Next up on our 2023 Faby’s Best of 2023: The model of the year! The nominees for this particular category are models who are always catching our attention with their style, influence, and over all fierce cat walk.
Let’s get into this year’s candidates for the 2023 FABY’s Model of the Year:
Known for her court side looks, trendsetting style, and breaking barriers within the model industry, Winnie Harlow is a Canadian fashion model of Jamaican descent, and a public spokesperson for the skin condition vitiligo. She gained prominence after participating in the 21st cycle of the reality TV show “America’s Next Top Model,” and is considered one of the most successful models of ANTM history.
Winnie Harlow’s career took off after the show, and she became known for breaking beauty standards in the fashion industry by embracing her unique style and swagger. 2023 saw her posing for brands like Puma, Coca Cola, Victoria’s Secret, and SmartWater, appearing in Elle Canada, Vogue Netherlands, and Fashion Canada, twirling at the British Fashion Awards and the CFDA awards, donning the hottest Halloween costumes, and breaking into entrepreneurship with her skincare line, Cay Skin.
2. Naomi Campbell
Naomi Campbell is an ICON. The British supermodel, actress, and businesswoman has been one of the most prominent and recognizable figures in the fashion industry for several decades, and her reign continues into 2023. Naomi Campbell began her modeling career in the late 1980s, catching her break at age 15, and quickly rising to international fame.
Campbell has worked with numerous high-profile fashion designers and brands, graced the covers of countless magazines, and walked the runways for major fashion shows including Chanel, Versace, Dior and Alaia.
She has broken countless barriers such as becoming the first black model to be on the cover of TIME magazine and both French and Russian Vogue. She’s undeniably a trailblazer for black models in the industry, and one of 5 of the “original supermodels” which includes Linda Evangelista, Christy Turlington, Tatjana Patitz and Cindy Crawford.
In addition to her modeling career, Naomi Campbell has been involved in various philanthropic activities and has occasionally ventured into acting. Campbell has supported charities like the Breast Cancer Center, AIDS LIFE, and GLAAD. The late Nelson Mandela even named her ‘Honorary Granddaughter’ for Naomi’s endless activism. Her influence extends beyond the fashion world, making her a cultural icon of our time.
3. Kendall Jenner
The girl boss herself, Kendall Jenner’s modeling career took off in 2014 when she first walked for Marc Jacobs. Since then, she has walked the runways for numerous high-profile fashion designers including Chanel, Balmain and Fendi.
In addition she has appeared in advertising campaigns for major brands, and graced the covers of various fashion magazines like Vogue and Harpers Bazaar. Kendall is known for her distinctive and versatile look, and she has become one of the most sought-after models of her generation.
In addition to her modeling career, Kendall Jenner has been involved in various business ventures and endorsements including 818 Tequila that she founded, and the Kendall Jenner Teeth Whitening Pen which placed her on the cover of Forbes magazine’s “30 Under 30”.
It’s worth noting that Kendall Jenner’s prominence extends beyond the fashion world, as she has a significant presence on social media and has been involved in various philanthropic activities including supporting a charity known as Charity: Water that helps fund water sanitation, hygiene initiatives in developing communities.
4. Precious Lee
Precious Lee is an American model and actress who advocates for race and size diversity in the fashion industry. Since becoming the first African American curvy model to be in Vogue magazine in 2015, Lee has walked for major designers like Marc Jacobs, Moschino, Balmain, and Miu Miu to name a few.
She was originally signed to Ford Models, however is now represented by IMG Models. Along with Lee working with major fashion brands, has been featured on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar, and British Vogue and inside of various fashion publications like Essence Magazine, and Paper Magazine.
Precious Lee is a force to be reckoned with, and from the moment she made her first runway debut at the Christian Siriano New York Fashion week show in 2017, to making history as the first curvy model to walk in a Versace show, Lee has opened a door for curvy models everywhere.
5. Adut Akech
Adut Akech is a South Sudanese-Australian model born on December 25, 1999, in South Sudan. She and her family moved from Kenya to Australia as refugees when she was a child. Since Akech’s modeling career took off in 2016, Adut Akech has become a highly successful and internationally recognized fashion model, walking for iconic designers like Valentino, Givenchy and Chanel.
Known for her striking beauty, unique look, and efforts to promote diversity and representation in the fashion industry, Akech has created a name for herself in the industry. As a mentee to Edward Enninful, and the legendary Naomi Campbell, Akech is learning from the best of the best.
In addition to her modeling work, Adut Akech has been an advocate for refugees and has spoken out about the challenges and opportunities she has faced as a darker complexion model in the fashion world fighting for representation.
6. Anok Yai
Anok Yai is a South Sudanese-born American fashion model. Born on December 20, 1997, in Cairo, Egypt, her family later moved to the United States. Anok Yai gained widespread attention and recognition in the fashion industry after a photo of her taken at Howard University’s homecoming went viral on social media in 2017.
At 5’10, with the most lucious brown skin complexion, she is one of the most sought-after models in the industry, becoming the second black model to open a Prada show following Naomi Campbell.
She has since walked the runways for major fashion houses, including Mugler, Hermès, Chanel, and Valentino. Anok Yai is known for breaking barriers in the industry and advocating for diversity and inclusivity. In fact, as means of embracing natural beauty and honoring her hair texture, during a period of her career she only rocked cornrows or an afro. Her successful career has made her a prominent figure in the world of high fashion.
7. Eva Apio
Eva Apio is a British-Ugandan model and social media influencer. Born in Uganda, she moved with her mother to the United Kingdom at the young age of 10. Eva Apio gained popularity through her modeling work and presence on social media platforms, particularly Instagram. She built a significant following by sharing her modeling work, fashion-related content, and glimpses into her personal life.
Eva Apio has worked with various fashion brands and has been featured in fashion campaigns such as H&M, Daily Paper and Cold Laundry. In addition to being a model, she also has a foundation entitled, “Apio Foundation” for children living in poverty in Uganda, has a clothing line and is a DJ, showing us that she’s simply unstoppable.
8. Alton Mason
Alton Mason is a 26-year old American model and dancer who is from Arizona, and has made a name for himself in the fashion industry. He is known as one of the most beautiful male supermodels, and in 2018 became the first male black model to walk the Chanel show.
He is known for his distinctive look, impressive modeling skills, and his ability to seamlessly blend fashion, dance and acting. He recently made his Hollywood acting debut as ‘Little Richard” in a film entitled, Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis.
With over a million Instagram followers, Mason’s influence expands across the globe and from walking in over 150 shows and being apart of 90 campaigns, he is redefining what it means to be a male supermodel.
Some of the major fashion designers and brands that Alton Mason has worked with includes Kanye West’s Yeezy brand, Gucci, Off-White ,Tom Ford and DSquared2.
In addition to his modeling career, Alton Mason has been recognized for his talents as a dancer, and actually studied dance and theatre at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in Los Angeles. He has found innovative ways to incorporate dance into his modeling work, and once served as a backup dancer for Diddy at the BET awards.
9. Ashley Graham
Ashley Graham is a Nebraska native and an entrepreneur known for her work in promoting body positivity and inclusivity in the fashion industry.
Ashley Graham gained widespread recognition when she appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue in 2016, becoming one of the first plus-size models to achieve this milestone. Another trajectory point was when she became the first plus size models to grace the cover of American Vogue magazine in February 2017.
Represented by IMG models, Graham has modeled for brands like Michael Kors, Dolce & Gabanna, and Christian Siriano. In addition to her modeling career, Ashley Graham is an advocate for body diversity and has spoken out about the importance of representation in the fashion industry.
She has also ventured into entrepreneurship, launching her own line of lingerie and swimwear called “Swimsuitsforall” that’s available in sizes 10-24. Ashley Graham’s impact extends beyond the fashion world, and she has become an influential figure in promoting self-acceptance and confidence for all sizes.
That does it!
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