Achieng Agutu Joins SI Swimsuit for 60th Anniversary Issue

The 2023 Swim Search co-winner will be featured as a rookie in this May’s magazine.
Achieng Agutu

Achieng Agutu was photographed by Yu Tsai in Mexico.

Achieng Agutu, better known as the “confidence queen,” will join the SI Swimsuit family as a rookie in the forthcoming 60th anniversary issue, out in May.

As co-winner of the 2023 Swim Search, the 27-year-old recently had the opportunity to travel to Mexico for her brand photo shoot. While on location, we caught up with Agutu to chat about her rookie feature, her definition of beauty and more.

“I think it’s beautiful to see someone just live so vibrantly and vivaciously and happily in their skin and in themselves, so I think beauty is confidence,” the Kisumu, Kenya, native said. “Confidence is such an important part of someone’s being. I know it’s hard to get there, but I think that’s what’s so beautiful to me. Someone being confident is somebody living in their truth and being themselves and I think that’s just so fun because then we just don’t have one person. We have all these people who are living the way they want to live, whether it’s being quiet or loud or happy or whatever. It’s just everybody living differently and that’s the beauty in it.”

While on set, Agutu posed in a stunning animal print string bikini by Analina, which featured ring detailing on both the top and bottom. She noted that collaborating with photographer Yu Ysai on the feature was “like shooting with your best friend.”

“Having him and having [Swimsuit editor in chief] MJ [Day], as well, at the shoot is amazing. Because MJ is Queen Mother to me and to many, many SI [Swimsuit] girlies,” she said of the experience. “It’s just exciting to have her there because she’s so grounding and nurturing and reassuring and it’s fun to have a mix of Yu Tsai and his hype and a mix of MJ and her calmness reminding you like, ‘Yes, it’s a good shot, you look fabulous.’ So I feel like I’m just in the best hands possible.”

Read more about Achieng Agutu’s 2024 SI Swimsuit photoshoot here.

Cara O’Bleness


Cara is a trending news writer/editor for Sports Illustrated Swimsuit. A passionate writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience in print and online media, she loves storytelling and believes that words have the power to change the world. Prior to joining the team, Cara worked as a writer and editor across a number of content verticals, including food, lifestyle, health and wellness, and small business and entrepreneurship. In her free time, Cara loves reading, spending time with her family and making her way through Michigan’s many microbreweries. She is a graduate of Michigan State University's School of Journalism.