Born on June 1, 1973, Heidi grew up in Bergisch Gladbach, Germany, where her father Gunther worked for a cosmetics company. Her mother, Erna, is a hairdresser.She was just 18 when she stumbled upon an ad for a modelling competition. Initially laughing off the idea, she was persuaded to apply by a friend and found herself with a three-year modelling contract and a very busy schedule. Soon she\'d racked up some serious frequent-flyer mileage jetting between the catwalks in Paris and Milan before settling in the States.Despite her jet-set lifestyle, Heidi is adamant that the usual pretensions and behaviour associated with superstars do not apply to her. "I\'ve never slept with a rock star, taken drugs or been photographed naked," she emphasises. Generally self-deprecating, at times she can also be charmingly self-conscious. Before appearing on US TV\'sThe Late Show With David Letterman, the curvaceous beauty worried that she wouldn\'t be funny. "My husband came up with the idea that I should just yodel and I did," she says. Needless to say, both the audience and the presenter, a notorious curmudgeon, were doubled up with laughter.After gracing the covers of countless magazines, including Cosmopolitan and Glamour, Heidi landed the coveted cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition and in doing so graduated into the world of one-name wonders alongside Cindy, Naomi and Tyra. Like her fellow catwalk stars, she then began the transition from model to actress. Unlike some of them, however, she met with some initial success, quickly notching up several well-received spots on the hit sitcom Spin City as Michael J Fox\'s girlfriend. She then went on to land a role in the indie flick Blow Dry and a one-off part in the popular Sex And The City opposite Sarah Jessica Parker.Romantically, Heidi was linked inaccurately to a number of celebrities, but in 1999 she wed New York City hairstylist Ric Pipino. When the marriage ended at the end of 2002 Heidi was soon photographed stepping out with Red Hot Chili Peppers front man Anthony Kiedis and Naomi Campbell\'s ex, Formula One boss Flavio Briatore. By the time she gave birth to Flavio\'s daughter Leni in May 2004, however, the two were no longer an item. Instead it was British pop star Seal who was at her side. Just before Christmas 2004 the singer popped the question and not long after Heidi posted the news that they were expecting a child of their own on her website. In May 2005 she and Seal tied the knot in a Mexico ceremony, where he serenaded the bride with a song written specially for the occasion. Their son, Henry, arrived in September 2005. Just over a year later, in November 2006, they welcomed another addition to their family as Heidi gave birth to son Johan. Motherhood, however, hasn\'t slowed the blonde beauty down one bit. In 2006 she made a cameo role in The Devil Wears Prada starring Meryl Streep and hosted popular US reality TV show Project Runway.
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