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4 min read

One Daring Model Who is Redefining Beauty

One Daring Model Who is Redefining Beauty

It's true. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And even though we live in a world where beauty is sometimes overemphasized, the definition of beauty is constantly evolving.

Our insecurities become magnified when in the public eye, but luckily, the notion that beauty can be found in all shapes, colors and sizes is growing in popularity. People across the world are beginning to embrace what makes each of us different and shun the constant scrutiny that's placed on our appearance.

One such perpetrator of this scrutiny comes from the fashion industry, with its competitive and intimidating beauty standards, although, in recent years a few notable fashion heavyweights are changing mindsets and challenging industry norms. A few standout models have joined this movement, dancing instead to the beat of their own drum and embracing what makes them stand out.

These unique voices bring to the beauty industry individualized approach to redefining beauty standards and their message is making its way from the runway to the pages of influential magazines. This is now the new wave of beauty on the horizon.

One model leading this new wave of beauty is Winnie Harlow. A Canadian native, this 21-year old model was diagnosed, at the age of four, with vitiligo, a condition in which the skin loses its pigment cells.  Her bold move to embrace her skin as it is has proved to the world that a model of different colors can succeed in the beauty industry.

In 2011, Harlow courageously posted the video, “A skin condition, not a life changer" on YouTube where she openly talked about her condition. She responded candidly to questions about her living with vitiligo and in a 2014 TED presentation she recounted her journey with this condition, noting "there is beauty in everything".

Later in 2015, Harlow was invited to speak at the Dove Self-Esteem Project at the Women in the World Summit and was bestowed the Portuguese GQ Men of the Year ‘Role model’ award. These high profile accolades led to a short-lived stint on America’s Next Top Model.

It was not an easy journey growing up. Harlow recalls vivid memories of being harassed and teased when she young, being called names such as “zebra” and “cow”, because of her remarkable skin color. Through all the torment, her confidence and courage held strong and didn't dissuade her from perusing her dream of becoming a model. 

Although she did, at one point battle suicidal thoughts, as chronicled in an interview with Gleaner, Winnie Harlow says she loves herself. She continues to challenge society’s parameters of real physical beauty and constantly encourages others to love themselves.

Although, some still view her as extraterrestrial or an oddity, she aims at helping everyone see the beauty inherent in everyone, inviting people to embrace their uniqueness. Her positivity and vitality have lead her to career highs like modeling for iconic Italian clothing brand Diesel and landed her a spokesperson campaign for Spanish clothing brand Desigual.

In a recent Today Magazine interview, Harlow said, “Who you are doesn’t matter, you have quirks. Uniqueness is okay, and this is what speaks to everyone. You can’t allow someone to lower your self-esteem.” And it seems that the world has embraced her uniqueness wholeheartedly.

At Hair La Vie, we know that your hair is an integral part of how you present yourself to the world and shape your authentic style.

Join our private Facebook Community for a safe, human-moderated space to share your Hair Journey, discover new natural beauty, and take steps towards becoming “you” with the help of an understanding, supportive community.

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    At Hair La Vie, we know that your hair is an integral part of how you present yourself to the world and shape your authentic style.

    Join our private Facebook Community for a safe, human-moderated space to share your Hair Journey, discover new natural beauty, and take steps towards becoming “you” with the help of an understanding, supportive community.

    Join now for instant access to livestreams, discussions, and exclusive access to new products!

    JOIN THE GROUP