​10 things you need to know about ruth bell

Meet i-D's latest cover star. She may be an identical twin, but Ruth Bell is one of a kind.

by Felicity Kinsella
08 February 2016, 2:50pm

When Ruth Bell was cast in the Alexander McQueen campaign at the beginning of last summer, she took the plunge, lost her locks, and risked her identical twin appeal. It paid off. In the modelling world a haircut can be make or break (just look up Linda Evangelista, Karlie Kloss or Edie Campbell pre-chop), and although May and Ruth Bell may have been the go-to identical twins for the fashion industry last year, it was when Ruth -- always the more tomboyish of the two -- got a buzz cut that her career really took off. She was told two days before the McQueen shoot with David Sims that they wanted to shave off her goldilocks, and true to their word, half an hour after her arrival Paul Hanlon had taken a razor to it. Her blonde tresses were donated to the Princess Trust Charity, which makes wigs for children undergoing chemotherapy. Since then the 19-year-old Kent girl has booked a spot in the Saint Laurent Cruise 2016 campaign, and a place on the runways of Versace, Gucci and Lanvin. Shot by Mario Sorrenti, Ruth joins Fernanda Ly, Frederikke Sofie and Dilone as one of the cover stars of i-D's The Fashion Issue. Here are 10 things you need to know about one half of the Bell twins, and one of four of our new cover stars...

1. Her childhood ambitions had to be put on hold for her modelling career...
"I wanted to be a pilot in the Royal Air Force. A search and rescue helicopter pilot to be exact! I was on the path to that career up until I was about 16. But circumstances changed and that was no longer an option for me. But in a way I'm kind of glad that's not what I became because otherwise I would not have the amazing opportunities I have now!"

2. Modelling really is a FULL-time job.
"Modelling consumes a huge part of my life I don't really have much time for anything else! I always joke that my only hobbies are sleeping and eating because they are all I do when I'm not working!"

3. (Other than their hair) This is how you can tell May and Ruth apart:
"Our personalities are extremely different! But if you are just going by looks then May has a small birth mark on her neck and I don't. I also have a more rounded face than may does."

4. She is going to miss doing that twin thing...
"It's nice to feel more of a individual but I'm going to miss messing with people when they can't tell us apart!"

5. Her first reaction to getting the McQueen campaign was:
"I thought my booker was telling the wrong model! I was also somewhat nervous to work with such a huge photographer as David Sims, I really wanted to impress everyone."

6. She really, really would like to know...
"What actually happens in the Bermuda triangle?"

7. If she could make a documentary about anything, she would...
"...strap a camera to my cat and document his excursions around my neighbourhood. That cat gets up to some crazy stuff!"

8. If she was director, a movie of her life would look something like this:
"I would cast Charlize Theron to play me, because thanks to the new Mad Max film we all know she looks good bald and is willing to shave her hair for a role. I would cast Angelina Jolie to be my romantic other because anyone who says they don't find her absolutely stunning is lying."

9. She's got some swell advice to pass on from her mama:
"She once said to me that I can only be successful in my career if I have gained that success by being my true self. Otherwise you are lying to everyone but more importantly yourself."

10. She's got no idea what her future holds.
"And I don't mind not having a plan. I didn't plan to model but I fell into it and its turned out incredible so far... So I think I will not worry about the future."



Text Felicity Kinsella
Photography Mario Sorrenti
Fashion Director Alastair McKimm
Ruth wears jacket and top Gucci. Earrings stylist's studio