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Culture Joan Smalls Will Grace January Issue of ELLE

Joan Smalls Will Grace January Issue of ELLE

Joan Smalls has landed a coveted spot on the cover of ELLEs January 2014 issue. The choice has been a range of firsts: Smalls has never been on the cover of U.S. ELLE before, photographer Michael Thompson will have his first cover and spread in the publication, and ELLE has decided to go against its usual TV or movie star cover ways to feature a model who has recently spoken out about racial diversity in modeling.

elle joan smalas cover photo shoot of the day

Smalls, who was the first black model to be signed as the face of Estée Lauder, has said, “People hide behind the word ‘aesthetic.’ They say, ‘Well, it’s just that designer’s aesthetic.’ But when you see eighteen seasons in a row and not one single model outside a certain skin color… There are people in the industry who are advocates, who support diversity. And there are people who do not. I don’t get it. Beauty is universal. These doors have to open.”

ELLE has named Smalls’ feature in the magazine “The Return of the Supermodel.” After seeing the pictures in the shoot, we couldn’t agree more. Smalls is wearing Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci for the cover, and other looks include Chanel, Jacquard, and Gucci. The full story and spread will hit newsstands on December 17.

elle joan smalas cover photo shoot of the day

elle joan smalas cover photo shoot of the day

elle joan smalas cover photo shoot of the day

See more stunning Photo Shoots of the Day here.

(Photos via Elle)

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