Kaia Gerber, Teen Vogue

Collier Schorr for Teen Vogue

Kaia Gerbermay only be 15 years old, but she has fame running through her veins. 

With an iconic mother and equally successful father, the high school beauty has the spotlight engrained in her roots. As her own burgeoning modeling career gains traction, Gerber is not exactly stunned by the attention—after all, she was just 8 years old when she realized the Crawford-Gerber clan had weight to its name. 

"I think it was only on my eighth birthday, at Disneyland, that I started to understand what was going on," she recalled to Teen Vogue, noting a private childhood in Malibu up until then. "I wanted to take pictures with the princesses, and everyone wanted to take pictures with her!" 

Kaia Gerber, Teen Vogue

Collier Schorr for Teen Vogue

That "her" being Cindy Crawford, one of the most successful American supermodels in history with a face that graced the cover of hundreds of magazines. With looks eerily identical to her mom's, early stamp of approvals from revered industry figures like Marc Jacobs and Carine Roitfeld and another magazine cover—this time for Teen Vogue's Icons Issue—the California teen is destined for a bright career on the catwalk. In the midst of gaining her footing and striking her poses, Gerber heeds the sound advice of Cindy and Rande Gerber

"My parents have always taught me to be myself and to follow my instincts," she told Teen Vogue. "They also say that you should never let what other people do affect what you want to do. It changes everything when you accept who you are and you don't try to change yourself."

Kaia Gerber, Teen Vogue

Collier Schorr for Teen Vogue

While she's staying true to 15-year-old Kaia, she understands that other 15-year-olds are watching. "It is so key to me to be a good role model for young girls and someone their mom would want them to look up to," she told the magazine. "I now reach so many people, and it's hard for them to know what is real. I don't take any platform I have lightly. It's so important to send a good message."

With 1.5 million people following her on Instagram alone, the model's reach is already quite far, but she's not logging on all day, every day. "I try to take breaks. Everyone expects you to be on it all the time, but social media is just everyone's best version of themselves," Gerber said. "I try and give people a truer depiction of who I am."

As she works to rises in the ranks as her authentic self, don't expect Kaia to throw around the word "icon." "All my icons I look up to as people, not just their work," she said. "‘Iconic' is not a word I use lightly. You have to earn it." 

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