Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit Edition “sets the standard for what it means to be beach-ready,” says model Philomena Kwao, which is precisely why this new campaign is so groundbreaking. Kwao (below) stars in swimsuitsforall’s new #SwimSexy ad in the new Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition along with Ashley Graham (above) and Nicola Griffin, and these ladies have a message: Sexy knows no size, race, or age.
In these stunning images from the body-positive campaign, 56-year-old Griffin (below) shines in a metallic bikini. “To be an older woman, it’s wonderful for other women out there to show them that they also can wear a gold bikini and look fabulous and feel confident. It’s quite groundbreaking,” she told InStyle.
“By including women of different races, different sizes, different ages, they’re knocking down those barriers and showing women that actually you can be beautiful as you are,” Kwao said of the campaign, which will grace the pages of SI next month.
Graham, who was just revealed as a model in the issue and as a contender for Rookie of the Year, celebrates the campaign as a big step for body positivity but knows the industry still has far to go. “You’re not going to see the words ‘plus size’ written about a model, or ‘curve,’” she told us about the future of modeling. “You’re going to see a lot more curvier, thicker models on the high-end runway, because that’s exactly where we need to see more diversity.”
Kwao believes that better representation, from high-end fashion to beauty campaigns, will help women to embrace their curves. “Celebrate the things that make you individual and unique and realize that there’s no one in this world that looks like you. Put on your bikini, put on whatever you want to wear, and don’t worry about what other people are saying.” We like the sound of that.