Feeling like a proud mamma, Tyra Banks took to Instagram this week to share a photo from Winnie Harlow’s editorial in Fashion magazine. Tyra Banks’ Instagram shows the 22-year-old’s cover for Elle magazine’s February 2017 edition. The Canadian cover girl grew up in Toronto, so gracing the cover of one of Canada’s leading fashion magazines meant a lot to the budding model. Born as Chantelle Brown-Young, the model is the daughter of single mother and hairdresser, Lisa Brown. Chantelle Winnie Harlow garnered attention as a contestant on the 21st cycle of the US television series, America’s Next Top Model. The 5’9” beauty is known for having a prominent form of the skin condition, vitiligo. While on the reality show, Tyra Banks encouraged the aspiring model to embrace her condition, stating that Winnie’s skin breaks down barriers of what is considered beautiful.
Tyra Banks discovered the aspiring model on Winnie Harlow’s Instagram, and she subsequently became one of the fourteen finalists of the twenty-first cycle in 2014. Harlow was eliminated in the second week of the finals, but went on to participate in a separate competition called the “comeback series.” In this side series, she continued to participate in the cycle’s photo shoots along with other eliminated contestants in hopes of returning to the competition. After completing the comeback series, it was revealed that she had received the highest average public vote score and returned to the show. She was eventually eliminated again in episode 13, placing sixth overall.
It is no wonder why Tyra Banks feels emotional watching the budding model gain more exposure and expand her modeling career, as Banks started Harlow on her journey as a top model. Following her elimination from America’s Next Top Model, Winnie Harlow modeled for the Spanish clothing brand Desigual, and quickly became their official brand representative. From there, the Canadian-born model went on to walk in London Fashion Week, modeled for Italian clothing brand Diesel, and appeared in numerous magazines internationally.
Winnie Harlow’s Skin Condition, Vitiligo
Winnie Harlow was diagnosed with vitiligo around the age of four, making her one per cent of the population who has the condition. Michael Jackson, who also famously suffered from the same skin condition, explained that his pale complexion was a result of the lack of melanin in his skin. Growing up with vitiligo was hard for Harlow, she was bullied at school and nicknamed zebra because of the white patches covering her face and body.
In speaking with Cosmopolitan magazine, Harlow talked about her skin condition, “’I get comments that I am a leper. I control how my skin changes, I bleach my skin, my skin’s burned. None of those are true. If one day I’m all black I’m still a model. If one day I’m all white I’m still a model. I am not my skin. I am a model with a skin condition.” Winnie Harlow’s makeup routine is always kept simple now to emphasize her skin condition rather than hide it like she tried to do in her earlier years.
Apart from appearing on the cover of Elle magazine, Harlow is also making waves in headlines for her secret romantic life. Winnie Harlow and Lewis Hamilton have been rumored to be secretly dating since the pair were seeing partying together in New York. With no comment from either the model or race car driver, their relationship is only speculation at this time.
Bianca L., “How a little girl nicknamed Zebra because of the white patches caused by her vitiligo battled her way to become a top model – and has now snared F1 star Lewis Hamilton,” Daily Mail web site, September 9 2016; http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3781203/Who-Lewis-Hamilton-s-rumoured-girlfriend-Striking-supermodel-Winnie-Harlow-reveals-children-called-cow-mooed-grew-Michael-Jackson-s-skin-condition.html