Coco Rocha Has Opinions on Modeling, Social Media, and Photoshop—and You Should Hear Them - It’s almost unfair for supermodels to be this cool.
by Marianne Dabir for Teen Vogue
Although Coco Rocha is a supermodel first and foremost, she’s also become ubiquitous both in and out of the fashion industry thanks to her outgoing personality, social media smarts, and yes, that famous face. Just days before she helped change New York labor laws to protect underage models, she spoke with Teen Vogue Fashion U students about her early start as a model, how she keeps it real, and the motivation behind her buzzed-about haircut. Read on for some of the best bits of her seminar, and check back tomorrow for more Fashion U highlights.
Like many young models, she struggled to maintain her own sense of self when she first started out.
"I wish I could go back in time and tell the 15-year-old Coco that she was allowed to say ‘no,’" she says. "But when you’re working with major industry moguls who say they can make or break your career, it’s extremely nerve-wracking to go against what they want." But over time, Coco learned that staying true to herself was important—and she didn’t have to sacrifice her career to do so.
Social media has given Coco—and many other models—a voice.
"Back when I started 10 years ago, you couldn’t really tell one girl from the other," she says. "We all looked alike, and therefore we were very replaceable." Not so much anymore. "These days, even the new girl on the block has a Twitter, Instagram, and a blog, and if she’s being mistreated she can write about it.” When Coco started her own blog a few years ago, she was one of the first models on the social media scene—and it wasn’t always well-received. “Someone in the industry once told me that I wasn’t supposed to be speaking out that much,” she remembers. “And I remember feeling really excited, because obviously I was on to something.”