Image: Mexy Xavier; Light painting: Neha Mithbawkar; Outfit: Bodice
Sakshi Sindwani | 27
Fashion content creator
Fashion content creator Sakshi Sindwani, 27, is a body- and size-positivity advocate. She is behind the brand @StyleMeUpWithSakshi on Instagram. Having begun her content creation journey in 2017 on YouTube, she experimented with different styles of content. After two years of inconsistent content creation on the platform, she found her footing on Instagram in 2019.
“When I first started creating content on Instagram, it was still largely a platform for images and aesthetic visuals. I decided to post one video every day for 365 days, showcasing the outfit I wore. After 40 videos, I started to build an audience,” she says. Starting from scratch, Sindwani now has a following of 535,000 on Instagram and primarily creates fashion, lifestyle and fitness content.
Content creation also opened the door for her to become a model. She is the first inclusive model to have collaborated with and walked the ramp for designers such as Manish Malhotra, Tarun Tahiliani and Masaba, among others. “Being the first inclusive model, or plus-size model as they call it, to walk the ramp for multiple designers puts a lot of responsibility on me. I want to be able to create an environment of inclusivity and inculcate the sentiment of ‘to each their own’, which I never saw in the media while growing up,” she says.
Born and raised in Delhi, Sindwani and her sister were obsessed with magazines as children. “We would eagerly wait for them to reach our doorsteps, and import magazines like Forbes and Vogue, but I could never relate to anyone in those editorials,” she says. Lack of representation and constant bullying in school made her body conscious. “I had a hard time growing up, I was insecure and underconfident,” she says. Content creation gave Sindwani a voice and acceptance.Also read: Rithika Pandey: Imagining a much-more integrated world
Sindwani now aims to inspire people to redefine conventional beauty standards. “While many brands that are hopping on the bandwagon of inclusivity might consider it a trend, I want to make sure it’s not just that. More inclusive representation across media and entertainment is a goal for me. I wish I could see this kind of inclusivity that we see today when I was growing up,” she says.
With nine people under her, Sindwani is conscious of the brands she chooses to work with. “I consciously choose brands that advocate the ethos I stand for. The money from a brand collaboration is secondary. What matters is the message I put out,” she says.Also read: View the full list of Forbes India 30 Under 30 2023 here
“I have witnessed Sakshi in action and she truly practises what she preaches. She is fearless and brings such much power and joy to everything she does. She is an influencer who really does influence and quite positively, at that,” says Kusha Kapila, a content creator, actor and YouTuber.
With a lot more authentic content creation and brand collaborations, she’s aiming to launch her own brand in 2023. “We’re brainstorming and coming up with ideas, but a brand of my own is definitely on the cards,” she says. Believing in the power of dreaming big, she says, “Authenticity is beautiful and very powerful. One should know that their quirks and weirdness are precious and are the only things that will get them ahead in life. No dream is small,” she says.
(This story appears in the 10 February, 2023 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)