If you haven’t been following the whole ‘Real Supermodel’ saga, let’s quickly break it down. Recently, original supermodel, Stephanie Seymour, told Vanity Fair that Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid shouldn’t be referred to as supermodels, but rather “bitches of the moment.” (She later apologised and said it was taken out of context). This comment came just a few weeks after another former model, Rebecca Romijn, said that Kendall and Gigi were “not true supermodels” because they came from reality shows and used social media to advance their careers. (She also said she was misquoted.) Well, turns out the KwEeN of the supermodels, Tyra Banks, is sick of listening to it all so she took to her blog to write an essay pleading with her “sisters” to empathise with both sides.
Firstly she addressed her original supermodel sisters, saying she understands their frustration at seeing these girls rise to the top with such ease compared to how things were in their day:
"We worked runways and shot magazine spreads together, schlepped to countless go-sees, used pay phones for on-the-go communication, and subways for transportation around the globe – no cell phones, Ubers or Lyfts around. Our GPS were huge, awkward maps in Italian and French that we pulled out when lost and scared...We witness young girls on reality shows and super popular girls on social media now being called Supermodels and think, "WHAT?! It's not fair! Is that kind of success even real?" Answering her own question she puts it simply, “I’ve gotta be blunt. Yes. IT IS REAL.” Although the landscape has changed and things may be a little easier to access, that doesn’t take away from the fact that there is huge demand for these girls from the public and designers alike. If anyone would understand this, it’s Tyra Banks, given she ran America’s Next Top Model for 22 seasons.
Then she turns to the newbies on the modelling scene, saying she understands how hard they work and although they aren’t using paper maps and payphones to get through their days, they are facing a whole new list of challenges: *"You’re kicking ass, working hard, running from show to show, shoot to shoot and party to party (because you have to be seen and have a cool social media post that night because your followers are complaining you haven’t been posting enough lately). You’re driving yourself into exhaustion all while showing the world post by post that it looks so easy, when in reality, it is anything but. The pressure is ON. You have to be perfect but relatable, friendly yet intimidating, sexy but not too much or you’ll get barraged with the capital ‘S’ word all over your feeds. You have to look put together all the time, not just on the catwalk but as you arrive backstage. The world is watching your every move, judging whether or not you have acceptable personal style. Oh goodness… it’s that time again. Time for another post on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, Vine, Periscope, Facebook Live, Pinterest… all day, every day, all the time. There’s no real YOU time. You are THEM. Your followers. They want more and more and more."*But in a bid to just make everyone understand each other a little better, she asks the new girls to empathise with the models of yesteryear and how hard it must be for them to watch their beloved industry change so drastically, saying, “Change is hard. And when you’re a legend, and have ruled the roost, it’s even harder. It can be frustrating, painful, and sometimes can leave one in disbelief.” However, she also thanks them for making supermodel-dom a thing again, as opposed to the whole industry dying off like “endangered species.”
She ends the heartfelt post by asking for everyone to just make and be at peace with one another, reminding both sides that they are better off supporting each other than they are fighting. *"Yesterday’s “Trinity” is today’s #Squad. And what we all must remember is that we are stronger together than apart. I hope we can start to act like it. I’ve had enough pain from my modelling years in the past and seeing my sisters in conflict today brings back those gut-wrenching memories. So, let’s band together and unite. Please end the fight."*
It really is a clear perspective on the whole debate and we’re so glad someone finally said it so eloquently! You can read the full essay here and prepare yourself to experience a whole new level of love for one Ms. Tyra Banks. RELATED: Kendall Jenner has spoken out about those nasty "Supermodel" comments RELATED: Yolanda Hadid just went into mama bear mode over criticism of Gigi Hadid and Kendall Jenner RELATED VIDEO: Tyra Banks talks body image