Filipina Models who Slayed at NYFW
The fashion industry has been going through some major model casting shakeups the past few seasons, and we at Hella Pinay could not be happier. This season, there were more and more models representing Filipina beauty, as well as more diversity and inclusion of a wider spectrum of beauty on the runway. Whether it's a calculated move or already part of a brand's DNA - like at Chromat, where inclusivity has always been a natural part of their brand - we're all for it. Beyond being gorgeous, our favorite models are also out there using their platforms to spread messages of body positivity, activism, and tolerance. And not just models - we also spotted star chef Angela Dimayuga in the Opening Ceremony lookbook, who became a highly visible voice for queer, immigrant, and women’s rights earlier this year after screenshots of her ripping Ivanka Trump a new one went viral.
As anyone who follows our Instagram account knows, we stan hard for Leyna Bloom and are beyond thrilled that she is blowing TF up and bringing recognition not just to trans models of color but also to Afro-Pinays. She opened the Chromat show (which also included fellow Filipinas Geena Rocero and Janine Tugonon), and also showed out at the LaQuan Smith presentation and worked the runway at The Blonds. As Leyna told OUT Magazine last month: "I love doing gigs and getting jobs that have influential messages—something outside of the glitz and glam parts of being in front of the camera. I prefer to work with brands that are about bringing in all shapes, sizes, colors, and creeds together, for the better of fashion and for the future of fashion. I think it's simple: If it's not helping the people, its not working."
Another face we were stoked to see stateside this season is Katrina Gumabao, a Philippines-based plus-size model who aims to make body shaming a thing of the past. In August 2016, she became the first plus-size Pinay model to walk Melbourne Fashion Week, and this season she was selected as a Top 10 finalist to walk the runway for popular plus-size label Torrid's first fashion week show at NYFW. Katrina recently told Cosmo.ph: "[There needs to be] more support for diversity and inclusion when it comes to fashion and beauty [as well as] acceptance of other people no matter who they are."
Click through our gallery below to see some our favorite Pinays killing it this NYFW: