As social media continues to grow and evolve, it’s safe to say that it has catapulted many careers whether it’s influencers, make-up artists, or fashion models. More specifically, Instagram has been a personal playground and portfolio for models allowing them to post fashion-forward photos via stunning headshots, or their latest Dolce Gabbana campaign.
Baller Alert has comprised a list of models slaying and serving face, body, and all of the above on the platform. Some are on the rise, still taking their own photos from their studio while some have been in the game for years. What they all have in common is their good looks, their hunger and drive to excel in their field and their amazing Instagram accounts that honestly speak for themselves.
These top 10 models have what we like to call, the “it” factor.
A good mixture of work ethic, motivation and God seems to be the key ingredients to model and actor Christopher Flanagan’s success. If you caught the series finale of HBO’s Insecure, you got the opportunity to see Chris play Issa’s love interest, Nassir. If you’ve been living under a rock and you haven’t seen Insecure, I’m sure his face has popped up on your IG explore page at some point.
Baller Alert caught up with Chris and he talked about his career among other topics. He referred to himself as “an underdog, who had to learn everything.” He referred to his career as unorthodox since he built his career from the ground up. Social media remains a big part of his success and his career. He admitted to sending Issa Rae a DM asking for a role. Months later the character Nassir was created.
With numerous projects on the way and deals in the works, it’s safe to say we’ll be seeing a lot more of Christopher Flanagan.
Dolce Gabbana campaigns, Kelly Rowland music videos, and broadway doesn’t come close to the amount of work this Cali native has put into his surging career. Ismail “Izzy” Hameed is a model, actor, director and producer. After receiving his bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Cal State University, he signed to Osbrink Models where he booked his first paid modeling gig for Sapporo and Best Buy. This move led him to other gigs including LA Fashion Week and Lady Gaga’s G.U.Y. video. With hopes of landing more editorial work, Izzy set his sites on the Big Apple. In 2016 he moved to Harlem where he landed his gig with Dolce & Gabbana. He was personally chosen by Stefano Gabbana, who spotted him wearing his grandfather’s brim fedora during his casting. Exploring several creative facets, Izzy has checked Broadway and film production off his list of talents. He is now represented by Scout Modeling Agency and shows no sign of slowing down. For Izzy, “This is only the beginning.”
This Brooklyn native grew up in a place she describes as “the best city in the world.” Growing up in New York has allowed her creativity to flourish at a young age. Modeling has been an interest of hers since she was 6 years old. In college, she found an interest in PR/Communications and later had the opportunity to work with three top fashion PR companies, which has heightened her love for fashion. All of her experiences have come full circle and have made her the person she is today. She’s continuously growing in all aspects and hopes to inspire those who have a similar background. Being a new face for about a year, she’s had the pleasure of working with Tom Ford Beauty, Sergio Hudson, Estée Lauder, Buxom cosmetics, Kim Shui, Danessa Myricks, Pat McGrath and more. She looks forward to working with more of her favorite brands.
Craig is a Miami local, known for his unique looks, chiseled physique, and debonair style. He has modeled for major brand campaigns, including Sprayground, Fila, Fashionova, Eastbay and many more. He’s also been featured in magazines from around the world. While his looks have ventured far, Craig is more than what meets the eye. He is a self-made man of many talents, who thrives in creative management, driven by his passion to create a life that he loves. He has been known to inspire and make an impact on those around him, and that’s what makes him stand out in the crowd.”
When we think of “Jack of all trades,” Darshae Spells comes to mind. While his images and flawless portraits of personality, black boy joy and fashion may be top tier, his Instagram has proven that this Tampa, FL native has a lot more tricks up his sleeve. “I have always been interested in having my picture taken growing up,” says Darshae. He decided that he wanted to take it more seriously and began collaborating with local photographers in his area to start creating a name for himself. He admitted that dancing professionally in high school allowed him to be comfortable posing in front of a camera. As you stroll his IG you’ll find images of him jumping and spinning in mid-air. He began studying and researching modeling and all it entails and learned that he needed a nice, diverse portfolio to get started. This prompted him to purchase his own camera in hopes of taking his own pictures. He now has his own photography business. As a full-time college student studying health science, he continues to craft other industry skills including acting. In the summer of 2019, he began background acting for fun in Atlanta and has been featured in shows like The Resident, Dynasty, and Black Lightning. He recently relocated to Los Angeles to pursue modeling, photography, dance and acting. Darshae shared that he is excited about what the future may hold.
Tabria Majors has become one of the most prominent plus-size models in the industry, snagging deals with Calvin Klein, Victoria’s Secret and Fashion Nova. It was the Beyonce video medley that really caught everyone’s attention as she recreated iconic Queen Bey moments including the Single Ladies video, Partition and shots from Disney’s Black is King visual album. With over a million followers and an Instagram feed full of sexy body-positive photos, Tabria started from humble beginnings. After graduating college and getting a job working as a production assistant in Los Angeles, Tabria was scouted by a talent agency and became a finalist for Sports Illustrated Magazine. She later realized modeling was her calling and she quit her job to pursue it full time. She realized how tough chasing a modeling career could be and ended up getting a job cleaning floors and tables for photoshoots, clothes and make-up kits. Tabria says this has made her a more determined person.
Marilyn Melo is a game-changer. In a field where skinny and tall have reigned supreme for decades, the Dominican Republic native stepped into the game at a fun size of 5’4 with a lot of curves. Her beauty has allowed her to work with big names including True Religion jeans, Pretty Little Thing, and Miami Fashion Week. Melo signed to Wilhelmina Los Angeles agency, helping her social media followers reach new heights. While dominating the fashion lane, Melo has also shown her ability to become an entrepreneur. She opened a beauty salon, Diosa, and a charity company that aids children struggling economically throughout third world countries.
Adonis Bosso is a Canadian model who has swept the world by storm. He has modeled for top brands including Dolce Gabbana, H&M, Armani Exchange, Gap, Yeezy, Levis and Tom Ford. Bosso became instantly famous after dating model Slick Woods who he shares a son, Saphir. While he is well known for modeling, Bosso also makes music, often turning his poetry into songs.
Winnie Harlow was first introduced to the world as a contestant on America’s Next Top Model. Despite not winning, Harlow has created an extremely successful modeling career. Her vitiligo skin condition has separated Winnie from other models, landing her gigs with Desigual, Diesel, Vogue, Cosmopolitan magazine, Complex magazine, Swarovski, and also music videos for Beyonce, Eminem and the Black Eyed Peas.
Jessi Melani is no stranger to social media. She has created a name for herself by using her social media platforms to share lifestyle tips on traveling, modeling and all things glam. The plus-size model is signed to Natural Models LA and The Osbrink Agency. She has modeled for Forever 21, DSW, Savage X Fenty, Nike, DSW and Nordstrom. The L.A. native has also created an impressive following on TikTok by creating lip-syncing, dance and modeling content.