Teddy Quinlivan is marking a huge milestone in her career.
The model and activist has announced she is the first openly transgender model to be tapped by Chanel Beauty for an advertising campaign. Quinlivan shared the news on her Instagram account, posting a video and image from the campaign along with a heartfelt quote on the significance of this role.
“I find I don’t cry anymore when things are sad, but isn’t it interesting when we shed tears in moments of triumph?” she wrote. “This was one of those triumphant cry moments for me. My whole life has been a fight. From being bullied at school consistently, kids threatening to kill me and going into graphic detail how they were going to do it, my own father beating me and calling me a f–got, to receiving industry blowback after speaking publicly about being sexually assaulted on the job.…This was a victory that made all of that s–t worth it.”
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💄CHANEL BEAUTY💄 -I find I don’t cry anymore when things are sad, but isn’t it interesting when we shed tears in moments of triumph. This was one of those triumphant cry moments for me. My whole life has been a fight. From being bullied at school consistently, kids threatening to kill me and going into graphic detail how they were going to do it, my own father beating me and calling me a fagot, to receiving industry blowback after speaking publicly about being sexually assaulted on the job… This was a victory that made all of that shit worth it. I had walked 2 shows for Chanel while I was living in stealth ( stealth meaning I hadn’t made my trans identity public yet) and when I came out I knew I’d stop working with some brands, I thought I’d never work with the iconic house of Chanel ever again. But here I am in Chanel Beauty Advertising. I am the first openly trans person to work for the house of Chanel, and I am deeply humbled and proud to represent my community. The world will kick you down, spit on you, and tell you you’re worthless. It’s your job to have the strength to stand up and push on, to keep fighting, Because if you give up then you will never experience the tears of triumph. Thank you to everyone who made this dream a reality! @nicolaskantor @shazmakeup @sebastienrichard1 @casadevallbelen
After walking the runway for brands such as Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Chloé, to name a few, Quinlivan came out publicly as transgender in September 2017. She has since been a fixture on the fashion week runways and has covered a number of magazines, including L’Officiel, Porter Magazine and Wonderland. She has also worked with other beauty brands for ad campaigns, including Milk Makeup, Redken and Maison Margiela fragrances.
Quinlivan continued to express her excitement over the Chanel Beauty campaign on her Instagram Stories, praising other members of the LGBTQ community — including actresses Laverne Cox and Hunter Schafer and Victoria’s Secret model Valentina Sampaio — for their accomplishments.
“This is such an exciting time to be alive if you’re a member of the LGBTQ community, especially if you’re [transgender] because trans girls are just out here f–king killing it,” she said. “There is no glass ceiling that is unbreakable, like this is our moment to seize the world and we just have to keep fighting and keep getting ourselves out there and making a difference and bringing exposure to the trans community to the forefront of the global stage.”
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