L’Oréal “Drops” World Cup Teenage Model After Hunting Picture Controversy

The 17-year-old’s Facebook account also appears to have been taken down.

1. Belgian teenager Axelle Despiegelaere became one of the faces of the World Cup, landing herself a modelling contract after being spotted in the crowd in Brazil.

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2. Earlier this week, the 17-year-old announced on her Facebook page she had signed with L’Oréal.

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3. A video was released to announce the news.

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4. After she returned to Belgium she set up a Facebook page, which quickly attracted thousands of likes.

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5. That page has now been deleted.

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6. It is claimed Despiegelaere received criticism on the page for this picture, which she allegedly uploaded on 1 July.

@Loreal @LOrealParisUSA what do you think of this post by your new model Axelle Despiegelaere?

— Aly Weisman (@AlyWeisman)
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7. The teenager reportedly added the caption: “Hunting is not a matter of life or death. It’s much more important than that..this was about 1 year ago…ready to hunt Americans today haha.”

The post was apparently uploaded the day Belgium took on the US in the last 16 of the World Cup.

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8. Screengrabs appear to show Despiegelaere apologising on Wednesday, saying: “I didn’t mean to offend anyone… It was a joke. Thanks for understanding.”

By Thursday her Facebook account was down.

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9. And now L’Oréal has told BuzzFeed the company is no longer working with the teenager.

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10. A spokesperson said:

Axelle de Spiegelaere is not one of L’Oréal Professionnel’s spokespeople.

L’Oréal Professionnel Belgium collaborated with her on an ad hoc basis to produce a video for social media use in Belgium.

This has now been produced.

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11. The 17-year-old does not appear to have commented on the controversy or rejoined Facebook, although a fan page still exists.

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Richard James is the UK news editor for BuzzFeed and is based in London.
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