Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner, Victorias Secret, Shanina Shaik

D Dipasupil/FilmMagic, Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for Victoria's Secret

Many have criticized Kendall Jenner's rapid rise to catwalk fame, but colleague Shanina Shaik said that she and her BFF Gigi Hadid have earned their spots on the runway.

In an interview with Daily Mail Australia, Shaik explained that both Gigi and Kendall have worked very hard and truly deserved their spots in the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, which aired in December. "I know them personally. Attachment sometimes from the outside in can help but they do work really hard," she explained. "They also have dreams and goals they want to achieve and they're very humble and they're very appreciative of everything great that happens to them. I see that myself."

People have accused the 20-year-old models of making it as a result of their well-connected families. Kendall, obviously, is the daughter of Kris Jenner, while Gigi is the daughter of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Yolanda Hadid. Although Gigi had modeled in Victoria's Secret Pink campaign before her debut in the famous fashion show, Shanina reminded the publication that Gigi had tried out before and was rejected. 

Kendall Jenner, Victoria's Secret Fashion Show Runway

John P. Filo /CBS

"Gigi's been modeling since she was a young kid and I think people forget that," Shanina, 24, added. "Gigi had to try out a few times before she got in. And Kendall, she's been saying she wants to model for a while."

She continued, "They did an amazing job and they looked great and they did amazing for the show. They have amazing bodies and they fit the criteria for Victoria's Secret."

Shaik, who is engaged to DJ Ruckus, made her VS runway debut in 2011 and couldn't help but get nostalgic when she saw Kendall and Gigi walk for the first time. "Seeing them being new to Victoria's Secret, I saw myself four years ago," Shanina recalled. "I had like Adriana [Lima] and Miranda [Kerr] giving me advice at that time so I just said, 'You know what, enjoy the moment.'"

Kendall was rumored to be bullied by model Lexi Boling during last year's Fashion Week, but her rep later told E! News, "I wasn't thinking and made a silly comment. Kendall's had a killer NYFW. A big congrats to her!"

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