Models with Acne

  • Amy Bebbington

Models with acne don’t exactly seem to be the most popular faces on our screens and the catwalk, but it’s amazing what a makeup artist and Photoshop can actually do. Whilst it’s of course true to say that models with spots aren’t the norm, they do very much exist.

The fashion industry is a young persons world. Therefore, it is almost guaranteed that teens and those in their early twenties will have spots or severe acne. However, the modelling world is not open to showcasing the common skin condition that millions suffer with daily causing low self esteem. Covered with make-up or digitally removed, spots are no where in sight creating an unrealistic illusion.

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Kadeeja Khan’s Story

Recently, 21 year old beauty blogger, Kadeeja Khan was cut from a L’Oreal shoot due to her acne. The global cosmetic brand approached Kadeeja to ask her if she would like to visit Paris for their launch of their new vegan hair dye. However, they soon retracted their invitation via email stating that they can’t be involved with people with skin issues. Appalled, hurt and humiliated by their unkind remarks, Kadeeja shared their opinion with her 129,000 followers.

She states: “To think we’re supposed to live in an advanced society that not only ACCEPTS of ALL walks of live but actually embraces people of all backgrounds, religions, ethnicities and disabilities. Shame on you L’Oreal.”

L’Oreal did issue an apology stating that they do in fact work with both women and men with all skin types and celebrate beauty in all its diversity. However, we are curious to know if they did or will ever employ models that have acne. With the fashion industry becoming much more diverse it would be inspiring for beauty brands to tackle issues that a lot of people suffer with. Spots being one of them. So many are self conscious, embarrassed and upset with their not so flawless skin. Beauty brands therefore have a responsibility to show that it is a common problem that can be helped with the right products. Also, if different skin types are represented by cosmetic labels their confidence will soar.

Looking After Your Skin

Whilst some things can’t be helped, it’s important to note that looking after your skin is one of the most important things you can do when you’re a person who will be appearing in the public eye and doing the exact kind of work that modelling requires. For example, you must drink lots of water. Ensure that you’re getting in two litres or more every single day.



The things you eat can really help as well. If you eat a diet rich in grease, this is much more likely to make you break out. Fresh fruit and vegetables are fantastic for keeping your skin in the best possible shape. What you directly put into your body effects your skin, wellbeing and personality. It is so closely linked that models should consider their diet carefully without becoming obsessed. Choose an apple over a chocolate bar the majority of the time.

Skincare Regime

You can also keep up a great skincare routine! It’s important to remove make-up after you wear it, particularly the heavy stuff that you might wear for modelling jobs. Then you should use a moisturiser to keep it as hydrated and smooth as possible. Now and again it might be worthwhile trying a face mask too. Obviously, you need to make sure that you’re not using products that will further irritate the skin – unperfumed products are great, as they’re a lot less harsh. Simple things like regularly washing your hair (but not enough to dry out the skin) can really help – greasy fringes, for example, can cause spots.

Unfortunately, you may never have clear skin with adult acne being a real problem for some people however, a regime that works for you will help. On days where you have no modelling jobs allow for your skin to breathe by going makeup-free.


Stress is another cause of outbreaks. The more stressed you are, the more spots will appear. This is due to how stress causes your body to make hormones like cortisol, which tells the glands in your skin to make more oil. As we all know oily skin causes spots and ‘bad skin’. If you feel that you are feeling burnt out and stressed, make sure that you rest and find a way to feel calm. Your skin will respond.


The fashion industry works on a global scale, which involves a lot of travel. You may be working in Los Angeles, California or an Australian city or both in the space of a couple of weeks. Feeling tired and run down from all the travelling may result in a spotty complexion. Therefore, make sure you keep up with the your beauty regime, drink plenty of water and sleep as much as you can.

Models with Severe Cases

Models with acne have often tried everything they can in order to improve the condition of their skin. Sometimes it can be extremely difficult and the challenge is frustrating to say the least. However, with the help of a doctor and specially medicated products, there is hope out there.

Acne treatments will really help clear your skin, which in turn will improve your mental health. Many with severe cases can feel very negatively about themselves. Therefore, it is worthwhile speaking to a professional. Cystic acne can leave models with scars. This may be another factor that causes insecurity however, do remember that small acne scars make you who you are. Every detail of your face is unique and beautiful.


Is Social Media to Blame?

With filters and apps so easily available, social media posts rarely show flaws. The likes of Kendall Jenner and Kylie Jenner look flawless in every way, only showing an edited version of themselves. Posing on the red carpet or working at New York or London Fashion Week there’s hardly a spot in sight. This provides an unrealistic version for young people to see on a daily basis, which causes low self esteem if their complexion doesn’t match insta-models. Try not to compare yourself to a highly edited image.

When Moto Guo Sent Models with Spots down the Runway

Back in 2016, Malaysian designer, Moto Guo made a statement at Milan Men’s Fashion Week. His choice to not use traditional makeup artist techniques by covering the models face in foundation caused a stir. Yes, the models graced the runway with their natural blemishes for everyone to see. Only MAC mahogany lip liner and MAC coffee eye pencil were the only two products used for the fashion show. His bold move was to showcase a skin condition that millions of people struggle with and certainly relate to. It is certainly nothing to be ashamed of. However, it doesn’t seem like the idea has caught on.

Do you suffer from spots? Would you be shocked to see models with acne? Let us know.

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