People Are Copying This Model's Skin Condition: Is That Okay?

24 August 2015, 12:27 | Updated: 8 May 2017, 17:09

Winnie Harlow
Nicky Idika

By Nicky Idika

Hold the phone! Why are people doing this?

People are strange. Most of the time, but especially recently and concerning model and former ANTM contestant, Winnie Harlow.

The 21 year old Toronto born model has a skin condition called Vitiligo which has resulted in very distinctive facial patterns. Her very unique look has landed her a spot on the pages of Dazedi-D, and as a model for Diesel brand jeans.  

Winnie Harlow

Winnie's place in the industry certainly illustrates how fashion has come to challenge traditional standards of beauty, but some fans have taken the "Winnie Harlow look" to a whole new level. 

Understandably, the issue is very multi-layered. Some of her fans are calling this "fan art" blackface, and others say it's simply paying homage to the rising star. 

See where this gets a bit tricky?Winnie Harlow

If you don't have brown skin and you're doing your makeup to make it seem like you have brown skin and vitiligo, is it a compliment or is it a costume? Winnie issued a statement via Instagram and some fans were not happy with her response. 

No one wants to "steal" our look here. We've just stood so confidently in our own nappy hair and du-rags and big asses (or in this case, my skin) that now those who don't have it love and lust after it. Just because a black girl wears blue contacts and long weave doesn't mean she wants to be white and just because a white girl wears braids and gets lip injection doesn't mean she wants to be black. The amount of mixed races in this world is living proof that we don't want to be each other we've just gained a national love for each other. Why can't we embrace that feeling of love?

Winnie Harlow

It's obviously a very complex issue, but what do you guys think? Is it okay to do your makeup as if you have a skin condition like Winnie's? 

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