We announce the winners of the Face of London Runway competition for
this year, and take you on the journey that we’ve traveled so far…
What a journey we’ve all been on!
This has been an incredible year for the Face of London Runway. We had a new
record of 853 entrants in the first round, making it all the more difficult for us to get down to the final stage.
After choosing just 100 – an eighth! – of all our entries to go through to the next
round, we met them all over Zoom. With fun posing challenges, lots of chat
about the industry, and advice for our budding models, we were able to get to
know them a little bit.
Now came the first of the really hard decisions: choosing which of our contestants would make it to the semi-final, held in Shoreditch at Chocolate Studios. The top 40 represented just 4% of our overall entrants, and they weren’t done yet.
Over the course of one jam-packed day, they met all of their fellow semi-finalists, posed for a classic portrait, styled themselves for a jewellery challenge (wearing jewellery provided graciously by Rove London), did their own pearl sticker makeup for a beauty challenge, took and posted selfies, and even shared a video answering some questions about the event and why they wanted to win.
As the dust settled from this round, we realised we’d made a terrible mistake. Signing ourselves up to choose just TEN people from this bunch? What were we thinking?!
Nonetheless, the decision had to be made. It’s worth noting also that this
final was our most international yet. We had models come to take part from
Australia, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, and the Netherlands! Add to that the models who have settled in London from other countries before taking part in the contest, and we had such a diverse bunch that it was incredible to see.
Finally, we narrowed it down to just that final ten: Ana Julia Medrano Cerna,
Corey Lane, Dan Holland, Essence Shomari Howells, Ignacio Ferrer, Joe
Fox, Julie Bouttier, Munashe Stephanie Shumba, Raphael Martin, and Sage Kim
(in first-name alphabetical order only).
During the whole of the competition, they had each been accrueing scores from both our judges and some factors that were based in data, not opinion. These included judgements on their ability to follow instructions and complete assignments fully, the quality and variety of images they completed
in the semi-final, their attitude when interacting with their fellow semi-finalists, their posts on social media, and more. We added scores from our judges (Chief Editor and Head Judge Rhiannon D’Averc, photographers Mrityunjoy Mitra and Fil Mazzarino, and our Advertising Manager/event assistant Amber Johnson).
The final piece of the puzzle was… you! The last round of the competition was
the public voting round, in which we asked you to vote for your favourites across Instagram and Facebook.
This year was not without controversy, as some false voting patterns were quickly detected by our team. Rest assured that our final scores reflect that reality, with points docked or disqualifications made when we could see that the votes were not correct. We asked our contestants to be honest and open with us, and reminded them many times that behaviour was one of the aspects we were monitoring, so all’s fair when it comes to the results.
And what were the results?
Yes, we know you’ve been waiting patiently to find out! If you turn to the next pages you will see images of our winners and runners-up. As always, we’ve chosen two winners, with two runners-up each; this is a slight throwback to our previous
menswear/womenswear categories, but as our theme was ‘face’ this year, we’ve mixed everybody up and instead made them beauty and jewellery winners.
Those category winners are:
Winner – Corey Lane
Runners-up – Julie Bouttier and
Winner – Essence Shomari Howells
Runners-up – Ana Julia Medrano Cerna
and Dan Holland
We’ll be bringing you front covers with the winners’ cover shoots soon! Make sure to keep an eye out across the year or shots of the semi-finalists, podcast interviews with the winners, and more!