Last week, 28-year-old model Lauren Wasser strutted down the runway at New York City Fashion Week looking fierce while showing off her gold prosthetic leg.
Wasser walked in a show titled “Lumina” with clothing brand Chromat, which also featured transgender and plus-size models.
Wasser said in a 2015 VICE article that she lost her leg at age 24 because of toxic shock syndrome—a build-up of deadly bacteria, which is commonly linked to the usage of tampons. However, a tampon alone is not enough to cause toxic shock syndrome; a person must already have staphylococcus aureus present in his or her body. About 20% of the population carries the bacteria, according to the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine.
After many obstacles to overcome, Wasser turned her tragic situation into a positive outcome and embraced her beauty.
“I’m more beautiful than I’ve ever been because I’ve experienced so many things, and I can relate to so many different people,” she told TODAY. “And you know, it’s just made me a better person.”