Superstar. Kimora Lee Simmons has lived and breathed beauty her entire life, as she was discovered modeling at 13 years old and became the youngest person to ever walk in a Chanel fashion show. Although her striking features landed her jobs with high-end designers and brands, the St. Louis native has been caught in the midst of plastic surgery speculation over the years.
Kimora has never publicly admitted to going under the knife, but she has challenged beauty standards over the years. In fact, she talked about the current plastic surgery fad during a 2020 interview with Glamour.
“One thing about beauty I wish people would understand is that when you’re discussing trends for plastic surgery, or for cosmetics, everyone has to remember that no one face or feature is going to be the same. And it’s usually never going to be symmetrical. We were not intended to look alike,” she told the publication at the time. “So, when you think of beauty standards, I would like people to consider that diversity is key. Respect the differences in all of our faces. Embrace your own differences as you go about your beauty journey.”
After modeling for fashion powerhouses, Kimora launched her fashion line Baby Phat in 1999, a sister brand to Phat Farm that was run by her now ex-husband Russell Simmons. The clothing line was a Y2K hit and offered some of the hottest low-rise jeans, sweatsuits and bedazzled crop tops.
Kimora re-launched Baby Phat in 2019 with her daughters Aoki and Ming Lee Simmons, whom she shares with her ex, and expanded the products into the beauty world. After 20 years of business, the Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane star wanted to ensure the brand “represented a lifestyle” while her daughters bring the “flair and youthful flavor” to their Gen Z audience.
Speaking of her daughters, Aoki made her debut on the runway in 2021 and shared how her mother gave her insightful beauty tips growing up. Kimora’s number one beauty tip? It’s to simply “embrace the features you have.”
“When I was younger, I would look at techniques to achieve a more Euro-centric standard of beauty — like using a white line underneath your eyes to widen them. My mom was like, “Why? You’re Asian, you have smaller eyes, be proud of that,’” Aoki told W Magazine at the time. “She’s very much encouraged me to stop hiding my natural features. She’s big on curls — she’s like, ‘Keep it curly, keep it free, it makes you unique. Don’t heat damage your hair.’’
Keep scrolling to see Kimora’s transformation over the years.
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