The Influence of Kate Moss on the Fashion Industry: Good or Bad?

Young Kate Moss

Young Kate Moss

The influence of Kate Moss on the fashion industry: Good or Bad?

It is not a secret that the Kingdom of the so called “Supermodels” started to sink once little, but strong. British model Kate Moss appeared, and she brought with her a lot of new adjectives into the fashion industry, such as: “The heroin chic look”, “Waifish figure”, “Bardotian face”, and many more, commonly used and beloved by the truly fashion enthusiasts.

Very soon, little Kate was featured in huge campaigns and as you might suppose, huge scandals too. Maybe the biggest campaign we all remember was that one with TV spots and all for Calvin Klein: by then, Kate was only 17 years old and had to pose and act very provocatively next to (you all know who), Mark Wahlberg a.k.a. “Marky Mark”.

As you can see in the fashion documentary made by Katharina Otto-Bernstein called Beautopia (1998), Calvin Klein himself appears saying that he wanted to “provoke” the public by presenting young Kate, that to him, she had the uncommon aesthetic, of a “child/woman” thing. “It touches a nerve”, he said, “especially with men”.

If this is what he wanted to go for, he nailed it. Nailed it so hard, that even president Clinton decried “Heroin chic” fashion photography for sending a message that using the once-feared drug is “Glamorous” and “Sexy.”

But, has it all changed yet? This whole idea of skinny, with bad hair and wasted look, has it changed? I don’t think so. I think we have all adapted our perspective of fashion and became used to it. Although the image of heroine was decaying, mostly because of the AIDS association to unclean needles in the 80’s, and the impact of films that exposed shocking images related to the substance abuse like Trainspotting or Pulp Fiction during the early 90’s, another drug was on the rise… Cocaine.

Miss Kate Moss did pretty well trying to clean up her image associated with inspiring a new breed of skinny, and even the fashion industry helped her through the years while more and more models seemed to look just like her only taller and skinnier. Until she got immersed in another scandal: in 2005, she was caught while snorting Cocaine. By the time, she was in a relationship with the lead singer of the band Babyshambles, Pete Doherty. Nothing less.

There was a lot of speculation about this issue destroying her career, and of course, a lot of contracts were broken because of that, but you need way more than just a picture all over the tabloids in order to take Kate Moss’s career down.

After she broke up with Doherty, and stood away from drama, her name returned to the discussion table in 2009 during an interview with the fashion magazine WWD. They asked her “do you have any mottos?” Moss that is very well known for not giving many interviews, and not revealing a lot of herself, answered: “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels”. Of course is one of the favorite sentences among the pro-anorexia websites.

Well, Kate Moss has proved that even though you can try it all, do whatever you want, do all the things that could normally ruin a career, she always manages to stay at the top, to be almost everywhere and to be the second highest paid model in the world… Is this the kind of career you would like to have?