Lily Cole admits being bullied for having red hair as a child

May 22, 2012, 07:07 IST | ANI

Lily Cole has revealed that she was bullied for her distinctive ginger hair during her school years and accused schools of not taking the issue of hair-based discrimination seriously enough.

The supermodel said teachers usually ignore when children tease others about their hair colour because it is not as stigmatised as problems like racism.

Lily Cole. Pic/Santa Banta

Cole said she was teased with names like ‘carrot top’ and ‘ginger’ when she was a child,” the Telegraph reported. Cole, who has earned an estimated 4 million pounds from catwalk modelling, said such names would not make her “bat an eyelid” today but can be traumatising to children because they are more vulnerable.

“I remember feeling very insecure. When I’d meet people, I would think they wouldn’t like me – that was an actual thought process – because I’m a redhead. It’s absolutely absurd,” she told the Daily Mail.

“Teachers often let it happen because there isn’t a stigma around it in the same way there is, quite rightly, about racism. Any form of bullying should be stamped on because children are so fragile and it affects them,” she stated.

The 24-year-old, who last summer graduated from King’s College Cambridge with a double first class degree in art history, also admitted that she had considered abandoning her studies because of the difficulty of balancing modelling and her academic work. 

As well as modelling for Playboy magazine in 2008 Cole has been the face of advertising campaigns for Marks and Spencer and Chanel.

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