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From Catwalk to Boardroom: The Rise of the ModelPreneur

From Catwalk to Boardroom: The Rise of the ModelPreneur

When we think of models turned moguls, our immediate first thought is Tyra Banks and her supremely entertaining America’s Next Top Model. But the multi-hyphenate model/producer/actress etc etc etc is not the only former model to make a living in business. We’re see more and more beauties that have graced our runways take interests outside of modelling, building long-lasting brands with impact.

One such entrepreneurial former supermodel is icon Naomi Campbell, whose #NaomiAfrica is more than just a hashtag – it has seen the British-born beauty head to Nigeria to participate in Lagos’ Arise Fashion Week and Homecoming events, and also publicise and promote philanthropic pursuits all over the continent.

Other models who have capitalised from their reach to build brands are Miranda Kerr with her skincare line Kora Organics, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley with her media brand Rose Inc, and Candice Swanpoel with her swimwear line Tropic of C. This increasing number of ‘modelprenuers’, however, begs the question: how sustainable is modelling? With the media constantly portraying youth as the vision of beauty, models often turn to other routes later in life, despite remaining, as we have seen with all of the above models, breathtakingly beautiful. Yet, this documented ageism is still prevalent, which is why projects such as Vogue’s Non Issue are so important.

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Do you think the modelling industry is ageist?

Nevertheless, the Modelprenuer is a force to be reckoned with. Seeing women take what they love and create new life from it should inspire everyone, budding businesswoman or not. And even more so when there’s a social cause behind it. 

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