MASERU – When you go through model ‘Mantoa Mohlakola’s social media platform posted hypnotizing photo series you capture the beauty of albino people, and you are inspired to look further into her than just her skin texture.
As you may already know, Albinism is a rare condition which results in the absence of pigment in hair, eyes, and skin. However, it’s not only the appearance, though; the albinos often suffer from vision problems and sometimes even blindness.
These issues can lead to isolation, making the work of artists like ‘Mantoa even more important, though their unique beauty in this industry is hypnotic. “I intend to treat my life like a person who has embarked on a journey of positives, despite the numerous personal challenges that I encounter each day,” she says during a brief interview with Life&Style.
Aged 24, the model hails from the Berea district and is a student at the National University of Lesotho – eyeing proficiency spiritual care and counseling.
‘‘I learned a lot as a child growing up in a family setup that I believe help me a great deal in pursuing my career in modeling. I started modeling way back in 2017, and it goes without saying that I always loved beauty and fashion, new relationships…in fact the entire beauty industry as a whole.
I have been wooed by new surroundings, but relocating and coming into the reality of the fast paced urban Maseru life from Berea I had to find myself, stand my ground and build confidence to challenge the system and societal perceptions.
Now I stand tall, I am a beauty queen, a pillar of strength to my brothers and sisters who come after me, not just in modeling but in all their endeavors,” a confident ‘Mantoa says.
She continues that she has always proceeded to challenge herself to be a better person in life, revealing that “joining agencies such as Amplic Modeling helped to transform me.”
She was first approached by Ark Media cinematography in 2017, going on to join Kaz Angels Modeling Agency and Promotions around mid-year until 2018 when she decided to go solo and work as an independent model.
“I honestly embrace the life of beauty and fashion in all forms it comes because of the confidence I gained during this journey.’’
She contends that working independently has been a good move as she gets to make her own decisions and becomes her own boss “even though getting gigs as an independent model is a hustle… especially in a country like Lesotho where the entertainment industry is for all intents and purposes asleep.”
‘Mantoa regards her albinism an opposing energy used by some of photographers in her industry to bring her down, but adds that she always rises as a goddess of beauty from the stigma and photographers’ impatience with her.
“Sometimes my eyes are sensitive to light so some photographers grow impatient, but I have got used to that.”
‘‘Living with albinism affects my work in some negative way, in that there is still stigma surrounding albinism. Other people still feel pity for me, they think I can’t get a job well done because of my condition,” she continues. People with albinism often face difficulties being ridiculed and discriminated.
In some African regions, albino women might even be associated with witchcraft. And though many famous artists and models suffer from this condition, the International Albinism Awareness Day, celebrated on June 13th, adds much-needed attention to their cause.
‘Mantoa’s work can be accessed over her social media platforms Facebook and Instagram – and for bookings through her email: email@example.com