As an in-demand model, Lorena Duran is used to being photographed in all sorts of locations. But prior to her recent shoot for the 2022 SI Swimsuit Issue, the Spanish beauty had never before posed in a swimsuit in the middle of a city.
“Montenegro is an amazing place,” says Duran. “But everyone was shocked to see a girl in a bikini in the middle of the city. We shot in the oldest part of the city, which is different from my last SI Swimsuit shoot at the beach [in the British Virgin Islands].”
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Another reason the shoot was so special for the 28-year-old was that it took place on her birthday. “It was such a special day for me,” she says. “The whole crew had a cake for me. It was a super magical moment for me.”
Of course, making a return to the magazine was already exciting enough for Duran, who made her SI Swimsuit debut in 2020, but was unable to return in 2021 due to Covid-19 travel restrictions.“I am so happy to return another year with my Swimsuit family,” she says. “It really is a family, and I want to continue supporting diversity with them. For me, it’s super important to have diversity and help women feel good and love their bodies. SI does that.”
In 2019 Duran was chosen for a Victoria’s Secret campaign after the brand faced criticism for lack of inclusivity and diversity. She has gone on to work with other major brands like Intimissimi Official and Abercrombie & Fitch. But the Seville native is always focused on promoting body positivity and inclusivity with every project.
“Working for SI Swimsuit has been a dream and becoming more visible allows me to leave a legacy that helps more women feel good and love their bodies,” says Duran, who is working on her own project focused on those core values. “I’m working on a new brand for all body types that's unisex and diverse. The world needs more brands that support diversity.”