Gabby Douglas' historic Olympic performance has turned her into America's new golden girl. She's on cereal boxes, murals are being painted in her honor and she's practically BFF with First Lady Michelle Obama. Need we say more?
But as die-hard fashion fans, we can't think of a better way for Gabby to celebrate her new, shiny status than with a full-blown magazine photo shoot complete with glitzy designer threads. And the 16-year-old phenom got the chance to do just that thanks to the folks over at ESSENCE.
The glossy snagged an exclusive spread with Gabby, where she showed off her mega watt smile and worked her fabulous physique in a gold J. Mendel dress and Jimmy Choo stilettos (amongst other stylish selections) making for a seriously chic upgrade from those, er interesting, U.S. Olympic team uniforms.
Gabby's controversial coif was transformed by celebrity hair stylist Ted Gibson for the glamorous shoot. He decided to ditch Gabby's gym-ready ponytail for long wavy locks worthy of a Hollywood closeup. Gibson, who has worked with Angelina Jolie and Gabrielle Union, told ESSENCE that working with the pint sized athlete was one of the highlights of his career. We're hoping this new 'do will finally snatch the spotlight away from Gabby's hair and silence all the haters.
The shoot was also a family affair with Gabby's mom, Natalie Hawkins, and older sister, Arielle Hawkins, striking a pose with the golden girl.
Although the body-hugging dresses and sky-high heels seem a bit mature for the teenager, we think Gabby looks simply fabulous. Plus, what teenage girl doesn't love to play dress up?
Check out this behind-the-scenes video of Gabby's ESSENCE shoot below and make sure to look out for the story in the magazine's October or November issues. What do you think of her glamorous look? And here's a look a some of our favorite Gabby moments...