Tyra Banks Just Made History as the Oldest Model to Cover the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue
The 45-year-old already made history in 1997 as the first black woman to earn a solo cover spot for the publication’s annual swimsuit edition.
Now, Banks has landed another cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue, more than 20 years after she made history as the first black woman to appear on the cover alone in 1997. Her latest cover comes more than a decade after she retired from modeling in 2005.
Banks reflected on her first solo cover in a video shared to the Instagram page for the issue.
“Being the first black woman on the cover, I didn’t dream it, because I never thought it was possible, almost like this,” she said. “I never thought it’d be possible – I’m 45-years-old on the cover of this magazine again.”
Banks’ iconic 1997 cover photo taken in the Bahamas, featured the then-23-year-old posing in a red two-piece swimsuit with pink polka dots.
Tyra revealed how her figure has changed.
“My body’s different,” she said, gesturing that her chest had grown. “Booty is bigger. Everything’s a little bigger.
“At first I was like, ‘Ooh, I’ve got more stuff to work with,’ she said. “At first, it was a little bit more difficult, but after the first shot, I was like, ‘I got this.’ “
— Sports Illustrated Swimsuit (@SI_Swimsuit) May 8, 2019
Tyra said she initially planned on losing weight for her latest shoot but decided against it because she wanted to eat and enjoy her life.
‘I started preparing for the shoot and I thought, “Let me get it together and look like Tyra back in the day,”‘ she explained. ‘I was thinking, “Oooh, I want the comments.” But then I suddenly thought why I am going to force that? I’m hungry and I want a pizza.’
While she certainly doesn’t look like she has been chowing down on pizza, she explained that it’s all in the pose.
‘I’m human,’ she told Entertainment Tonight. ‘I still don’t love the cellulite on my butt. I still know how to twist and turn even during this photo shoot to make sure you don’t see the dimples on my booty, so I still have that.
I just don’t linger there, and I celebrate the things that I’m proud of,’ she continued. ‘I don’t like that my calves are too skinny. I don’t like that. I have flat feet. I don’t like that my hands look 20 years older than my face.
‘You know, there’s just things that I don’t like but I just don’t dwell there. But I’m also very honest and saying I don’t like it, but it’s not the end of the world.’
Tyra admitted that the experience of doing a third cover more than two decades after her last one was ‘crazy.’