At first glance, you’d be forgiven for thinking Duckie Thot was a life-sized Barbie doll. The South Sudanese-Australian model’s smooth skin, silky hair, and slender frame is causing a commotion on Instagram – but her road to stardom hasn’t exactly been lined with Dream Houses.
When Nyadak (Duckie) Thot was just 17, she was a frontrunner on the 2013 season of Australia’s Next Top Model. Though it sounds like an empowering experience, Duckie later opened up about the constant torment she faced on social media regarding her natural hair, skin colour, and weight, including being called ‘cauliflower head’ by former US Top Model contestant Winnie Harlow. “I took quite a few blows as a 17-year-old girl — and it was hard to understand why,” she told Teen Vogue in an emotional 2016 interview. She found a mentor in Top Model judge and fellow cyberbullying victim Charlotte Dawson, and though Dawson tragically committed suicide in 2014, Duckie still lives by her advice to this day. “That was really my driving force post-show.”
After taking a couple years off to regain her strength, Duckie came back with the thunder. Now 21 years old, she’s got almost 300 thousand followers on Instagram, and is carving out icon status on her own terms. Oh, and she’s happily accepted the ‘Barbie’ title given by her fans. Read more about Duckie’s story below!