2023 SI Swimsuit Model Olivia Dunne Reflects on What She Learned From Golf Influencer Paige Spiranac

The NCAA athlete shares the advice she got from the magazine’s one-time model.
Olivia Dunne and Paige Spiranac.

Olivia Dunne and Paige Spiranac.

Olivia Dunne and Paige Spiranac had a similar rise to fame with athletic backgrounds, social media monetization and hard work that led to major success. Both women have also, unfortunately, faced a great deal of criticism and internet trolls.

The 2023 SI Swimsuit model and LSU gymnast recently reflected on what she learned from the golf influencer.

The two first interacted online when the New York Times published a misleading and sexist piece titled, “New Endorsements for College Athletes Resurface an Old Concern: Sex Sells.” The article questioned the way in which Dunne leveraged her social media popularity and took advantage of the NCAA’s name, image and likeness (NIL) policy to earn her seven-figure salary.

Spiranac was quick to stand up for the 20-year-old on Twitter and dubbed her as an accomplished “badass.”

Dunne has amassed more than 11 million TikTok and Instagram fans since she began consistently posting on social media during the COVID-19 pandemic. Her content includes gymnastics tricks, locker room fun with teammates, trending dances and the occasional sponsored post from Vuori or American Eagle.

“The biggest thing I’ve learned so far is that you need to make sure to keep certain parts of your life private,” Dunne said in reference to the advice she received from Spiranac, who was featured in the 2018 SI Swimsuit Issue. “Some things you don’t want the whole world knowing, so [you have to] keep certain parts of your life private. Making sure not to post certain things that maybe you don’t want people’s feedback on.”

Both women are regularly shamed online for “oversexualizing” women in sports and accused of using their looks—rather than their athletic achievements—to expand their empires.

“Paige is just so great at showing that you can be beautiful and athletic and successful at the same time, so it just really is awesome to have someone like her stand up for me and be on my side,” Dunne said, noting that the 30-year-old’s support and advice came at a pivotal time and meant a lot. “I really appreciate all the positive comments and feedback, especially from girls and people who reach out and tell me how much respect they have for gymnastics and the hard work I’ve put in so far.”

Meet Olivia Dunne—read the 2023 SI Swimsuit model’s full feature profile here.

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Ananya Panchal


Ananya Panchal is a NYC-based Lifestyle & Trending News writer at SI Swimsuit. Before joining the Swim team, the Boston University Alum worked for culture & entertainment beats at Bustle, The San Francisco Chronicle and the TODAY Show. When Ananya is not writing or doom-scrolling on social media, she can be found playing sudoku, rewatching One Tree Hill or trying new restaurants. She's also a coffee and chocolate (separately) enthusiast.