Skip to main content
YOU GUYS. It has been a HECTIC month to say the least, so please forgive me for not posting sooner. At the beginning of July, I signed a contract with Elite Models, then went to Miami Swim Week to debut my fifth collection with Sienna Swim! Since then, I’ve been traveling for work and fun, doing a few press interviews, and shipping orders out to customers whenever I am home. It has been a month of so many INCREDIBLE blessings, and in the spirit of transparency, I thought I’d talk a little about what it took to get here. 
When I was in middle school, I tried to be a model. I loved setting up little photoshoots in my backyard and at the beach, and enlisted everyone from my brother (who has become a majorly talented videographer and photographer, so, you’re welcome) to my parents and friends to take photos of me. I’d post the photos to my Instagram and submit them to all the major agencies, but no one ever reached back out. 
Young girl poses with serious expression in front of a landscape back drop. She wears a black halter top tank top and jeans.
A few years later, I joined TikTok and gained a social media following. Today, one of the questions I’m frequently asked, especially in press interviews, is the secret for becoming successful online. It wasn’t until recently that I felt I had a concrete answer.
In May of this year, Vogue had an open casting call. I started seeing all the posts and was reminded of my own modeling aspirations that had never really gone away. I still love the creative process of glam and wardrobe, being on set and posing to create something really cool with other creatives. I knew I wanted to do it, but was apprehensive because in order to submit, I was going to have to post a video of myself doing a runway walk and tag Vogue—publicly. 
I had posted myself walking down runways in swim shows for my brand, and countless photos of myself online. This post felt different though, because instead of posting about something I was proud to be doing, I would be posting about something I wanted to do. I was worried that posting my submission would come off as cringy or embarrassing, and that maybe I should just wait for a modeling agency to reach out to me, but the things we want in life don’t always land in our laps. Sometimes, and in my experience, most times, we have to go out and get them.
I am lucky to be surrounded by family and friends who are always honest with me and who always support me. I told them all how weird I felt about posting my submission video, and one of my friends looked at me and said, “No offense, but you’ve posted way more embarrassing things than a runway walk.” We laughed and I realized that she was right. At 16, I was posting videos with my belly out, and doing a little squirrel dance – and this content, of me just having fun, being a little cringy, and doing whatever felt right – was the content that gained me a platform, contracts, a business, and a career.
Sienna Mae Gomez Tiktok
My 16 year-old self didn’t have all the answers by any means, but she did get me to where I am now, and the biggest lesson I had to re-learn from her was this: filtering what you post online for fear of seeming “cringe” will close you off from opportunities. 
A week or so after I posted my video, Vogue didn’t reach out—but Elite Models did. I have had agents before, but never strictly for modeling. I was represented for digital brand work but now – represented by Elite Models New York, Miami and L.A. and by a new talent management company too, I will be able to continue working on my business, creating content, and getting to work with other brands I admire. You never know what will happen unless you put yourself out there.
Girl standing in black jeans and black top in front of glass door with opaque text that reads "Elite"
Speaking of putting yourself out there, if you’re following me on Instagram, you may have seen the series of screenshots I shared on my story yesterday from a follower who was leaving me some hateful DMs. It’s always interesting to me that half the people who leave the nastiest comments have phrases like “be kind,” or “by grace through faith” or even bible verses in their bios, but then come at me with such cruel words. It’s even more interesting that they’re also usually people who follow or subscribe to my content. I think both are a testament to the fact that people who don’t give themselves permission to post what they want online will criticize you for doing so. Haters will leave mean comments, people who don’t care to comment will simply keep scrolling, and more importantly, people who identify with you or support you will like, follow, subscribe, and cheer you on.
Mean DM message from a girl names Mae Jones that reads "girl delete ur post ugly ass"
People will either choose to support or ridicule you, but the most important thing is to continue showing up for yourself—even when it feels “cringe.” I have gone from posting backyard bikini videos to launching my own successful swimwear brand (and you can shop our fifth collection online NOW!); taking iPhone photo shoots to being a contracted model with one of the top agencies in the world, and, most importantly, doing it all with people who genuinely want to see me win. 
Girl smiling with United States Postal Service order fulfillment box with text overlay that reads "anyways, time to get these babies to their new homes! (bikini emoji) @siennaswim"
So, post what you want. You might get hate. You might feel silly. Or, you might get the things you really, really want, and find a community to celebrate your victories with along the way.
Sienna Mae Gomez