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Chella Man makes history as the first trans masc face of YSL beauty

Speaking in a campaign video for the brand’s Nu collection, the model, artist, and activist explains his experience getting top surgery and what art means to him

Model, artist, and activist Chella Man has just made history as the first trans masculine face of YSL Beauty.

Yesterday (October 21), Man revealed his partnership with YSL beauty for its Nu Collective campaign – a collection of Gen Z influencers in support of the brand’s Nu collection of “clean and sustainable” skin and make-up products. 

In a black-and-white video on Instagram, the model explains his experience getting top surgery and what art means to him. “I’ve always experienced intense gender dysphoria – my mind didn’t connect to my body,” he explained. “Top surgery allowed me to make my body a home, and my scars will always remind me of this liberation.”

He continued: “Where I lack the resources to explain myself through words, art was and still is my loophole. My scars are the things that make me who I am. They’re a privilege to bear. My scars are my signature.”

Throughout the clip, Man – who identifies as deaf – can be seen wearing jewellery from his Beauty of Being Deaf jewellery collection, which debuted last May. Designed to help deaf and hard of hearing people feel more control over their bodies, the collection showcases flexible metal ear pieces in gold which fit over hearing aids and cochlear implants.

Aside from Man, YSL’s campaign features internet star and comedian Rickey Thompson, queer model Brynne Rosetta, TikToker Tatiana Rigsby, and more – showcasing the diverse range of people that wear the beauty brand beyond cisgendered women.

In the short film for his jewellery line – also titled The Beauty of Being Deaf – Man discussed his history of being left out of the beauty community. “When you think of beauty you’re not taught to think of me. We are often told: we have lost. We have a loss. We are at a loss,” he signs in the video. “In the face of prejudice, we gain strength.”

Check out YSL Beauty’s Nu collection here.