The 2023 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition just announced its newest rookie, Sixtine Rouyre, a model and body-neutrality advocate.
The Belgian-born, Texas-raised model moved to New York City at the age of 18 to pursue a modeling career. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit just as her modeling work was starting to take off, Rouyre made a pivot toward social media. As it turns out, it was a shrewd move. Now she counts nearly 800,000 followers on TikTok and more than 100,000 on Instagram (and counting). In addition to advice on how to pronounce her first name “like the chapel, not the number,” Rouyre uses her social media platforms to inspire others to love and accept themselves.
“I really hope that in seeing me, people see themselves,” she says.
Being part of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition
As for SI Swimsuit, Rouyre says it was something she’d thought about for a while. She’d even put the idea on a vision board. The fact it came to fruition is “just unreal,” she says.
“To me, being a rookie feels powerful and strong. I’ve always said that I never want to be just a pretty face as a model. If I have a platform, I want to be able to use it, and being a rookie allows me to do that.”
Rouyre’s shoot took place in Dominica with photographer Yu Tsai. Rourye wore a shell-adorned bikini and a giant palm leaf fashioned into a swimsuit. She was also able to celebrate her birthday the moment the photography wrapped.
“There wasn’t even any pause, it just literally went straight into them singing ‘Happy Birthday’ to me, which is insane. I got to shoot Sports Illustrated on my 25th birthday,” she says.
“We are proud to celebrate [Sixtine’s] effortless beauty, compelling intellect and confident stance on body inclusivity,” says MH Day, SI Swimsuit editor-in-chief. “Once you get past her ethereal beauty and get to know Sixtine, you are met with a woman we all aspire to be. Her messaging is on POINT and we take great pride in celebrating her here.”
Rouyre hopes her place in SI Swimsuit will inspire others to focus more on how daily habits make you feel rather than how they make you look.
“I think it’s important that people get that representation in [the] media so that they don’t feel this heavy pressure to be something that nobody is,” she says. “Nobody looks like the girls in the magazine—even the girls in the magazine don’t look like the girls in the magazine because there’s so much that goes into it. So I hope people see themselves.”
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