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Models who conquered the Runway to become Entrepreneurs

Emily Ratajkowski close up

Photo: @emrata

by Georgia Rhodes


Hero image of woman in swimwear

Melissa Odabash

USD 250

Melissa Odabash wearing white one-piece swimsuit

Photo: @melissaodabash

Candice Swanepoel wearing Tropic of C swimsuit

Photo: @candiceswanepoel

Emily Ratajkowski wearing Inamorata Woman green bikini

Photo: @emrata

Since then her career has skyrocketed, walking for the biggest names in fashion and frequently modeling on the cover of top magazines. In 2021 the fashion world saw Jenner tackle sexist stereotypes as she made her mark in a heavily male-dominated industry. Developing her women-led, socially aware Tequila business; 818 she built a forward-thinking, environmentally responsible business.

Jenner has not been the only model who has transitioned into a prosperous female boss.

Melissa Odabash led the way for young models with an unconstrained vision. These powerful female entrepreneurs are pushing boundaries and rightly so. Under a strong male gaze, they are showing the fashion world that they are more than what society sees to be a ‘model’. Odabash endorsed an organic journey from a swimwear model to a swimwear designer. Scouted at a young age she moved to Italy in her early 20’s to pursue her modelling career, she was quick to launch her own line as she noticed a lacking in bikinis that she favoured. Launching in 1999 she paved the way with the finest quality and captivating prints, still today the Melissa Obadash brand is seen as the Lamborghini of swimwear.

Emily Ratajkowski in black one piece swimsuit by Inamorata Woman

Photo: @emrata

As a woman who was seen as the epitome of sexy, not only is Emily Ratajkowski now an established model on the couture catwalks but she also leveraged her career becoming a female entrepreneur and author advocating for feminist empowerment.

The queen of swimwear launched her own line back in 2017 full of different styles to make women feel confident within themselves, her feminist values stand strong at the heart of her brand. It wasn’t long until Inamorata became a thriving business, with her 18 million followers selling out her collection launches in just 24 hours!

It was no surprise when Victoria Secrets Angels Candice Swanepoel laid down her wings for an entrepreneurial venture.

Candice Swanepoel in black bikini by Tropic of C

Photo: @tropicofc

From the cover of Vogue to an office desk, the glamorous supermodel took a leap of faith in her passions; swimwear and sustainability. Modeling since the young age of 15, Swanepoel has worked with the world’s top fashion brands from Chanel to Givenchy. No stranger to working with swimsuits as a renowned Victoria Secret Angel, she dove (no pun intended) into launching her swimwear brand: Tropic of C back in 2018. With a significant goal to source not only the best fabrics but to keep the whole line sustainable, even down to the tags. The cover star wanted to make women feel good with her simplistic aesthetic for beachwear.

Others are even making a name for themselves off the catwalk and out of the fashion industry.

Miss Bella Hadid is no longer remembered as ‘Gigis younger sister’ but the face of Dior Parfums, a Victoria Secret Angel, and the cover of Vogue. Signing in 2014 with IMG Models she is now a fashion force of her own, walking the runway of Balmain, Chanel, Versace and all the greatest Couture houses. As one of the most recent models to take on a new dynamic transition off the runway, she recently became co-founder of Kin Euphorics. Distinguishing her entry into the wellness industry, the two sectors of her career undoubtedly go hand in hand. Kin Euphorics offer a range of wellness drinks that intend to boost creativity or increase calm feelings, to offer a daily serving of good vibes. With a rise of models and celebrities entering the beauty sector, this is by no means a mistake but a tactical venture for the model.

Will Bella Hadid be the next to join the fashion business with her own bikini line? We wouldn’t be surprised with her love of the outdoors and some sunny vitamin D.

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