Valentina Sampaio Is the First Transgender Model to Grace Sports Illustrated's Swimsuit Issue

Valentina Sampaio is the first transgender model to grace Sports Illustrated's annual Swimsuit Issue, proudly making strides for the LGBTQ+ community. Valentina is one of eight "rookies," i.e. newbies to the magazine, which include Marquita Pring and Josephine Skriver. Her editorial was shot in Scrub Island, BVI, and she wears two suits - this glitter metallic bandeau and a white one-shoulder one-piece - for the gorgeous feature.

"Being trans usually means facing closed doors to peoples' hearts and minds."

"I am excited and honored to be part of the iconic Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. The team at SI has created yet another groundbreaking issue by bringing together a diverse set of multitalented, beautiful women in a creative and dignified way. I was born trans in a remote, humble fishing village in northern Brazil. Brazil is a beautiful country, but it also hosts the highest number of violent crimes and murders against the trans community in the world - three times that of the U.S. Being trans usually means facing closed doors to peoples' hearts and minds. We face snickers, insults, fearful reactions and physical violations just for existing. Our options for growing up in a loving and accepting family, having a fruitful experience at school or finding dignified work are unimaginably limited and challenging," Valentina posted on her Instagram after the news was announced on Good Morning America.

Sports Illustrated Swimsuit editor MJ Day calls Valentina a pioneer for the LGBTQ+ community and explained, in a press release from the brand, "we didn't think twice about wanting to amplify her voice, her message and give her a platform to advocate from on behalf of her personal aspirations and the trans community." SI has also encouraged Valentina to take the reins on its Instagram platform, where she will have a live conversation with GLAAD about her experience at 1 p.m. ET on July 10.

We hope that this move paves the way for future editorials to expand representation and diversity and that it empowers the LGBTQ+ community, and minorities everywhere, to feel confident in who they are. Even though the fashion industry has a long way to go when it comes to inclusion, this news has us looking forward to July 21, when the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue is released everywhere.

Related:

16 Models Paving the Way For the LGBTQ+ Community in Fashion

More From

  • Chris Pratt and Katherine Schwarzenegger Welcome Their First Child

    Congrats are in order for Chris Pratt and Katherine Schwarzenegger, who have welcomed their first child together, a baby girl, People confirmed on Monday. Shortly after, Chris shared an Instagram photo of him and Katherine holding their daughter's hand.

  • My Firstborn Son Is a Leo Like Me, and It’s Exhausting, Honestly

    My firstborn son, Logan, was born in August, making him a Leo like me. It's great when it comes to his infectious laughter and heartwarming hugs, but tough when he throws epic tantrums, tries to control every situation, and is so.

  • If You Need Some New Book Recs, Here Are 3 August Releases We're Loving Right Now

    Here at POPSUGAR, we love books. We're constantly reading, and if you're going through books as quickly as we are, you probably need some new recommendations right about now. Well, not to fear. We tapped our editors to find out the brand-new books they can't get enough of. These picks have all come out in August, and you won't be able to put them down. Whether you want an engaging thriller, a collection of essays, or a complex novel that's "like nothing else I've read this year," these must-read books are worth checking out. They're for anyone who wants to read more this summer or just needs something fun to do this weekend. Keep reading to shop our top August book recs! Related: 11 Romance Books Coming Out in August That Will Make You Weak in the Knees

  • Pottery Barn Just Dropped New Halloween Decor, and It's Right Up Our Haunted Alley

    Pottery Barn's 2020 Halloween decor is both spooky and chic, and its selection is right up our haunted alley. For those who dislike flashy blowup lawn decorations and scare tactic knickknacks, this collection of Halloween goods is anything but. With gorgeous mosaic pumpkins, fancy skeleton drinkware, tactfully decorated wreaths, and more, it's hard to resist all the chic findings Pottery Barn has to offer. Don't sacrifice your home's style for another haunted holiday - grab this decor while it lasts! Shop all of our favorite spooky items, ahead. Related: Target's 2020 Halloween Decorations Have Arrived (Yes, Already)