The New Catwalk Queens: 12 Brown Models You Need to Know (Chanel & Joan aren't the Only Legs Ripping The Runway!)

The New Catwalk Queens: 12 Brown Models You Need To Know

The journey to super model status is a long and windy road. Being discovered, signed and added to a popular agency’s roster, doesn’t guarantee your success—luck, timing and the relevancy of your look do. And for colored faces, the odds of winning are even slimmer. But there’s something about the silhouette of a lithe brown beauty cascading down a designer runway, decorated in couture fashion, that certifies why we deserve a permanent spot on the catwalk.

We applaud designers like Hermès, Bottega Veneta and Naeem Khan for sprinkling their F/W 2012 presentations with brown and yellow faces—the runway has not seen this much diversity since the seventies—hopefully the multicultural trend is here to stay.

Veronica Webb, Naomi Campbell, Tyra Banks and Alek Wek, paved the way for the new brown girls to shine, meet 12 ethnic models you need to know now!



Sessilee Lopez



 “If my mother wasn’t behind me, I would not be this far in my career.”


Known For: Pout, Hair, Legs

Designer Runways: Karl Lagerfeld, Jean Paul Gaultier, Givenchy

Editorials: Vogue, Times T Style, i-D

Hometown: New York, NY



Ataui Deng



  “What you see in your mind go for it. Don’t be scared…just feel it.”


Known For: Gaze, Height, Lips

Designer Runways: Proenza Schouler, Hermès, Lanvin

EditorialsV, Harper’s Bazaar, Lurve

Hometown: San Antonio, Texas via Khartoum, Sudan


Chrishell Stubbs



  “I couldn’t live without sunshine. It makes everything better.”


Known For: Hair, Eyes, Curves

Designer Runways: Diane Von Furstenberg, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Vivienne Westwood

Editorials: Teen Vogue, Face of Ralph LaurenBenetton and H&M 

Hometown: Turks and Caicos




Nyasha Matonhodze



“I never really developed a serious interest about it until America’s Next Top Model. Seriously, that’s when it all changed for me.”


Known For: Lips, Skin, Facial Structure

Designer Runways: Louis Vuitton, Balenciaga,  Emanuel Ungaro

Editorials: W, Numero, Wonderland 

Hometown:  Zimbabwe



Diandra Forrest


Editor’s Pick: This striking face is currently on our radar. Diandara’s full lips and stark beauty captivate us each time we spot her Albino canvas in a new editorial. Memorize the face and name.


Georgie Badiel

 “Coming all the way from Africa to model in New York is a dream come true. I feel so lucky!”


Known For: Smile, Legs, Walk

Designer Runways: Issey Miyake, Giambattista Valli, Tracy Reese

EditorialsBiba, Elle, Interview 

Hometown:  Burkina Faso, Africa


Anais Mali

“Always try to go to the moon, and even if you can’t do something, you will fall in the stars.”


Known For: Hair, Legs Skin

Designer Runways: Rachel Roy, Marc Jacobs, Vera Wang

EditorialsLove, Zink, French Vogue 

Hometown:  Toulon, France



Lakshmi Menon

“I look at myself as any other model. But yes, sometimes I’m looked upon as an exotic thing that’s landed on their shores.”


Known For: Hair, Skin, Pout

Designer Runways: Stella McCartney, Carolina Herrera, Hermès

EditorialsL’Officiel, Dazed & Confused, Allure  

Hometown:  Bangalore, India




Ajak Deng



“Designers are really understanding the value of having the African girls in a show. I mean, they’re gorgeous.”


Known For: Legs, Smile, Skin

Designer Runways: Maison Martin Margiela, Valentino, Chloé

EditorialsFrench Revue de Modes, The Age, Vogue 

Hometown:  Tonj, Sudan




Arlenis Sosa



“I love Oscar de la Renta. He shows the elegance of women.”


Known For: Legs, Hair, Skin

Designer Runways: Bottega Veneta, Oscar de la Rent, Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

EditorialsFlareDeustchTime Magazine’s Style & Design Issue

Hometown: Montecristi, Dominican Republic



Jeneil Williams



“Shooting with Karl Lagerfeld…was really fun. It was like hanging out rather than working.”


Known For: Eyes, Legs, Lips

Designer Runways: L’Wren Scott,Paul Smith, Naeem Khan

EditorialsRussian Vogue, Elle, i-D

Hometown: Kingston, Jamaica



  • Cj

    Simply flawless ladies! Joan Smalls is one of my very fave’s tho. It’s really a shame that when an attempt is made recognize black models no love is shown. I guess only stereotypical “video models” get love these days. 

  • Fganders

    Wow….. I am overwhelmed by these women….  black is soooooooooooo beautiful….

  • Mee

    That Ajak Deng is GAWJUS!!! WOW!

  • Tony

    What about Roberta Narciso, Sharam Diniz…Gorgeoussssssssssss gals!!!

  • Love Spell

    Black is Beautiful sho nuff!

  • Sheryl Prince

    Where the heck is Jordan Dunn and Joan Smalls?  Those two were probably the most in demand Black models this past fashion season.

  • Iamstyl

    OMG Ms. Deng is one of the most beautiful women. She is like a gorgeous alien that is too perfect looking to be human. I literally gasped when I saw that Juneil Williams was from Kingston, Jamaica. That is also my birth place and I am sooooooo proud that the beauty from my homeland is represented by this gorgeous woman. I am so happy for her and I will definitely follow her. I am so happy that I am a brown girl and that I have these women to look up to and not the trash that is thrown in my face by the mainstream media. Many blessings to Ms. Deng, Ms. Williams and all the other beautiful black girls!

  • one word,…………..FINALLY!!!!!!! our skin just makes brings garments TO LIFE!!!!! THESE GIRLS ARE GGGGGGGGGGGGGAAAAAWWWWWJJUSSSSS!!!!

  • Sassynhot

    Gorgeous women.  #4 reminds me of a young Naomi, but #11 should make it to supermodel status.

  • Shiron

    Black beauty–I love it! 

  • Love this! I guess black is the new “black”. lol.

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