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Thursday, April 18, 2024

Top 11 African Famous Female Supermodels of All Time

Top 11 African Famous Female Supermodels

Africa has a lot of elegant and beautiful female supermodels that have defied the odds and become the most celebrated in the fashion world.

The attention of stylists and fashion houses has increasingly been drawn to them as they dominate the fashion and modeling industry.

Take a look at the top 11 famous African female supermodels and some of the most accomplished iconic supermodels of all time.

1. Naomi Campbell

Naomi Campbell is a British supermodel of Afro-Jamaica origin. She was born on the 22nd of May, 1970 in Streatham, London, U.K, and first spotted as a model at 15.

She has been active from 1978 till date, modeling, singing, acting, and doing business. She is the first black woman to feature at Vogue magazine cover and Time, and she is among the top six females that the fashion industry is declaring supermodels.

Over the years, she has modeled for agencies such as NYCs DNA Models, Priscilla’s Model Management in Sydney, Models 1 in London, ZZO in Paris, and the “d’management Group” in Milan.

2. Iman

Iman is a Somalia fashion model born in 1955 with the name Zara Mohamed Abdulmajid. She is also an actress, an entrepreneur, and a philanthropist.

She began her modeling career as a teenager after a photographer Peter Beard took pictures of her at the University of Nairobi.

In 1976, she signed a deal with the Wilhelmina Models after relocating to New York for a full-time modeling career.

She became famous and spotted on runways for Versace, Yves Saint Laurent, DEonna Karan, and the likes with the deal.

She insisted on being paid equally with her white counterparts and also chose her styles. She has also featured in many magazines, including Harper’s Bazaar and the Vogue.

3. Alek Wek

Alek Wek, born in 1977, is of the Wau, Dinka tribe in South Sudan but resides presently in Britain. She is worth over 7 million dollars with a career in fashion designing and modeling.

 She is popularly called the black fashion diamond and has ranked among the top ten supermodels for a couple of years now.

She started her modeling career in 1995 at the age of 18. In the year 1997, her career boomed after she won the MTV model of the year.

She has featured and continued to feature for fashion houses and top brands, and her first significant modeling deal was with the Ford Models in 1996.

Afterward, she modeled for Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Victoria’s Secret, Tommy Hilfiger, Armani, Moschino, Chanel, and Dolce n Gabbana.

Over the years, she has been a guest star at America’s Next Top Model hosted by Tyra Banks. She has also been on the covers of Vogue magazine and Elle magazines of different editions.

4. Khoudia Diop

Khoudia Diop is a supermodel and actress from Senegal, born on 31 December 1996. Because of her thick dark skin tone, she is popularly called the Melanin goddess and won the title of the most dark-skinned model.

She has an attractive smile and takes pride in her color, referring to Alek Wek as her role model. She said she was insistently bullied as a child because of her color.

She started her modeling career at 15 years old when she moved to Paris and had many offers from top fashion brands.

She grew in popularity, especially on Instagram as a model after The Coloured Girl campaign by Victory Jones and Tori Elizabeth.

She has been campaigning for Make Up Ever and has modeled with other modeling agencies from Paris and New York.

5. Gelila Bekele 

Gelila Bekele was born on 4 September 1986 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. She is a model, a film producer, an author, and an outstanding activist. 

At age 19, she started modeling full-time and had her first big signing with the Ford Models.

She became very famous after campaigning for Michael Kors, Levis, and Nespresso. She has appeared in many magazines and renowned fashion brands, including Diesel, Tony Burch, and Pantene.

She devotes most of her time to charity and is known for championing Ethiopia’s clean drinking water Charity Water Organization. She has a child with Tyler Perry, the renowned film producer, and actor.

6. Maria Borges

Maria Borges is a top African supermodel native of Luanda, Angola, born on 28 October 1992. She started her modeling career during the 2010 edition of the Elite Model Look competition in Angola.

Around 2012, she started modeling for Supreme Agency and appeared at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show from 2013 to 2017.

In 2013, she won the top model at the Forbes Africa Magazine, which especially raked her among the ultimate supermodels in Africa.

Additionally, she has signed with IMG Australia in Sydney, Mega Modeling Agency, and modeled for IMG Los Angeles.

 She is always known to wear her natural hair and is recorded in the history of the Victoria Secret Show as the first African model to wear her natural hair.

After Alek Wek, she is the second African model printed on the Elle Magazines front cover. As a supermodel, she has boasted many fashion brands, especially those with which she has a contract.

Maria Borges became the L’Oreal global ambassador and has made appearances at many runways, including H&M, Givenchy, C&A, Bobbi Brown, Maybelline, and L’Oreal Paris.

7. Adult Akech Bior

Adult Akech Bior has solid dark skin and a cupid face to stand out among other black models. She was born in South Sudan on 25 December 1999.

She started modeling at 12 during a fashion show organized by her aunt, and in 2018, she was the model of the year at models.com.

Adult Akech Bior has recently been seen among fashion shows, including the popular Saint Laurent Show, Valentino, and Chanel.

She has also worked with famous brands like Versace, Alexander McQueen, Calvin Klein, Tom Ford, and Givenchy.

8. Kiara Kabukuru

Kiara Kabukuru is a model born in Kampala, Uganda, on 31 July 1975. She is an American fashion model and became very popular after the 2002 deal with Vogue and CoverGirl.

She was first discovered in a mall in Los Angeles and ever since then has worked with Dior, Channel, Gucci, and other top fashion brands featuring in their runways.

She also had dealt with IMG Models in New York, Paris, and Sydney; Ice Models in Cape Town; and Mega Model Agency in Hamburg, among others.

9. Candice Swanepoel

Candice Swanepoel is a black African model born in South Africa on 20 October 1988. She is a popular name in the modeling industry, having worked with top names like Chanel, Tommy Hilfiger, Versace, Kardashian’s, Jean-Paul Gaultier, Dolce & Gabbana, and other brands.

She was discovered by a scout for models at Durban Flea Market when she was 15 years old, which marked the beginning of her modeling career.

10. Imaan Hammam

Imaan Hammam of Egyptian and Moroccan origin is a Dutch model ranking as one of our time’s top 10 African supermodels. 

She was discovered at the railway station in Amsterdam when she was 14 years.

Her fame began after she participated in the 2010 edition of Victoria’s Secret show and became the ambassador of many brands, especially the face of the Givenchy Campaign.

She has been spotted at various walkways with top fashion brands such as Victoria’s Secret, Alexander Macqueen, Prada, Marc Jacobs, and Givenchy.

11. Ajak Deng

Ajak Deng was a fashion model born in Tonj, South Sudan, on 7 December 1988. She is an Australian fashion model of African origin.

During her high school days, she was discovered and made her first official signing in 2008 with her FRM model management.

In no time, she grew in popularity, and other agencies like Esee management modeling agency and Milk management also signed her.

Over the years, she has modeled for top brands like Marc by Marc, United Colors of Benetton, Givenchy, and Valentino, to mention a few.

Who is the most famous African model ever?

Naomi Campbell is regarded as the most famous African model after being spotted in the ’80s and featured as a child in Bob Marley’s song. Her fame has remained to date.


The African female supermodels listed here have been increasingly seen on magazine covers and runways as celebrated for their beauty and creativity.

These black models are known for their natural beauty and distinctiveness. As they continue to make the African continent proud, we equally celebrate them even as their numbers increase.

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