New York Fashion week had a very big star you may have never heard of: 19-year-old Cassandra Bankson became famous for something she was ridiculed and bullied for—her acne.
Chances are, if you don’t recognize her name, you probably heard of her YouTube videos, which earned her 45 million followers and led to an appearance late last year on Good Morning America.
Cassandra, who had always dreamed of modeling, had a case of acne so severe that she dropped out of school to be home schooled because the bullying from other students became unbearable. She became a self-proclaimed recluse, spending her time indoors studying so she could graduate two years early.
Every spare moment she had was put into researching different makeup products until she found a routine that completely masked her cystic acne. The transformation was so incredible, the shy teenager was able to start modeling.
And, in a brave move no one saw coming, she chose to model her imperfection by taking her makeup transformation online. She recorded YouTube videos of herself applying her makeup to teach other teens and young adults how to hide their acne.
Her courage was nothing short of miraculous. Cassandra began her videos looking like the model she is wearing a full face of makeup. Slowly, painstakingly, she cleaned the makeup off revealing her bare skin. She then started her morning routine from scratch, showing and explaining to her viewers step-by-step each product she was using and why.
Last night, Cassandra fulfilled a lifelong dream walking the runway at Stacey Igel’s Boy Meets Girl show in New York. She’s also shot ads with Bebe and Range Rover through her modeling agency, Explore Modeling.
Says an incredulous Cassandra, “I’m a small town girl who sits in her living room and films videos all day and now…I’m in New York Fashion Week. It’s still a dream. I am so thankful.”
These days, the California college sophomore says her acne has improved by 70 percent of what it once was. As for those tormentors that made her life miserable in high school? Cassandra has the last laugh, and they’re now friending her on Facebook.
You go, girl!