Former model Kereen Hurley may only be 23, but she’s a veteran to discrimination in the modeling game. At just the age of 16, the U.K. based beauty began her modeling career then eventually became an agent, scouting her own talent. Hurley tells Refinery29 that the blatant colorism in the industry is what motivated her to start Choco Media Models – an agency exclusively for dark skinned women.
Hurley describes in detail the obstacles she’s faced with booking her models, having black-girl-adept makeup artists for photoshoots, and battling with the ‘only-one-black-girl-tokenism-policy’. Struggles that we’ve all heard time and time again out of the starving mouths of dark skinned black girl talent, just eager to be seen.
Much like DDS Magazine, Hurley has her work cut out for her telling Refinery29, “I’m working to get more mainstream eyes on my agency” with hope that the industry will “take notice and evolve”. Yet even if they don’t, we hope that Hurley continues strong in her mission, eventually forcing the mainstream to come to her. After all, it’s only a matter of time before dark skinned women will get fed up and begin to look/create elsewhere for representation. Now is the time to secure a spot in that revolution and certainly while social media is busy cultivating a new generation, influencing, and in some cases, replacing mass media.