Transgender model signs major beauty contract

Transgender supermodel Lea T. signs beauty deal with haircare giant Redken.
Photo / Getty
Transgender supermodel Lea T. signs beauty deal with haircare giant Redken. Photo / Getty

Transgender supermodel and Givenchy muse Lea T has signed a beauty deal with American hair care brand Redken, which unveiled her today as the new face of its Chromatics colour line.

Lea T. is widely credited as being the world's first high fashion transgender model, who was first discovered by Givenchy's creative director Ricardo Tisci.

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Her modelling debut was for Givenchy's autumn/winter 2014 campaign and since then she emerged from backstage assistant to a catwalk star. Since becoming Tisci's muse, she has appeared in countless campaigns and magazine editorials, including the cover of Love magazine, where she was pictured locking lips with Kate Moss.

And on a more controversial note, she posed completely naked in a portrait for French Vogue when former editor Carine Roitfeld was still in charge.


Kate Moss holds her fellow covergirl, Lea T. Photo / Getty

Now, her dark locks have made her the beauty muse of Redken. T. said: "It's an honour and a responsibility at the same time.

"My mum has beautiful hair, and when I was young, I was so envious of it... Hair is so important for a woman, and I'm so lucky [mine] is natural, strong, and shiny."


The 33-year-old Brazilian model is part of a big move towards diversity in the fashion industry. Other well-known examples include Andreja Pejic, who's been a regular in the modelling world for some time now. Also, controversial Eurovision winner, drag queen Conchita Wurst, appeared on Gaultier's haute couture show earlier this year and was shot by Karl Lagerfeld for CR Fashion Book.

The beauty industry, traditionally has been a different story to the fashion world, although, there has been some promising moves towards embracing diversity in recent years. Twelve Years of Slave's actress Lupita Nyong'o, for example, recently became the face of Lancôme, model Neelam Gill became Burberry's first Indian model and beauty muse, and renowned drag queen RuPaul has fronted two MAC cosmetics' Viva Glam campaigns.

T.'s deal with haircare giant Redken give the LBGT community cause to celebrate the success of an icon in this field.

T. began her career in fashion as a "controversial face" who shook the industry with a Givenchy's ad campaign and then with that rather revealing portrait on French Vogue. But by 2011 she was one of the most in-demand supermodels in the world.

As she extends her CV, her new campaign for Redken will elevate her profile even further with her face featuring on advertising in thousands of salons globally, inspiring new generations to think about beauty just a little different.

"Being the new face of Redken is a dream comes true," she said.

"I love working with Redken because they appreciate all kinds of beauty. They believe in the individuality of the person, and I think that's really important."

- Independent

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