Model scouts in Brazil are looking for the next Gisele Bündchen. They have figured out that the genes of girls who look like a model in the way she does — with light skin, light hair, and tall, naturally thin figures — come from German and Italian ancestry and may also have a dash of Slavic blood. While more than half of Brazil's population isn't white, more than half of Brazil's models are scouted in a southern rural region comprising about one-twentieth of the nation's population. Gisele and Alessandra Ambrosio, who were discovered at 13 and 12 respectively, come from these parts.
The region is proud of its reputation for hotness. But Brazil as a whole — more than half of which is black — is also proud of its hotness. Frustrations have emerged over the world not recognizing all of Brazil's skin tones as beautiful. While Brazilians embrace beauties with darker skin, the fashion industry in the rest of the world gravitates toward paler Brazilian models.
“I was always perplexed that Brazil was never able to export a Naomi Campbell, and it is definitely not because of a lack of pretty women,” said Erika Palomino, a fashion consultant in São Paulo. “It is embarrassing.”
Scouts have begun looking in darker-skinned regions, but they have a long way to go. Prosecutors recently forced São Paulo Fashion Week to make sure that at least 10 percent of its models were of African or indigenous decent. In 2008, 28 of the 1,128 models in the event weren't white.
Most Viewed Stories
I Tried Hillary Clinton’s Diet and Now I Sympathize With Her
Brad Pitt Fights Back Against Angelina Jolie and Her Plot to ‘Destroy’ Him
Blake Lively Reportedly Just Gave Birth, and You’ll Never Guess Who’s Running to the Hospital
Looks Like Kate Middleton Is Enjoying the View in Canada
What It’s Like to Be a Female Reporter Covering Donald Trump
Angelina Jolie Got Everything She Wanted in Temporary Divorce Deal With Brad Pitt
The Best Part of Being a Royal Is Getting to Pet Bunnies
22 Intimate Lost Photos of Marilyn Monroe
Trump Campaign Manager Accidentally Refers to His ‘Abuse’ of Women on Live TV
Megyn Kelly Roasts Trump’s Campaign Manager for Claiming He Doesn’t Make Sexist Comments
From Our Partners
powered by PubExchange
The Cut’s Latest Fashion FeaturesCiara's Wedding Dress Was Too Big for the Chapel
To be fair, it was a 13 foot-long dress.You and Rihanna Will Both Want to Invest in Dior’s New Bag
It's got something for everyone.Polo Shirts Have Turned Their Back on Ryan Lochte
Along with his other major sponsors.Ryan Lochte Will No Longer Be Paid to Wear Tiny Bathing Suits
Speedo remains committed to transparency.Laura Brown Is the New Editor-in-Chief of InStyle
After 11 years at Harper’s Bazaar.Tyra Banks Is Going to Teach a Class on Smizing at Stanford
"If I see somebody not paying attention, I’m gonna call on them."This Floating Pier Is the Most Zen Installation Ever
Walking on water in Italy.Nation Is Appalled by Matt Lauer’s Nude Ankles During Ryan Lochte Interview
What’s the opposite of “Jeah”?8 People at the Life of Pablo Pop-up Explain Why Kanye West Is a God
"I mean, Kanye West is just Kanye West. There's not more or less you can say about Kanye West. He's just Mr. West!"A T-shirt Is Enough
Simplicity, versatility, and cool. What more could you want?
She took a perfect pencil dive off a 30-foot yacht.American Apparel Is Being Sued by Former Workers
As the company considers putting itself up for sale.A Gendered History of the Tailored Suit
From Marlon Brando to Coco Chanel.How Zendaya Developed Such Great Style at the Young Age of 19
The star's best looks from Disney to now.Proof That If You’re Chic Enough, a Little Federal Investigation Doesn’t Matter
Is this the best they could do?5,300-Year-Old Mummified Iceman Probably Would’ve Been a Street-Style Star
He had several different looks and was “pretty picky.”J.Crew Has Identified 226 Shades of Pink
Even more than there are shades of gray.Gigi and Bella Hadid Merch Is Now Somehow a Thing That Is Happening
Today in Hadidiana.Gird Your Loins for the Return of Yeezy to New York Fashion Week
The season approaches.This Indie Brand Had a Great Response to Ivanka Trump
When she bought one of their cuffs, they donated the proceeds to the Clinton campaign.