Gigi and Marquita: The role models you never knew you had

Photo posted by Gigi Hadid | Instagram (@gigihadid)

Let’s talk about Gigi Hadid for a minute.

Gigi Hadid has very quickly risen in the fashion world and is one of the most famous celebrities right now. But what makes Hadid so different from other models? Well, what images come to mind when you think of “models”? Do you think of Kate Moss in the 90’s, effortlessly sporting her Calvin’s alongside the dreamy Marky-Mark? Or do you think of sickly-looking women sauntering down runways, all bones sticking out? The modeling industry has taken plenty of heat for these stereotypical portrayals, but no more. Gigi Hadid is one of many models who is beginning to revolutionize the modeling industry.

Marquita Pring, a plus-sized model, is another face in the industry looking to create waves. After her agency, Ford Models, decided they wanted to do away with plus-size models, she was dropped. However, after eight years of modeling, she wants change.

“I prefer ‘curvy’ honestly,” she says. “Plus-size feels outdated and no one thinks of it in a positive way. It’s always got this sort of stigma attached to it. I’d like to do away with that.”

What do these two have in common? For those of you who follow Gigi Hadid on Instagram, you may have noticed her post last week. Apparently, some of her followers somehow believe that she is “fat” just because she doesn’t fit into the stereotype of the “typical model”. In her post, she acknowledges that she has breasts, a butt and shapely thighs, but isn’t asking for special treatment.

“Your mean comments don’t make me want to change my body,” she says, letting us know that she really isn’t going anywhere.

Body image is something that our generation has been lectured on endlessly from teachers, parents, school counselors and even celebrities. It’s dangerous, and can even be life-threatening when taken too far. With the advent and daily expansion of social media, body image these days is taken even further out of proportion, when comparing ourselves to others and tearing people down so quickly can be done within a matter of seconds.

Models and celebrities in general are constantly dealing with negative comments coming at them from all channels. It isn’t easy, but they can manage. These are the kinds of role models that girls should be looking up to. Girls like Hadid and Pring realize that, though they aren’t exactly what everyone expects them to be, they too are happy with the way they are and they don’t really care who disagrees.

Besides, as Gigi said, “…this is fashion, it’s art; it can never stay the same. This is 2015.”


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