In 2018, those with vitiligo were able to collectively celebrate moments where brands had diversified and used models with vitiligo to front their campaigns. From features in magazines, which extended to representing global fashion brands and being the face of beauty campaigns, 2018 created unimaginable opportunities that has inspired us and allowed us to celebrate our skin.
It’s great to see brands are finally starting to ‘think outside the box’ and are looking beyond the Kylie Jenner’s and Gigi Hadid’s of the world and finally using women that better reflect what society looks like. Here are 4 stories worth celebrating these past 12 months…
Amy Deanna; the face of Covergirl
Amy Deanna’s flawless face quickly swept across social media and news platforms when she became the first model with vitiligo to represent makeup brand, Covergirl. The campaign, I Am What I Am, carried the powerful message about the importance of being ‘unapologetically’ you.
In the 15 second ad campaign, Amy looks down the camera lens and asks ‘Why try to blend in when you can choose how to stand out?’, whilst applying Tru Blend foundation to the patches on her face. It’s a question that likely resonates with so many women with vitiligo, because for so long we didn’t want to stand out. We wanted to blend in and so would seek every option that allowed us to cover up, including makeup which for many, was the best coverage option. Now, standing out is about being us, which is something so many of us are starting to do….
Gillette: My Skin My Way
Bianca Schonhofer, from Vienna flew out to Mexico to shoot the 26-second clip for global beauty brand Gillette, which begins with a close up of Bianca, her eyes looking deep into the camera. Launched in October, the commercial forms part of the ‘My Skin, My Way’ campaign which features a woman with congenital nevi, another with a C-section scar and also body tattoos. Research has shown that 63% of women in the UK feel more confident when they see women in adverts that represented them and so adverts like this are guaranteed to inspire and remind women that there is nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to skin condition or natural marks that women often have on their bodies.
On the Gillette Venus Instagram page, the message is simple. Be proud. Be Unapologetic. Be you. We are definitely listening…..
Watch the full clip here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fTe0qoHcBo0
Aerie launch #AerieREAL
Back in the summer, lingerie brand Aerie, owned by American Eagle, launched the #AerieREAL which included 57 women (chosen from 2000 applications), with various disabilities and medical conditions including a Paralympian, a cancer survivor and a woman with a stoma bag.
Representing vitiligo was Lexus Morgan, a great advocate for vitiligo, who, just after the campaign launched commented, “I’m so incredibly grateful to have had this magical opportunity and experience. I’m so humbled to be featured in such an inspiring campaign alongside all of the gorgeous and authentically #aerieREAL women”
Revolution launch campaign with zero retouching
London based makeup brand Revolution launched their makeup campaign that included 24 models from diverse backgrounds including a 90 year old makeup enthusiast. Can you get anymore diverse than that?!
What I especially loved about this campaign was its ‘zero retouching’ ethos, which meant the campaign represented natural, every day women who didn’t have to hide behind airbrushing tools.
Right now, us girls with Vitiligo should be on a friggin high! None of these campaigns happened over night. Brands took a gamble when they decided to step away from ‘norm’ and invest in ‘us’, which ten years ago would never have happened…and I’m sure for many who are sharing their story and featuring in the campaigns like those I’ve mentioned, it took a long time for them to reveal themselves in such a public way.
It takes a lot to love your body and finally, not only do we love our body but others do too. Here’s to a good 2019…..