The bubbly, driven and outspoken 22-year-old Jay-Aeron Gertze made history a few months ago as Namibia’s first androgynous model after a signing a three-year modelling contract with the South African Lasfab agency.
Jay-Aeron, who is also a makeup artist and a fashion stylist, says Lasfab saw his profile on Instagram right away thinking he fits the bill of an androgynous model. Although skeptical at first after some time he went ahead and signed the contract. “When I received the news I was shocked but it sunk in quite easily. This means that a lot of expectations await,” says he. Being the first androgynous model from Namibia is an amazing feeling for him but means the country is slowly but surely breaking barriers and norms on conformity.
Jay-Aeron’s creativity caught Lasfab agency as the 22-year-old when moody will some days wake up, style himself in an outfit and do makeup than upload this picture onto his Instagram account.
“That perhaps caught Lasfab’s attention and here we are. I am signed up to them today as an androgynous model,” he enthuses. On whether one can make a living out of modeling in the country, he responds: “I believe whatever you put your mind to, you can achieve. You can make money in Namibia but not lot of money with modeling.” Most Namibian models have other jobs that pay the bills whilst in other countries one can pay the bills by modelling only. Due to exploitation in the modelling industry, Jay-Aeron believes models are compelled into second jobs. A regular face at various events in the country, he is Gender Non Confirming (GNC) and thus he is not bothered at how people would address him as there are other important issues to worry about.
Describing himself as fun, fearless and unapologetic, he does a lot of cardio workouts and does not eat after 20H00 to keep in shape. He advises aspiring models to be their truthful selves and fearless. “Definitively being a makeup artist as it will never go out of fashion,” says he on choosing between a model and makeup artist.
Jay-Aeron wants to share a runway someday with Danila Kovalev, which he describes as “literally pulling off any look”. The next five years he wants to be a household name in all mediums he is trying to build a brand in. He has previously done makeup for musician Lioness for her music video and other Namibian celebrities too sort advice on style as he is up to the point when it comes to styling. Although not currently booked for any fashion shows in the country, Jay-Aeron will be walking down the runway this year at FoxxyTurnOne event in outfits buy Simone Johannes. For this rising model the sky is not the limit and it seems he is destined for more photo shoots and runway shows in South Africa.
Breaking new grounds… The bubbly, driven and outspoken 22-year-old Jay-Aeron Gertze who has signed a modeling contract with a South African agency.Photo: Contributed