Corky with a gender-fluid style is social media sensation Parker Kit Hill. Hill, who currently holds 574k followers on Instagram, originally was the culprit of a cult following at just 17 that including meme lovers and social media pros due to his cheeky videos. His grasp on the millennial market has gained him the success that has skyrocketed past the internet and landed him gigs for Thom Browne, JW Anderson, and Calvin Klein – only to name a few. But, making his way back to his old stomping ground, Hill has teamed up with Instagram for its #2020Vision campaign.
This month, Instagram announced that they would be focusing on stories of ordinary people doing extraordinary things – and that Parker does. On top of being naturally funny, Hill also has a great sense of style. The influencer is often twirling at fashion weeks in Europe and sitting front row at Balenciaga and Maison Margiela shows. “It feels amazing to work with Instagram because for the past two years I’ve been building a relationship with the brand,” Hill told ESSENCE.
We got a chance to chat with the 23-year-old about his journey, how to brand yourself, and what he hopes to see at NYFW. Check it out below.
ESSENCE: How did you connect with Instagram?
Hill: I met Eva Chen maybe a year or so ago, and I’m also friends with Kristie Dash, she’s really sweet, and any time there’s anything going on at Instagram, I feel like I’m a part of the family. It’s so amazing, and it’s super vital to everyone’s lives. To be a part of it at this capacity is just insane.
ESSENCE: What are three tips you would give to readers that want to expand their brand?
Hill: 1. It would have to be staying true to who you are, even though sometimes it can be hard because there are so many different things happening online, but you always have to follow your intuition. 2. You have to create a conversation and be there for everyone. Make people feel like they’re involved in something and there’s always an ongoing conversation with your followers. 3. Just live, and also be open to collaborating and reaching out to people. Create something that’s bigger than you. Try to create different, new and fresh things.
“I feel like if I want to wear a dress one day, I should be able to wear a dress. If I want to wear jeans, I should be able to wear jeans.” – Parker Kit Hill
ESSENCE: Was there any plan you set on how to reach the number of followers you have?
Hill: There was never any kind of goal for me. Social media was always just an outlet to express myself creatively. I don’t want to look like I haven’t grown since I posted my last thing. I want to look like I’ve evolved with each new post. I want to show change.
ESSENCE: How would you describe your style?
Hill: I first got into fashion when I was in high school, in 2013, and I fell in love with the thrift store, I don’t know why. There was one year where I told my mom on my birthday, “I really want to go to the thrift store and just buy as much as I can.” I love embodying different eras, but also bringing everything in and making it modern. At the same time, my sexuality plays a part in my fashion. I would say I am gender-bending all the time, and I like being in the middle. I feel like if I want to wear a dress one day, I should be able to wear a dress. If I want to wear jeans, I should be able to wear jeans. Clothing to me has no gender, and that is just how I feel.
ESSENCE: With NYFW right around the corner, what are you hoping to see on the runway?
Hill: I’m always hoping to see more diversity, and I want to see more queer people, that’s it. I want to see more queer men walking in a women’s fashion show. There needs to be representation for that. We have all different types of bodies and colors of people, but we’re still missing out on a huge market which is the queer market.