Happy Birthday, Naomi Campbell! The OG supermodel turns 49 on Wednesday, May 22, and we’re celebrating by paying homage to her illustrious career. The catwalk queen has been strutting her stuff on runways around the world for some three decades now, and, as you can imagine, there have been some pretty iconic moments along the way.
As part of the crew that redefined the modeling industry in the 1980s and 90s, the London-born beauty is one of just a few of her contemporaries to still be going strong. After getting her start at the tender age of 15, she quickly established herself as one of the most in-demand and recognizable faces in the biz – and not much has changed since.
In addition to walking runways for top designers like Alaïa, Chanel, Dior, Givenchy, Louis Vuitton and Versace to name a few, she also worked on print campaigns with famed photographers like Annie Leibovitz, Peter Lindbergh, Herb Ritts and Bruce Weber. She broke barriers as the first black woman to ever appear on the cover of French Vogue in 1988 and has been instrumental in diversifying the catwalk and advocating for equal pay.
Campbell has also dabbled in acting and served as a coach and judge on the modeling competition The Face. In 2015, she founded the charity Fashion for Relief, which holds runway shows to benefit the victims of natural disasters and other international causes. Oh, and she’s released 16 fragrances and signed her first beauty contract with NARS in 2018. That same year, she received the prestigious CFDA Fashion Icon Award.
But let’s get back to the runway. Whether she’s showing off her super fit physique at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show or strutting her stuff in haute couture, Campbell has done it all with her signature ferocity. In honor of her 49th birthday, we’re taking a look back at her hottest catwalk moments. Keep scrolling to see our favorites!