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Lagos, NG
29th January 2023

Skinny male models get rejected a lot in the fashion world-Denrele

Male models like me, get rejected a lot in the fashion world-Denrele Edun
Male models like me, get rejected a lot in the fashion world-Denrele Edun (via-IG/Denrele_edun)

Nollywood actor and celebrity TV host and model and someone that is also referred to as a cross-dresser, Denrele Edun has a few hours ago, taken to his social media page to walk us down memory lane on his modeling journey and the struggles he overcame before getting to where he is today.

The one-time Soundcity TV and MTV presenter, who narrated how he went about hustling to get a modeling job, said he was once called a “malnourished Somalian refugee” for being “too skinny” by a designer whose name he did not reveal. He even said there was a time he did a job for a designer, and was not paid, so he had to trek from Victoria Island (VI) to his base in Yaba (this one too loud…lol)…

Taking to his Instagram, Denrele Edu said in the spirit of the Fashion Week he is digging out his dusty portfolios and a throwback to his first ever professional modeling shoots, and how male models have to do more to be recognized, especially skinny ones just like himself who face a lot of rejection.

Putting up an old photo which he said was his first ever shoot, Denrele had this to say about his experience as a male model in the fashion world. He said:

Denrele Edun 1999
Shola Creative Studios, SuruLere (via-IG/Denrele_edun)


An (Androgynous) Male Model has to be psychologically strong; there’s a lot of rejection!

In the spirit of FashionWeek, allow me dig out my dusty portfolios and throwback my first ever professional modeling shot!

Despite d disgusted looks from passers by, I walked with my defiant confidence to d local bus-stop to board a Molue that’ll take me to another Designer’s showroom.

I had developed a knack for appearing at Fashion Designer showrooms and their houses to present my pictures & my overwhelming personality. All in a bid to convince them to walk in their shows.

Mind you; I was the shortest, skinniest Male Model at that time, but that didn’t deter me. The Hustle was real!

I got to a designer’s house and saw a cluster of top models. They all burst into laughter when I walked past but then, who cared? Sighting a familiar face, I ran up to her and was told fittings had begun. In my usual bravado, i saw the designer & walked up to him. 

Moment i introduced myself & my intentions, he stared me down and asked,

“Are you a Refugee?”.

“No Sir, but I’m the model with a unique look who’ll love to walk for u,” I threw back confidently. 

He looked me up and down and said, “U can never walk on my runway. U look like a malnourished Somalian refugee”, and with that he faced his tailors & continued giving directives. “I’ll wait in d Showroom Sir, till u’r ready to fit me”, I answered bk & walked in to the reception. 

This designer actually hissed & went in. Came out, dismissed all d other models without me noticing and left the building. 

Wit all d bravado I could muster, I waited for an agonizing 12 hours. I was scared to go get something to eat cos i didn’t want to miss his entrance. 

At bout 11pm, he strolled in wit some other models. They obviously had finished a shoot & he seemed to be in a light mood. 

Seein my chance, I walked up to him. 

This time, he lost his cool.

But that didnt stop me from walking his show weeks after.

He refused to pay me & not only was I stranded but had to walk from V/I to Yaba wher Vigilantes made me frog jump on the express!

The Designer? We’re friends till date!

Why? Denrele get clean mind!

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