From Agbani Darego to Oluchi Onweagba, the modelling industry has seen several bright stars change the narrative and pave the way for Nigerian models as a whole. This doesn’t seem to be waning anytime soon as we keep seeing new faces emerge to break grounds and represent our dear country on a global scale.
Last week, we looked at their male counterparts, but this time around we will be reviewing some of the female models that have made quite an impact on the industry.
Mayowa Nicholas is one of Beth Model Management’s leading ladies and has come a long way at a relatively young age. She was scouted by the Elite Model Look team while on her way to the salon and soon emerged winner of the Elite Model Look 2014 female category, at 16 years old. The 5 foot 11 inches tall model has since been exceptional by being the first Nigerian model to grace a Dolce & Gabbana campaign in 2016. She has also walked the runways for high-profile designers like Hermes, Dior, Prada, and Balmain. In 2017, she was unveiled as the face of Calvin Klein’s underwear campaign, a feat which serves as a testament to her modelling prowess. Mayowa is signed to Elite Paris and Milan and Beth Model Management.
Uju Marshall’s career in modelling kicked-off in 2010 after she got scouted by an agency, while still an Economics student at the University. This led to her move from her hometown, Enugu, to Lagos where she landed fashion editorials with big magazines, became the face of several beauty brands, and worked with some of Nigeria’s finest designers such as Orange Culture, Iamisigo, and Andrea Iyamah. She also came out as the best model of 2014 at the Lagos Fashion and Design Week and got nominated at the 2016 Nigerian Entertainment Awards. Beautiful and quite successful in her craft, Uju is certainly one to keep up with.
Known for her chemistry with the camera and “signature walk”, Olamide Ogundele hit the runways after she signed with FEW Model Management in 2015 and later, Boss Model Management in South Africa (the same agency that discovered Hollywood actress Charlie Theron and Victoria Secret model Behati Prinsloo). With these impressive qualities, it didn’t take her long to become the face of the 2015 Lagos Fashion and Design Week where she walked 20 odd shows. She has worked with Nigerian designers such as Maki Oh, Devon Dejana, and Retro Religion. Olamide has earned the features of some prestigious magazines including Mania Magazine and Vogue. With the edgy persona she brings to the camera, she is definitely one model to look out for.
Remarkable for being just 5 ft 8 inches but still holding her own in the modelling industry, Eliazbeth Ayodele began her modelling career in FEW Model Management. She was first discovered by Bolajo Fawehinmi, founder and director of FEW Model Management after she signed with his agency. This young model of about 18 years has excelled further in her career, by being the first Nigerian model to be signed to the renowned modelling agency, IMG Models Worldwide. In the space of just two years since she started her modelling journey, Elizabeth has attained great heights globally; she has walked the runways for notable brands such as Yves Saint Laurent, Miu Miu, Fendi, and Broganno, amongst others.
Aduke’s venture into the modelling industry wasn’t all rosy as she encountered certain setbacks due to her height (two inches shorter than industry’s standard height) and weight which was not considered model criteria. But through perseverance and hard work, she honed her skills in modelling and would eventually end up stealing the show at 2017 GTBank Fashion Weekend – an event in which she walked for designers Julien Macdonald and Laquan Smith and became their choice. She has modelled for top designers like Deola Sagoe and Meena. She has been featured in several publications and has worked with reputable Nigerian photographers like Lakin Ogunbnanwo, Reze Bona, and TY Bello.
Feature Image: guardian.ng