gigi hadid
PARIS, FRANCE – FEBRUARY 27: (EDITORIAL USE ONLY) Gigi Hadid walks the runway during the Isabel Marant show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Fall/Winter 2020/2021 on February 27, 2020 in Paris, France. (Photo by Stephane Cardinale – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)

In the mid-2010s, Gigi Hadid was everywhere. Bursting onto the fashion scene, the model fast became the industry’s hottest face: gracing every runway, walking the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in its prime, and racking up millions of Instagram followers through her perfectly poised selfies. In recent years, however, Hadid has taken a step back from the runway, replaced by her younger sister, Bella, who stepped effortlessly into her shoes and was dubbed Model of the Year in 2022. 

In a new interview, Hadid says her decision to step back from supermodel status was a deliberate one, made during her pregnancy with her daughter, Khai, who she shares with Zayn Malik, which coincided with the COVID-19 lockdowns in 2020.

“I got pregnant and I really started to think about what I wanted after, when the world opened back up,” Hadid, who was most recently linked to Leonardo DiCaprio, shared with Elle. “It kept coming back to just a more stabilized schedule where I’m not in a different country every week.”

Hadid has since launched a luxury cashmere line, Guest In Residence, which she says has been a “very stabilizing” part of her life. “I have an office that I come to. I know everyone here. I don’t have to look a certain way to show up,” she explained. “It’s a different experience for me, and it was the right time because I was ready for that.”

Though Hadid likely won’t be walking in many runway shows this season, nor gracing too many magazine covers, she thankfully will be returning to the spotlight in the second season of Netflix’s Next in Fashion this March, a project she says she sees as an opportunity to show herself to the world from a different angle.

“There are a lot of snapshots and really quick moments where, again, there’s not a lot of context given,” she said of her level of fame. [For Next in Fashion,] I went to the same studio for a month, with the same 100-person crew. You really feel that sense of community that I think I’ve been wanting, and that really brings out a [sense of comfort] and the time and space and screen time to show yourself.”