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The Vitiligo Goddess is here to spread awareness on TikTok


TextDominic Cadogan

Model and influencer Iomikoe Johnson is gaining followers on the social media platform for her honest videos about her condition

Following Winnie Harlow’s appearance on America’s Next Top Model in 2014, people around the world with vitiligo – a skin condition that causes patches due to a lack of melanin – finally thought it was their chance to be celebrated in the mainstream. 

While Harlow has continued on to model for the likes of MAC, Nike, and Tommy Hilfiger, by and large people with vitiligo still don’t find themselves in the spotlight. Looking to change that is model and influencer Iomikoe Johnson AKA the Vitiligo Goddess

“I came up with the name when I was featured in a Buzzfeed article for the most beautiful people with vitiligo,” she tells us. “They called me a goddess, so I put vitiligo in front of it and that was it!” 

Like many with vitiligo, Iomikoe faced her fair share of difficulties growing up, abhorrently being compared to a cow or dalmatian. “I found it hard to fit in. People used to make fun of me because I had dark skin and because I was really skinny,” she reflects. “Back then, skin colour determined whether you were pretty or not.” 

Despite faces like Winnie’s in the mainstream, Iomikoe says a lot of people are still confused about what vitiligo is. “Vitiligo isn’t contagious, I’m not sick and I wasn’t burned or hurt in any way” she says. “However, my skin is sensitive to large amounts of sun exposure, but other than that I’m very healthy.” 

To educate people further, the Vitiligo Goddess recently joined where you can find her living her best life, educating people about her condition, and clapping back at ignorant trolls who leave hateful comments. “TikTok is the perfect platform for me to showcase my personality, I love that I can be funny and express myself to my followers, but I can also speak on important issues as an advocate,” she explains. Even with the support, she’s had to post videos proving her vitiligo is genuine and not foundation. 

On being a role model for others with vitiligo and those who simply feel like they fit in, Iomikoe says: “I feel extremely humble and I never thought I’d be here today having people look up to me. I love inspiring others to be comfortable in the skin they’re in. We all must learn to love and appreciate the vessel we were given in this life.” If you’re struggling, her advice is simple. “Let go and forgive those who don’t understand you,” she says. “Learn to love yourself, be comfortable, and try new things – don’t be afraid!” 

Looking to the future, Iomikoe hopes that her presence and others with vitiligo will help bring about change in the mainstream. “I hope more people with vitiligo are accepted in the entertainment industry,” she concludes. “Different is beautiful and when people can fully accept that, we will thrive together!”

@vitiligogoddess

For the one's in the back Educate yourself before your so quick to judge‼️ ##fyp ##foryoupage ##melanin ##blackgirlmagic ##vitilgo ##xyzbca ##i_love_tiktok

♬ ALL IN - ZaeHD & CEO
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