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January 13, 2020updated May 14, 2020

Travel Diaries with Supermodel and lemlem Founder Liya Kebede

By Emma

Liya Kebede first stepped onto the modeling scene in 2000, and since then she has made history modeling for the most prestigious fashion and beauty labels around the world.

While Kebede still models, she is primarily devoted to her fashion label, lemlem, and her nonprofit organization, lemlem foundation, which helps women in Africa get access to education, jobs and maternal health care.

“I always knew that I wanted to focus on giving back and helping women in Africa,” the Ethiopian-born model exclusively tells Elite Traveler. “I began advocating and supporting efforts to train midwives and health workers so more women have access to critical care during pregnancy and childbirth — and this remains at the heart of our mission.”

Her label, lemlem, combines her love for philanthropy and fashion and offers a chic, sustainable range of clothing for men, women and children — we love her breezy linen dresses, totes and scarves. Kebede loves to wear her designs on her travels, including on a recent trip to Mexico City.

“I like to dress comfortably in jeans and T-shirts, and my brand lemlem’s summer dresses and swimwear are perfect for the warm weather in Mexico,” she says.

Kebede loves to wear her designs on her travels, including on a recent trip to Mexico City

Liya Kebede’s Travel Essentials

Above: Anita Ko Meryl earrings in 18K yellow gold, $3,250,

Above: lemlem Eskedar beach dress, $345,

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Above: lemlem Eskedar pouch $50,

Above: L’Oréal Paris Rouge Signature lipstick, $12,

To shop the chic collection and learn more about her foundation, visit

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