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Saturday, March 12, 2016

Madonna’s Daughter Lourdes Leon Makes Her Debut in Stella McCartney’s Pop Campaign

Over the past week, Stella McCartney has steadily unveiled the bright young stars of her Pop perfume campaign, her first new fragrance in four years. This morning, the designer pressed “go” on her final reveal, perhaps saving the most unexpected face for last: Lourdes “Lola” Leon, the eldest daughter of Madonna, who will be joining Grimes, Kenya Kinski-Jones, and Amandla Stenberg as McCartney’s new muses.

The campaign marks the first time that the 19-year-old has willfully stepped into the spotlight, after a life spent carefully limiting her contact with the paparazzi and mainstream media. “I have a lot of people judging my every move,” she says. “It’s important for me to not let it rule my life.”

It was McCartney’s call for female camaraderie and collective girl power that led Leon to collaborate with the designer, who also happens to be a longtime friend of her mother’s. Promoting self-acceptance and positive mutual support, the campaign offers a refreshing alternative to the occasionally divisive atmosphere of body shaming and the unfiltered opinion-sharing that currently exists on social media. “I go through this struggle myself, [where] women’s bodies have been made so public that everyone feels like they need to comment,” says Leon. Of the Pop campaign’s be-true-to-yourself message of creativity and individuality, she says simply, “I love when someone doesn’t pretend to be someone they are not.”

Shot in California with the sun-drenched desert as backdrop, Leon appears bare-faced with a head of soft gray waves, streaked with lavender, and a few inches of exposed root. From a look at the outtakes, it can be hard to believe that she’s still in college, studying musical theater at the University of Michigan and fine-tuning her singing, acting, and dancing skills. That’s not the only way in which Leon’s resemblance to her mother is striking: Her doll-like eyes and heart-shaped face make her a dead ringer for a young ’80s-era Madonna. With her own innate knack for risk-taking beauty, which leads her to try everything from septum rings to teal topknots, and an equally irreverent attitude, it won’t be long before Leon is making waves, too—on her own terms, of course.

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