Hailey Clauson has been part of the SI Swimsuit family since 2015, when she landed not one but two features, including a spread with Yu Tsai in Kauai, Hawai’i, and a body paint photo session with the same photographer and makeup artist Joanne Gair in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Clauson went on to land the magazine’s cover the very next year, after posing for James Macari in Turks and Caicos. Since then, she’s traveled to Finland, Australia, Barbados and more with the brand.
A model since the age of 13, Clauson knows a thing or two about succeeding in the industry. In addition to SI Swimsuit, the 28-year-old has worked with notable brands like Calvin Klein, Louis Vuitton and Versace. In early April, Clauson stepped into a new role as co-owner and creative director of Margaux the Agency, a boutique agency in Los Angeles.
We caught up with the model and entrepreneur during magazine launch week at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino - Hollywood, Fla., last month to learn all about Clauson’s exciting new venture. She says that after so many years of modeling, this was a natural next step.
“I have been modeling for 15 years and I got this opportunity to become a partner of an agency and I thought it was a really unique opportunity, coming from somebody that’s been in the model’s shoes, using all my good and bad experiences with modeling agencies and being a model, kind of bringing that to the agency,” she tells SI Swimsuit. “I really feel like I’m taking my power back in the industry, really making the change that I want to see.”
In addition to serving as a guide for young individuals using her learned experience throughout the years, Clauson also hopes to mentor those just getting started in the industry.
“My role is mentoring these models and teaching them how to take advantage of [their] opportunities. This is really a stepping stone to so many more things, so I really want these boys and girls and people to know that they have so much more to offer,” Clauson adds. ”For [the agency], the goal is just to keep growing and eventually be one of the best agencies in the world.”
She notes that Margaux the Agency, which was established in 2015, aims to modernize the modeling industry. Clauson says that unlike most, the agency doesn’t include measurements of talent online, nor do they categorize individuals by gender or size—which are great steps in the right direction when it comes to fostering meaningful change.
“I think there’s so many more changes that need to be made in the modeling industry, and it really does start with the modeling agencies,” she admits.