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The introduction of Caitlyn Jenner earlier this week highlighted the special importance of makeup to transgender women. “I never had, until a couple of weeks ago, actually a professional come in and do my makeup, what a difference,” she revealed in a teaser for the docu-series I Am Cait. The Vanity Fair covergirl also told Diane Sawyer that “to be able to have my nail polish on long enough that it actually chips off,” was the number one thing Jenner was looking forward to post-reveal.
On Wednesday, rumors circulated that MAC Cosmetics — a progressive brand that tapped Ru Paul nearly a decade ago — picked up on this and was talking to the Olympian about potentially becoming a spokesperson. (The brand quickly denied the hearsay, saying, “We are inspired by Caitlyn Jenner, her personal journey and we admire her courage and beauty. We have not signed Caitlyn as a spokesperson for MAC.”) But even though this particular 65-year-old trans person won’t be shilling eye shadow in the near future, there is actually surprising trans representation within the beauty world. In fact, it seems cosmetic companies are some of the most progressive, leading a diversity charge not seen within other industries.
Last November, model Lea T., muse to Givenchy’s Ricardo Tisci, became the first trans woman to front a major beauty campaign when she was tapped by Redken for its January 2015 Chromatics hair-color campaign. Teenager Jazz Jennings was chosen by Clean & Clear, which typically casts PYTs like Hayden Panetierre and Demi Lovato, for its March social media-driven promotion using the hashtag #SeeTheRealMe to promote natural beauty. And, lastly (and probably most notably), Andreja Pejic is the new face of Make Up For Ever.
Pejic, who underwent gender reassignment in 2014, made a successful and prominent career for herself prior to her surgery as an androgynous male model who walked runways for designers like Jean Paul Gaultier and Marc Jacobs. She recently became the first trans woman to appear in the pages of Vogue and her campaign for Make Up For Ever will launch July 16. She shared a teaser on Tuesday of the images on Instagram and captioned the snippet, "I can’t even describe how incredible it feels to be the 1st transwoman to become a face of a major cosmetics brand @Makeupforeverofficial. Thank you guys for being so brave and giving me this opportunity and for spreading the message that beauty IS diversity and simply that being different is perfectly OK!“
Speaking to Women’s Wear Daily, Pejic reinforced the idea that makeup’s particularly powerful for the trans community. "Being bold is about freedom. It’s hard for anyone to grow up and not be afraid of what others think. Makeup helps me express myself, and I’ve used it in varying ways throughout my life. I have strived to live life on my own terms, to never have to hide and to never have to feel shame about who I am,” she said. “I can be proud of that and I’m equally proud to share that message through this Make Up For Ever campaign.”
Jenner might not be for MAC (right now), but there are plenty of other cosmetics companies out there that might scoop her up.
More from Yahoo Style:
Bruce Jenner Reveals Caitlyn on Vanity Fair Cover
Cheers to Bruce Jenner for Proving It’s Never Too Late to Be Yourself
11 High Fashion Looks Caitlyn Jenner Should Wear to the ESPYs