WWD Digital Daily

Influencer Helen Owen Launches Swimwear Line at Revolve

- BY ALEXA TIETJEN

Owen was Alo Yoga’s first paid influencer and is a former recipient of Revolve’s Influencer of the Year Award.

Helen Owen is the latest superinflu­encer to launch a line with Revolve.

Owen, who rose to online influence modeling swimwear, has, fittingly, created a swimwear line. The line launches Nov. 11 with 14 pieces, 11 of which are swimwear and three of which are clothing items.

The collection was produced in partnershi­p with swimwear brand PilyQ and will be available on PilyQ’s web site and at Revolve. Prices start at $80 for an individual top or bottom.

“I was approached by Revolve pretty early in my Instagram journey — it was before I knew it would be a career,” said Owen. “Revolve was investing in influencer­s before any other brands were even aware of the power of influencer marketing. They’re definitely like family to me.”

In addition to being one of Revolve’s 3,500-person influencer pool, Owen, who counts 1.5 million Instagram followers, was Alo Yoga’s first paid influencer. She was also a Neutrogena brand ambassador and generated 496 sales from a single swipe-up story for the company. Last year, she was the recipient of Revolve’s Influencer of the Year Award.

Owen studied design at the University of California, Los Angeles. She began to amass a large Instagram following in high school after purchasing a bikini from Australian swimwear label Triangl in the wrong size. In an attempt to resell the bikini on an app, Owen took a picture of herself wearing it and posted it to her Instagram page. Triangl reposted the image, which quickly became its most-liked photo at that time.

“That launched my career in a weird way,” said Owen. “Swimwear has been there since the get-go and it feels natural since I’ve been living in a bikini around the world.”

She has plans to expand beyond swimwear, depending on initial response to the line. Her audience, she said, is primarily based in the U.S., followed by Canada, the U.K. and Australia. The male-to-female ratio is split in half — “It’s a percentage I’m pretty happy about,” she said — with ages ranging from 25 to 35.

Owen has been working with PilyQ for years.

“When you’re designing a bikini you have very limited fabric to work with,” said Owen. “PilyQ still manages to make outstandin­g designs that I’ve been drawn to over the years. Taking their expertise in that arena and fusing it with my design sense and my brand and my personalit­y and my love of swim is a natural collaborat­ion. Out of it comes this capsule that feels very accessible and very me.”

PilyQ, she continued, gave her full creative control over all assets, including the look book, which she and her boyfriend shot in Hawaii.

“That’s what I love doing: creating my own content and being in creative control,” said Owen. “If I’m not in creative control, I’m not happy.”

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