As Byrdie editors, we stare at a lot of beauty ads day to day, and even in 2017, campaigns tend to look pretty homogenous. When a company's objective is to make money, inclusivity and representation of different body types and identities aren't usually a priority. But Urban Outfitters' latest ad campaign says screw it—instead of casting the same models we see time and again, it's put together an inspiring group to represent a campaign they're calling the Class of 2017.
According to a report from Allure, the models involved were selected for their adherence to "challenging the status quo through activism." Included in the Class of 2017 are plus-size model Barbie Ferreira, transgender actress Hari Nef, and many other artists from diverse backgrounds.
The project launches with each model designing a white Hanes T-shirt with an encouraging statement or personal mantra. Each model will also be featured in upcoming social media videos and blog posts on Urban Outfitters.
This campaign comes at a time when other beauty brands are inching toward inclusivity. (CoverGirl and Maybelline just named the first male faces of their brands). With hope, popular brands will continue working to amplify marginalized voices in their campaigns.
Watch the Instagram video below to learn more about the Class of 2017, and keep scrolling to meet five of the new models!
Meet the Class of 2017
Job: Model, actress
"Barbie Ferreira is changing the way the world think about models. The outspoken 20-year-old champions inclusion and representation for all— regardless of body type. We talked to Barbie about what it means to make an impact and her goals for the coming year. " — Urban Outfitters
Job: Actress, model, writer
"After a stellar 2016, actress and model Hari Nef is ready to work on her own terms. We chatted with Hari about the importance of storytelling, why she’s leaving the 'activist' qualifier behind, and how she’s staying balanced in the new year." — UO
Job: Rapper, artist
"Rapper and artist Tommy Genesis tells us the story behind her forthcoming album, her writing process that fluctuates from freestyle to meticulous song craft, and why it’s important to keep your friends close." — UO
Job: Student, model
"Manon Macasaet is literally a part of the class of 2017. The up-and-coming model and creative breaks down influential style, which gives a nod to the tried and true streetwear staples of the past, and tells us about her lofty goals for her upcoming gap year." — UO
Job: Petite model
"Genesis Vega always dreamt of being a model. Now that she’s living out her dream she’s using her platform to call for change, for representation for all body types and ethnicities. We chatted with Genesis about her hopes for 2017 and how her positive mindset helps her push forward." — UO
Read about the other models in the Class of 2017; then, support Urban Outfitters by shopping our favorite skincare products from its beauty section!