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Gigi Hadid defends 'athletic' body in British Vogue

"I love my body because I know what it's been through to be what it is," the model said.

By Annie Martin
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Gigi Hadid defends 'athletic' body in British Vogue
Gigi Hadid at the American Music Awards on Nov. 22. The model defended her body in the January issue of British Vogue. Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

LONDON, Dec. 3 (UPI) -- Gigi Hadid recently landed her first Vogue cover, a major milestone for the burgeoning model.

The 20-year-old American star posed for the January issue of British Vogue, and responded to body critics in the interview. Social media users picked Hadid apart after New York Fashion Week and the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, claiming she is heavier than her peers.

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"Yeah, I'm an athletic person," the model told the magazine. "But I love my body because I know what it's been through to be what it is, and honestly I'm not going to change for someone that is depressed about their life."

"The Victoria's Secret Angels aren't going anywhere," she asserted. "I'm not going anywhere; plus-sized models aren't going anywhere."

Hadid previously shared a body-positive message in September following criticism of her appearance in a Tommy Hilfiger runway show. The model acknowledged she has a curvier body type, but said she's "not asking for special treatment."

"Your mean comments don't make me want to change my body," she declared. "They don't make me want to say no to the designers that ask me to be in their shows, and they definitely don't change the designers' opinions of me."

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Hadid is known for her modeling work with Guess, and walked in her first Victoria's Secret Fashion Show in November alongside friend and fellow newcomer Kendall Jenner. She also appeared on day two of the Love magazine 2015 advent calendar this week.

Hadid is the elder daughter of Mohamed Hadid and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Yolanda Foster. Foster and her current husband, David Foster, announced they are headed for divorce on Tuesday, saying they "did their best" during their 4-year marriage.

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