Photo by Michael Schwartz.

Every season is swimsuit season for model Brooks Nader

Baton Rouge native Brooks Nader is no rookie when it comes to life-changing experiences. Earlier this year, Nader was chosen to be featured in the swimsuit edition of Sports Illustrated, and she is now competing for the title of Rookie 2020 (you can vote for her here). But Nader’s modeling career didn’t start in the warm waters of the Bahamas, but rather in the concrete jungle of New York City, when she visited during her freshman year of college at Tulane University.

“I signed my first autograph in Miami for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit launch week,” says the model, who is pictured here at this year’s release party. “It was such a cool and surreal feeling!” Photo courtesy Brooks Nader.

“I sort of fell into modeling by chance,” says Nader. “I was studying finance and came up to NYC one summer for an internship and was scouted. I haven’t looked back since!”

In the beginning of her career as a model, Nader was doing commercial work and felt like she needed something more. So she decided to embark on the journey of a lifetime and attend a Sports Illustrated open call.

“Before taking the chance and going to the SI Swimsuit open call, I sort of hit a point where I thought, ‘Is this it? Am I just limited to commercial work and nothing else for the rest of my career,” she says. “SI Swimsuit changed all of that for me, and has opened so many doors.”

One of those doors was the chance to travel to the Bahamas for her first shoot for the much-anticipated annual issue. Nader refers to the shoot, and the week leading up to it, as the most exhilarating time of her life.

“I couldn’t sleep the whole week before because I was so excited,” says Nader. “I wasn’t too nervous for the shoot because it was such an amazing and talented team. I knew I was in the best hands.”

Since making her way into the professional modeling sphere, Nader has also gotten the opportunity to travel to places like Miami and Munich for shoots. However, while the trips make for enviable Instagram posts, they still involve hard work for the young professional, who says her business savvy is just as important as her looks.

“I’ve definitely traveled to some cool places for work, and I feel so fortunate to have done such,” says Nader. “I once shot a campaign outside of a castle in Munich, which was pretty special.”

Thanks to jetsetting so often these days, Nader has a set list of go-tos for her voyages, including dandelion tea–a trick to help with inflammation and swelling–and a soft place to rest her head.

“My travel and shoot must-haves are Aquaphor, Evian spray, eye masks and a neck pillow,” she explains. “Comfort and hydration are key.”

And while the celebration of this year’s issue hasn’t ended for the young model, she is already looking forward to next year. She is currently in the top six for this year’s Sports Illustrated Rookie 2020. The chosen model will have a guaranteed spot in the 2020 issue, as well as on the beaches of whichever picturesque destination Sports Illustrated chooses next.

Voting for the Sports Illustrated competition ends tomorrow. However, no matter how the voting turns out, Nader already feels so fortunate for all the love and support from her family, friends, fans and, of course, the people that made the stunning photos that fill the pages of this year’s magazine possible.

“The teams was amazing and so legendary,” Nader notes. “I feel so grateful to have worked with them! It was something I’ll never forget.”

To vote for Nader in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Rookie 2020 competition, click hereTo follow along with Nader during the competition, you can follow her on Instagram at @brooksnader