6 Bombshell Activists and What They Stand For
There used to be a stereotype about models — that they were just pretty faces who didn’t know or care what was going on in the world.
But now that models have been given their own platforms like Instagram and Twitter, in addition to starring in ad campaigns and editorial photo shoots, the world is learning just how well-rounded many models are. And models are jumping at the chance to get their voices heard and lend their massive platforms to the causes they care about.
These sexy, badass women prove that they are more than just a pretty face on a magazine cover, and strive to use their platform to advocate for a meaningful cause and garner awareness around societal issues. They are breaking all the stereotypes and looking effing amazing while doing it.
1. Ashley Graham: Body Positivity
Ashley Graham boasts a confidence and a fierceness that is breaking grounds for curvy girls, being the first plus-sized model to have the honor of covering British Vogue in the January 2017 issue.
She is taking an industry that is notorious for body shaming by storm by embracing curves, cellulite, and other physical features that have previously been airbrushed out of existence in the fashion world. Recently, she teamed up with the Health at Every Size movement, did a Ted Talk about body positivity and self love, and is being recognized by major fashion publications worldwide.
2. Emily Ratajkowski: Women’s Sexual Health
Emily Ratajkowski is most famously known for her appearance in Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” music and her skyrocketing modeling career. She is also keen on the issues, speaking out for women’s sexual health by collaborating with Planned Parenthood to raise funds and spread awareness on birth control and sexual health services for women.
Both in her activism and her modeling career, she shows that she is unashamed of her womanhood and feels empowered in her own skin, countering the taboo that women should feel ashamed of their own sexuality. She has also been extremely vocal in her endorsement of Bernie Sanders, a champion for a range of progressive issues.
3. Karlie Kloss: Girls in STEM
Karlie Kloss is known as the girl who can do both high fashion editorials and also strut a Victoria’s Secret runway, but she is also passionate about empowering young girls to learn how to code and become leaders in male-dominated fields of science and technology.
She hosts coding summer camps and awards career scholarships to young female developers through her organization “Kode With Klossy.” Her dual role as a show-stopping supermodel and avid coder causes people to pause and think, “If she can code, so can I.”
4. Winnie Harlow: Body Image Positivity
5. Hereith Paul: Education in Rural Africa
Before she was catapulted into the fashion spotlight as Maybelline’s spokesmodel, Hereith Paul and her mother raised money for the family-run orphanage in Tanzania. Now, she donates a percentage of her earnings to the kids there, so they can save up for high school and college.
She has ambitious plans to build schools for children with disabilities in her home country, since she grew up taking classes along blind and deaf students who did not get the additional attention they needed. Also a natural hair champion on the runway, she values staying true to yourself no matter what and never forgetting where you came from.
6. Hari Nef: LGBTQ + Issues
After being turned away by multiple model agencies, Hari Nef walked into New York’s IMG offices, an agency that represents supermodels such as Kate Moss and Gigi Hadid, to meet Ivan Bart, who called her weeks later to tell her that she was signed to the biggest modeling agency in the world.
This made her the first openly transgender woman to receive a worldwide modeling contract, though she still openly critiques the fashion industry for capitalizing off the “trans-aesthetic” without actually caring about the livelihoods of the trans community. She speaks on behalf of the LGBTQ+ community, and gave an inspiring speech at NYC’s LGBT solidarity rally about the protection of minorities under Trump’s presidency.
These women prove that making a name in fashion and modeling can provide for a powerful platform for activism, and that being sexy and woke are in fact complimentary, not mutually exclusive!