In her most revealing interview yet, Jourdan Dunn talks Twitter regret, diversity on the runway, the pressures of being a young mother, and her huge plans for building a brand.
As one of the UK’s most recognisable faces, with a lucrative Maybelline contract and campaigns for Burberry, Balmain and H&M under her belt – not to mention a much-publicised spot on the Forbes list of top-earning models after banking £2.4 million in 2014 – Jourdan Dunn is the face of her generation.
Jourdan counts is one of the founding members of the Insta-model club with 1.5 million followers and counting. Her popularity was instant, in the year after she was discovered she walked in 75 shows lincluding Louis Vuitton and Valentino.
At just 25-years-old, five years ahead of Kendall, Gigi and crew, Jourdan has been around long enough to be looking towards the next big career move - launching a childrens wear range with Marks & Spencer and Fluid World called Lil Londunn, consisting of 22 adorably edgy boy’s and girl’s separates.
ELLE’s Fashion Features Director Kenya Hunt gets beneath the glamorous veneer and meets a highly motivated woman on the verge of world domination, and discusses the changing mood of the fashion industry and the reality of modelling today.
To coincide with the issue Jourdan has filmed an original ELLE short film directed by new talent Ozzie Pullin. Watch it now...
Jourdan on diversity in fashion:
‘There are definitely a lot more girls of colour being represented. But I also feel like we’re 100% still not there. I want to see us get to a place where seeing a black girl, anywhere, is not such a big deal. Why can’t it just be the norm to see black models in campaigns and on covers and runways? It’s still too much of a big thing when this happens.’
On social media regret:
‘People always ask me, “Do you regret saying this?” I don’t have any regrets. My agency used to tell me, “Can you take that down?” And I’m like, “No.” Why would I take that down? That’s how I feel, that’s how I felt and it is what it is.’
On being a mother:
‘The one thing about parenthood no one ever warns you about. They tell you about the sleepless nights, but no one ever warns you about the guilt. He was just in the hospital last month, but I’m fortunate that he’s quite well. So if something happens at work and I don’t get an opportunity, it’s fine. I’m not gonna cry about this stuff. I’ve got bigger things to think about, like my son and if he’s OK and keeping him out of the hospital. Ultimately, I look at it like this: I am my son’s lifeline. Mummy needs to work to put food on the table and pay his school fees. So I always keep that in the back of my mind.’
On being friends with Karlie Kloss:
‘Karlie is such a professional. I used to always admire how she is about building her relationships, and looking at her career as a business and going the extra mile. She would stay up until midnight making her Karlie’s Kookies and sending them out, giving them to people on set,’ she says. ‘I used to see that and be like, "Why are you doing that?’ But now I understand.’