The beauty industry is all about expressing creativity and harnessing individuality, which is what 23-year-old down syndrome advocate and model Grace Strobel is showing the world in her latest campaign with science-based skin-care brand Obagi.
According to a release, Strobel is the brand’s newest Skinclusion ambassador, which the company said is an “initiative designed to elevate the global dialogue about diversity and how we can all make conscious choices to see the beauty in all of our differences.” She is also the face of its Clinical Kinetin + Exfoliating Cleansing Gel ($38) as well.
The launch of this partnership was announced on October 1 in celebration of Down Syndrome Awareness Month and encourages a theme we’ve been seeing—and supporting—a lot of in 2020: inclusion and diversity.
“I think people with disabilities sometimes feel invisible. I became a model and speaker to help people see the value in others,” Strobel said in the release. “And that’s what Obagi does: looks into our faces and our hearts and sees the beauty in all of us. To be fearless. To be strong. To stand up for others. And to feel beautiful in our own skin.”
It’s not often that people with disabilities, which amounts to 61 million people in the U.S., are represented in skin care and there’s no better advocate for this cause than Grace. Her initiative to raise awareness surrounding the stigma aimed at people with disabilities started in 2017 after a severe bullying attack, explains the release. “Grace turned pain into purpose and co-created #TheGraceEffect, a presentation she gives to schools about overcoming obstacles, treating people with kindness and respect, and living with a disability.”
“At the onset of SKINCLUSION, Grace sent me a letter explaining how she felt underrepresented in the beauty and skin-care industries and was encouraged by the work Obagi was doing around diversity and inclusion,” says Jaime Castle, president of Obagi and member of the CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion. “With elegance, humor, ambition and determination, Grace is working to change society’s view of people with disabilities. We welcome and encourage Grace to use Skinclusion as a platform to amplify her message, to advocate for people with down syndrome and to challenge our biases to become more inclusive.”
Obagi’s Skinclusion initiative is one of the first stepping stones within the beauty industry to expand the acceptance of down syndrome across the world.
For more information on Obagi’s initiative, click here.
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