Li Xiao Xing: 'My hair colourist launched my career'
Li Xiao Xing credits her hair colourist for changing the course of her career.
The Chinese model dyed her naturally dark tresses platinum blonde before the 2016 fall ready-to-wear season and was immediately selected to walk the runway for some of the biggest names in fashion, including Stella McCartney, Alexander Wang, Marc Jacobs and Fendi.
Of her rising career, Li said she has the same hair colourist as Australian model Fernanda Ly, who is known for her cotton candy pink locks, and the rising stars have both enjoyed success since undergoing a hair colour transformation.
“That colourist is changing two girls’ careers,” Li told WWD, adding, “But it’s good that they didn’t dye my hair pink.”
Before walking the runways of Paris and London, Li's mother wasn't keen on letting her daughter pursue a modelling career until she finished university. But with the help of her sister, Li entered and won the Elite Model Look competition in China when she was 21. Because she didn't experience immediate success in the fashion world, Li reveals she seriously considered pursuing other pathways as she didn't consider herself to be beautiful enough for the modelling industry.
"In China, (beautiful girls) are like dolls. They have big eyes - like baby girls. So I’m like a monster to them," she shared. "I did a casting for Beijing Fashion Week and nobody picked me. Nobody even looked at me."
However, Li's fortunes changed when a modelling agency in Paris wanted her for a shoot, launching her career.
Despite her fame, Li remains humble and if she wasn't a model would be keen to work with children.
"I could be a cleaning lady, maybe," she laughed. "You know, my dream job was to be a teacher. But my mom always said, 'Little kids, you would drive them crazy!' I only like little kids, not older kids. They’re boring."