We’re used to seeing Beyonce alongside dancers with legs for days and fellow A-list celebrities, but the new model for Bey’s “Formation” merchandise looks a bit different. That’s because Jillian Mercado was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy as a child.
Now the blogger turned model is looking fierce as ever while modeling hats that read “Hot Sauce” and “Smack It” sweatshirts from her wheelchair.
“OK LADIES now let’s get in FORMATION!” Jillian wrote on Instagram with a shot from Beyonce’s online shop. “So BEYond excited to finally announce that I’m on the official@beyonce website!!! A special shout out to Queen Bee herself and the amazing team behind it.”
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OK LADIES now let's get in FORMATION! So BEYond excited to finally announce that I'm on the official @beyonce website!!! A special shout out to Queen Bee herself and the amazing team behind it 👑 Photography by the most wonderful @danielavesco, Makeup @jamiebeaute, & Hair @jenniferjocelyn 🐝 #slay #formation #jillianmercado
While this is obviously a dream come true for anyone who has ever witnessed a Beyonce music video, it’s just another job for Jillian. Since signing with IMG Models in August 2015, she’s appeared in campaigns for Diesel and in Carine Roitfeld’s CR Fashion Book.
Jillian hopes that her disability will help others feel more confidence with theirs.
Soon after being signed with IMG, she told Vogue, “When I was younger, I was looking for that role model. I had people who I admired, but there was no one [with a disability] who I could look to. I was shocked that I didn’t see anyone in the industry who was like me. So when people—girls especially—tell me that I’m their role model, I am taken aback. I love it and it is flattering, but it affects me on a very personal level because I remember growing up without having a person I could look to.”
Sounds like Jill is the perfect person for Beyonce’s apparel.
Check out more photos of Jillian Mercado working it below.