Kate Moss’ rock ‘n roll life – from scouted at 14 to coke scandal and sobriety

Kate Moss’ ability to down endless flutes of champagne once saw her nicknamed ‘The Tank’.

But today the fresh-faced model is the epitome of healthy living, three years sober and a lover of yoga – even if she does indulge in the occasional cigarette.

Instead of wild nights out she is focused on a new goal – guiding daughter Lila Grace’s fledgling career.

The model mum called herself “so emotional” when the teen made her catwalk debut for Miu Miu back in October, days after she turned 18.

And throughout lockdown Kate has been helping her only child forge ahead in the modelling world, from covering this month’s British Vogue to shooting campaigns for Fendi.

But while the 46-year-old is clearly hoping Lila Grace follows in her footsteps professionally, she will surely hope she does not follow her lead away from the catwalk.

Today Kate Moss is the epitome of healthy living, three years sober and focused on a new goal - guiding daughter Lila Grace's fledgling career; the two are seen last year
Today Kate Moss is the epitome of healthy living, three years sober and focused on a new goal – guiding daughter Lila Grace’s fledgling career; the two are seen last year

From being talent spotted at just 14, to leading the model pack as the face of heroin chic, to that infamous cocaine scandal, she has enjoyed a life full of rock ‘n roll worthy excess.

Croydon-born Kate was just 14 when she was scouted by Storm Model’s founder Sarah Doukas at JFK airport in New York as her family jetted home from a holiday to the Bahamas.

At 5ft7 Kate was initially considered too short for catwalk work, with Amazonian curves dominating the catwalks of the late 80s.

However she stuck with it – and trends changed.

Naturally slender, Kate’s waifish, emaciated look came to epitomise the controversial early 90s trend for ‘heroin chic’.

At 16 she landed her first magazine cover, shot by Corrine Day for the now defunct but hugely influential magazine The Face.

That same year Kate had her first taste of genuine fame when she was cast in a Calvin Klein underwear shoot, which saw her pose topless, embracing Mark Wahlberg.

Kate is seen with actresses Gwyneth Paltrow and Liv Tyler in 1988
Kate is seen with actresses Gwyneth Paltrow and Liv Tyler in 1988

Kate very rarely gives interviews, but has since talked of how “uncomfortable” she felt on set.

She would go on to work for Calvin Klein again with the iconic 1993 campaign for the designer’s perfume Obsession.

Becoming a household name, Kate booked campaign after campaign, working for the biggest names in fashion.

But throughout the years it was her wild social life that never failed to make headlines, whether she be partying with Brad Pitt or bathing in champagne with Johnny Depp.

In her 2014 book Champagne Supernovas, journalist Maureen Callahan wrote of Kate’s love of a party: “In one sitting, [Kate] could snort three grams of coke and drink a bottle of vodka, which doctors said was the best liquor for preserving her looks: she put the stuff away so hard and fast that her nickname was ‘The Tank.'”

Friends used to call losing track of time with her as “getting Mossed” the book said.

Throughout the years it was her wild social life that never failed to make headlines, whether she be partying with Brad Pitt or bathing in champagne with Johnny Depp; she is seen in 1998 in New York
Throughout the years it was her wild social life that never failed to make headlines, whether she be partying with Brad Pitt or bathing in champagne with Johnny Depp; she is seen in 1998 in New York

After first being linked to Johnny Depp in 1994, the couple dated for four years before splitting.

In 1998, Moss spent a period in rehab in London’s Priory clinic, saying she was being treated for “exhaustion.”

She soon found herself part of the wild Primrose Hill set, alongside her good friend Sadie Frost and Sadie’s then-husband Jude Law.

Kate was seen on constant nights out, alongside her many famous friends.

She appeared in music videos for bands including The White Stripes, Elton John, and Marianne Faithfull. Indeed her vocals can even be heard on tracks by Oasis and the Lemonheads.

After first being linked to Johnny Depp in 1994, the couple dated for four years before splitting
After first being linked to Johnny Depp in 1994, the couple dated for four years before splitting

But despite previous stories of excess, it was after she started to date Babyshambles musician Pete Doherty in 2005 that Kate’s drug use threatened to derail her career.

Less than a year into their three-year romance, a grainy 40-minute video emerged showing the pair snorting cocaine.

In stills published by the mirror, Kate was seen smoking a cigarette, drinking shots of vodka and whiskey and snorting five lines.

As a result, she was rapidly ditched by multiple companies including H&M, Chanel, and Burberry, losing millions in fees.

Kate is seen in 2009 leaving Cafe De Paris after a night out in London
Kate is seen in 2009 leaving Cafe De Paris after a night out in London

But despite her wild past, today Kate has turned herself around.

Following the end of her five-year marriage to The Kills guitarist Jamie Hince in 2015, she gave up drinking and is now a changed woman.

She is three years sober, a model mother who is using her years in the modelling industry to guide the career of her only child.

And she’s having a better time than ever, according to her friend, producer DJ Fat Tony, himself been sober for 13 years.

Fat Tony said in an interview last year: “Kate’s been clean for over two years. Me and my sober mates now have a better time than we ever did when we used to drink and take drugs.”


Her model half-sister Lottie confirmed the change, telling the Daily Mail: “Kate is not drinking anymore, she is fully clean.”

And Kate herself has talked of her changed approach to life.

Speaking to NBC’s Megyn Kelly in 2018, she explained: “I go to bed, I drink lots of water, not too much coffee, and I’m trying to cut down on cigarettes.”

With her own life in order, she is keen to help her daughter, born during her relationship with Dazed & Confused editor Jefferson Hack.


The fashionista gushed about Lila in a special video with British Vogue to celebrate her January 2021 cover issue.

Kate admitted: “Yeah it was so emotional seeing Lila on the runway, it wasn’t emotional I was really nervous for her.

“I was sitting on the kitchen table and Katie England was there and Rosemary, and other girlfriends, and we were waiting for the show to start on the link, and when she came out we were like [gasp] she’s doing it, she’s doing it! I was so proud.”

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