9 Women Who Represent The Unconventional Beauty
Beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, colors and ages.
Is there a mold that fits every person that tells if he or she is beautiful or not?
Thank God there isn't, although we have somehow taken it upon ourselves to judge people under false and pretentious standards, to measure the heights and widths of other people's bodies; impose value upon their skin tone and clothing style.
For once, we'd like you to take a breather and explore the "other beauty" that exists above societal norms. These nine women have taken their insecurities and turned them into their biggest virtues, inspiring other people to feel comfortable in their own skin.
1. Brunette Moffy, the cross-eyed model.
Brunette Moffy is a cross-eyed model who works with Storm Models, the same agency that brought the likes of Kate Moss, Cindy Crawford and Cara Delevingne into the spotlight. She turned her condition into a signature feature and says she loves her eyes the way they are.
2. Jacky O'Shaughnessy, the 'old' model.
Jacalyn (Jacky) O'Shaughnessy is an award-winning actress and model, recently discovered and featured by American Apparel at 62 years old. Her brave editorial for the company's lingerie line proved there is no limit on beauty, especially age-wise. Check out Jacky's inspiring confessions for the What's Underneath project here.
3. Katya Zharkova, the curvy model.
At the age of 33, Katya Zharkova is the top Russian plus-size model. She has worked with labels such as Forever 21 and Silver Jeans and was the first plus-size model to appear in Cosmopolitan Russia. She strongly believes and advocates that women have the right to live healthy and not obey society's beauty standards.
4. Melanie Gaydos, the 'ugly' model.
Melanie is definitely not your typical model, however, she has found the strength and confidence to be one even when the world is judging. Gaydos suffers from a genetic disorder known as ectodermal dysplasia. After facing a lot of struggles in her life, she says she finally feels comfortable in her own skin. Read more about Melanie's accomplishments here.
5. Diandra Forrest, the albino model.
Although she is African-American, Diandra Forrest has milk white skin, green eyes and natural blonde hair. Like many people with unconventional features, Diandra was teased and bullied a lot when she was a kid. Years later, she became the first albino model to ever sign a contract with a major modeling agency. She works regularly with MAC, Jean Paul Gaultier, and Vivienne Westwood, and fights discrimination against the albino community.
6. Chantelle Brown-Young, the multi-color model.
Chantelle Brown-Young, or Winnie Harlow, was diagnosed with vitiligo when she was 4. Vitiligo is a skin condition that causes patches of skin to lose pigmentation, resulting in a multi-colored effect. Chantelle admits she had to fight bullying and name-calling, but it all helped her rise above, appreciate and love her differences. Read more about this inspiring woman here.
7. Jillian Mercado, the model in a wheelchair.
Jillian might not be your typical catwalk model, but she really is a stunning personality with lots of bravery in her heart. Mercado suffers from spastic muscular dystrophy and uses a wheelchair to navigate. But that didn't stop her from graduating from New York's Fashion Institute of Technology, interning at magazines like Allure, working with Diesel and becoming the Executive Editorial Director for WeTheUrban.
8. Andreja Pejic, the androgynous / transgender model.
Believe it or not, Andreja was born Andrej. Andreja Pejic spent years billed as an "androgynous" male model, until she came out as a transgender female in 2014. Pejic was initially known for modeling for both men's and women's shows. This year she underwent sex reassignment surgery and even started a Kickstarter campaign in order to raise funds for a documentary about her life. Find out more about Andreja's story here.
9. Viktoria Modesta, the one-legged model.
Viktoria Modesta Moskalova is a Latvian-born singer/songwriter and model. Due to a hospital accident at birth she had problems with her left leg and at the age of 19 decided to have it amputated. However, Viktoria's drastic decision had no impact on her career. In fact, she wittily calls herself a "bionic woman" and proves you can kick ass even with one leg.
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