Natalie Nootenboom, the niece of DJ Steve Aoki, is taking the fashion industry by storm and smashing stereotypes along the way.
The 16-year-old rising star just signed with New York-based agency, Muse, and has already got a few campaigns under her belt.
Describing herself as a writer (as well as a model) on her Instagram profile, Nootenboom has spoken out about her time at school.
The gorgeous Japanese-American beauty was bullied for being taller and bigger than the social standard set against her.
“The norm for Asian girls is to be, you know, petite, cute, and skinny,” Nootenboom explained to Revelist. “But growing up, I kind of was taller, bigger, more awkward. I was the opposite of what people expected me to be, and so I really want to use my platform to say, you know what? We’re all different. We can’t build a mold and expect people to all fit that mold.”
Fans have been loving her look on Instagram. One commented: “Natalie Nootenboom you are totally changing the modelling game right now.”
Another fan felt particularly moved to say: “As a half Japanese girl with curves you, your message and your beauty inside and out mean so so much to me, truly. Keep slaying! 💕 ”
Nootenboom opened up about how her uncle inspired her: “I’ve always looked up to my uncle because he broke Asian norms with his music. Me, as an Asian curve model, I feel like I can use my platform as well to do that.”
Nootenboom firmly believes seeing body positive images in the media is empowering: “Sometimes [your] social media feed really does feed you. So always be careful what you eat.”