“We are all beautiful because we are different.” Photographer captures the many faces of women around the world

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Sejal Kapadia Pocha
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"Global trends make us look and behave the same, but we are all beautiful because we are different."

It's this sentiment that led Romanian photographer Mihaela Noroc to quit her job, pack her camera and savings, and begin travelling the world to document the many faces of beauty that often escape western media. 

The 30-year-old wanted to photograph women from each country of the world to show that beauty is everywhere. 

That was two years ago. She's now has accumulated over 100 portraits of women from 60 countries, from Cuba to China, and over 200,000 fans who follow her work titled “The Atlas Of Beauty” on social media.

A street cleaner in Dushanbe, Tajikistan:

On her adventures, she's met a Kichwa tribeswoman in the Amazon jungle of Ecuador and a member of the Minangkabau ethnic group in Indonesia, one of the largest groups in the world that lives with matriarchal rules. 

She's most recently travelled to North Korea where she discovered "women are not familiar with global trends, but this doesn’t mean that they are not preoccupied with their look...they have a passion for high heels and usually wear classic outfits".

This week she's in Nepal where she's photographed a buddhist nun and a passerby on the street with bright green eyes. 

A woman with striking eyes in Kathmandu, Nepal:

Noroc says she sometimes only has 30 seconds to take a picture of an interesting woman she meets on the street. At other times she spends an hour with her subjects. 

It helps that she can speak five languages, she says. She tries to talk a lot whenever she's photographing the women to make them feel proud, special and unique.

Fans and critics alike have asked why Noroc doesn't capture men on her travels. She says: "This is a personal project about women. I'm sure there are great photographers that can do a similar project about men, much better than me."

"My goal is to continue and take photos of women from each country of the globe, showing that beauty is in our differences" she writes on Bored Panda.

In Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region, an isolated region of Tajikistan:

In Beijing, China:

In Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan:

In Dushanbe, Tajikistan:

At the Wakhan Corridor, Afghanistan:

In Rio de Janeiro, Brazil:

In Havana, Cuba:

In Singapore, Malaysia:

In New York, USA:

In New York, USA:

Valerie in #Harlem #NewYork #USA for #theatlasofbeauty #travel #beauty #diversity

A photo posted by Author of THE ATLAS OF BEAUTY (@mihaelanoroc) on

A few behind the scenes snaps:

And the photographer herself (left):

Follow The Atlas of Beauty on Facebook and Instagram.

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Sejal Kapadia Pocha

Sejal Kapadia Pocha covers stories about everything from women’s issues to cult foods. She describes herself as a balance between Hermione and Luna Lovegood.