Tyra Banks Returns to Modeling for ‘Sports Illustrated’ Swimsuit Issue and the Internet Can’t Handle It

Banks' solo 1997 cover of 'SI Swimsuit' made her the first black woman to do so.

The legend known as Tyra Banks has made her return.


The #SISwim legend is our 2019 cover model! 😍https://t.co/bxnibZoWMW pic.twitter.com/kO215wRBrr

— Sports Illustrated Swimsuit (@SI_Swimsuit) May 8, 2019

People notes the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2019 cover marks her official reintroduction to modeling. Banks has previously appeared on the cover of SI Swimsuit, with her first occurring in 1996 alongside Valeria Mazza. She made history in the following year, becoming the first black woman to receive her own cover.

Her first-ever cover of the mag was a shared honor with Valeria Mazza in 1996. pic.twitter.com/hv1gaTWW4C

— Michael Blackmon (@blackmon) May 8, 2019

MJ Day, the magazine's editor, praised the 45-year-old, saying "Since Tyra’s first cover in 1996, she’s transformed herself into nothing less than a mogul, a cultural force and a supernova of inspiration and empowerment. She’s kind of the Swimsuit Issue ethos come to life, everything we know this franchise can be.”

In an interview with the New York Times, Banks discussed her iconic cover, calling it "huge. It was explosive. It changed my life overnight. You have to think back to remember what that did for an appreciation of black beauty to have a black girl, a girl next door type, on the cover of one of the most mass mainstream magazines of our lives. It was a societal statement, a political statement and an economic one.”

The entrepreneur also talked about her decision to retire from modeling 13 years ago. “I didn’t want to age out. I walked out with a three-year contract on the table, but I wanted to say goodbye before the industry said goodbye to me.”

Ultimately, her love and passion for modeling resulted in her emphatic return, and people on the internet can't control their excitement.

1997 Tyra is pretty. 2019 Tyra is breathtakingly stunning.

— Andrew Dashiell ❤️🌹🌈🖖🇺🇦 (@andydashiell) May 8, 2019


— Ken Pease (@kjpease) May 8, 2019

Looks to see why Tyra Banks is trending pic.twitter.com/V9NsNZf5q6

— Javar Madison Jr. (@Outlaws_GhostM) May 8, 2019

Tyra Banks Sports Illustrated Swiwsuit edition 1997 vs. 2019. Trying to spot the age difference because I don’t see it. That melanin never lets us down!#BlackGirlMagic pic.twitter.com/A70JtQZdBm

— Joshua Chenault (@joshuachenault1) May 8, 2019

The lord is my sheperd pic.twitter.com/0a5e8HmRnv

— Bert McDirt Garcia (@BertSixx) May 8, 2019

❤️ pic.twitter.com/5hK9wJw0gs

— TsKROBB21688 (TTV) (@C73V37AND) May 8, 2019

Latest in Pop Culture