at a high cost; Schiffer says her high-visibility made her the target of at least one “Indecent Proposal”-type offers from a prince who loved a pretty face.
“The strangest one was an Arab prince. He asked if he could hire me for a dinner for a million pounds. I declined, and some other supermodel took it….It’s not all about money. I just want to be able to walk down the street and be proud of what I do,” she said.
It might surprise some to know that the supermodel was once extremely shy, and it affected her career in the early days. However, she says that once she got into the job, things got easier.
“I would always turn bright red, and so then I became even more shy, thinking, ‘I don’t want to be here.’ Once I put the make-up on I’d go, ‘OK, I can cope, no one can see what I’m thinking’,” she said.
Image via Wikimedia Commons