Linda, Cindy, Christy, Naomi! The Iconic Supers Open Up About Their Fabulous Then—and Now
Over two days in May, Cindy, Christy, Linda, and Naomi (no surnames required) can be found at a photo studio on the West Side of Manhattan doing that thing they do—supermodel-ing—with humor, and with ruthless precision. They don’t balk at wearing massive shoulder pads, pastel mini suits, skinny ties, and pointy pumps—items that bear no relation to the cozy cashmeres and jeans they arrived in—and they smile with familiarity at the racks of this season’s most important looks, which look not unlike designer offerings they wore more than 30 years ago. Back then they were just kids, really, and the clothes made no sense; now they are in their 50s, and ditto (save for a Schiaparelli gown in jersey that Christy falls in love with). Even the coolest, most downbeat look—jeans and a tank from superhot Matthieu Blazy for Bottega Veneta—is paradoxically made of leather. How does that work when walking a dog? But never mind. These are Supers and they can own any look, gamely sing along to a soundtrack of early Madonna and Lauper, catch the light just so to create shapes that don’t actually accord with their actual bodies, and all the while subtly coach the young, rising-star photographer Rafael Pavarotti on how best to capture the movement of the clothes. Between takes they check the monitors; being “bossy ladies” (Cindy’s term), they offer corrections. Naomi never gives up the heels, even when her costars are barefoot. It’s a master class in commitment. But how odd it must be to be in a back-to-the-future version of your own life! And even odder to have spent a life working at being beautiful when you are naturally, by any gauge, gorgeous. When Edward Enninful, who has known them all for decades, charmingly references an episode of 30 Rock in which Tina Fey’s character dates a man (played by Jon Hamm) who is so handsome that he unknowingly lives in a bubble of special treatment and privilege, it is Cindy, who has literally made beauty her brand, who smiles first in understanding.