To all those who have hopped on the pink hair fad with a high-fashion wink, it’s quite possible that you have Charlotte Free to thank for that. The model best recognized for her rose-hued tresses appeared on the scene last summer after being discovered by a photographer at a local arcade, and she’s become pretty damn close to ubiquitous since then. Charlotte is an interesting case — in an industry of models who are stunning in their beauty but lacking in a sense of individuality, something to separate them from the pack, she’s an unapologetic neon renegade. Designers like Richard Chai, Jeremy Scott, and Chanel took note and cast Free, pink hair, abbreviated height, and all. Despite being only five foot seven (and just eighteen) it’s undeniable that the modeling world has work itself into a tizzy over the California native. I like Charlotte best editorially: her unique face and hipster leanings, not to mention her impossible-to-ignore hair, translate better to print than to the catwalk, where the emphasis is almost always on homogeneity.
It was only a matter of time, then, before a massive brand took note of both her popularity and her insta-recognizability and offered the fresh face a serious beauty contract. It’s a gig that veteran models would sell their souls to score, and who else landed it but the pretty, petite new girl? Maybelline has adopted Free as the new face of the brand, and the announcement is making ripples in the water of the fashion world. See: this video, in which P’trique (who you might recognize from “Shit Fashion Girls Say”) just can’t keep a chicret. It’s worth watching for the blink-and-you’ll-miss-them industry cameos… and P’trique herself. Congratulations, Charlotte, this is totes maj! [Lucky]