The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary American Models of all time. This list of famous American Models is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of American Models.
With an HPI of 57.40, Bettie Page is the most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 33 different languages on wikipedia.
Bettie Mae Page (April 22, 1923 – December 11, 2008) was an American model who gained notoriety in the 1950s for her pin-up photos. She was often referred to as the "Queen of Pinups": her long jet-black hair, blue eyes, and trademark bangs have influenced artists for generations. After her death, Playboy founder Hugh Hefner called her "a remarkable lady, an iconic figure in pop culture who influenced sexuality, taste in fashion, someone who had a tremendous impact on our society".A native of Nashville, Tennessee, Page lived in California in her early adult years before moving to New York City to pursue work as an actress. There, she found work as a pin-up model, and she posed for dozens of photographers throughout the 1950s. Page was "Miss January 1955," one of the earliest Playmates of the Month for Playboy Magazine. After years in obscurity, she experienced a resurgence of popularity in the 1980s. In 1959, Page converted to evangelical Christianity and worked for Billy Graham, studying at Bible colleges in Los Angeles and Portland, Oregon, with the intent of becoming a missionary. The latter part of Page's life was marked by depression, violent mood swings, and several years in a state psychiatric hospital with paranoid schizophrenia.
With an HPI of 57.36, Cindy Crawford is the 2nd most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 53 different languages.
Cynthia Ann Crawford (born February 20, 1966) is an American model, actress and television personality. During the 1980s and 1990s, she was among the most popular supermodels and a ubiquitous presence on magazine covers, runways, as well as fashion campaigns. She subsequently expanded into acting and business ventures.
With an HPI of 57.09, Gigi Hadid is the 3rd most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 50 different languages.
Jelena Noura "Gigi" Hadid ( JEE-jee; born April 23, 1995) is an American model, television personality, founder, creator, and director of the clothing line "Guest In Residence". In November 2014, she made her debut in the Top 50 Models ranking at Models.com. In 2016, she was named International Model of the Year by the British Fashion Council. Over the span of four years, she has made thirty-five appearances on international Vogue magazine covers.Born in Los Angeles, she began her modeling career as a child model for Baby Guess. She signed to IMG Models in 2013 and made her New York Fashion Week debut the following year. She has appeared in numerous high fashion campaigns, editorials and is a spokesmodel for Maybelline.
With an HPI of 56.33, Gia Carangi is the 4th most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 37 different languages.
Gia Marie Carangi (January 29, 1960 – November 18, 1986) was an American model, considered by many to be the first supermodel. She was featured on the cover of many magazines, including multiple editions of Vogue and Cosmopolitan, and appeared in advertising campaigns for luxury fashion houses such as Armani, Dior, Versace and Yves Saint Laurent.After Carangi became addicted to heroin, her career rapidly declined. In 1986, at age 26, she died of AIDS-related complications. Believed to have contracted it from a contaminated needle, she became one of the first famous women to die of the disease. Her life was dramatized in the 1998 HBO television film Gia, directed by Michael Cristofer and starring Angelina Jolie as Carangi.
With an HPI of 53.12, Carmen Dell'Orefice is the 5th most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 16 different languages.
Carmen Dell'Orefice (, Italian: [delloˈreːfitʃe]; born June 3, 1931) is an American supermodel and actress. She is known within the fashion industry for being the world's oldest working model as of the Spring/Summer 2012 season. She was on the cover of Vogue at the age of 15 and has been modeling ever since. Her daily motto is to enjoy herself, at no-one else's expense.
With an HPI of 50.12, Kendall Jenner is the 6th most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 109 different languages.
Kendall Nicole Jenner (born November 3, 1995) is an American model, media personality, and socialite. She is a daughter of Kris Jenner and Caitlyn Jenner, and rose to fame in the reality television show Keeping Up with the Kardashians. Jenner began modelling at the age of 14. After working in commercial print ad campaigns and photoshoots, she had breakout seasons in 2014 and 2015, walking the runways for high-fashion designers during the New York, Milan, and Paris fashion weeks. Jenner has appeared in campaigns, editorials, and cover shoots for LOVE and various international Vogue editions, and is a brand ambassador for Estée Lauder.Jenner made her debut at No. 16 on Forbes magazine's 2015 list of top-earning models, with an estimated annual income of US$4 million. In 2017 Jenner was named the world's highest-paid model by Forbes, ousting model Gisele Bündchen who had been leading the list since 2002.
With an HPI of 50.05, Kylie Jenner is the 7th most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 60 different languages.
Kylie Kristen Jenner (born August 10, 1997) is an American media personality, socialite, and businesswoman. She starred in the E! reality television series Keeping Up with the Kardashians from 2007 to 2021 and is the founder and owner of cosmetic company Kylie Cosmetics. She is the third-most-followed person on Instagram. At age 14 in 2012, Jenner collaborated with the clothing brand PacSun, along with her sister Kendall, and created a line of clothing, Kendall & Kylie. In 2015, she launched her own cosmetics line called Kylie Lip Kits, which was renamed to Kylie Cosmetics the following year. They also released a mobile app that reached number one on the iTunes App Store called Kendall and Kylie.In 2014 and 2015, Time magazine listed the Jenner sisters on their list of the most influential teens in the world, citing their considerable influence among youth on social media. In 2017, Jenner was placed on the Forbes Celebrity 100 list, making her the youngest person to be featured on the list. Jenner starred on her own spin-off series, Life of Kylie, which premiered in 2017. In November 2018, New York Post credited her for being the most influential celebrity in the fashion industry.In 2019, Forbes estimated Jenner's net worth at US$1 billion and called her the world's youngest self-made billionaire at age 21; the notion of Jenner being self-made has been controversial. In May 2020, Forbes released a statement accusing Jenner of forging tax documents so she would appear as a billionaire.
With an HPI of 49.82, Jerry Hall is the 8th most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 23 different languages.
Jerry Faye Hall (born July 2, 1956) is an American model and actress. She began modelling in the 1970s and became one of the most sought after models in the world. She transitioned into acting, appearing in the 1989 film Batman. Hall was the long-term partner of Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger, with whom she has four children. She subsequently married media mogul Rupert Murdoch, from whom she is now divorced.
With an HPI of 49.59, Tyra Banks is the 9th most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 60 different languages.
Tyra Lynne Banks (born December 4, 1973), also known as BanX, is an American television personality, model, producer, writer, and actress. Born in Inglewood, California, she began her career as a model at the age of 15, and was the first African-American woman to be featured on the covers of GQ and the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, on which she appeared three times. She was a Victoria's Secret Angel from 1997 to 2005. By the early 2000s, Banks was one of the world's top-earning models. Banks began acting on television in the sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1993), and made her film debut in the drama Higher Learning (1995). In 2000, she had major film roles, such as Eve in Disney Channel's Life-Size and Zoe in the box-office hit Coyote Ugly. Banks had small roles in the romantic sports film Love & Basketball (2000), the horror film Halloween: Resurrection (2002), and in the television series Gossip Girl (2009) and Glee (2013).In 2003, Banks created the long-running reality television series America's Next Top Model, which she executive produced and presented for the first twenty-two seasons, until the series' cancellation in October 2015. She remained executive producer for the revival of the series in 2016 and enlisted Rita Ora as host for the twenty-third cycle before reassuming the duties herself for the twenty-fourth cycle. Banks was the co-creator of True Beauty (2009–2010), and had her own television talk show, The Tyra Banks Show (2005–2010), which aired on The CW and won two Daytime Emmy awards for Outstanding Talk Show Informative. In 2015, she co-hosted the talk show FABLife for two months. In 2017, Banks was the host of America's Got Talent for its 12th season. In 2020, she was the host of Dancing with the Stars for its 29th season, also serving as an executive producer. In 2010, Banks published a young adult novel titled Modelland, based on her life as a model, which topped The New York Times Best Seller list in 2011. She also has her own production company, Bankable Productions, which produced The Tyra Banks Show, America's Next Top Model, and the 2008 film The Clique. Banks is one of four African Americans and seven women to have repeatedly been ranked among the world's most influential people by Time magazine. She is also one of only seventeen models to be ranked as a Legendary Supermodel by MODELS.com.
With an HPI of 49.56, Sable is the 10th most famous American Model. Her biography has been translated into 16 different languages.
Rena Marlette Lesnar (née Greek, formerly Mero; born August 8, 1967), better known as Sable, is an American former model, actress, and retired professional wrestler. She is primarily known for her time in WWE. She began working for WWE in 1996. As Sable, she gained considerable popularity. After feuding with Luna Vachon, and Jacqueline, Sable became the second WWF Women's Champion after the title was reinstated into the company. After leaving the company, she filed a $110 million lawsuit against the company, citing allegations of sexual harassment and unsafe working conditions.In 2003, she returned to WWE and was put into a feud with Torrie Wilson, and another storyline as Vince McMahon's mistress. In 2004, she left the company to spend more time with her family. Outside wrestling, she is considered to be a sex symbol and has been featured on the cover of Playboy three times. In April 1999 issue of the magazine with her on the cover was one of the highest selling issues in Playboy history. She has guest starred on several television series, including Pacific Blue, and appeared in the film Corky Romano.
Pantheon has 85 people classified as models born between 1923 and 2001. Of these 85, 83 (97.65%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living models include Cindy Crawford, Gigi Hadid, and Carmen Dell'Orefice. The most famous deceased models include Bettie Page and Gia Carangi. As of April 2022, 12 new models have been added to Pantheon including Hunter Schafer, Debi Diamond, and Beverly Johnson.
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