Mimi Macpherson was a '90s 'It Girl'. Then she changed her name and vanished from the spotlight.

In Australia in the 1990s, there were no sisters more iconic than 'It Girl' pair Elle Macpherson and younger sister Mimi Macpherson.

The sisters were well known in the Sydney scene, with Elle finding fame as a supermodel, her high-profile relationships and acting guest roles on hit shows like Friends. 

As for sister Mimi, she was making waves thanks to her career in the whale-watching and boating industry.

She had her own whale-watching business and was a successful director of multiple companies. By the late '90s she had even been featured on the cover of Cosmopolitan as "one of the 30 most successful Australian businesswomen under the age of 30".

Then in 1999, it reached a peak when Mimi became the face of Foster's beer. And from then on, she dominated the celebrity scene. 

Elle and Mimi Macpherson in 2002. Image: Getty.


Mimi Macpherson during her time as the face of Foster's beer. Image: Getty.


Mimi Macpherson in 2003. Image: Getty.

Around this time Mimi was involved in campaigns for Swatch watches, Australia Post and the National Baseball League – even becoming the face of Evolve Cosmetics.

But behind the scenes, Mimi later said spending time in the spotlight where she was mainly known for being the younger sister of a world-famous supermodel wasn't where she wanted to be.


Around this time, a sex tape was leaked, allegedly with Mimi involved in the video. Although she never confirmed it was her in the video, it was reported that it was distributed without her consent, which would now be considered an alleged act of revenge porn under new laws.

The man who appeared in the sex tape, Australian businessman Matthew Bennett, later admitted that he had made the tape, but never meant for it to be circulated. In 2019, he died of a long-term illness while living in Thailand. 

In 2008, Mimi declared bankruptcy, saying she only had $8 in the bank. A year prior, she had also been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol.

Mimi then leaned slightly into the media landscape – she became a radio presenter on a Sunshine Coast radio station, she was a celebrity contestant on the reality singing competition It Takes Two, and she was also a presenter on the Discovery Channel, championing environmental issues. 

But by the early 2010s onwards, Mimi was rarely seen in the public eye. Only recently did she say that it was a deliberate decision on her part.

Watch Elle Macpherson on The Project. Post continues below.

Video via The Project.

Today, Mimi resides on the Sunshine Coast and goes by a different name in her professional life.

Now in her mid-50s, Mimi told Daily Mail Australia in December 2022, "I just really like to keep things simple".

"I don't particularly like talking to the media. It's one of the reasons I moved away from Sydney. It's quite daunting. Going out to red carpets and having my picture taken and wearing high heels was never really my thing," she explained.

"I just like privacy. I don't trade on my name and I never have. I love Noosa, it's gorgeous."

Mimi Macpherson. Image: Getty.


As per Daily Mail Australia, she has continued to work in the business space, operating a local company called Australian Sleep Co, which markets itself as providing 100 per cent natural, plant-based sleep remedies.

She also obtained a diploma in Health Science Naturopathy at the Australasian College of Natural Therapies.

It's a similar path to what her older sister Elle has done as well, who retired from modelling to pursue work and ventures in the environmental and 'natural remedies' space.

As for the sisters' bond, Mimi said in her interview that they remain "extremely close" but don't often get to spend much time together. 

Reflecting on life today, Mimi said: "I have been here [the Sunshine Coast] for the best part of 15 years now. I just love the lifestyle. I love the water and boats. How could you not love it?"

Feature Image: Getty/Mamamia.

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