FASHION + WATCHES

SOFÍA JIRAU BECOMES VICTORIA'S SECRET'S FIRST MODEL WITH DOWN SYNDROME

Model-entrepreneur Sofía Jirau dreams big and encourages others to achieve their dreams too.

22.02.2022
BY JACKSON KEEFE
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Victoria's Secret's rebranding initiative emphasizes inclusivity, with names like Rapinoe, Elsesser, and Chopra being added to the roster. As Sofía Jirau joins the roster, this is the first time a model with Down syndrome has worked with the brand.

Puerto Rico native and model Sofía Jirau joins Victoria's Secret family as its new ambassador. She says that despite having Down syndrome, people with the condition can still get a job and start their businesses.

"I want to tell the whole world that people with my condition, Down syndrome, inside and out, we have no limits. People who have Down syndrome like me are capable of getting a job, creating their own business, and working hard like me," Jirau said during an interview with NBC.

According to the CDC, about one in every 700 babies in the US has Down syndrome. This condition, which can cause mental and physical challenges, is caused by an extra chromosome.

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Victoria's Secret (@victoriassecret)

Dream big
Since becoming a model in 2019, Jirau has used her platform to encourage others with Down syndrome to reach their goals.

The 24-year-old model, who made her runway debut in New York in 2020, said she would like to inspire others with Down syndrome to dream big. She also mentioned that being a model has taught her hard work and discipline.

One of the characteristics that set Jirau apart is her confidence in letting others know that she's doing her best to make dreams come true.

She often shares her daily exercise routines and healthy meals on her Instagram stories. She also mentioned that her next career goal is to become a model in Europe.

"You have to work hard, you have to work very hard, and more. My next dream is modeling in Europe, Paris and Italy," she said.

Jirau's excitement to join Victoria's Secret
She joins the company as it tries to distance itself from the iconic images of its angels. As part of its rebranding, Victoria's Secret also featured a diverse group of women in its new underwear line.

After getting a call from her mentor, Alessandra Correa, she went to her local company, INprende, which provides professional development and business opportunities to people of all backgrounds.

After being selected, the Puerto Rico native model was told to become the first model with Down syndrome to work with the company. With a high excitement level, Jirau flew to Los Angeles for the campaign. "I loved the bra I wore for this campaign," Jirau expressed her excitement.

One of her favorite parts about being part of the campaign was when she got into a car and wore sunglasses. "It was a whole look. After that, we did the shoot, and we were ready!" the cheerful model said.

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Sofía Jirau (@sofiajirau)

Jirau's other projects
Aside from being a model, Jirau also owns her online store called Alavett. The store has a collection of bilingual merch revolving around Jirau's favorite phrase, "I love it."

The model-entrepreneur also launched a Spanish campaign called "No Limits" to encourage people with Down syndrome to reach their goals.

After becoming the first model with Down syndrome to work for Victoria's Secret, Jirau said she is happy and looking forward to working hard to improve her body and reach her goals.

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