There’s Something About Molly

Nearly two decades after capturing the world’s attention on the cover of Sports Illustrated, Molly Sims is once again stealing the hearts (and likes) of fans across the country, this time as an entrepreneur, producer, and very hilarious star of her own growing social media empire. We sat down with The Wrong Missy actress to talk parenting through a pandemic, staying authentic in the digital age, and why when it comes to TikTok, it pays to be weird.

EDITED BY Alyssa Montemurro

STYLED BY Kate Davidson Hudson


LOCATION Wölffer Estate Vineyard

With her piercing brown eyes, structured cheekbones, and towering, statuesque frame, it’s hard to imagine Molly Sims as anything other than the charming, all-American supermodel-turned-actress that she is today. And yet, to hear the Kentucky native tell it, that wasn’t always the case. “I always knew I wasn’t the most beautiful girl, or the smartest, the coolest, or the skinniest, but I was kind,” she says. “I did what people asked and I worked really, really hard.”

I always knew I wasn't the most beautiful girl, or the smartest, the coolest, or the skinniest, but I was kind," she says. "I did what people asked and I worked really, really hard.

Molly Sims

It’s that down-to-Earth mentality and girl-next-door approachability that has undoubtedly served Sims well throughout her career. First, as a five-time Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue cover star, then as a popular T.V. actress, and most recently, as the star of a growing social media empire, producer, digital content creator, investor and beauty entrepreneur. 

“TikTok definitely changed the way people see me,” explains Sims of her newfound social media stardom. “I think of myself as a regular mom, because I do regular mom things, but I think there was a disconnect early on with my audience and my community of being relatable.”  

Born in Murray, Kentucky, the former Victoria’s Secret model credits her parents for doing everything in their power to raise her with a sense of fierce independence. As a child, Sims attended public Murray high school before enrolling at Vanderbilt University, where she was initially studying to become a lawyer before ultimately pursuing a modeling career. When speaking of her late mother, who passed earlier this summer,  the poised actress reveals a raw and deeply vulnerable side—one that is not at all surprising given her candid nature. 

“She was just so instrumental in who I am and my path, that’s why it’s still so hard to go back and talk [about her]” shares Sims.  “It’s not that my mom wouldn’t say ‘you’re so pretty.’ It is that she said, ‘Ahh, you’re so smart. You can do anything.”

It's not that my mom wouldn't say 'you're so pretty.' It is that she said, 'Ahh, you're so smart. You can do anything.

Molly Sims
Molly Sims

LA PERLA Maison Rainbow Slip; BVLGARI Serpenti Necklace & Serpenti Bracelet. On Previous Image: PROENZA SCHOULER Coat, Top & Necklace. HUNTER Original Tall Boot. On her right hand: FOUNDRAE Dream Band (Pinky finger). CARTIER Clash Ring (Ring finger). On her left hand: CARTIER Juste un Clou Ring (Index finger).

And anything is precisely what the 5’10” Southern beauty did. Taking a semester off from Vanderbilt to dip her toes into the modeling world, the then brunette soon found herself traveling around Europe for six years, during which time she shot numerous high-profile campaigns, catalogs and fashion editorials. Looking back on her time at Vanderbilt, Sims got a brief taste of what it meant to be a small fish in a big pond and the power of independence. “ I loved Vanderbilt but there was a bit of a mean girls group called ‘The Monsters’, and I wasn’t from New York, or Dallas, or Atlanta…I was from Kentucky. And very, very naive in a way, which I think ultimately was a good thing. But I soon realized how mean they were” explains Sims of her first brush with a mean-girl experience. “And I remember thinking, ‘Wait, everyone wears their hair the same way. Everyone dresses the same way’. But [my mother] had always taught me to be different. If the girls were wearing their hair curly, I wore it straight. So that set off a little bit of the rebellious streak in me.”

Taking a pause from her studies at Vanderbilt, Sims was sent by her agency, Next Models, to Germany, before moving on to Paris and then London. After landing the cover of the highly-coveted September issue of Vogue Paris in 1999,  with just a touch of Vaseline on her eyelids and completely au natural hair, Sims explains that that pivotal moment catapulted her career and, for perhaps the first time, allowed her to feel as if she was “finally going to get to be the cool girl.” Within a year, Sims went on to land herself the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. In addition to covering the esteemed publication five times throughout her career, Sims would also be remembered for sporting the barely-there, $30 million diamond bikini in 2006—the most expensive swimsuit in S.I. history. 

By the early 2000s, Molly Sims had become a household name, and with a Cover Girl contract in hand, she decided to explore a new modus operandi. “Ultimately, I knew I didn’t want to [model] forever. There are only so many hours that you can just sit there and do nothing,” she reminisces. “And at that time, everything was just dominated by drugs, and late nights and long hours. And all the travel. You could be in five countries in one week. And, as I look back, I think, ‘how the f*ck did I stay normal?’”

Molly Sims

DOLCE & GABBANA Bra, Shorts & Cardigan. FOUNDRAE Dream Necklace, Classic Fob Necklace, Karma Bracelet, Classic Triptych Bangle, & Passion Band.

After taking over as the host of MTV’s model-centric House of Style series in 2000, Sims transitioned into acting, a career move she credits her friend and fellow supermodel Shalom Harlow for after she introduced Sims to an acting course in Los Angeles. Two years and close to 200 red-eyes between Paris and L.A later,  Sims graduated from the course, ultimately landing herself the lead regular of Delinda Deline in the hit television series Las Vegas.

“My first reaction was, ‘I can’t be in the same place for that long,” says Sims of the gig. “It was probably the first time in my life that I was with the same people and in the same place for longer than five days, and I was not an L.A. fan, to be honest.” To her amazement, Sims would stay put there for five years, while still shooting large-scale modeling campaigns in between, and ultimately credits the show with being one of the best learning experiences in her career.

“You don’t realize how fast it goes,” she adds. It was then while playing a pregnant Ms. Deline on Las Vegas, that the former swimsuit model recognized something shifting within. “I had always wanted a family,” explains Sims. “I just knew I didn’t want to get married young. My mom always reminded me that you have so much life to live.”

Molly Sims

Determined to live life on her own terms, Sims sought the advice of an IVF specialist. “This was ten years ago,” she says of the initial meeting. “He suggested I freeze my embryos. I remember, he turned to his computer and said, ‘we can find you sperm right here and now!’ I said ‘thank you, but I think I’m going to be ok.” The now mother-of-three laughs, “I didn’t speak to him for a year.”

Taking gambling off the set and into her personal life, the Las Vegas star ultimately decided to freeze her embryos prior to her engagement with her now-husband, producer and head of original films at Netflix, Scott Stuber. “I was very clear with Stuber from the start about what I wanted,” asserts Sims. Candidly sharing a touch of the trademark self-awareness from which Sims has conjured a hugely-allegiant community of followers, she explains that she is a “very codependent” person. “I do better with my life and with my business if I am anchored. I need that stability. When I met Stuber,” and this is one thing Sims concedes she will tell her own daughter, “I had my own life; I had my own car, I had my own housing, I had my own money. And, I would have had children on my own.” For Sims, this is an important life lesson because she feels as though it helped her “go into the relationship on more of an even playing field.” It was likely that sense of self-assuredness and her charming penchant for unabashed honesty, a characteristic she’s never shied away from, especially in front of her husband.

I had my own life; I had my own car, I had my own housing, I had my own money. And, I would have had children on my own.

Molly Sims

Even prior to their dating relationship, Sims reveals there was just something about Stuber that made her feel as if she could be herself around him without having to sugarcoat things in the way typical of most Hollywood actresses. In one interaction, in particular, Sims recalls attending the CAA’s annual Golden Globes party one year with a friend. “I looked incredible, I was in a freaking ball gown,” she says, “but we got there and I was like I just can’t do this tonight. I just could not do, you know, that whole Hollywood bullshiting thing, so I got up and left.”

While waiting for her car outside of the party, Sims ran into Stuber, an acquaintance she says she “had known for a while and thought was really good-looking,” but had heard had recently gotten married. “So we were standing there talking and he asked me how I was doing, and I just said, ‘you know, not really that good actually.’ I don’t know what possessed me, to blurt out honesty in Hollywood at that moment, but I did.” 

Molly Sims

MAX MARA Cupro Coat, Top, & Pant. BVLGARI Necklace. On her right hand: CARTIER Clash Bracelet, Clash Ring (Ring finger), Juste un Clou Ring (Index finger). On her left hand: CARTIER Clash Bracelet, Clash Ring (Ring finger), & Juste un Clou Ring (Index finger).

To her surprise, Stuber reacted with the same amount of candid openness. “If you know my husband, you know he’s a good politician,” explains Sims. “He makes everyone feel great and he’ll never really say that something is wrong, but for whatever reason that night when I asked him how he was doing, he was just like ‘eh, you know, it’s alright.’ Of course, I’m such a straight-shooter, that after talking for a bit about the different projects that we were working on, I just told him to ‘call my agent’ because I would love to come in on some of the things he was working on or whatever. And I left.” 

As fate would have it, the two ended up meeting at the Chateau Marmont a few days later to discuss some of the projects Stuber was working on as a producer at the time. “It was just so easy,” recalls Sims of the business meeting. “I didn’t know at the time what was going on with him personally, so we just talked a lot about business and what we were both working on. Then at one point, he asked me ‘what do you want to do,’ and I was just like ‘I want a family. I’d love to shoot all of these things, but I need to pick a lane.’ And he was like ‘really?’ And I just said, ‘yeah, I do.’

Fast-forward to almost a year later, and with Stuber now divorced and Sims in a bit of a dating rut (“I ended up dating a few guys and then got dumped a few more times”), the two ended up going out to dinner together, after a bit of persuasion on Stuber’s part. “I had always thought about Scott throughout that time,” admits Sims, “but I just didn’t think we should date. So finally, when he asked me to dinner I said ‘OK, fine.’ We’ll go to dinner, but we have to go where no one will see us because he was just such a big producer at the time and I just didn’t want that kind of attention being put on my dating life.” Little did she know, however, that that dinner would change everything. “We went to dinner and that was just it,” she says matter of factly. “From that dinner on, we’ve been together.” 

Molly Sims

ALTUZARRA Beverly Sweater & Tony Skirt. MICHAEL KORS COLLECTION Belt. On her right hand: BVLGARI Serpenti Necklaces & Serpenti Bracelet. CARTIER Clash Ring (Index finger). On her left hand: CARTIER Juste un Clou Ring (Index finger). CHANEL Coco Crush Ring (Ring finger).

The couple’s change in relationship, however, did little to change Sims’ mind about IVF. If anything, it only convinced her further. “I knew ultimately that I really wanted to freeze [my eggs],” says Sims. “Cut to a year and a half, almost two years later, and I decided I’m doing it.” Despite warnings from her friends about telling Stuber so soon into their relationship, Sims remained true to her convictions, telling herself, ‘if he dumps me, then he dumps me.'” Luckily for Sims, that was not the case. The couple froze their embryos in January and got engaged in May. A bold bet to make on a man, but an accurate reflection of Sims’ conviction. The Hollywood power couple has since tripled down with three children; Brooks (8), Scarlett (5), and Grey (3).  Of course, that’s not to suggest that Sims’ first pregnancy was a walk in the park. After conceiving her first child ironically on her honeymoon, she soon found herself and her body transformed from a self-described, “skinny, successful, Victoria Secret model to 9 months later [weighing] 204 lbs. I have always had body dysmorphia, but that really was a definite low for me.” Later, Sims discovered that a thyroid disorder had a role in her pregnancy complications.

I have always had body dysmorphia, but that really was a definite low for me.

Molly Sims

When asked about her children’s role in her social media profile today, Sims’ motherly instincts naturally come to the forefront. “I try to keep them out of it,” she admits. “I’m not a huge fan of social media, even though it’s how I communicate with my community and friends. It’s not all bad, though.”  

In fact, Sims’ social media presence has earned more than a few likes while giving the world a glimpse into an underexposed quirky side reserved mostly for her adoring husband and children. Although Stuber plays a minimal role in her social media stardom, he encourages the actress to continue on the road of self-deprecation and authenticity. Sims explains her husband’s ongoing support in that, “he encourages me to show that [funny] side of myself. I’m like, ‘but, why?’, and he goes because ‘you do weird sh*t. It’s funny!’” And, seemingly, Stuber has clocked what the rest of America has,  “I am the mom that will have brownies in the morning,” she says with a laugh. “I am the mom that will drive two hours for a lacrosse game. I change diapers.” Although Sims’ frequent wine intake on TikTok doesn’t accurately reflect her real-life personality, she relates to the desire to say, hide in the closet with a glass of rosé

Molly Sims

CHLOE Serge Top, Cady Skirt & Franckie Belt. HUNTER Original Boot. FOUNDRAE Karma Necklace. On her right hand: BVLGARI Serpenti Bracelet. CARTIER Clash Bracelet & Juste un Clou Bracelet. On her left hand: BVLGARI Serpenti Bracelet. CARTIER Clash Bracelet.

“Parenting three children within five years is a full-time job,” she exclaims. “All they want is you. In all honesty, my focus on social media and the Molly Sims website  is really just a pathway to stay home. I made a deal with my husband when we first got married that we both can’t be on the road traveling in different directions.”  It’s a juggle that the model-actress-producer highlights with refreshing candor through her social media posts, explaining “even with help [with the children] at the end of the day, they still want you. But, I do worry about the [privilege of extra help] every day. If you want to know something- I will not raise a douche-y kid.”

If you want to know something- I will not raise a douche-y kid.

Molly Sims
Molly Sims

MICHAEL KORS COLLECTION Sweater & Scarf. CARTIER Clash Ring (Ring finger). CHANEL Coco Crush Ring (Index finger). FOUNDRAE Dream Band (Pinky Ring).

On her kids (from left to right): MARIE-CHANTAL Evonne Dress. CHANEL Coco Crush Bracelet. FOUNDRAE Dream Necklace. MARIE-CHANTAL Oxford Shirt & Emmitt Short. MARIE-CHANTAL Oxford Shirt & Emmitt Short.

Leave it to Molly Sims to turn motherhood into an entrepreneurial endeavor. The modern Martha Stewart of social media, Sims has seemingly cornered the ‘moms in quarantine’ market on TikTok, turning her at-home life and humor into viral Instagram REELS.  “You know, I think in life, sometimes you just have to let things go sideways and be OK with it. I’ve never been the girl to have FOMO. I’m more focused on my family and gratitude. And, I’m good.” Time and experience have ultimately informed Sims’ career outlook moving forward, and like most things in the Molly Sims brand, it’s the authenticity factor that rings most true, “Now, in my 40s, [projects] have to be a fit. I’m really big on energies. I will never work with people who are not kind, who are not professional, who are not on the same plane of where I am. I don’t give a f*ck how much money it is. I won’t do it.”

Now, in my 40s, [projects] have to be a fit. I’m really big on energies. I will never work with people who are not kind, who are not professional, who are not on the same plane of where I am. I don’t give a f*ck how much money it is. I won’t do it.

Molly Sims

So, what’s next for the growing Molly Sims empire? Having hired a “dream team” of executives to run the soon-to-be relaunched Molly Sims website, the mother-of-three is spending her time these days focusing on those things that truly bring her joy — “I really love beauty,” she admits — while also producing, launching a podcast and seeking out strategic investments. “I’ve always been one to find incredible talent,” she says. Among one of her latest projects is serving as an executive producer alongside Reese Witherspoon on an eight-episode Netflix series titled, Get Organized with The Home Edit, available beginning September 9th. Additionally, Sims also serves as a skincare brand ambassador for the PRP skincare brand, SoME, and continues to invest in companies run by female entrepreneurs such as Carbon 38, Sagely Naturals, and Halogen Ventures, an early-stage venture capital fund investing in women-led consumer technology companies.

Molly Sims

CHANEL Dress & Boot. BVLGARI Serpenti Bracelet. CARTIER Clash Bracelet & Juste un Clou Bracelet.

Still, despite her high-profile status, it seems fair to say that these days Molly Sims is perfectly happy to trade in the glamour of Hollywood for a box of General Mills, a bottle of Chardonnay and a bowl of laughs. Whether it’s on the cover of a magazine or in a TikTok video, the multi-hyphenate continues to steal the hearts and likes of fans across the country with her Southern girl charm, relatability and humor, proving yet again, that there’s just something about Molly.

Shop the Cover Look

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Cover Look:

ALTUZARRA Beverly Cardigan; BVLGARI Serpenti Necklaces.

On her right hand: BVLGARI Serpenti Bracelet & Serpenti Ring (Middle finger). CARTIER Clash Ring (Index finger).  CHANEL Coco Crush Ring (Pinky finger).

On her left hand: CHANEL Coco Crush Ring (Ring finger).

“In partnership with our friends at La Perla”

Talent: Molly Sims @mollybsims. Styling Assistant & Assistant Editor: Chloe Iturralde. Sittings Assistant: Ellie Gill. Hair Stylist: Matthew Monzon @matthewmonzon. Makeup Artist: Gianpaolo Ceciliato @gpcbeauty using Laura Mercier /

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