Tom Brady’s wife, Gisele Bundchen, is more than the wife of one of the greatest football players of all time. She is the highest-paid model globally, and since 2001, has retained that title alongside other A-listers.
Gisele Bundchen wields several prestigious titles that came from a career of over two decades and counting. From being the highest-paid model to the 16th wealthiest woman, Bundchen has had quite a number of highs.
However, being at the top does not erase her humble beginnings. Before the highs, there were lows, and it included Bundchen being bullied and body-shamed. Here’s a look through her success story.
Where Is Gisele Bundchen From?
Gisele Bundchen grew up in a small town in Brazil, a young girl who towered over her peers all her childhood life. Unfortunately, Bundchen’s stature caused her much pain while she was growing up.
Not because there was anything wrong with her, but because she was easily picked on. The young Bundchen was constantly bullied and given a not-so-flattering nickname.
Because of her long legs, she was called Olive Oyl, the tall willowy character who was Popeye’s girlfriend. However, her stature gave her an edge as a high school volleyball player.
As time went on, Bundchen decided she would play volleyball professionally. But, unfortunately, she never really had an idea of fashion, the modeling world, and how it worked.
Inside Her Modeling Journey
At the age of 13, Bundchen’s mother enrolled her in modeling classes, and one day after her first modeling class, there was a class trip to Sao Paulo. It was there that a talent agent noticed Bundchen’s potential.
She once shared with Vanity Fair that at the time, she had never seen a fashion magazine and even told her mother she did not want to be a model. However, she participated in her first modeling contest and got the green light.
This also resulted in a change of heart, and Bundchen moved to Sao Paulo to pursue a career in the fashion world. At the age of 16, the would-be Tom Brady’s wife moved to New York City.
Bundchen’s Humble Beginnings
Bundchen’s childhood woes were not the only societal vices that she endured. As a teenager trying to find her footing in the world of runways, she faced several rejections.
In fact, the star who would come to be the highest-paid model was rejected 42 times. Bundchen made it known to people that she still faced criticisms about her physical features. The star shared:
“I remember some people telling me my nose was too big or my eyes were too small, that I could never be on a magazine cover. It wasn’t easy to be 14 and hear that kind of criticism. It made me feel insecure.”
However, Bundchen had a support system in her family. She recalled telling her father about the harsh criticism, and he had told her, “Next time, tell them, I have a big nose and that comes with a big personality.”
From then on, Bundchen believed in herself more and knew putting in the work would give the desired result. The “The Devil Wears Prada” actress continued to go for castings but still did not make much progress.
However, she finally landed a gift with Alexander McQueen in 1998. This was the eureka moment in Bundchen’s career, and she witnessed immense progress from then on.
Her Achievements, So far
From Alexander McQueen, Bundchen landed an impressive appearance on Vogue’s cover in 1999, and more than two decades later, the fashion icon has remained one of the most sought-after models globally.
Bundchen was on Forbes’ top-earning models’ list in 2012, and she topped the famous list. In 2007, she was the 16th richest woman in the entertainment industry,
Bundchen and sports champion Tom Brady have been man and wife since 2009, and they are nothing short of the ideal power couple. They have three kids, including John, Tom’s kid from a previous relationship.
Tom Brady’s wife returned to her hometown when her grandfather celebrated his 83rd birthday. This was a statement-making return because she made quite an impact in the little town.
Bundchen has retired from the runway, and this came after a long stint of proving her worth and bagging historical achievements. She amassed vast wealth estimated at 386 million dollars at the time of retirement. Despite retirement, Bundchen is still very much active in the entertainment industry at 44.