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Jarlos John Tuite and Carlos Santolalla
John Tuite and Carlos Santolalla, aka Jarlos@jarlos420 via Instagram

Jarlos is the ‘first gay couple’ to sign to modelling agency

DKNY campaign boys John Tuite and Carlos Santolalla say they're making history by signing to Fusion

If you're one of the 22,000 people who follow @jarlos420 on Instagram, you'll already be fully clued up on who John Tuite and Carlos Santolalla are. For the rest of us, it's enough to know that the two models have been labelled the new Brangelina and "downtown’s gay 'It' couple". They DJ club nights, photograph parties, curate art shows and send their Insta-fanbase into hysterics every time they upload another make-out pic. 

The pair have already landed a DKNY campaign, but they've recently achieved a historic LGBT landmark. "Stoked to announce that we're the first gay couple ever to sign with a modelling agency," the pair said on Instagram, announcing their new contract with Fusion in New York.

Why is this so groundbreaking? Well, contrary to the gay-friendly perception of the fashion industry, many modelling agencies actually tell queer models to remain in the closet, even actively encouraging them to "act straight" at work. In short: all those guys aren't turning up to castings with skateboards for nothing. 

In an interview with The Cut, both Tuite and Santolalla said that they dropped their previous agencies because they were under pressure to conceal their relationship. "We were discouraged from identifying as being gay. They’d rather you be ambiguous about it," Tuite said. "I met with this one agency and they said, 'We’d like to sign you, but you have to delete your Instagram account with your boyfriend and you guys can’t go out to parties together anymore.'"

While Alexandra Phipps from Fusion said that she could not officially confirm that Jarlos are the first couple to ever get signed ("We can’t think of any other gay couple to sign together with an agency, off the top of my head... [but] I am sure that there are other couples who are dating and have signed to the same agency by happenstance"), she said that the pair were definitely scouted because of their joint profile. 

"We signed them as a duo because they are both models and they DJ as a duo, under the name Jarlos," she said. "They’ve made a name for themselves as a team, so we decided to run with it."

She added: "We have been aware of Carlos and John for a while, now. We have an agent on the men’s board here who started Carlos in the modeling business. John and Carlos have modeled together in several projects, so it seemed natural to sign them both. They are great models and they have an amazing look, as a unit and individually."

We've reached out to Jarlos for comment. Congratulations, guys! Don't let anybody tell you you've got to hide your love away.