First year three black models wore their natural hair at a Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Models Jourdana Phillips, Maria Borges and Herieth Paul wore their natural hair in this year’s Victoria’s Secret fashion show.

The three models were praised by the media and other models for showcasing black women’s natural hair.



Borges made headlines last year as the second model to wear their natural hair while walking in the show.

Maria-Borges--2015-Victorias-Secret-Fashion-Show-Runway--07-662x996.jpgMaria Borge VS Fashion show 2015

Model Ajuma Nasenyana was the first angel to walk with her natural hair in the 2006 show.

This year’s show was held in Paris on Wednesday evening and included veteran Victoria’s Secret models such as Adrianna Lima, Alessandra Ambrosia and Lily Aldridge returning to the runway.

The first thing most people will think of when they hear ‘Victoria’s Secret model’ is the tall, slim, bombshell girl with long, tousled locks.

Borge decided to go against the norm and shaved her head and wore it natural for the show last year, showing girls around the world they can be beautiful in their natural hair too.

Phillips and Paul decided to join Borge in this year’s show.

gettyimages-626766658.jpgJourdana Phillips 

“This year, I feel happy still because I see two other girls with short hair and they are beautiful”, Borge told W magazine. 

Borge said in a tweet, the first look she wore in this year’s show was a love letter to her continent Africa.

maria-borgesMaria Borge first look at VS Fashion Show 2016 

The Angolan model told Teen Vogue earlier this month wearing her hair natural was the sexiest moment of her life.

She told People that wearing her short, natural  curls made a statement that girls do not need wigs and a lot of makeup to be sexy and they can be sexy being comfortable with who they are.

Accurate representation in media is important for minorities, especially for a show as big as the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, which is watched by millions of people from around the world who look up to the models walking down the catwalk.

When long, wavy and straight hair is all people, especially young kids, see in the show, they start to believe that they need to look like those models in order to be considered beautiful.

Adding more diverse models who walk in the show creates a more realistic and inclusive representation for the brand. It also spreads the message that beauty comes in several different forms.

Phillips told Glamour that beauty is not about the length of a woman’s hair, but it’s about how a woman projects herself instead.


The creator of the famous Victoria’s Secret waves is hair stylist Sarah Potempa and she does not oppose the short, natural look.

2013 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show - Hair & MakeupModel Lily Aldridge wearing signature VS waves

She said in an interview with Glamour that the hair team behind the show was focusing on enhancing every model’s natural beauty.

Although, she is known for the model’s signature long, beachy waves, she said she’s playing with their natural length and texture this year.

While Borges, Paul and Elizabeth are helping brands adopt a more diverse look, non-white models are still underrepresented in the fashion industry.

In the highest paid models list of 2016, only three non-white women were featured. The three women included Liu Wen, Joan Smalls and Jasmine Tookes, who also walked in this year’s show.

Teaching young girls to embrace their natural beauty and encourage diversity in the beauty and fashion world is something Borge takes pride in. She said in an interview with Glamour that she has met so many other girls who think it’s scary to wear their hair natural, or if they change their hair, they won’t feel beautiful anymore.

“So I said, you know what, I want to show women that anything’s possible. You can still look beautiful with short hair,” she said.




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