Gigi and Bella Hadid as “Instagirls”

Stylish sister duo Gigi and Bella Hadid have been making impact on the New York Fashion Week circuit recently.  Both sisters have been turning heads on and off the runway this season, enjoying front row seats at Diesel, Tory Burch, DKNY and more as well as walking for leading designers.  The genetically blessed pair are daughters of former model and Real Housewives of Beverley Hills star Yolanda Foster, who supported her daughters following in her footsteps to stardom, “I took each of them on their seventeenth birthday and found them an agency that was right for them. It ended up being the same agent for both, IMG. And I told them to work hard,” she told press.

Both girls were eager to begin viewing the shows from the spectator’s point of view this year, “I’m excited about that because I walk shows, so I feel like being able to see it from a different perspective calms my nerves a lot,” Gigi was quoted by Refinery29.  DKNY was Bella’s first viewing of a runway show and she described it as “the most amazing thing ever.”  Bella made sure to snap a quick Instagram photo of her view of the runway, captioning “@dkny thank you for a beautiful show!”


The sisters are keeping a busy schedule this season. Gigi walked the runway for Tommy Hilfiger earlier this week before celebrating with fellow-model friend Jourdan Dunn at the Maybelline New York Fashion Week Party.  Gigi has been launched as the new face of Maybelline New York so it was only fitting that she attend the party in style.  It has also recently been announced that she is the latest cover girl for both Spanish Vogue and Teen Vogue’s March editions.

Younger sister, Bella, is following Gigi’s example and has freshly launched a new campaign for Botkier handbags as well as shooting recent editorials for Love Magazine, Pop Magazine and Wonderland Mag.  She was also recently spotted at Purple Mag’s NYFW Party.

It could be argued, however, that the pair’s successful parents and socialite friends were all that was needed for a recipe towards a supermodel career.  With international exposure on The Real Housewives of Beverley Hills and strong connections with celebrities such as the Jenner/Kardashian Klan, it would have been difficult for the beautiful sisters not to fall under the spotlight.

Social media has played an enormous role in the sisters’ success. The Los Angeles beauties have racked up whopping amounts of social media attention, with over 2.3 million Instagram followers between them.

Kendall Jenner is another example of how social media and socialite fame can lead to an incredibly successful modelling career.  Clients have seen the potential in advertising through social media forms run by beautiful socialites with extremely large followings, and are using it to their advantage when it comes to choosing models.  Many clients will specifically ask agencies about a model’s social media following and book models accordingly.  Candice Swanepeol has spoken about clauses within some of her contracts that require her to post specific content at certain times on social media to her millions of followers.

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On top of this higher demand, models with a social media following of over 50k will generally earn four times the amount of money than a model with a lesser amount of followers will for the same job.  Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the Hadid sisters are pulling in some of the top jobs in the industry.

Vogue has coined the term “Instagirls” for models such as the Hadid sisters, Cara Delavigne or Kendall Jenner who use Instagram to enhance their fame and affectively connect with fans.  The term “Instagirls” also stretches out to models who were actually scouted through the social media app due to their enormous followings.  There is even a new agency, Kitten Management, who has dedicated themselves to only represent models who were discovered on the media platform.

Naomi Campbell has spoken out about the concept, “We [’90s supermodels] had to earn our stripes and take our stepping stones to get to where we’ve gotten, and to accomplish what we have achieved… Then it just comes like that for them — but I sometimes believe easy come, easy go.”

Despite Campbell’s and many other cynic’s claims, social media has become an important part of everyday life for much of the world.  The fact that these models can use this platform (that many use only recreationally) to further their career is an intelligent business move.  With countless wanna-bes competing for social media attention, standing out in the crowd, and then maintaining the spotlight consistently is not an easy feat.  By using social media as a tool, the new generation of models have been given a power that previous models have never had before: the ability to self-promote and give themselves their own “big break” instead of waiting for fashionable movers and shakers to create it for them.

Both Gigi and Bella are taking the fashion world by a storm and are supporting one another just as much as social media is.  Bella describes her older sister’s invaluable advice on staying confident and true to herself as a model, “She’s a really great older sister in that sense, because she just wants to make sure that I know that everyone has their own beauty and everyone is beautiful in their own way, and if someone doesn’t like you it’s not because you’re not a great human and they don’t like you for who you are, they just don’t need to use you that day,” she told Lucky Magazine.  Both sisters have proved their dedication and love for the industry and we are expecting to be seeing even more of them throughout their (already remarkable) careers.


You can see the whole Gigi story in Fashion Industry Broadcast’s Top Models Vol 61 “It” Girls coming soon.