Kendall Jenner may have returned to the runway—complete with a new head of blonde hair—for Burberry on Monday, but there was another blonde model whose comeback really stole the show: Agyness Deyn. In the late aughts, Deyn (with her signature androgynous, peroxide-blonde pixie cut) was on practically every runway and starring in the campaigns of pretty much every designer you can think of, including Vivienne Westwood, Moschino, Versace, Celine, Burberry, Chanel, and Yves Saint Laurent. At one point, she became so popular that Burberry reportedly dropped her because she was too famous.
Eventually, though, Deyn, decided to switch gears. “I suppose I have stopped modeling officially. I’ve not done any for a good long while now,” she told the Independent in 2012. “I think it was about four years ago when my feelings were changing towards the industry. I didn’t hate it, but I was yearning to do something different. I was on a gradient. It was a gradual thing.” So, Deyn, a pioneering model-slash-actress—not to mention model-slash-DJ—set her sights on film. Most recently, she starred in 2018’s Her Smell, alongside another model-turned-actress, Cara Delevingne.
But in the midst of the industry’s current nostalgia for what Fashion Week looked like a decade ago, Deyn’s comeback seems almost inevitable. For the first time since she walked Saint Laurent in 2015, the 36-year-old returned to the runway in an embellished trench coat. Also making an appearance were fellow late-aughts favorites Sasha Pivovarova and Freja Beha Erichsen, though unlike Deyn, both still work in the industry relatively consistently.
As for what prompted Deyn’s return, she might also be riding the current nostalgia wave—or she could be simply between films. Then again, maybe she owed Burberry’s chief creative officer, Riccardo Tisci, a favor. After all, she only walked in Alexander Wang’s show for spring/summer 2011 because the designer had helped her out with killing a cockroach in her rental home at Coachella. A deal’s a deal.