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Meet Shelby Lynch, the Gen Z model with spinal muscular atrophy who just starred in a major fashion campaign

Dillon Thompson
·2-min read

Shelby Lynch keeps her TikTok bio short and sweet.

It reads: “Yes I’m disabled. And yeah I’m pretty cute!”

The 23-year-old, who lives in the U.K., is a model, a fashion influencer and a TikTok creator with more than 200,000 followers. She also just snagged the biggest deal of her career.

Lynch was born with spinal muscular dystrophy type 2. The rare disease affects nerve cells, causing muscle weakness and often making it difficult to move, eat or sit upright. Lynch is in a wheelchair and uses a ventilator to help with breathing.

In October, Lynch shared her condition on a brand new stage when she joined Kurt Geiger’s We Are One campaign. The U.K.-based footwear brand is donating 100 percent of the proceeds from We Are One to the British National Health Service.

Lynch spoke about the opportunity in November, sharing a TikTok in which she called it her “biggest achievement.”

Lynch is no stranger to big stages, but as her fame has grown, she’s continued to use her platform to raise awareness about her condition — and to fight for inclusivity in fashion overall.

The Gen Zer called the collaboration “absolutely amazing,” writing on Instagram that she was excited for the chance to share her story so widely.

“It is such an honor to be seen as an empowering person,” Lynch wrote. “Getting to work with them was absolutely amazing! I never thought I’d get an opportunity like this to work with high-end brands and tell my story.”

Meanwhile, Lynch is continuing to speak out online — especially through TikTok, where she often posts videos that try to help others better understand people with disabilities.

In a recent video, the model warns her followers about questions they shouldn’t ask a person with a disability.

“Don’t ask us about our sex lives,” she writes in one of the video’s captions. “You wouldn’t ask an able-bodied person.”

In the same clip, Lynch also cautions users against calling people with disabilities an “inspiration” just for living their lives.

It’s a principle she’s stuck to throughout her career. In every achievement, Lynch asks others to see her as a model, influencer and now, a brand ambassador — instead of someone “overcoming” a disability.

If you liked this story, check out this article about Grace Strobel, an up-and-coming model with Down syndrome.

More from In The Know:

Ellie Goldstein is a model with Down syndrome and the new face of Gucci Beauty

19-year-old TikToker demonstrates how to grocery shop while blind

Starbucks is opening its first sign language store in Japan

Meet Aarón Acosta, the quadruple amputee who’s one of TikTok’s favorite dance stars

The post Shelby Lynch is a Gen Z model with spinal muscular atrophy — and the new face of Kurt Geiger appeared first on In The Know.