Born Katherine Moss, she grew up in the London Borough of Croyden and attended school close to home, first Ridgeway Primary School and then Riddlesdowne High School.
Moss excelled at sport but was not much of an academic, reportedly achieving for her GCSE exams one C in Science, with the remainder being Ds, Es and Fs.
In 1988, at age 14, she went on a family holiday to the Bahamas. Whilst waiting for her return flight to the UK at JFK Airport, New York City, she was discovered by Sarah Doukas, founder of Storm Model Agency. The rest, as they say, is history.
Kate Moss joined Cindy Crawford, Naomi Campbell, Claudia Schiffer and Linda Evangelista, in becoming the Supermodels of the 1990s. It was however, in somewhat of an antithesis to the other's glowing healthy looks and towering frames, that Moss spawned a resurgence of the 'waif look', a la Twiggy in the 1960s. Like Twiggy, Moss is skinny and also much shorter than the other supermodels.
It all began with her first cover shoot for British magazine 'The Face' in 1997, which evoked much public conjecture over her skinniness. Further controversy followed Moss as she posed scantily clad for Calvin Klein underwear adverts, and then posed nude for an advert for Calvin Klein perfume, 'Obsession'.
She was criticised for giving further endorsement to the controversial 1990s 'heroin chic' look, which many people thought dangerous and unnecessary to glamorise in the world of fashion, already notorious for its drug culture.
Moss seldom gives interviews and for this reason, she is an easy target for the paparazzi and the press. However, she doesn't always turn a blind eye and once successfully sued the UK Sunday Mirror when they claimed that years earlier, she had fallen into a coma following a cocaine binge in Spain.
She has been accused of many things, ranging from being a long-term cocaine user, to taking heroin, to having anorexia, to indulging in lesbian affairs and participating in threesomes with her friend, Sadie Frost and British TV star Davinia Taylor, as well as with Sadie and her then-husband, actor Jude Law. Moss always responds that the claims are ridiculous.
Besides modelling, Moss has turned her interest to the arts, literature, and music. She was in a made-for-television comedy film, 'Inferno' (1992), directed by Ellen von Unwerth. She played alongside Helena Christensen, Eva Herzigova, Tyra Banks and Amber Smith in this story about an English author needing to avoid distractions in order to complete his latest work.
In 1997, 'Kate: The Kate Moss Book' was published. Moss personally chose the pictures of herself that would make up this compilation, representing her career in front of the camera lens. Returning to comedy films, Moss played Maid Marion/Queen Marion in 'Blackadder Back & Forth' (1999). She has made numerous appearances on television as herself, including four episodes of 'French and Saunders' in 1996.
Moss' dabblings in the field of music include appearances in music videos, such as 'Delia's Gone' by Johnny Cash and 'I Just Don’t Know What to do with Myself' by the White Stripes. She has provided vocals for both Primal Scream's 2003 'Some Velvet Morning' and ex-boyfriend Pete Doherty's band Babyshambles.
Over the years, she has worked with a number of artists and sculptors. In 2002, she teamed up with German-born British painter, Lucien Freud for a full frontal nude portrait of her whilst she was pregnant, which represented her version of the Madonna. The portrait was sold by Christie's of London, in February 2005 for £3.9 million.
Then in 2006, controversial British sculptor Marc Quinn unveiled 'Sphinx', a sculpture of Moss in a yoga pose, meant to represent "a mirror of ourselves, a knotted Venus of our age".
Usually making headlines for her convoluted personal life rather than her career, Moss always seems to go for the 'bad boys'. She has been romantically linked to the likes of many a celebrity rogue, often men with current or previous drug problems. Moss had a stormy relationship from 1994 to 1998 with actor Johnny Depp.
Soon after splitting with Moss, Depp met French singer/actress, Vanessa Paradis. Moss checked herself into London's Priory clinic in 1998, claiming to be suffering from exhaustion, rather than substance abuse. Sources claim she was in fact extremely depressed following her split with Depp. Four years later, Moss had a daughter, Lila Grace, born 29 September 2002, with Jefferson Hack, publisher and founding editor of Dazed & Confused magazine.
Moss has dated actors Billy Zane (1999), Leonardo Di Caprio, Mark Wahlberg and Daniel Craig (for four months in 2004). She dated artist Jake Chapman, photographer Mario Sorrenti, Evan Dando of the Lemonheads, Rolling Stone Ron Wood's son Jesse and Spacehog guitarist Antony Langdon. There were rumours of links with Jack Osbourne (but they insist they're just friends), and Russell Brand (ex-drug addict, MTV presenter and stand-up comic).
In 2005, Moss had a tempestuous on/off relationship with Pete Doherty, lead singer and songwriter of Babyshambles, self-confessed heroin addict and general troublemaker. Following their split, she was seen kissing and cuddling a 'toy boy' on the ski slopes of Aspen, Colorado, in December 2005.
It turned out to be Jamie Burke, 11 years her junior, the son of wealthy property developer and friend of Richard Branson's, Patrick Burke.
In July 2007, Moss and Doherty split for the last time and by March 2008, she was dating the lead singer of The Kills, Jamie Hince. He proposed to Moss on 26 March 2008 during a trip to Amsterdam with a vintage 1920s ring worth £100,000.
The couple got married on 1 July 2011 at St Peter's Church in Gloucestershire. The blushing bride wore a gown designed by John Galliano.
Moss has been a spokesperson throughout her professional career, and has worked with major British, French, New York and Italian designers, including Yves Saint Laurent, Dior, Chanel, Versace, Dolce & Gabanna, Narciso Rodriguez, Sephora.com, Missoni, Louis Vuitton, Banana Republic, Cerruti 1881, Burberry and Rimmel.
She has featured in fashion spreads in most major international fashion magazines, including Vogue (UK, French and US), The Face, Vanity Fair, W and Another Man, and she has graced the covers of these issues many times over. Moss has also worked with the fashion industry's top photographers, including Mario Testino, Steven Klein, Juergen Teller and Mario Sorrenti.
In April 2005 make-up house Rimmel launched their new mascara, using Moss as the first face of Rimmel cosmetics. In the advert, she is clad in leather and rides a motorbike through London. In July 2005, Moss won the Fashion Designers of America Vogue/CFDA award.
It is reported that the haute couture dress she wore from the Christian Dior Fall 2005 collection, to the award ceremony, inspired John Galliano to create his entire Spring 2006 ready-to-wear collection around the theme of nude and black lace.
Scandal struck on 15 September 2005, when London's Daily Mirror ran the story with the headline 'Cocaine Kate' and photographs of Moss at a Babyshambles studio recording, allegedly cutting cocaine. Doherty claimed that it was his former manager, James Mullord, who sold the photographs to the newspaper for over £150,000.
A number of sponsors and international companies were not amused and immediately dropped Moss from their campaigns. One of these was Swedish fashion retailer H&M, which had planned to use Moss for their Autumn clothing range, designed by Moss' friend Stella McCartney. Chanel stated it would not be renewing Moss' contract, due to expire in October 2005, but insisted it had nothing to do with the drug scandal. Keira Knightly became the new face of the Coco Mademoiselle fragrance. Burberry and H Stern followed suit, dropping their contracts with Moss.
Realising the impact this could have on her career, as well as on her personal life, Moss immediately checked herself into the Meadows Clinic, outside Phoenix, Arizona, in October 2005, to undergo drug rehabilitation. Checking in meant that she not only had to miss her beloved daughter's third birthday in early October, but she was also barred from any contact with family or friends for the duration of her stay at the Clinic.
People who supported her through this ordeal include Sadie Frost, Johhny Depp, Jefferson Hack, Naomi Campbell, Helena Christensen, Robbie Williams, Catherine Deneuve and artist Stella Vine. British designer Alexander McQueen touchingly used his 'walk out' after a fashion show to wear a t-shirt proclaiming, 'We love you Kate'.
Throughout this troubled period, Moss continued to appear in adverts for Dior and was on the November 2005 cover of W magazine, as well as a multi-page fashion shoot inside the issue.
With her uncanny ability to turn criticism to her credit, Moss bounced back. In November 2005, she emerged from her successful stint in rehab looking extremely happy, healthy, toned and tanned and was overjoyed to be reunited with her daughter, Lila, whom she had missed terribly whilst in Arizona. She issued an official apology but didn't say anything directly about drugs.
Moss was only too aware of Doherty's continuing drug dependence and urged him to follow her lead and attend the Meadows Clinic. When he checked himself out, before completing the drug rehabilitation programme, Moss finally put an end to their relationship in November 2005. According to Doherty, the reason for their split was because "I can't buy her diamonds and my d**k is too small."
The London Metropolitan Police made a request on 5 January 2006 for Moss to return to the UK for questioning regarding the cocaine incident. On 31 January 2006, with her solicitor present, she was questioned by the police but admitted nothing. She was not arrested, as photographs of alleged drug taking are not admissible evidence in British courts. The police finally dropped the charges, due to lack of evidence, on 16 June 2006.
The Daily Mirror apologised and paid substantial financial damages to Moss for the libel case she made against them and won. The case was finally closed and offers of work began swiftly to return, led by Virgin.
Fred Vermorel's book 'Addicted to love: Kate Moss' was released on 31 March 2006. The tabloids were having a field day, with 'Cocaine Kate' still being a hot news item. In March 2006, it was reported in Female First, a women's lifestyle magazine, that she had adopted Buddhism during her time in rehab.
British Grazia magazine reported that Moss is contemplating volunteer and charity work in order to achieve good karma. In 2014 she released her first fashion line for Topshop.