“Do you know how important you are?”
This very question was the running theme as models Leyna Bloom and Liris Crosse took to the stage at the inaugural ESSENCE Fashion House NYC on Thursday, September 5th.
Joining ESSENCE Global Beauty Director, Julee Wilson, the ladies engaged in an empowering discussion where they oped up about being women of color in the fashion industry and how they continue to stand in their truth.
Hailing from Baltimore Maryland, Project Runway alum Liris Crosse encouraged the audience to keep “showing up,” even amidst constant rejection and unexpected curveballs.
“My superpower is showing up period. Women that are my height, color, size and body shape are depending on me so I can’t give up,” Crosse said.
If you follow Crosse on social media, then you know that she is an advocate for making your dreams come true. The supermodel has openly discussed how she managed to keep moving forward despite society’s efforts to shut out plus size models over the years and how her unyielding determination actually motivated her to sashay down the runway in honor of other plus size women and models.
For model and activist Leyna Bloom, breaking barriers by becoming the first American transgender woman of color to appear in Vogue India in 2017 has proved to be an unforgettable career milestone. The Chicago native said her key to moving forward in the face of naysayers is to always have self-love and believe that no one can do what you do. Bringing her powerful words to life, Bloom yet again made history with her recent appearance in a breathtaking spread for the September 2019 Global Fashion Issue issue of ESSENCE magazine.
While both of these phenomenal women have certainly made their marks in the fashion industry in major ways, the truth is, they’re just getting started.
Crosse will be heading to the U.K. to celebrate and walk bridal fashion week in March, while Bloom is currently working on a television show and is set to star in the upcoming film, Port Authority, which premieres in Paris on September 25th.
For more of everything you missed at the first-ever ESSENCE Fashion House NYC, head back to essence.com.Share :