“Garden Barbie,” who made her rookie debut within the annual bikini-clad mag in 2019, took to Instagram to announced her third SI Swim appearance in a row.
“SPORTS ILLUSTRATED SWIMSUIT 2021 BABY!! I’m back for my 3rd year!!” she wrote before thanking veteran photographer Yu Tsai and longtime SI Swim editor MJ Day.
“Your guidance and proud mom screams make me the bad ass I am today! Thank you for allowing me a space to do just that while feeling extremely confident, fearless, and stronger than ever. Can’t wait for you all to see more soon!” Sanders concluded.
But fans didn’t have to wait long for more Sanders action. The official SI Swim IG account dropped a short clip featuring the model and activist speaking on how she’s used her platform to advocate for change, especially with regard to the Black Lives Matter movement that’s gained momentum over the last year.
“One of the biggest things that got me into protesting—you feel the power that we speak about online,” she said. “Being a black woman, this year is the year that I’m the most proud of being who I am. I did all of these amazing things and built this platform.”
“It wouldn’t have been anything if I hadn’t took the time to scream about the things that are happening around this country,” Sanders added.
Another behind-the-scenes video showed Sanders posing for Tsai at Tampa’s Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino.
Congrats to Sanders and all of the stunning 2021 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue models.