Vogue Features First-Ever Transgender Model Andreja Pejic

Andreja Pejic Vogue Andreja Pejic. Photographed by Patrick Demarchelier, Vogue, May 2015

“I wanted to stop puberty in its early tracks,” Andreja Pejic tells me. “I was worried about my feet being too big, my hands being too big, my jawline being too strong.” She still recalls the relief she felt on her first fashion job. Surrounded by similarly proportioned models, she told herself, “Every girl in fashion is exactly the same. I don’t need to worry!”

Andrej and Andreja Pejic for Elle Serbia.
Andrej and Andreja Pejic for Elle Serbia.

It was only last year that Pejic underwent gender-confirmation surgery (the term that has come to replace gender-reassignment surgery), and to hear her recount the facts of her autobiography can be a little surreal, requiring recursive, real-time attention. There is nothing masculine about her. Dressed in a Prada turtleneck and a Phillip Lim pencil skirt, Pejic is as feminine as my sister, as my mother, as my biologically female friends. This is, of course, the product of extreme effort: an adolescence spent on synthetic, puberty-suppressing hormones (taken secretly at first, then with her mother’s support and blessing), and a surgical procedure that took her two months to recover from—not to mention a measure of phenotypic luck. She engages—and dismantles—all one’s visceral perceptions of gender.

Read more on Vogue.

The interview was very tasteful and well-done, it fleshed out the human-side of Andreja Pejic that is often hidden behind the glitzy and the glamour that shrouded the fashion industry.

We especially love the last line in that interview, 

“Being known to the whole world with this transition, I thought, Who is ever going to love me? How am I going to have a relationship with a man if all of this is public? Then I got to a place where I was like, ‘I’m successful and happy with what I’ve achieved. There’s nothing I should be ashamed of. You can take it or leave it.’ ”

Most of the LGBTI, especially kids, struggle with the lack of a very strong role model growing up, we’re hoping with the emergence of such public figures like Laverne Cox from Orange is the New Black or Matt Bomer from Magic Mike, we can slowly start evolving into much more open-minded, welcoming society. 

The amount of money thrown into building such a hateful effigy, especially because this largely deals with something personal and innate, is just a big waste of energy when there are many others pressing concerns that we can put our minds to.