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Diversity becomes a special feature

Fashion gets closer to the real world: Winnie Harlow, the first model with vitiligo

Fashion weeks, newspapers and magazines have been carrying photographs of Canadian model Chantelle Winnie. What’s special about this? She has vitiligo over all her body, from her face down to her legs. This is a skin disease that affects 1% of the world’s population, where “the skin, hair or mucous membranes has un-pigmented patches, or areas where physiological coloration from the pigment melanin, normally contained in melanocytes, is completely absent.”  (Wikipedia).

Last summer Chantelle was also the new face of Desigual’s spring/summer ad campaign. “She personifies our mood: la vida es chula (cool)”, says the Spanish brand. So, fashion really does seem to be getting closer and closer to the real world. The fact that these days we are seeing curvy models and ones over the age of 70 shows an awareness that the public and customers no longer yearn to be like perfect supermodels but instead there is a growing desire to accept ourselves for who we are, complete with our defects and imperfections.

“This is my life and I’m happy with the choices I make. Put on a bit of mascara, puff up your lips, cut your hair, have liposuction – it’s your choice. I’m proud of my skin. And I say go for anything that makes you happy.”


Alessandro Di Giacomo