04/20/2009 at 11:00 AM EDT
The teen in those oh-so-snug Calvin Klein jeans was not the confident supermodel she appeared to be on billboards in the 1980s. Instead, Brooke Shields
felt a "complete detachment," the now-accomplished actress, 43, tells More
magazine's May issue.
In her early career days, she says, "I didn't want to [look in the mirror]. What if I didn't like what I saw? What if I didn't look like I did in the magazines?"
From debuting as a baby Ivory Snow model to her most recent run on TV's Lipstick Jungle
, Shields says that her pregnancies (while in her 30s) and life experiences helped her come to terms with her self-image. "Suddenly I realized how good [my body] had been to me over the years," she says.
But just because she is comfortable in her own skin now doesn't mean she adores everything about it. "People say, 'I love my wrinkles.' I don't love my wrinkles – come on!"
Still, she admits, "I'm proud of my longevity more than anything else. There's a lot to be said for endurance. I'm trying to find the beauty in the whole picture rather than the crow's feet."