Sofia Jirau Is Victoria’s Secret’s 1st Model With Down Syndrome
Making history! Sofía Jirau is the first model with Down syndrome to star in a Victoria’s Secret campaign. The 24-year-old Puerto Rican model was tapped as one of the faces for the Love Cloud Collection, a new line of uber-comfy bras and underwear.
Following the collection’s launch, Jirau took to Instagram to thank the lingerie company for viewing her as a model “without limits.”
“One day I dreamed of it, I worked for it and today it’s a dream come true,” the Latin model wrote in Spanish, alongside a black and white photo. “I can finally tell you my big secret. I am Victoria’s Secret’s first model with Down syndrome!”
Jirau’s followers quickly jumped into the comments section to congratulate her. “Thank you for being a part of our #VSFamily,” Victoria’s Secret’s official account wrote, while someone else said, “U go girl!!!”
In addition to Jirau, the campaign featured 17 other women with different ages, body types and backgrounds. Hailey Baldwin, Adut Akech, Taylor Hill, Valentina Sampaio and Paloma Elsesser were among those featured.
“Love Cloud Collection is a major moment in the brand’s evolution,” head creative director Raúl Martinez said in a press release shared with Us Weekly. “From the cast of incredible women that bring the collection to life, to the incredible inclusive spirit on set, this campaign is an important part of the new Victoria’s Secret standard we are creating.”
This news comes after the retailer announced in June 2021 that they would be getting rid of their “Angel” title and instead launching the VS Collective, “an ever-growing group of accomplished women who share a common passion to drive positive change.”
The initial group included “accomplished” women like Priyanka Chopra Jonas and soccer star Megan Rapinoe, as well as Akesh. It has since expanded to include the likes of Baldwin, Bella Hadid and Naomi Osaka, among others.
In addition to switching up the faces that represent the brand, Victoria’s Secret also launched The Victoria’s Secret Global Fund for Women’s Cancers to “fund innovative research projects aimed at progressing treatments and cures for women’s cancers.”
Victoria’s Secret’s evolving image hasn’t gone unnoticed. In fact, Heidi Klum, a longtime Angel, weighed in on the rebrand in July 2021. “About time, is all I can say. About time,” the 48-year-old star said to The Sunday Project. “As a model, you go there, you are happy to have a job. When you are not the company, you do what you are told. But finally, looking at this now, I’m like, about time.”