Milan also showed signs of progress. Piergiorgio Del Moro cast a diverse catwalk of non-white faces at Max Mara, and the biochemistry student Anok Yai became the second black model to open a Prada show in more than two decades. The biggest disappointment of the AW18 womenswear season? Haider Ackermann, in Paris, where only three models of colour walked in a cast of 31 (9,7 per cent).
The catwalk may be changing, but will this diversity be reflected elsewhere, in magazine shoots and advertising? “Unfortunately, diversity is treated like a trend in this industry, so the sustainability of diversity levels is unpredictable,” says @moremodelsofcolor. “However, the more models of colour are represented on the runway, the more attention they are likely to receive for jobs in editorials and print ads. Magazines in general are usually less diverse, an assumption that is based on the ignorant notion that non-white models do not sell [clothes] as well as white models. Moreover, the type of shoots models of colour are typically used for are very niche, exotic or culturally driven narratives. Diversity needs to be a naturalised part of the industry, and the creative direction of shoots.” Here are some of the faces we hope to see a lot more of.
Scouted at the bus stop last September, the 22-year-old Adan made headlines in her native Denmark when she became the first hijab-wearing model to be signed to local modelling agency Unique Models. The agency’s chief executive described the signing as “new and groundbreaking”. Since then, Adan has also signed with the global agency Models 1 and made her first Milan appearance this season at Max Mara. In keeping with the requirements of her faith, she wore a leopard-print headscarf, elbow-high leather gloves and a slouchy grey check blazer.