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Bella Hadid Is Constantly Reinventing Herself

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The 50th Anniversary Issue of W is an all-out supermodel celebration featuring 17 cover stars ranging from the world’s most famous names to women who are well on their way to total fashion domination. See every cover model here and read Jenny Comita’s essay about the evolution of the beauty standards that define the industry here.

What appealed to you about being a model?
Modeling was always in my stars, and I had to accept that. My mom grew up modeling, and my sister, obviously, is incredibly successful and great at her job. At the end of the day, I think we all have this work ethic of wanting to be the best at whatever we do, and I knew that if I worked my butt off, I could succeed in this business. Still, it took a really long time to not have impostor syndrome. To be honest, it’s only been in the past year that I’ve felt confident in my craft and that impostor syndrome started to float away a little bit. Now I know what I want to do, who I want to work with, and what I like and what I don’t like. Until you really listen to yourself and stand by your boundaries, you can’t move forward.

The ’80s and ’90s as decades were distinct eras in terms of the model’s aesthetic. Do you think there is an overarching beauty trend at the moment?
No. There really isn’t one definition of what beauty is right now. For so many years, people tried to condense us into one type. It used to be about having one look and that was the look you were going to ride with for the rest of your career. I’m constantly reinventing myself, and I want to show every version of myself that I can be. For hundreds of years it was, this is how a woman looks, and this is how a man looks, and now we’re not so locked into that. The beauty of now is that you can look at yourself in many different ways and love all parts of yourself.

Source: wmagazine.com

Categories Article Gallery Photoshoots

How Bella Hadid and Ramy Youssef Became BFFs

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It is difficult to imagine a career trajectory for a millennial supermodel that does not involve a pivot to acting. In the case of Bella Hadid, arguably the world’s most famous model since she was 17, the crossover might have even seemed inevitable. “People probably thought,” she tells me, “that my first acting job would be something super sensual and sexy.”

Instead, when the 25-year-old makes her acting debut this fall as a guest star on Ramy, it’ll be in a slightly more unhinged role: a weirdo girlfriend.

The Emmy-nominated dark comedy (you can find it on Hulu) follows a fictionalized version of Ramy Youssef, an Egyptian American millennial who tries—and mostly fails—to be a good Muslim as he navigates adulthood. Across two buzzy seasons, the show has been lauded by critics for its general abhorrence of easy morality and its eagerness to dive into messy territory. For example, one of Ramy’s more quotidian plot points involves Ramy helping his best friend jerk off because his muscular dystrophy won’t allow him to masturbate.

And Hadid’s role on the show? “It’s probably one of the weirdest scripts we’ve ever written,” says Youssef. “And that says a lot.”

The model and the showrunner first connected back in January, when Youssef emailed Hadid out of the blue and asked if she’d be interested in a guest spot. They hopped on a Zoom and, after a long conversation, Hadid said yes. “I was like, this is perfect,” Hadid gushes. “We hadn’t even met before, but I had a feeling it was gonna be kismet.”

Hadid, who is of Palestinian descent, already shares with Youssef an overlapping network of friends and creative confidants. Youssef is close with Hadid’s brother, Anwar, and they’re both friends with the Canadian musician Mustafa, who was excited to hear that Hadid had found her way onto the show. “Bella’s been at the center of a world that doesn’t acknowledge what it’s like to be a Muslim at any of the intersections,” Mustafa tells me. “She’s sometimes the only Muslim or Arab person in a room, so it’s great to see Bella surrounded by her community.”

Hadid felt that sense of belonging instantly, she says. When she arrived on set for her first day of filming, she was surprised by the gift the crew had left in her trailer: a T-shirt that said “Free Palestine.” The simple, welcoming gesture made her weep. “I couldn’t handle my emotions,” Hadid says. “Growing up and being Arab, it was the first time that I’d ever been with like-minded people. I was able to see myself.”

I know what Hadid means. Feeling the constant need to minimize your identity can take its toll on you. Growing up Muslim, I often felt like I had to shrink down or hide that part of myself in order to seem less difficult or demanding. Both Hadid and Youssef—each in their own way—seem to be taking a different approach. By amplifying their heritage and proudly asserting their cultural identities, they’re embracing the spotlight and using it to complicate outdated expectations of what Arabs and Muslims are capable of in the culture. Part of what makes Ramy so special is its deft ability to raise heavy and spiritual questions: Underneath all the plotlines about porn stars and racist family members and what really caused 9/11, the show refreshingly offers no tidy answers, nor does it claim to represent what a “good” Muslim even is.

Meanwhile, in the last few years, Hadid has become perhaps the most outspoken American celebrity advocating on behalf of the Palestinian people. In an era of halfhearted virtue signaling, she is finding ways to dig deeper into the issues—and her own experiences—with her platform. This past winter, I was struck by an Instagram post in which Hadid highlighted the discrimination women who wear a hijab, like me, face every day. She took specific aim at a corner of the culture she knows well. “If we are seeing more and more appreciation of hijabs and covers in fashion,” she wrote, “we have to also acknowledge the cycle of abuse that Muslim women of all different ethnicities in fashion get met with on a regular basis within fashion houses, especially in Europe [and] America.” It was, to say the least, not the sort of concern that your traditional supermodel is posting.

If the Hadid we see in the culture is an honest reflection of who she is in private, Youssef couldn’t be more unlike the character he plays on television. Real Ramy is easygoing, kind. Almost effortlessly thoughtful. On the day the pair met up for the photo shoot to accompany this story, he met Hadid at her apartment here in New York and they rode together to set, where he gamely permitted her to take the lead in styling him for the photos. He made certain that he properly introduced me to his then fiancée, and now wife, who came to hang out. He was even so focused on continuing our conversation that he missed his scheduled flight out of town.

The Ramy you see onscreen is a hall-of-fame fuckboy. Like, you could retire his jersey and put it in the fuckboy rafters. TV Ramy is also on a spiritual journey, but his pursuit of inner peace comes at the expense of all the people who love him. The second season of the show concludes with Ramy cheating on his fiancée the night before they get married—with his cousin—a catastrophe that ruins the lives of everyone in his orbit.

Despite having donated his likeness to the character, Youssef knows that TV Ramy sucks. “You pick the worst side of you because then the people you meet are like, ‘Oh, you’re so much better than I expected!’ As opposed to the other way around,” he explains. “It’s all upside, really. You gotta undersell hard.”

Hadid can relate. “That’s what I’ve dealt with my whole career!” she adds. “People will meet me and think, Oh, I thought you were a bitch. Or I thought you were mean. [They assume] I’m this other person. I’m like, This other person that you saw on a magazine cover: no soul, no nothing? It’s just an armor.”

Full interview: gq.com

Categories Gallery News Photoshoots

Bella Hadid Has a New Job: Cofounder of Kin Euphorics

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Bella Hadid doesn’t know how cans of Kin Euphorics, the nonalcoholic adaptogenic drink, ended up in her fridge. All she knows is that one day, in 2019, they appeared. “The universe placed it there,” she says.

Let her explain: Her meteoric career as a model meant constant 17-hour workdays, a hectic global travel schedule, and appearances upon appearances upon appearances. She was thankful for all of it—what a life! But she was also teetering on the brink of burnout.

“I would just go to the next job and the next job and the next job—constantly pushing and pushing,” she says. “I had to be at work at 7 a.m. and somehow go out the night before. It wasn’t sustainable.”

There were other factors too: Hadid says she still suffers from the lingering effects of Lyme disease, which include brain fog and exhaustion. “Put that all on top of my social anxiety, then being thrown into a business where everything is about being social—it was a struggle for me that not a lot of people saw,” she admits.

Drinking just exacerbated it all, leaving her feeling even more depleted, more low energy. (As it does for most of us: Alcohol affects the serotonin levels in the brain, which can worsen anxiety, especially the morning after consumption.) Plus, in order to execute on set, she couldn’t be hungover.

So when she glanced at the ingredients list of Kin—which includes GABA, a naturally occurring nootropic chemical that promotes relaxation, and tyrosine, a mood enhancer—she decided to crack one open and give it a shot. Maybe it could calm her—and allow her to responsibly let loose a little too.

It did the job, and then some: Fast-forward two years, and Hadid is now officially a cofounder and partner of Kin Euphorics alongside CEO Jen Batchelor.

While celebrity endorsements and brand ambassador roles are nothing new, as cofounder, Hadid is taking on a significant role within the company. In addition to her own investment, she’ll help run point on everything from branding to social initiatives to formulation. A tangible example? Kin drinks will soon be infused with lavender grown on the Hadid family farm in Pennsylvania. She’s not content with just being the face of the brand—she wants to build it too. “Creation is my love language,” she says.

Batchelor admits she was surprised when Hadid’s email hit her inbox. After several in-depth conversations, however, she realized, she says, that Hadid is a “kindred spirit.”

By all accounts, Batchelor’s company was, and is, a success. It’s carried at Soho House, Erewhon, Jean-Georges’s ABCV, and Harmons grocery stores in Utah. It has raised more than $10 million in funding since launching in 2018, a remarkable feat, especially when you consider that Black and Latinx startups only receive 2.4 percent of venture capitalist funding, according to a 2020 Crunchbase report. That, combined with the fact that only 16 percent of food and beverage executives are women, and only 5 percent of those women identify as Latinx, meant the weight was often heavy on Batchelor’s shoulders. “Being a female solo founder in this industry? It’s super lonely,” she admits. So when Hadid expressed interest in taking on a significant rather than superficial role, Batchelor jumped at the offer. “The opportunity that we could do this 50-50 percent together, that’s what excited me,” she says.

Hadid and Batchelor have big plans for Kin, many of which they can’t talk about yet. But the biggest is to stress that “brain care is self-care,” says Batchelor. Kin is, yes, used as an alcohol-free alternative, but also as a general wellness drink: Many of its key ingredients, such phenylethylamine and rhodiola rosea root extract, improve cognitive function and increase energy levels. “It’s not just for sober people. It’s also for the Wall Street businessmen. It’s for mothers who have to go to work all day and then take care of their kids all night. It’s for people who don’t want to drink but still want to have something that makes them feel good without regret,” says Hadid.

The latter is a fast-growing crowd. Call them sober-curious, call them sober-lite, call them people who just want to practice more mindful consumption: An estimated one in five American drinkers participate in Dry January. In 2019 a report found that 52 percent of adults wanted to reduce their alcohol intake. Meanwhile, IWSR, an alcohol-industry tracker, estimates low- and nonalcoholic drinks will grow 32.1 percent between 2018 and 2022. And while, yes, the pandemic saw alcohol sales shoot up across the Western world, many realized the escapism it provided was very much temporary. Hadid now counts herself as one of the people living a life with less alcohol. “I don’t socially drink nearly as much as I used to,” she admits. “You can either take one shot of whiskey to feel better for 20 minutes or you can drink Kin every day to feel better for a lifetime.”

On August 9, she posted a slideshow on Instagram as a reflection on the cosmic alignment called the lions gateway. A can of Kin was on full display, hinting at the partnership to come. Call it the Bella effect, or credit the wellness movement, but support for the brand-model kismet is clear: More than 2 million people liked the post.

Source: vogue.com