In honor of Gigi’s 26th birthday on Friday, Mohamed, 72, shared a list of things he said fans “did not know about” his supermodel daughter.
“Self Made.. never took a single Dollar from her parents,” he wrote on Instagram Wednesday, sharing a gallery of photos featuring Gigi and her daughter and her 7-month-old daughter Khai. The comment prompted some backlash from online critics who questioned whether the term “self-made” could apply to the supermodel given her privileged background.
Mohamed also added that Gigi “started modeling for Baby Guess when she was in Khai’s age” and that she studied forensic criminal psychology after high school.
According to Forbes‘ list of the highest-paid models in 2018, Gigi came in seventh place with $9.5 million. Her younger sister Bella, 24, was right behind her with $8.5 million. Kendall Jenner topped the list that year with earnings of $22.5 million.
Mohamed shares Gigi with his ex-wife, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alum Yolanda Hadid, and they are also parents to models Bella and Anwar Hadid.
Back in February 2019, Gigi opened up to ELLE about her frustrations in her success being solely tied to her parents’ connections.
“I mean, I understand it. I come from privilege, and I recognize my privilege,” she said at the time. “But because my mom was on a TV show, people think that my whole childhood was fame. It absolutely was not. My mom was a model. She moved to the States when she was 16 to send money back to her family in Holland. My dad was a refugee and worked his way up in every way. I work hard to honor my parents.”
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Gigi Hadid, Mohamed Hadid and Bella Hadid in 2016
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Opening up to the U.K.’s Sunday Times in September, Mohamed said that people “don’t look at me as Mohamed Hadid; they look at me as the father of Gigi and Bella and Anwar and Alana and Marielle.”
“It’s dangerous for me to be their father. I have to be very careful. Everything I do is a reflection on them,” he added. “… Just being their father is a tremendous burden on me. They were my kids. Now I’m their father. It is what it is.”
Mohamed also told the outlet that his family is “much more private than people tend to think,” saying, “We are not the Kardashians.”
“We know the Kardashians as friends. Kendall is a great friend of my daughters and we have a lot of respect for what they do, and how they did it,” he said. “They are good people and they created something so unusual that you have to commend them. But I don’t use my kids to enhance my career. I protect them. I watch over them. I don’t want to take them out on the street and take pictures with them. Would we ever do a show? No, I don’t think that will happen.”