The fashion industry has always been known and renowned for pushing boundaries and setting standards in terms of what people wear and what they look like.
The industry has gone through several changes for decades and at the core of every change is the “it model”. Models epitomises trends. Think about the 1980’s and the early 1990’s and names like Cindy Crawford and Naomi Campbell comes to mind. Then Kate Moss changed fashion’s obsession with the supermodel to a more alternative look known as heroin chic.
Recently the new “it girl” arrived and has been the most talked about model for the past few months. Except that she is actually a man. Lea T, a Brazilian model, who’s real name is Leandro Cerezo, is the son of famous footballer Toninho Cerezo. With all the controversy surrounding her, Lea T has let fashion take a u-turn into a whole different direction. Her looks match a typical female model. Tall, skinny, with a strikingly elegant face, Lea T has created a whirlwind news frenzy capturing everyone’s attention launching a transgender trend known as the femiman. In January 2011 at the Sau Paolo Fashion Week critics applauded her runway walk.
So far Lea T has modelled in campaigns for Givenchy and recently appeared on a magazine cover kissing Kate Moss. The 28 year old looks set to earn more high profile campaigns and is soon becoming a runway phenomena.
Another transgender who is also making headlines all over the fashion sphere is 19 year old Serbian-Australian model Andreij Pejic. He was recently interviewed in a UK March edition of Grazia magazine. Pale, with long platinum blonde hair and an attractive girl’s figure, he confesses that guys have chatted him up a few times. He has walked the runway for men and women’s clothing. He has been booked for Jean Paul Gaultier’s Spring 2011 campaign alongside Karolina Kurkova. It seems that designers are embracing the guess the gender trend and Andreij has become a symbol for androgyny.
It is hard enough for female models to compete for top campaigns with each other, but now they face competition from men who can easily fit into the same tiny outfits, and manage to look even more striking.
What’s next though? Aliens, clones? Maybe people should not go so far as to say that a transsexual model could be compared to something as outrageous as a clone, but accept that change, especially in the realms of an industry that shape our daily consumerist lives, could simply be a good thing.