It’s not a secret that the fashion industry puts a lot of pressure on women.
Glossy magazines, luxurious shop window displays, or sizzling catwalk looks create a narrow beauty ideal to follow.
And while this staged fantasy world keeps failing young women around the world, a breath of fresh air comes in!
Meet Sofía Jirau, a Puerto Rican model with down syndrome who took New York Fashion Week (NYFW) by storm.
“Inside and out there are no limits. You can accomplish your dreams too!” The woman states on her Instagram profile where she inspires her 67 000 followers.
Last week, the 22-year-old model walked at NYFW for the first time in designer Marisa Santiago’s show.
The next day, the beauty posted a picture of herself on the runway and said the experience was a dream come true, The Mighty reports.
“Yesterday, I fulfilled a dream,” she wrote on Instagram. “I was born for this and I want to show the world that I have everything a model needs to shine.”
Though Sofía isn’t the first model with down syndrome to walk the runway during NYFW, her inclusion is an important moment for people within the down syndrome and Latina communities, many of whom haven’t historically been represented in fashion, Revelist reveals.
In addition to her role as a model, Sofía is a businesswoman. Her clothing line, Alavett, includes shirts, wallets, mugs and phone cases.
On Alavett’s website, Sofía proudly proclaims the line is her “cry of joy to the world.”
She’s become a symbol of hope and a reminder that anything is possible, a belief that’s helped her reach this point in her career.
“One day I looked in the mirror and said, ‘I’m going to be a model and I’m going to get to New York, and look, here I am’,” she said. “I made it and now I want to model worldwide.”