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8 of Russia's Coolest Influencers to Follow on Instagram

Get to know the former Soviet state's most stylish men and women.
Model Kris Grikaite and Russian influencer-to-watch. Photo: Melodie Jeng/Getty Images

Model Kris Grikaite and Russian influencer-to-watch. Photo: Melodie Jeng/Getty Images

The biggest takeaway from Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Moscow is that Russian street style is not to be ignored. The Spring 2019 season just wrapped, and its resident influencers proved their mettle against recent coverage from London, Paris, Milan, New York — and even emerging fashion weeks, like Copenhagen.

The criteria for being an influencer in Moscow is no different from the aforementioned fashion capitals, either. Gone are the days of a one-size-fits-all approach — the stars that stand out here make the most affect by wielding their difference. From edgy, local "It" model Sasha Panika, who hails from a small town outside of St. Petersburg some eight hours-drive from Moscow, to Vsevolod Cherepanov, who launched his own label of street-inspired separates last year, here's a definitive list of Russians you can (and should) be following on Instagram.

Sasha Panika

Sasha Panika is somewhat of a household name in Moscow. The 23-year-old model got her start like any good millennial: by posting photographs of herself on Instagram. She's best known for her strong eyebrows, killer cheekbones and androgynous off-duty style. Look out for her on the runway in Tbilisi, Georgia next month, too. 

Olga Karput

You might recognize Olga Karput from international street style coverage. As the founder of Moscow's coolest concept store called KM20, she makes the trip to Europe to pick out stock each season. Her wardrobe is exactly what you'd expect: Think a clever mix of big-name labels like Off-White and Vetements, mixed with niche Russian talents like Gosha Rubchinskiy.

Vsevolod Cherepanov

Also known as Sever, Vsevolod Cherepanov is a model-slash-designer and all-round cool kid. He was scouted back in 2015 and has been the face of Lumpen — the Russian agency responsible for placing street-cast models from rural post-Soviet countries on the runway at Hood by Air and more — ever since. His eponymous brand is stocked at KM20, and he has an ongoing collaboration with Nike that includes custom Air Max 97s and personalized tees.

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Kris Grikaite

Kris Grikaite is widely tapped as the next Natalia Vodianova, and it's easy to see why. The 18-year old model has proved a magnet for casting directors and she's already built up an impressive catwalk portfolio including Prada, Chanel, Dior and Valentino. Off-duty, her style is bare-faced and sweet.

Kirill Sokolovski

A classical dancer in The Vaganova Academy of Russian Ballet by trade, Kirill Sokolovski is also a budding model and street style star. The fashion industry started listening when he appeared alongside Kris Grikaite on the cover of Vogue Russia's October 2017 edition. The duo were photographed by Patrick Demarchelier.

Alena Shishkova

If you're searching for Russia's version of a Kardashian, look no further than Alena Shishkova. The platinum blonde's following is in the mega millions (currently she boasts a cool 6.3 million), and she's the founder of a cosmetics range called White Star Beauty. This fashion week she made a surprise appearance on the runway for Russian streetwear brand  Black Star.

Sasha Trautvein

Sasha Trautvein stands out for his face tattoos. The Insta-influencer has 'Wake Up' inked under his eye, along with a bounty of other designs across his body. He's originally from Siberia, but now splits his time between Saint Petersburg and the United States, where he sometimes models for brands including Y-3 and Heron Preston.

Yung Dari

Yung Dari's real name eludes the internet, but that hasn't stopped her Instagram account from amassing a sizable following. The 20-year-old has an innate sense of cool and is the girlfriend of Sasha Trautvein. You'll find him on her feed nearly as much as her doe-eyed selfies.

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