Kelly Hughes becomes 1st 'Sports Illustrated Swimsuit' model with C-section scar in magazine

Photo of Kelly Hughes in Sports Illustrated Swim. (Credit: Fumie/Sports Illustrated.)

Kelly Hughes has made history as the first model for Sports Illustrated Swimsuit with a c-section scar to be featured in the magazine.

The 42-year-old model announced the milestone Wednesday. 

"I am speechless and so honored to be in @si_swimsuit 2022 as the FIRST woman to expose her C-section scar in magazines history!" Hughes shared on social media. "I struggled with insecurities from my scar being that I’m a model and my incredibly difficult recovery but it wasn’t until I embraced my scar that I experienced the true power in it." 

Hughes thanked her partnership with Frida Mom, a pregnancy product company, for normalizing and embracing the changes to a woman’s body, especially when becoming a mom.

Sports Illustrated Swim revealed the news on social media, writing, "Let’s give some love to all our moms out there to acknowledge the power of the female body and the beauty of motherhood!" 

This news comes just days after the magazine reported that model and fitness guru Katrina Scott, who is expecting her second child, will appear visibly pregnant in one of this year's issues.

"Sports Illustrated Swimsuit has a storied history of firsts… of breaking boundaries, building and restoring confidence, and speaking directly to all women in an empowering and inclusive voice. Today is such a special moment that I’m honored to be a part of," Scott said in a statement to Sports Illustrated Swim. "In this issue, I hope to represent all the women out there that are creating life, feeling all the feels, and embracing change as they look to the future, especially those having difficult fertility journeys. I am with you, and you are never alone."

Earlier this year, Victoria’s Secret made a decision to feature its first model with Down syndrome. 

Sofía Jirau, a 24-year-old Puerto Rican model, announced the milestone on Valentine’s Day.


Photo of Sofia Jirau (Credit: Victoria's Secret)

"One day I dreamed of it, I worked on it and today it is a dream come true," Jirau shared on social media. "I can finally tell you my big secret... I am the first Victorias’ Secret model with Down syndrome!"

RELATED: Sofía Jirau becomes 1st Victoria’s Secret model with Down syndrome

Jirau was one of 18 women hired for the lingerie and comfort-wear company’s launch of its brand new Love Cloud collection.

Then in March, Banana Republic featured a baby boy with Down syndrome in its baby collection campaign to champion inclusivity.

RELATED: Banana Republic features baby with Down syndrome in new collection

"The BR Baby collection recently launched by Banana Republic was designed with a promise to be more sustainable, more welcoming, and more inclusive. This simple idea – that we all deserve to belong, and on our own terms – is core to who we are as a company and how we make decisions," a spokesperson with the clothing company and retailer confirmed to FOX Television Stations Group. "We want to celebrate diversity in all forms and in the casting for BR Baby we saw a perfect moment to move this forward. We were thrilled to give this beautiful, loving human his first modeling job."

According to Mayo Clinic, a cesarean delivery or C-section is a surgical procedure used to deliver a baby through incisions in the abdomen and uterus. A C-section might be planned ahead of time if the mother develops pregnancy complications or has had a previous C-section and isn't considering a vaginal birth after a cesarean delivery.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says more than 1.1 million women in America have babies via C-Section every year. This means cesareans account for about one-third of American births.