Khoudia Diop has inspired thousands by overcoming relentless bullying for the colour of her skin to pave her way in the modelling industry. She's a self-named "Melanin Goddess."
Diop is 19 and hails from Senegal where the use of skin lightening is alarming - over 52 percent of women in the country are estimated to use skin altering products regularly, according to this 2015 survey.
After being bullied while growing up for the darkness of her skin tone, Diop chose to rise above the negative comments and use her positive outlook to promote body positivity. She's been modelling part-time since 2014.
“I was teased a lot growing up, because of my skin tone,” she told the Daily Mail. “And now even online sometimes, people will make comments. Growing up, I faced it by confronting the bullies. As I grew, I learned to love myself more every day, and not pay attention to the negative people.”
A photo posted by Khoudia diop (@melaniin.goddess) on
Diop has gone viral with her inspiring words about self-acceptance and clocked up over 337K Instagram followers (and rising) with her stunning profile.
She puts the spotlight on beauty which is usually sidelined from the mainstream fashion industry and celebrates her skin tone with hashtags like #MelaninOnFleek, #BlackGirlMagic and #BlackGirlsRock
Currently studying in Paris, she's using her free-time to work with The Coloured Girl, on projects encouraging inclusivity and self love.
“I’ve learned to ignore the negative people and just be a living example of confidence and self-love. I let my life, and success, speak for itself,” she told Huffington Post.
We couldn't agree more. Even bigger things beckon for Diop.