Gigi Hadid is ''proud'' of her sexy figure.

The 20-year-old model has spoken out to defend her curvier figure after she was criticised for being out of shape during recent catwalk shows.

In a note posted to her Instagram account, she wrote: ''If I didn't have the body I do, I wouldn't have the career I do. I love that I can be sexy. I'm proud of it.

''I've said it before... I hope everyone gets to a place in their life where they'd rather talk about the things that inspire them over the things that bring others down. At least be open if not part of the change, because it's undeniable happening.''

Gigi insisted she's been so successful because the fashion industry has cottoned on to the idea that not all models have to be a size zero.

She explained: ''No, I don't have the same body type as the other models in shows. No, I don't think I'm the best in any given show. Yes, I want to have a unique walk but I also know I have to improve. No, I'm not the first or last model of my type in this industry. You can make up all the reasons you think I am where I am, but really, I'm a hard worker that's confident in myself, one that came at a time where the fashion industry was ready for a change. I'm just doing my job.

''I represent a body image that wasn't accepted in high-fashion before, and I'm very lucky to be supported by the designers, stylists, and editors that I am: ones that know this is fashion, this is art; it can never stay the same.

It's 2015. But if you're not one of those people, don't take your anger out on me. Yes I have boobs, I have abs, I have a butt, I have thighs, but I'm not asking for special treatment.''

And the blonde beauty claimed that while critics do get to her, she won't be giving up any time soon.

She added: ''If they [designers] want me in their shows, I'm in it; if they don't, I'm not. That's just how it is and how it will be. If you don't like it, don't follow me, don't watch me, cause I'm not going anywhere.''