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Cindy Crawford Turns 46 and Has More Than Beauty Tips to Share

George Washington isn’t the only one who had a birthday yesterday. Cindy Crawford turned 46, and she makes approaching 50 look pretty hot. I wonder if she looks as good face to face these days as she does in photos.

Cindy Crawford and Family

Cindy Crawford and family

The last two times I ran into her, back in the dark ages before airbrushing was the norm, the live version could compete with the photo version. Outside the Portapotties at New York Fashion Week in 1994, the real Cindy looked just like the Cindy Inc. we know and love (was she Cindy Inc. yet back then?). As we stood side by side washing our hands, I wanted to tell her, “Wow, Cindy, you look exactly like Cindy.” But that would have made me seem like a wide-eyed fan from Middle America, not a fellow catwalker (I was but not at all in her league). Instead we smiled pleasantly at each other, as you do during those awkward ladies room moments.

Soon after I saw her at the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables, filming Fair Game. (I was posing in a cheesy editorial for Cosmo). She looked great there too, but looks didn’t quite carry the movie. It was a big flop, but Cindy gracefully accepted the limits of her talent and found success elsewhere: as a spokesperson, fitness guru, beauty mogul, furniture designer, mom, enduring model (she appeared on the cover of Vogue Mexico just last year).

Other lessons that can be culled from Cindy Crawford’s career:

1. Embrace your uniqueness. Some people wanted Cindy to remove her mole. Like Lauren Hutton who told her agent she would fix the gap in her teeth but never did, Cindy resisted. Good thing, cuz her beauty mark became her trademark.

2. Beautiful does not equal ditzy. Cindy graduated valedictorian from DeKalb High School in Illinois and won an academic scholarship to study Chemical Engineering at Northwestern. Fortunately for the fashion world, she was discovered by famed photographer Victor Skrebneski and dropped out after one quarter.

3. Beautiful does not equal skinny. Cindy has always had sexy curves. If only there were more Cindys out there on the runways today!

4. Even if posing may seem like a shallow activity, the fruits of a model’s labor can make a profound difference in the world. Cindy’s little brother died of leukemia when she was ten years old. She has turned her sexy calendars into medical research dollars for that cause. She is also actively involved in the Ronald McDonald House  and California Wildlife Center and has supported numerous charities over the years.

Stay tuned for some mom wisdom from Cindy later this week…