Karen Elson almost lost early modelling gig after turning up hungover

Karen Elson

Karen Elson was once nearly fired from a modelling gig for turning up late and hungover.

The British supermodel has opened up about a variety of "firsts" in a new video for British Vogue, and during the chat, revealed that she first experienced a hangover after a wild night out in Tokyo, Japan when she was there on a work trip.

"My first hangover was pretty fabulous, honestly. I was in Tokyo and I was 16 years old, modelling," she recalled. "I had gone out and we drank sake all night, and absinthe, I think I tried. I had such a terrible hangover (the next day) and my agency almost kicked me out of Tokyo because I showed up an hour late to work. Fun though."

The 41-year-old also remembered her first-ever modelling job, as a teenager sporting party clothes on British daytime show This Morning, and how the make-up artist drew lips on her that with three times with the size of her natural pout.

She then reminisced about her "I've made it" moment, which came when she was 18 years old in 1997 and had scored her first-ever magazine cover with Vogue Italia, in which she sported short red hair and thick semicircles of red paint above her eyes.

"The first 'I've made it' moment has to be my first Vogue cover, Italian Vogue cover, with Steven Meisel, Pat McGrath doing make-up, where she shaved my eyebrows off, and I cut my hair off and dyed it punk, bright red," she said. "That was the first moment when I saw that cover where I pinched myself and went, 'Oh my God, I'm on a cover of Vogue.' It was just the most magical."

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