The modeling industry is unfortunately known for creating idealized images of bodies, appearances, and aesthetics that can, more often than not, ignite insecurities and project unattainable goals across society. It’s an industry laced with racism, body dysmorphia, and a general attitude of disregard that can prove physically and emotionally harmful for those in it. Luckily there’s a good number of models fighting from inside the system to make a difference.
As the faces of brands, and fashion and beauty campaigns, models hold positions of visibility that allow them to address large audiences. When they talk, we listen, whether it be about body positivity, institutionalized racism, or simply about the importance of education, and whether they address these issues through Instagram posts, interviews, TED talks, forums, or through their actions entirely. With public attention, there comes an opportunity to shed light on various causes and problems, so modeling can actually lend a hand to advocacy.
Their actual, on-paper jobs may be to simply model clothes or cosmetics, but that doesn’t stop these nine models from going above and beyond to use their voices for good. These empowered women are so much more than just pretty faces, and their words and deeds show that they’re ones to warch—on camera, and off.