Bawar sisters – their story


As promised, we would like to introduce you to the three sisters featured in our October recommendation post.

Lara and Mara live in Sao Paulo with her sister Sheila and they are known in social media as the Bawar sisters. The Bawar twins have albinism, a genetic condition that causes the partial or complete absence of pigment in the skin, hair, and eyes. This is their story.

Anna Mascarenhas discovered Lara and Mara, two albino twins, through Instagram. She was intrigued with the story of this two sisters, so she decided to document it through her lens.

SISTERHOOD is about three sisters: Lara, Mara and Sheila. They hold each other tight and get lost in their own reflections, facing the differences between them and the difficulties towards their environment.

Bawar-sisters-albinism-cuteandkids-blogImage by Anna Mascarenhas

Their parents came from Guiné Bissau, looking for opportunities, when their mum was pregnant with the eldest one, Sheila. Then the twins came, Lara and Mara. They are albino, so when the father saw them for the first time, he thought her wife cheated on him and left. Their mum has raised the three girls by herself.

Bawar sister’s mum works as a hairdresser in the centre of São Paulo, specialised in hairstyles for black hair. The eldest, Sheila, is 14 years-old and her dream is to become a model, and so do her younger sisters, but their problem is that it seems they don’t belong to any pre-existent category. Living in a favela in São Paulo, and having a single mom to pay for all the expenses, it is almost impossible to consider this dream to be a success.

All the three girls are amazing and loving. I wanted to show how they see each other as sisters, as black girls, as individuals. How they relate to what society expects from them, being marginalised by their class and colour. And, most important, how they relate to what they see in the mirror.” Anna Mascarenhas


Image by Vinicius Terranova

In 2016, the Bawar twins’ unique pale features caught the eye of Swiss photographer Vinicius Terranova, he photographed the twins and their sister Sheila  to showcase how truly beautiful diversity can be.

Lara, Mara and Sheila have since then work as model for Nike, Insanis and Bazaar Kids.

Beyond modelling and representing uniqueness in fashion, we are devoted to spreading positive and inspiring messages to future generations and all those somehow affected by beauty standards or any other form of discrimination and intolerance in our society.

Together we are more than beautiful, we are strong!” Bawar sisters.


Image by Anna Mascarenhas

“Growing up like this was amazing, we love being different and are happy with our unique beauty” Mara Bawar

We love this sentence by Mara, because these beautiful girls are very proud of being different. And we are very proud of them.

We must educate our children to be accepted as they are. In a society where beauty is valued more and more, it is important to foster self-esteem.

Tell your kids about albinism and explain them that difference is the essence of humanity. We must respect each other.

+ info at Bawar sisters web and instagram account. 

Featured image by @albertopereira