10 Things You Didn’t Know About Natalia Vodianova

From living a life of struggle to transforming into one of the world’s most successful supermodels, Natalia Vodianova’s life story is awe-inspiring. However, there’s so much more to her than what meets the eye. Let’s uncover some intriguing facts about this philanthropic fashionista that many are probably not aware of.

1. Natalia has a Rags-to-Riches Story

Birthed into poverty in Russia, Natalia experienced a harsh childhood. Her mother struggled to make ends meet, and young Natalia had to sell fruit on the street to contribute to the family income. However, life took a turn when a scouting agent discovered her unique beauty at the age of 17. From there, she embarked on a journey to stardom.

Today, Natalia is one of the top-earning models in the fashion industry. The determined and driven woman has not merely used her success to improve her life, but also to bring change and make a difference in the lives of others.

2. She Founded the Naked Heart Foundation

Natalia is not just a beautiful face; she has a heart that resonates with empathy and an indomitable will to give back to society. Despite her challenging upbringing, she didn’t let her past hinder her spirit. Instead, it fueled her passion. In 2004, Natalia founded the Naked Heart Foundation, a charity organization that provides support for disadvantaged children across Russia and around the globe.

The foundation has raised millions of dollars and funded numerous play parks and support services aiming at reducing the stigma associated with disabilities. Natalia’s drive to facilitate a positive change is truly admirable.

3. Natalia is a Mother of Five

Amidst her hectic schedule and prominent career, Natalia Vodianova manages her duty as a mother efficiently. She is a dedicated mom to her five wonderful children – four with her ex-husband Justin Portman and one with her current husband, Antoine Arnault.

A firm believer in leading by example, Natalia clearly articulates the value of hard work, empathy and kindness to her children, hoping to instill them with the same drive and compassion that has been quintessential in her life.

4. She Filmed a Film in 2011

Apart from her stellar modeling career, Natalia ventured into acting as she starred in the French film ‘Belle du Seigneur’ in 2011. She played the role of a Swiss writer’s mistress, showcasing her talent beyond modeling.

Although the film garnered mixed reviews, Natalia’s performance was appreciated. The experience not only added another dimension to her talent pool but also proved that she’s not one to limit herself to a single field.

5. Natalia, an Advocate for Autism Awareness

Her involvement in various social causes is extensive. Natalia is an ardent advocate for special needs children and Autism awareness, inspired significantly by her younger sister Oksana who is autistic.

Fighting against the stigma associated with Autism, she uses her influence to enlighten society about this order and create a safe, accepting and inclusive environment for children with Autism.

6. She Ran the Paris Half Marathon for Charity

Natalia’s dedication to her Foundation is limitless. In 2010, she ran the Paris Half Marathon to raise funds for the Naked Heart Foundation. Her commitment and will to go out of her way for her cause is truly commendable.

This event also proved Natalia’s dedication to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. As an influential figure, she continues to encourage others to participate in physical activities.

7. Time Magazine Recognized her Efforts

Her philanthropic efforts didn’t go unnoticed. In 2014, Time magazine highlighted Natalia Vodianova as one of the 100 most influential people in the world. She also gained recognition from Forbes for her impact.

These acknowledgments are testaments of Natalia’s commitment to making a difference in the world, proving that she’s an inspiration, both on and off the runway.

8. She Walked the Runways Pregnant

Showcasing her passion and dedication, Natalia has walked the runways while being visibly pregnant. During the 2011 Paris Fashion Week, she strutted the ramp for Calvin Klein while she was five months pregant, making a bold statement about her work ethic and the power of women.

Her decision to hit the runway while pregnant was greatly applauded for breaking the barriers in the fashion industry and redefining the standards of beauty.

9. Dubbed as the Supernova of the Fashion World

With her unparalleled beauty and talent, Natalia secured an enviable place in the fashion industry. She’s been dubbed as “Supernova” – a testament to her brilliant and explosive impact in the fashion world.

Starting from her early years with Calvin Klein to her long-standing relationship with brands like Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Stella McCartney, and others – Natalia’s presence continues to light up the runway.

10. Natalia is also an Entrepreneur

Adding another feather to her hat, Natalia is not just a supermodel and philanthropist, but also an entrepreneur. In 2019, her digital start-up ‘Elbi’ won the Cannes Lions track prize. ‘Elbi’ is a philanthropy platform that simplifies giving and makes it accessible to everyone.

This endeavour of hers aligns with her mission of creating a world where every individual has a chance to make a positive impact. Her can-do attitude says a lot about her personality, and she continuously inspires others to dream big and work relentlessly towards achieving them.

In conclusion, Natalia Vodianova is much more than just a supermodel. She is an unstoppable force, a change-maker, a driving inspiration. There is much to learn from her resilience, compassion, and never-give-up attitude. We can all take a leaf out of the grand book of Natalia’s life to enrich our personal stories.

Check out Natalia Vodianova’s official Instagram page here

Click to know more about the Naked Heart Foundation

Learn more about Elbi, Natalia’s digital start-up