18 New Top Models Who Had the Biggest Fall 2018 Breakout Seasons

It was a record-breaking one for diversity.

    Its only taken two seasons for Cindy Crawford-spawn Kaia Gerber to break through as a post-Instagirl supermodel, so theres still plenty of room at the top for the next generation of fresh faces — and as we do every season, were here to shed light on the industrys newest class of soon-to-be "It" models from the Fall 2018 runways.

    The big news this fashion month: the deluge of Black beauties who made their mark on the runways. Out of the 18 emerging stars on this list, nine are Black, including several African refugees-turned-models — from Saint Laurent-favorite Adut Akech to famed Prada opener Anok Yai — who are inspiring a renewed push for diversity in the industry. 

    Meet the models of the season below.

    Adut Akech

    Agency: The Society Management

    Hometown: Narus, South Sudan by way of Adelaide, Australia

    Age: 18

    Instagram: @adutakech 

    Highlight reel: Opened Valentino and H&M; walked Prada, Yves Saint Laurent, Versace, Calvin Klein and Tom Ford

    While she may not technically be considered all that "new," Akechs supernova success in recent months deserves celebration. After fleeing from Sudan as a refugee to Sydney, and modeling locally since age 11, she became the exclusive face of Saint Laurent, making her major fashion week debut as an exclusive at the houses Spring 2017 runway show. Akech soon went on to become an editorial darling, starring in 2018s all-Black Pirelli calendar and turning up on just about every runway that matters for Fall 2018. 

    Meghan Roche

    Agency: Women Management

    Hometown: Bucks County, Penn.

    Age: 17

    Instagram: @meghanrochey

    Highlight reel: Opened Fendi; walked Chanel, Versace, Saint Laurent, Alexander Wang and Max Mara

    First impression: Wow, who was the girl that just opened Fendi?! The combination of mesmerizing blue eyes and Brooke Shields-worthy eyebrows won us (and major designers) over immediately. Roche hung with the cool kids at Alexander Wang, joined the glamazon cast at Versace and walked all the top runways in Paris. Not to mention, shes a total overachiever who played soccer for a top team while also studying for the Ivy Leagues. 

    Shanelle Nyasiase

    Agency: Red Model Management

    Hometown: Nairobi, Kenya

    Age: 21

    Instagram: @shanellenyasiase 

    Highlight reel: Closed Nina Ricci and Boss; walked Alexander McQueen, Givenchy, Loewe, Gucci, Versace, Burberry, Marc Jacobs and Tom Ford

    Theres a lot of Black excellence on this list, and Nyasiase embodies the new wave of African stars taking the industry by storm. Shes got a smile that lights up a room and a runway saunter thatll make you weak in the knees. Following her starring role in Alexander McQueens Spring 2018 campaign, Nyasiase walked 40-plus top shows this season, confirming her breakout status.  

    Ansolet Rossouw

    Agency: The Society Management

    Hometown: Bloemfontein, South Africa

    Age: 17

    Instagram: @ansolet_rossouw

    Highlight reel: Walked Valentino, Saint Laurent, Off-White, Jil Sander, Fendi and Max Mara

    Theres a lot of fashion-adjacent talent coming out of South Africa lately, including this fresh face with spunky ears and a sultry pout. Discovered via a photo that pictured her lined up alongside schoolmates in matching uniforms, Rossouw has a distinctive look that makes her stand out in any crowd.

    Hannah Motler

    Agency: Ford Models

    Hometown: Nottingham, England

    Age: 17

    Instagram: @hannah_motler

    Highlight reel: Opened Erdem; closed Matty Bovan; walked Miu Miu, Dior, Calvin Klein, Prada, Moschino and Giambattista Valli

    Milky white skin, flaxen curls and striking bone structure lend an enchanting quality to this English rose who charmed casting directors last season, then went on to prove herself as one to watch for Fall 2018, hitting all the major shows in each of the four capitals. 

    Naomi Chin Wing

    Agency: IMG Models

    Hometown: Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago

    Age: 17

    Instagram: @naomichinwing

    Highlight reel: Closed Carolina Herrera; walked Miu Miu, Alexander McQueen, Yves Saint Laurent, Calvin Klein, Brandon Maxwell and Marc Jacobs 

    "Be the good Naomi," is what another, certain Naomi said to this fresh face after Alexander McQueens Spring 2018 runway show last season. Weve witnessed plenty of runway stars emerge from the Caribbean in recent seasons, and Wing caught our eye during the haute couture shows, then mingled with top-notch casts, like Miu Mius, for Fall 2018. 

    Fran Summers

    Agency: Ford Models

    Hometown: Yorkshire, England

    Age: 18

    Instagram: @fransummers

    Highlight reel: Opened Chloe; closed Prada; walked Miu Miu, Chanel, Loewe, Isabel Marant, Versace, Burberry, Calvin Klein and Alexander Wang  

    In late January, if you asked any model expert who would crush the Fall 2018 runways, all bets would be on Summers, a poetic "It" Brit with a glacial stare and chic, ragged bob. She made a strong showing for Spring 2018, then made a clean sweep of every major show last month. 

    Remington Williams

    Agency: DNA Models

    Hometown: Austin, Texas

    Age: 20

    Instagram: @stuckinteenage

    Highlight reel: Closed Maison Margiela and Coach 1941; opened Peter Pilotto; walked Miu Miu, Haider Ackermann, Moschino, Gareth Pugh, Marc Jacobs and Sies Marjan   

    This fiery-haired Southwesterner made headlines last season after being scouted while working at Chipotle just days before walking Marc Jacobs and Calvin Klein. She continued to build on that momentum for Fall 2018, and her haute "Napoleon Dynamite"-esque look made her a shoo-in for some of the more avant-garde casts.    

    Eniola Abioro

    Agency: Next Management

    Hometown: Lagos, Nigeria

    Age: 19

    Instagram: @eniolaabioro

    Highlight reel: Prada exclusive; walked Versace, Tommy Hilfiger, Miu Miu, Saint Laurent, Loewe, Off-White and Giambattista Valli   

    Discovered while volunteering as a teacher at a local school in Nigeria, Abioros heart is as beautiful as her face. Her impressive, top-shows-only roster confirmed her membership in the new guard of African models. "I feel honored and glad to be part of this change," she told Fashionista.    

    Heejung Park

    Agency: Muse

    Hometown: Seoul, South Korea

    Age: 25

    Instagram: @hello_kijeong

    Highlight reel: Opened Self-Portrait; walked Louis Vuitton, Givenchy, Balmain, Fendi, Christopher Kane and Alexander Wang 

    Theres been a bona fide South Korean boom on the runways in recent seasons, but what sets Park apart is her edgy look and equally edgy sense of personal style. The former Louis Vuitton exclusive hit all the highlights this season.  

    Loane Normand

    Agency: The Society Management

    Hometown: Saint-Philbert-de-Grand-Lieu, France

    Age: 19

    Instagram: @normandloane

    Highlight reel: Opened and closed A.P.C.; walked Givenchy, Dior, Giambattista Valli, Saint Laurent, Fendi, Michael Kors and Ralph Lauren 

    No one can own a gamine pixie cut better than a young Frenchie. Aside from her tomboyish charm and cute beauty mark, what we love most about Normand is her versatility, who looks equally great in a billowing Giambattista Valli gown or a utilitarian A.P.C. look.   

    Adesuwa Aighewi

    Agency: The Society Management

    Hometown: Edo, Nigeria

    Age: 26

    Instagram: @adesuwa

    Highlight reel: Walked Chanel, Miu Miu, Louis Vuitton, Dior, Fendi, Matty Bovan, Alexander Wang, Michael Kors and Sies Marjan  

    Aighewi made a name for herself seasons ago as one of the industrys most outspoken models who has been working for years, and is now enjoying a second coming in her career. The Nigeria native, who is also of Chinese and Thai descent, started embracing her dreadlocks and switched agencies, and is finally getting the recognition — and relevant bookings — she deserves. 

    Hannah Sprehe

    Agency: The Society Management

    Hometown: Bremen, Germany

    Age: 17

    Instagram: @hannah_sprehe

    Highlight reel: Walked Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Alexander McQueen, Paco Rabanne, Valentino, Stella McCartney, Versace, Prada and J.W. Anderson

    A handful of raven-haired up-and-comers owned the Paris runways this season, and Sprehe was one of them. Compared to others (like Mattea Brakus and Alexandra Micu), we particularly like how she captures that strong, cinematic look without all the hard edges.  

    Rocio Marconi

    Agency: Next Management

    Hometown: Buenos Aires, Argentina

    Age: 16

    Instagram: @romarconi_

    Highlight reel: Walked Fendi, Christopher Kane, Jil Sander, Rick Owens, Hermès and Off-White

    You wont find many lanky teenagers out there who are half-Italian, half-Cuban and grew up in South America — and this season, Marconis doe eyes made her stand out among the newcomers.  


    Agency: IMG Models

    Hometown: Nairobi and Kakuma, Kenya by way of Adelaide, Australia

    Age: 22

    Instagram: @akiima

    Highlight reel: Closed Kenzo and Chalayan; walked Valentino, Loewe, Jacquemus, Matty Bovan, Brandon Maxwell, Marc Jacobs and Oscar de la Renta 

    None other than Akech inspired this fellow former African refugee, also from Australia, to pursue modeling. "I saw her photos on Instagram," she told a local Australian news site. "It was just so nice that someone was actually getting recognized with a different skin color and doing so well." This former Prada exclusive is now enjoying her own moment on the runways, none more than for Fall 2018, and in magazine editorials. 

    Rebecca Leigh Longendyke

    Agency: Women Management

    Hometown: Hurley, N.Y.

    Age: 21

    Instagram: @rebeccalongendyke

    Highlight reel: Walked Chanel, Stella McCartney, Valentino, Paco Rabanne, Yves Saint Laurent, Dries Van Noten and Calvin Klein

    Were always in the market for a strong, all-American blonde, and this upstate New Yorker fits the bill. Her aristocratic profile and spray of freckles translated into a short and selective showlist that included a Calvin Klein exclusive during New York Fashion Week.

    Veronika Kunz

    Agency: The Society Management

    Hometown: Basel, Switzerland

    Age: 25

    Instagram: @kunz.veronika

    Highlight reel: Walked Givenchy, Dries Van Noten, Jil Sander, Victoria Beckham and Max Mara

    Beginning with the Givenchys haute couture show this past January, we began noticing a modern-day Amber Valetta doppelgänger with arthouse appeal. Its refreshing to see a more mature model — 25 is, somehow, still considered to be older for the runways — hit the ground running on her own terms.    

    Anok Yai

    Anok Yai at Prada. Photo: Imaxtree

    Agency: Next Management

    Hometown: Sudan by way of Egypt and Manchester, N.H.

    Age: 19

    Instagram: @anokyai 

    Highlight reel: Opened Prada as an exclusive

    Last but not least is the history-making moment that was Yai, the first black model to open a Prada show since Naomi Campbell in 1997. Her modeling story began with an Instagram post that showed her at a Howard University homecoming picnic in October that soon after went viral. Like several other stars on this list, shes a former refugee, her family fleeing the Sudanese genocide, and now finding success on the runways and helping to inspire the next generation.  

    Sign up for our daily newsletter and get the latest industry news in your inbox every day. 


    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *