'Sports Illustrated' is changing women's lives; just ask Camille Kostek

Since 1964, Sports Illustrated has been celebrating the female physique and helping undiscovered models find success in the cutthroat modeling world. Before pretty faces were landing on the Instagram discover page, they were luring followers through the pages of S.I.

Camille Kostek, a former New England Patriots cheerleader and 2018 Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, stopped by The Morning Breath to talk with Jackie and Claudia Oshry about the positive impact M.J. Day’s cream-of-the-crop glossy continues to make.

“We’re obsessed with Sports Illustrated because it’s the last place that still cherishes real bodies,” the co-hosts share with the 25-year-old. The model quipped, “I noticed that when I was 15.”

Women like Kathy Ireland, Cheryl Tiegs, Nina Agdal, and three-time cover model Kate Upton can credit their industry longevity to the mag’s annual swimsuit edition, which continues to celebrate diverse women every year.

While admitting it took her longer than others to realize her S.I. dream, Kostek said wouldn’t a change a thing.

“This is why I wanted to be a Sports Illustrated model so badly. A lot of the girls who have a professional career in modeling started when they were younger,” she said, adding, “When I walked into agencies, they’d be like, ‘Oh, you’re 23 or you’re 24 or you’re 25 — you should have started a long time ago.’ I was like, ‘No, I know I can represent this brand. I know that my body can be embodied in this issue.”

The renowned mag will feature 24-year-old Danielle Herrington on this year’s cover; she is the third African-American cover model. The honor also belongs to Tyra Banks — and, of course, Beyoncé. The issue with Herrington’s voluptuous and womanly figure hits stands this week.

“It’s still something to look up to, but it’s achievable: real people and sexy,” says Jackie of the magazine’s curvy inspiration.

Kostek explains that women will continue to look for achievable inspiration in the pages of S.I., and that’s a responsibility the ex-cheerleader is happy to share. “That stuff reflects your attitude: the way you go into work; the way you go into your dating life,” she said.