Known as one of the five original supermodels, along with Claudia Schiffer, Cindy Crawford, Christy Turlington and Naomi Campbell , this 5'9" beauty was born on May 10th, 1965, in St. Catharine's, Ontario, Canada. Linda was raised in a working class, traditional Italian Catholic family and knew that she wanted to pursue a modeling career by the age of 12.
Linda Evangelista's big break came when she participated the 1988 Miss Teen Niagara Contest at age 15, when a modeling scout discovered her. Although she didn't win, entering the contest was what ultimately led to Linda's successful modeling career.
Although discovered by a modeling scout, Linda's rise to the top of supermodel stardom was not an easy one. Her career began in New York, where she signed with the Elite Model Agency. Before finally getting a job booking with high profile fashion magazine Vogue, Linda moved to Paris to try to develop her career.
The three-year wait that Evangelista had to endure before getting the job at Vogue was worth it, since the string of jobs that came later made up for lost time. Linda's beautiful facial structure and striking blue-green eyes have appeared on practically every fashion magazine cover on an international scale.
Not only has she graced a slew of magazine covers around the world, but Linda has also appeared in advertising campaigns for the following companies: Alberta Ferretti, American Express, Anne Klein, Barney's, Bloomingdale's, Calvin Klein, Chanel, Chloé, Dolce & Gabbana, Donna Karan, Gianni Versace, Hermes, Perry Ellis, Ralph Lauren , Jill Sander Valentino, Yves Saint Laurent, Christian Dior makeup, and Jones New York. She also signed a long-term contract with Kenar.
Although she has been seen in practically every hair color possible (she has dyed her hair 17 times in four years), Linda's natural hair color is brown. Not only has she gone from every shade of hair possible in the blonde, red and brown categories, she is also known for her boyish haircut.
Like fellow supermodel Helena Christensen, who appeared in a wicked music video for Chris Isaac, Linda has been in two George Michael videos: "Freedom 90" , featuring the other top supermodels, as well as the video for "Too Funky". Following with the video trend, Linda has also appeared in Unzipped, by Isaac Mizrahi, and Catwalk, a documentary produced by Christy Turlington.
On the topic of fellow supermodels, Linda formed The Trinity, with Christy Turlington and Naomi Campbell, completing the trio. These three were the elite supermodels that dominated the fashion industry in the early 90's.
When not on the catwalk, Linda Evangelista uses her fame to help in causes that she believes in, most notably raising awareness for breast cancer research. Both her grandmother and a family friend suffered from the disease, and Linda joined Bryan Adams in hosting a charity fundraiser in aid of breast cancer research.
As for her love life, Linda has been romantically involved with Andre Rau, and was formerly engaged to Twin Peaks actor Kyle MacLachlan. She was previously married to Gerald Marie, the former head of Elite Paris. Named one of People magazine's 50 most Beautiful People in the World, Linda Evangelista was honored with the VH1's Fashion Awards' Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996.