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My girl Icy is guestblogging today….please show her some luv…
I’ll be back tomorrow!

Sup bellanaija readers. Happy Tuesday o my people o ha una dey. No I’m not fighting to be the fess to post on Bella’s blog today (considering I don’t even win prize- Bella you need to fix that) . Even better, I get to post on Bella’s Blog.. Omo das jes sexy lol … Ok ok I digress…. Woosssaaa

*Clears throat and gets serious*

I hope I do justice to Bella’s blog today as Tuesday is my favourite day of the week. Today I’m totally, utterly and completely zeroing in on MODELS. AFRICAN MODELS IN AMERICA. I was going to zero in on Nigerian Models but that will not do this entry justice. But as withmost things African. There are usually more Nigerians in the mix.

As a part-time model (4 years). Things have changed over the past 4-5 years and I have been a first hand witness to the influx of Nigerians, Ghanaian, Somalian, Zimbabwean, South African, Kenyan and many other Models of African Nationalities in America that have embraced the modeling industry. It’s not an easy profession and mehn, the dues you have to pay unless you get a nice fat check for one gig.

There is a new breed of Nigerian… excuse me, African Models. Yes we hear about the babz and blokes in South Africa in France, Milan, Japan. I’m talking about the breed of African models in American. Who are bold daring and fabulously African. They don’t hide it and their features more than give you a perfect indication of their heritage.

These men and women are with various agencies across America. From Elite to Ford to Wilhelmina to Click. I mean working models . There are a lot more that I know I am not aware of. Please feel free to tell us all in your comment and list other models you know of sorta doing their own thing in the background.

I have a question for you all though. (I’m assuming 80% of bella readers are Naija/African ppl)
What is your honest opinion about models. African models in particular. Do you think they don’t’ push the envelope like their counterparts. Is that hindering the success curve?

Here are some of the many models. Enjoy and have a fun-tastic day. RAWK ON PEEPS!!!

Name: Idele
Location: Chicago
Nationality: Nigerian
Agency: Elite Model Management

Name: Cherif
Location: Los Angeles
Nationality: Senegalese
Agency: LA Models – Major Models NY – Nu Talent

Name: Ajuma
Location: New York City
Nationality: Kenyan
Agency: Ford Models 1 London – Wiener Models Vienna

Name: Note
Location: New York City
Nationality: Liberian/Nigerian

Name: Kiara
Location: New York City
Nationality: Ugandan
Agency: Why Not Model Agency – Women Management

Name: Ade
Location: New York
Nationality: Nigerian
Agency: ORB Model Management

Name: Kaone
Location: Cape Town Everywhere Fashiony
Nationality: Botswanan
Agency: Zero Models

Name: Yomi
Location: New York
Nationality: Nigerian
Agency: Storm Models – Click Model Management

So what do you think of modelling as a career?

Does it contradict African culture and upbringing? Would you encourage your daughter to enter this industry? Let us know!

Living & Celebrating the African Dream! Catch all the Scoop on Follow us Twitter: @bellanaija Facebook: @bellanaija Instagram: @bellanaijaonline


  1. Naijadude

    December 5, 2006 at 8:12 am


  2. Thoughts

    December 5, 2006 at 8:17 am

    Yup Naijadude, cos we let you:).Um the models look cute.Big-ups Icy, I was almost expecting you to put up your pics too.Why didn’t you?

  3. swissrose

    December 5, 2006 at 8:26 am

    I must say that t really enjoyed the African perspective you decided to bring into it. nice one!. As per modelling as a career and allowing my child be a model i say why not but that child will have to go to school still o or train up in something else to have a back up plan in case all else fails.

  4. Angie

    December 5, 2006 at 8:49 am

    ICY lovely post!!!
    Icy i was xpecting to see ur pic.
    these pics are lovely and i think African models are VERY unique in their own way.
    I think i would allow my child to be a model..if that is his/her choice(may even try to be a model my But i think she/he should have a back-up plan like a degree alongside just incase….


    December 5, 2006 at 9:13 am

    lofffly..i am so feeling the note guy all dripping of chocolateness and all things warm..
    and for the girls…ill take kaone in a threesome anyday…and ill..oops sorry ehn yess….of course my kids can be models,but thats even if i chose to have kids..anytype of model they wanna be,even glamour sef..but y’alll bet ya arse im doing a tyras mama on them and following the child to casting pervert is gonna feel my child up!!
    lovely post.

  6. Angie

    December 5, 2006 at 10:07 am

    That Senegalese(Cherif)dude is hot!!!
    Can i have him for my birthday…lol

  7. Anonymous

    December 5, 2006 at 11:16 am

    Yomi Abiola is so hot…

  8. TaureanMinx

    December 5, 2006 at 11:48 am

    OMG I can’t breathe and theres drool flowing down my mouth. Help! Send Cherif to administer CPR QUICKLY!

    I won’t mind my kids modelling as far as they go to uni. Maybe there willbe a modelling degree

  9. Anonymous

    December 5, 2006 at 11:58 am

    lovely post.lovely models.
    its all love and my mouth was =P for cherif but kaone’s pic looks like all those pics peeps take in unilag.near the trees and stuff…

  10. Nilla

    December 5, 2006 at 12:38 pm

    Nice one icy! I’m a fan of yours too.
    I kinda thought Oluchi would be up there (but i guess we already see too much of her.. lol).

  11. Uzo

    December 5, 2006 at 12:50 pm

    Very nice. There is a marked improvement in the attitude towards models. I need to blog about my encounter with a group of models at Bobby’s Signature this past Saturday. Interesting breed these.

    On another note, Ade is so hot. Good grief. If my daughter wnats to be a model, i wouldnt stop her. I would emphasize the importance of education and at least having a degree. The arts – music, acting, modelling are based very much on skills, talents that can go away. So there has to be a plan B

  12. undressed*polaroid

    December 5, 2006 at 1:41 pm

    models models…I’m obsessed with them

  13. Icy

    December 5, 2006 at 3:12 pm

    @ Naijadude hahah I bet u din even read the thin fess.. u just post..oya! Bella hook up the first post gift drawing .. A subscription to True Love magazine.. U best believe I’m gonna win that ish! Lol!

    @ Thoughts hahah why naw.. I do enough of that onmy blog o jare lol! 😉

    @ swissrose Nice sister egged me on to do all African models. Yah gotta get a degree.. gotta

    @ Angie Thanks jare.. why are ya’ll expecting me to put ma pics lol! Omo if we are talking PR ( )or Web Design ( you best believe I will be writing all plugging myself lol! Yah education is relative lol at the end of the day the reason we go to school is so we make money. If your pikin begin make money from age 14 lol wut to do lol!

    @ EXCESSIVE-DIVA hahhah chic ya a trip lol! note is a hottie lol kanoe is a cutie as well. Yah Tyras mum set a good example that is what you call investing in your future..

    @ Angie hahah… madness den dey get ppl for baiday gifts now heen lol!

    @ Anonymous why you gota be Anonymous
    @ TaureanMinx hahaha crazyness. Lol! Yah I’m sure in 2020 modeling will be a degree lol! Wanna bet lol!

    @ Anonymous ….another Anonymous omo I am so not responding to John Doe’s ki lo de lol why are ya’ll hiding.

    @ Nilla aww thanks jare.. Well Oluchi is doing her thing jare.. I had to post some names that we are not too familiar with.

    @ Uzo Yes o I agree.. why we gotta be “a breed” no dey judge like that o lol wut am I saying. I’m guilty of it. Lol! I feel u on the Plan B. and C sef if possible.

    @ undressed*polaroid hahah why?

  14. ABBEY

    December 5, 2006 at 4:05 pm

    i wont to answer your questions and all but I have a request…

    CAN I TAKE “NOTES”? dang! The brother is hot!

    Ok lemme answer now…Modelling does go against the general Nigerian/African upbringing but these days, only doctors, lawyers and engineers don’t.

    If I had a daughter and that’s what she wanted to do…I think I will let her, (like our generation is really going to have a choice when it comes to choosing careers for our kids) but one just has to educate them on the many dangers and such! I’ll show her a picture of laura flynn boyle…she’s not a model but that’s one person she shdn’t want to look like. nuff said.


    December 5, 2006 at 4:21 pm

    naija models oh soryr i mean african models r getting better recognition these days.if my daughter wanted to model id never stop her, my parents didnt stop me (i modelled for 5 yrs in the Uk) the only thing they made sure was i got a degree and a masters, good thing they did that cos now i dont model anymore, i work as an investment analyst, but i run a modelling agnecy.

  16. Anonymous

    December 5, 2006 at 5:31 pm

    idele as a model will go far with elite

  17. Anonymous

    December 5, 2006 at 5:41 pm

    abeg show some love for other models like: yetty 4m miami, Zainab A. aka zee ( we hear say the chic is more into bridal modeling)anyway, the chic dey with elite model chicago. she started with idele.

  18. Anonymous

    December 5, 2006 at 5:43 pm

    Talking about models, joseph jaiyeoba is another hot dude with chosen chicago

  19. Mona

    December 5, 2006 at 6:28 pm

    Wow! They are well fit o! Both the guys n the girls

  20. Icy

    December 5, 2006 at 7:49 pm

    @ ABBEY Yah it’s not so accepting in our culture but these days it’s bringing food to a lot of Nigerian Tables so I guess mumsi’s and pumpsi’s can’t get all mad naw huh!.

    @ 36 INCHES OF BROWN LEGS Rawk on mama. wuts the name of your agency?

    @ Anonymous ooooo more Anonymous people.. wetin naw lol!

    @Anonymous 2.. if na yetty 4mia I think ya referring to me. Aww thanks 😉 WHY U GOTTA BE Anonymous *franks face*

    @ Anonymous and another one..

    @ Mona abi naw!

  21. zaiprincesa

    December 5, 2006 at 8:33 pm

    kai!…see eyecandy!..Note and Ade r superfreaking HOTTTT!!!…ok, i need to calm down. hmm….growing up, i always wanted to be a catwalker (i was…didnt know it was called modeling jare). But my strict mama dashed all those dreams in a heartbeat…she said only “ashewo’s” did that (no offense intended to all models). Guess with time and westernization, things, and opinions change.

  22. Angela

    December 5, 2006 at 11:52 pm

    Let’s face it folks Nah. I won’t allow my child to be a model. lailai. Especially as a Nigerian child i say no because Most of the so-called Nigerian models abroad have not made it big enough for me to be inspired to send my child that route. Icy, i’m sure you are doing it part-time for a reason, so that’s why i won’t let me child waste her energy in a field where no matter how skilled you are, they just might not give you the recognition you deserve. That’s just African perspecitves oh. let’s not start wiht the countless African American, Gizillion caucasian and infinite asians who are struggling for the same spot “becoming supermodel”
    Also, as a model, if you don’t hit your big break before u turn 20 years old, pls go find another job cos as you age in that industry, you depreciate in value. You become more difficult to market. Cindy Crawford got her but kicked when better looking spring chics came in full force, that’s why Tyra bowed out gracefully cos she already smelled the butt-kick a few miles away.

    my kids can go and kick arse in othre fields where every talent is valued regardless of age and the other 2million talented people.

  23. stacy jones

    December 6, 2006 at 12:08 am

    Keira was/is a top model. She is the black version of Kate Moss.

  24. Angela

    December 6, 2006 at 12:30 am

    ok Keira. who else? playin devils advocate

  25. Icy

    December 6, 2006 at 12:46 am

    @ zaiprincesa hahah I guess it’s the Naija idea that you should never indulge in your looks I think it’s the Humbling side of most Africans but omo times are changing we need to get with the program

    @ Angela very interesting point of view, I totally see it but I need you to… for just a moment open your mind. And I ask this only cuz I think I have the advantage of seeing both sides

    There are countless doctors in this world and they make loads of dosh and here and there, we have the top neuro surgeons e.t.c being highlighted on Times mag, e.t.c

    Just cuz u no see a chic on the cover of Vogue doesn’t mean she is not making it o. I can not count for you how many African models we have that are making shit loads of money and doing there own thing. So don’t assume just because you don’t hear of them in the news or on covers that they don’t exist.

    My doing this part-time is because my passion is more in pr/event planning other than that, I’ll be over the mug like butter and Making it is not = Vogue cover If I can get $80,000 for one commercial in just a month (note that is just one job o)then who will tell me I can’t put money for back until ma arse gets kicked out or I bow out gracefully.. shuuu

    I guess you have to be in this industry to understand how it works.

    So if your daughter finishes school at age 20 and gets into modeling and is enjoying it and she really wants to do this… ARE YOU GOING TO TELL HER NO? Age can be a factor but these days life span don change in modeling.

    @ stacy jones Yes she is.. RAWK ON!

  26. Angela

    December 6, 2006 at 1:18 am

    LOL! Opinions will vary…i just wonder why all the nigerian-models are only known mostly among Nigerians in their local states o (not even nationwide).

    Looking at the pictures sef. you know a 24 year old model from a 19 year old model. pancake and airbrush can only hide so much. then we know the ones who straight out lie about their age. lol So if my daughter can hit it big (trust me we Nigerians are too medicore) so when i say big, i mean wide arse big, yeah i can support her to rake fast money quick and bounce. Otherwise,nah she gots to put her money where her mouth is. When it’s taking you over 3 years to hit it big in the model industry, you know shelf life could have expired before the photo finally make it to Milan.

    Besides the industry is not for everyone and that’s why it seems there are too many people trying to get into the industry. Because you are skinny and tall doesn’t make you model material. Neither does being pretty/beautful. That’s all i see today. tall and skinny and that’s why less than 1% make it in the industry. Alek wek for instance had a very unique look and was “discovered”. She remains unmatched in the industry…because you still look at her more than once. You rarely see alek wek look alikes. Same with Tyra, that her huge forehead is one of it’s kind. Iman too. Very rare face. But all these regular looking girls that you run into everyday at the mall or at the club are the ones clogging the field making if more difficult for real model materials to make a big break.

    But there can only be so many supermodels and i’m sure you can agree with this. And no matter how we, the older folks (10+) lie to ourselves that life span has changed and that 40 is the new 30, the younger folks (under 20) are still at an advantage. It’s the bitter reality that’s inevitable 🙂

  27. IDIA

    December 6, 2006 at 3:13 am

    I’ve had the pleasure of working with Note n he is really good, runway n print.


    December 6, 2006 at 3:27 am

    I just had to come back and repost. more ways than one i totally agree with you.
    even though modelling is something i would let my child get into,i guess by the time my child gets old enough to be one,things MIGHT have changed in terms of modelling for black people etc.
    because let us face the truth as you said.
    how many of these african models make it big?and not just big on the couple of shoots,carrying portfolio around kinda big.
    how many even make it to that “super” model status?
    coming from a complete magazine/fashion whore,when we look through a lot of magazines what do we see?these girls “making” it more or less look like “amubalegbe”(okay for the non speaking yorubas,lets just say sidekick or attache kinda things)kinda models in the pictures.there will me more often than not be some white model in the pictures or maybe a group of friends etc(unless i have been reading the wrong mags)
    right from Imans days (And please this has been a long time)when she was seen as “breaking” it as a woman of color and “opening” the way for others.lets face it:how many have made it through that wall she broke???not only in terms of just africans but also african americans,brazilians,mixed race know the so called “ethnic” or “exotic” looking models.
    verry few.
    naomi campbell,alek wek,liya kibede,yes they have MADE IT… but even kimora lee simmons that was musing for chanel up and down…how long did she last on the runways?how many people can really say they know kimora as a model?compared to even lesser known but successful white models?tyra herself,how many shows can people really say she did,what is she synonymous with?Victorias are right angela,she is a smart woman,she sniffed the fact that her butt might get kicked anytime soon.
    lets take oluchi also…kudos to her hardwork and what not..but YES she is doing good,But one out of the HOW MANY???
    thank her mothers head tyra is off V.S maybe she can take the spot as Top Black Model.but then again.GISELLE is still there.
    can we really compare the type of work there contemporaries get to what these African Models get?to a large extent i know what im talking about,look at agbani,all about ex miss world etc.when we read about her they tell us she is doing “big things” in new york.
    so how come i havent seen her in anything out of the ordinary apart from that l’oreal ad?
    how many magazines covers has she been on?
    i mean is it me or is it a FRIGGING big deal to get the covers of VOGUE ETC.if it wasnt why do people still rave that this or that was the first black model to be put on the cover of this or that.when they make it big they write in their and so.graced the covers of Vogue,Cosmo,Tatler,Elle,etc etc,this and that.
    if some get lucky they do a couple of shoots,get paid a couple thousand.and then there is a loooong dry that a career??Far from it.
    yes a lot are up and coming and by God and For the Love of so many kids who want to be models,i hope the perception of ethnic dont sell,will change with time.
    and as angela rightly said,there is making it..the tiny way and there is MAKING IT,
    i guess when a model can google her own name without having to add so many attachments to it,then i dare say he/she has made it.
    So in the name of “Paying dues” are these african models going to keep on hopping from one “hopeful break” to the other all in the name of hoping that maybe one sweet day they will just be the next BIG THING?then the years roll by etc!!when the truth is they are just among the nameless faceless thousands that roam the streets of paris,newyork and london everyday hoping to make it big.
    and if all else doesnt work out south africa is still there abi?rather than deluding oneself that You will make it big in paris etc.

    and please all tall skinny girls(im not jealous o)..NOT everyone is MEANT TO BE A FRIGGING MODEL..
    SEE THE TING WEY FACE OF AFRICA CAUSE OH…EVEN jeremiah my Mums tailors SON in naija,because he is tall and tings he calls himself FACE OF FRIGGING AFRICA.and is just waiting for the day he can hit the runways…not killing anyones dreams,but jerry boy howzabout doing something B4 that dream of modelling comes to life huhn??

    a lot of these pictures you put up icy,nice looking guys and girls,but i hope they all have backup plans cus in all honesty i have about just heard of less than half of them(and im counting on 2 and a half fingers)

    but all said and done,ill still marry note and invite kaone for a threesome.

    **abeg o if my post has loopholes etc..its not my sleepy**

  29. Vera Ezimora

    December 6, 2006 at 6:02 am

    While it’s not something I would consider, I think modeling is a great career. I am not model material (I’m not thin, and I’m not tall enuff), but if I were, I wouldn’t mind being one…but maybe just for a day. As long as I don’t have to be naked or take my clothes off though.

    African culture? Hmmph. There’s a lot our African culture does not acknowledge, but hey…

  30. tatafo!

    December 6, 2006 at 7:18 am

    i like Kiara the best…why are the pictures a little jaga-jaga?

  31. Dimples

    December 6, 2006 at 10:53 am

    I’ve got a friend that models tooo.Bola Ayo..we went to secondary schoool 2gether.
    I like her she’s a fan..check her out.

    Nice blog Icy

  32. Dammie

    December 6, 2006 at 6:15 pm

    Go – Gor – Gorgeoussssssssss!!!

    Kewl Icy

  33. The Life of a Stranger called me

    December 6, 2006 at 7:27 pm

    This is a very nice post and very inspiring – I also to answer your question it depends on the parents, and times have changed. There are more parents that really don’t see it as a big deal if their children go into modelling or not.

    Great post by the way. Really loved it.

  34. undressed*polaroid

    December 6, 2006 at 7:43 pm

    erm icy, I’m obsessed with models, because, because…..I’m obsessed with the superficial world of fashion and everything within it… warped as I might sound, I like their skinny-ness

  35. sl

    December 6, 2006 at 9:12 pm

    Oluchi is doing well peeps but why is she not vocal. I was kinda hoping she would put Naija on the map some more. We naijas know her but do enough people know she is naija? I would have loved for her to be more outspoken and take Nigeria and africa to a whole new level..but I guess it takes a certain type of person to be vocal and daring..she rocks sha

  36. Icy

    December 6, 2006 at 9:42 pm

    @ Angela -let’s agree to obviously be of differing opinions. Maybe I’m too optimistic but I can only respond based on my own experience

    @ IDIA -nice to know mama. From what I have “heard” 😉 he’s hella kool

    @ EXCESSIVE-DIVA -hahah I don tire mehn I can’t even begin to re-analyze lol I feel u though but there are a llllloot of exceptions and if you’re not in the industry it’s hard to notice it.

    @ Vera Ezimora -thanks for reading up babz.. RAWK ON! er you can be naked without being naked lol oya EDIVA and ANGELA attack lol I sense one coming hahaha lol!

    @ Dimples – Yup Know Bola hella kool chic..!

    @ Dammie -see dammie oo ssooo after all that reading das all u can come up with omo no make me fight you o.

    @ The Life of a Stranger called me – yah I’m with you. Parents are more accepting of it these days Heck I had my first shoot with my mother as the photographer. Thanks for reading

    @ undressed*polaroid – keep on jare.. err but while ya at it find a way for that obssession to make you some dosh abeg 😉

    @ sl- I think Oluchi is slowly finding herself. No worry when she’s ready to get all vocal best believe we will be all ears and nose and lips sef.. Thanks for reading..

  37. undressed*polaroid

    December 6, 2006 at 10:16 pm

    lolll….i’m turning bella’s blog into a mini-convo

    @ Icy, I think my obsession feeds a certain creativity if u like….and yeh I get u on the dosh!!

  38. Angela

    December 6, 2006 at 11:44 pm

    Did you guys see the Victoria secret fashion show last night? WOW! Oluchi tore it up! She repped us really good wiht those wings. I guess she is stepping higher cos i heard only the top shots are allowed to model wings. ehehhehehe. Angels!

  39. Anonymous

    December 7, 2006 at 12:15 am

    @angela – she looked beautiful.
    I love her strut!
    Here are her pics from the show

  40. Adaure

    December 7, 2006 at 10:06 am

    I modeled for fun and because I like to take nice pictures (vanity) at one point I did try to consider it seriously and attempted to take time off from school but didn’t have the heart to. As I discovered is that many people who try to get into the industry may not have the best guidance, may be unrealistic and blinded by illusons. Another thing is that everybody and their mama wants to be a high fashion runway strutting vogue cover model. Not every ‘pretty’ person can be that. As i tell some people there are other options that will pay you. People dawg being a catalogue model but believe that’s where the money is…so my thing is diversify, be realistic and don’t limit yourself. As for whether I would let my child become model….hmh… YOU best believe that as soon as I pop them suckers out the v’jayjay they are gonna be working for the rest of their life under my roof pimping products… you can lok out for them in your Walmart, Gap, Nordstrom, Toys-R-USs, OshKosh etc etc catalogues, websites and coupons. That will help to pay for their Ivy league tuition, books, my porsche carrera and our energy bills.

  41. Parazone Super Bleach

    December 7, 2006 at 2:30 pm

    Maybe I might consider modelling as a hobby for my little future munchkin! I will have to be a momager(mom /manager)like Tyras mother to make sure she isn’t cuttin up “Lines” with a razor on a mirror and sniffing it!God forbid!I have heard some horror stories. That’ll also mean I will have to put my hustle aside and scurry around with her. Who will pay the bills and what will Baba “Munchkin” say? you know how husbands can be they wouldnt want their hot daughter and wife running around the modelling world all willy nilly! Ah, this one is kinda hard. I guess it would depend on a lot of things. ie the type of guy I marry and the type of daughter I have(character wise)..Anyway Icy thats my 2 cent!

  42. Anonymous

    December 10, 2006 at 3:05 am

    what about ijeoma onuosa.
    A big time model in newyork and paris

  43. Emeka

    June 23, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    ajuma, note,ade are the only model quality on there, Ijeoma is okay, no attitude to go with the pictures nothing fantastic.

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