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Childhood beauty pageant star crushed by vitiligo diagnosis throws herself into modelling

A childhood beauty pageant star who "felt like a dinosaur" after being diagnosed with the skin condition vitiligo has rebuilt her confidence by throwing herself into modelling. Make-up artist, Crystal Alexis, 36, made her catwalk debut aged just 21 months, after winning a beauty pageant. But, diagnosed with vitiligo - a long-term disorder where a lack of the pigment melanin causes pale white patches on the skin - aged 30, she feared she would never model again. Then, sick of ignorant strangers asking what was wrong with her skin, aged 32 Crystal, of Cocoa, Florida, USA, decided to follow in the footsteps of Canadian model Winnie Harlow, who also has vitiligo, by taking to the catwalk and using social media to "educate and inform" people about the condition. "Modelling really is my first love," she explained. "I was just three months shy of my second birthday when I did my first pageant - and I won. "But by the time I hit my teens, I had started working as a make-up artist, so I left modelling behind."

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