Emmanuelle was shot exclusively for MODELS.com by Jessica Gordon, with styling by Julie Nivert. Thanks to Marianne Phan.


Emmanuelle Lacou

Silent (Paris)
Muse Management (New York)
The Hive Management (London)
The Lab Models (Milan)




Place of Origin:
My dad’s from Bordeaux (France), my mother from Kaolack (Senegal), but I lived in different countries (Gabon, Nigeria, Senegal, France…)

Ethnic Origin:
French and Senegalese


How discovered:
At the time I was living in Dakar (Senegal), my actual mother agent (None Management) got first in touch with me via Instagram. And when I came to Paris for holidays I got re-scouted by my friend’s cousin who happened to work with my actual mother agent as well. So I started with them.

What was your first modeling job?
My first job was walking for Viktor & Rolf during Couture. I was not nervous at all, quite weirdly, and it was as good as I thought it’d be! After that too, I had an article written about me on vogue.com as ‘7 Standout Models From Couture Fall 2016’ which pushed me into leaving Senegal and applying to Paris high schools for the following year to try to do modeling and studies at the same time.

Favorite things:
Traveling, sun, beach, quality time, good laughter… and my tiakhry too (Senegalese dish)

What are you listening to at the moment?
Everything from J Cole, Eminem to African music that I love with Wizkid, Davido, MrEazi… passing by lusophone songs with Nelson Freitas, Natiruts… Without forgetting the good « old » RnB’s from the USA, obviously! Quite diverse haha

Favorite movie, tv show:
I love the Silver Linings Playbook, it’s quite fantastic according to me

Favorite designer, fragrance or beauty product:
Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet! Especially in winter the Bioderma body cream is a go-to one (it’s quite thick) as well as lime and shea butter, two necessaries for skin and hair. Talking about my favourite designer I wouldn’t be able to pick only one at the moment.

What were you doing before modeling?
Before modelling I was schooling in Africa, so I lived in Gabon before moving to Nigeria and finally Senegal, where I left almost 2 years ago to live in Paris.

What would you be doing if you weren’t modeling?
If I weren’t modeling I would have probably turned towards preparatory classes in Maths after high school. It is basically 2 really intensive years of maths, physics… to prepare you for big scientific studies. Instead, I went to Dauphine University in the Maths course, so I can skip classes more easily and do modelling at the same time. Now looking back at it I’m glad modeling came my way because preparatory classes would have made me go mad, haha

What’s something uncool that you love anyway?
Staying around all day in horrible pyjamas whenever I get to stay home because they are so warm and comfy

Favorite modeling experience so far?
I had a lot of fun shooting L’Officiel in Formentera Island, the team was really fun, the weather perfect, the locations beautiful.

What’s the best thing about your hometown/country?
Oh hard one, what should I consider my hometown? Haha. If talking about western Africa it’s definitely the whole: the people’s mentality, the vibes, the easiness, the carefreeness, the climate, the food, the music, history… Africa is a whole ♥

Which brand would you really love to model for?
In the ones I have not work with, for now: I’ve always been a fan of Saint Laurent. Lately, I also discovered Jacquemus, I loved La Bomba! Vogue, Self Service, Love, i-d… magazines always have some pretty sick editorials as well. Way too many dream client to list entirely.

Place you would love to visit:
I don’t think any website page would be long enough for me to write a list haha. Let’s say mostly everywhere, especially the « lost » places.

Currently you’re obsessed with/about:
Travelling, sun, travelling, sun. It’s a sickness.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
To do what I love in life. To not live for anybody else. And that as long as you have the willpower and guts it takes, ANYTHING is achievable even if that doesn’t mean it will be easy.