Gisele Bündchen seems like she was born to be a supermodel. But when she started out in 1995, not everyone agreed that she was destined for the job — because of her looks!
"I remember some people telling me my nose was too big or my eyes were too small, that I could never be on a magazine cover," she told People magazine. "It wasn't easy to be 14 and hear that kind of criticism. It made me feel insecure."
Fortunately, the 35-year-old, who has since married NFL star Tom Brady and stepped back from the runway, got great encouragement from her dad, Valdir.
"I told my dad, and he said, 'Next time, tell them 'I have a big nose and that comes with a big personality,'" she recalled. "At that point I felt if I kept working hard and giving my best, it would all work out."
Clearly it has. Bündchen moved to New York at age 16 and landed a big runway show for Alexander McQueen in 1998, which set her on the road to success. She signed a $25 million contract with Victoria's Secret in 2000. She's doing less modeling now so she can focus on being a wife and a mom to her children with Brady, Benjamin (age 6) and Vivian (age 3) and stepmother to Brady's son Jack (age 8).
So what's the lesson she learned from all of those years of criticism and modeling success? How to take a good photo! Bündchen's advice: "I have learned that when you are feeling good in that moment it's the most important thing," she said. "Also, good lighting always helps."
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