African supermodels have made significant contributions to the fashion industry, breaking barriers and redefining beauty standards. While it’s challenging to rank them definitively, here are 10 exceptional African supermodels who have achieved international recognition and have had a significant impact on the industry:

Naomi Campbell (United Kingdom)

  • Naomi Campbell, though born in London, is of Afro-Jamaican heritage and is considered one of the most iconic supermodels of all time. She has graced numerous magazine covers, walked the runways for top designers, and has been a prominent advocate for diversity in the fashion industry.

Alek Wek (South Sudan)

  • Alek Wek is a South Sudanese-British supermodel known for her unique beauty and distinctive features. She has challenged traditional beauty norms and has been a trailblazer for models of African descent, breaking barriers in the industry.

Liya Kebede (Ethiopia)

  • Liya Kebede is an Ethiopian-born supermodel and actress. She has worked with renowned fashion houses and designers, including Estée Lauder, Louis Vuitton, and Tom Ford. Kebede is also an advocate for maternal health and is the founder of the Lemlem Foundation.

Ajuma Nasenyana (Kenya)

Ajuma was born on October 14, 1984, in Lodwar, Kenya. Ajuma gained international recognition for her striking beauty and unique features, particularly her long neck. Her distinct appearance has made her a sought-after model in the fashion industry.

Ajuma Nasenyana started her modeling career in 2003 after being discovered by a talent scout from Surazuri Modeling Agency. She quickly gained attention and went on to work with various renowned designers and brands, both locally and internationally. Ajuma has walked the runways for fashion powerhouses like Vivienne Westwood, Marc Jacobs, and Victoria’s Secret, among others.

Iman (Somalia)

  • Iman, born in Somalia, is a legendary supermodel, actress, and entrepreneur. She was one of the first Black supermodels to achieve international success and has been a trailblazer for models of African descent throughout her career.

Grace Bol (South Sudan)

  • Grace Bol, a South Sudanese model, has made a significant impact in the fashion industry. She has walked the runways for prominent fashion brands and designers, including Givenchy, Oscar de la Renta, and Diane von Furstenberg.

Ajak Deng (South Sudan)

  • Ajak Deng, also from South Sudan, has gained recognition for her striking beauty and distinctive presence on the runway. She has worked with renowned fashion designers and has been a strong advocate for diversity in the industry.

Maria Borges (Angola)

  • Maria Borges, hailing from Angola, gained prominence for being the first Black model to walk the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show with her natural hair. She has since worked with many high-profile designers and has become an influential figure in the industry.

Adwoa Aboah (Ghana/United Kingdom)

  • Adwoa Aboah, with Ghanaian and British heritage, has become an influential figure in the fashion world. Besides her successful modeling career, she is also a mental health advocate and the founder of Gurls Talk, a platform that empowers young women.

Herieth Paul (Tanzania)

  • Herieth Paul, originally from Tanzania, has made waves in the fashion industry with her captivating looks and versatility. She has walked for renowned fashion houses and has been featured in major fashion magazines.

Jourdana Phillips (United States/South Africa)

See Also

  • Jourdana Phillips, with South African and American heritage, has been making waves in the fashion industry. She has worked with notable designers and has been a strong advocate for representation and inclusivity.

Oluchi Onweagba, (Nigeria)

 also known as Oluchi Orlandi, is a Nigerian supermodel and entrepreneur. She was born on August 1, 1980, in Lagos, Nigeria. Oluchi gained international recognition when she won the inaugural edition of the reality TV show “Face of Africa” in 1998, which was organized by the South African channel M-Net.

Following her victory, Oluchi Onweagba signed with several prestigious modeling agencies, including DNA Model Management in New York and Storm Model Management in London. She has graced the covers of numerous fashion magazines and walked the runway for top designers like Chanel, Christian Dior, and Marc Jacobs.


These are just a few of the incredible African supermodels who have made their mark on the fashion industry. Each one has contributed to breaking down barriers and promoting diversity and inclusion within the fashion world.