Five Russian Models Who Conquered the World

PHOTO by Treetops Productions / Vimeo / Screenshot
The most sought-after Russian models who have made a name for themselves on the global stage

Foreigners admit that Russian women are the most beautiful in the world, so it’s not a surprise that Slavic looks are highly esteemed in the model business, with fashion designers often seeking Russian ladies for their shows.

Natalia Vodianova

Vodianova was born on Feb. 28, 1982, in Nizhny Novgorod. Her life is often compared with Cinderella’s: like in the fairy tale, she worked hard when she was a child. While in school, she was helping out her parents by selling fruit at a market. It was there that Natalia was spotted by her future agent and the girl's rise to stardom began. She later got married to Lord Justin Portman, a British billionaire, and gave birth to three children. Currently, Vodianova is one of the most accomplished models in the world, the wife of a millionaire Antoine Arnault, the mother of four and the founder of the Naked Hearts charity which helps children with special needs.

Russian modeks
Natalia Vodianova

Irina Shayk

Shayk was born on Jan. 6, 1986, in the small town of Yemanzhelinsk. Her childhood was far from easy: after her father’s death, her mother had to toil away to support the family. After graduating from school, Shayk left for Chelyabinsk, where she partnered up with a local modeling agency.

Giya Dzhikidze, the agent who noticed the girl, helped Shayk with her first European gig in 2005. She became the face of major brands soon after and appeared on the covers of glossy magazines. The supermodel has also tried acting and starred in several movies.

Shayk dated Cristiano Ronaldo for five years, and since 2015 she’s been going out with American actor Bradley Cooper. It’s been rumored that the couple are soon to become parents.

Irina shayk
Irina Shayk

Sasha Pivovarova

Pivovarova was born in Moscow on Jan. 21, 1985. She never fantasised about becoming a model. As a young girl, she was keen on art and she studied art history. Perhaps the world would have never learnt about Pivovarova if not for her husband, who had sent a few photos to a modeling agency. Two weeks later, Pivovarova was opening a Prada show. This became a breakthrough moment for her, yet she never abandoned painting. In 2011, Pivovarova, together with Gap, created a line of pajamas with her own prints. In 2012, she gave birth to her daughter, Mia Isis.

Pivovarova
Sasha Pivovarova

Natalia Polevshchikova

Polevshchikova was born on July 12, 1985, in Perm. She is known as Natasha Poly in the fashion world. She was invited by a scout to take part in the prestigious New Model Today show in Moscow in 2000, where her second-place finish sparked her fashion career. Polevshchikova walked the podium for the first time in 2004 and she has represented such brands as Gucci, Roberto Cavalli, Dolce & Gabbana and many more. French Vogue included Polevschikova in their list of the top 30 models of the 2000s.

Polevshchikova is married to businessman Peter Bakker and she gave birth to a daughter in 2013.

Natalia
Natalia Polevshchikova

Anna Vyalitsyna

Vyalitsyna was born on Mar. 19, 1986, to a family of doctors in Nizhny Novgorod. From an early age, she took ballet classes and studied relentlessly, dreaming of becoming a model. Her career began at the age of 15 when an agent in St. Petersburg singled her out. The girl did miss the opportunity: she graduated from high school without attending classes and set off to conquer the world. These days, she is better known by her modeling name, Anne V.

She has been in a relationship with Adam Cahan, vice president of Yahoo, since 2014 and their daughter, Alaska, was born on June 25, 2015.

Anne v
Anna Vyalitsyna