After growing up on a farm in Canada, Helfer began modeling at age 17 and was crowned the 1992 Ford Supermodel of the World, eventually gracing the covers of many magazines and becoming a Victoria's Secret beauty. A stint as a correspondent on the Canadian style series Ooh La La sparked her interest in acting, and in 2002 began to rack up a handful of credits including a dead model on CSI, and as Farrah Fawcett in the TV-movie Behind the Camera: The Unauthorized Story of Charlie's Angels. But her turn as Battlestar Galactica's seductive Cylon Number Six turned her into an instant fanboy favorite. In 2006, concurrent with her work on the hit series, she became a judge for the first season of the reality series Canada's Next Top Model. Helfer is the co-founder of Acting Outlaws, which services various charity events.