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Slay Model’s Transgender model search; trans exclusive agency placing modeling first

Slay Model Management, the world’s first Transgender exclusive model agency, has announced it will host its first-ever Model Search on February 15, 2020, at One Culver in Los Angeles.

“We are looking for star quality,” said Cecilio Asuncion, the founder, and director of Slay Model Management. “It takes more than beauty to be a top model. It takes determination, a healthy outlook, and a visceral understanding that she is a model first, and a Trans woman second.”

Slay Model Management models have appeared in campaigns for Eva Mendes for NY and Co., Nikita Dragun cosmetics, Katy Perry Fragrance: Indi, Elle Magazine, Truvada and on TV in FX’s Pose, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Project Runway and Netflix’s upcoming show, Next in Fashion. Even the agency has gained notoriety. The Oxygen-TV series, Strut, executive produced by Whoopi Goldberg, was built around the agency and showcased the challenges its models faced in the fashion industry, fighting to overcome gender and beauty stereotypes.

Asuncion is careful to clarify: “Slay is not about selling Transness. We are selling a young woman’s capability to represent a brand or a designer. Sure, it’s great to be booked during June for Pride month, but what we want is sustainability and opportunities year-round.”

He says unique opportunities are available to transgender models today.

“Fashion is changing. Companies understand the need for representation, diversity, and inclusion.”

At some point in the near future, he contends that models will be hired for their beauty and not, specifically, because they are Trans.

“One of the biggest misconceptions is that a Trans model has to be an activist. Frankly, I don’t believe they do. By polishing their craft and representing themselves as the best in the business, they will help future generations.”

To enter the model search, hopefuls are encouraged to visit the Slay Model Management website (www.slaymodels.com) and click on the “Get Scouted” tab. However, Natalie Chang, the head of new faces at Slay Model Management cautions all women to prepare themselves mentally as they will be competing against thousands of other young women for only three spots.

Twenty-five finalists will be selected from all entries received through the website. They will be invited to compete in the February 15, 2020 finale at One Culver in Los Angeles, hosted by supermodel and Slay Model Management talent, Arisce Wanzer and International Celebrity DJ and Slay Model Management talent Lina Bradford.

“My advice for all who are selected to compete is to concentrate their efforts on perfecting their stage presence and confidence,” says Asuncion. “To be a top model today, women must be able to deliver a great walk that connects with audiences and cameras.”

The model competition will be co-produced by celebrity event planner Jason Rhee of the Rheefined Company. A seasoned event designer, Jason has spent the last fifteen years producing events that are designed around experiences and inclusion. “It’s an honor to be a part of producing this event and my goal is to create an event that matches the beauty of each of the contestants.”

Prior to the competition night, all selected contestants will attend a Model Boot Camp where they will be coached by top photographers, stylists, and editors. The competition, itself, will be judged by industry professionals.

“As it often is in model competitions, the real challenge will be an internal one,” Asuncion predicts. “It used to be that women reshaped themselves to fit the industry standard; striving to match the idealized version of a Barbie doll. Today’s fashion industry wants to see the real, unfiltered woman beneath the lashes and lipstick.”

The Slay Model Management Model Search takes place Saturday, February 15, 2020, at One Culver in Los Angeles. For more information, visit Slaymodels.com.