Ines Rau becomes Playboy's first transgender Playmate

"I am proud to be making history and breaking boundaries!" the model said.
By Annie Martin  |  Oct. 20, 2017 at 9:54 AM
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Oct. 20 (UPI) -- Playboy will soon feature its first transgender Playmate, Ines Rau.

The 26-year-old French model voiced her gratitude in an Instagram post Friday after news broke she will appear as the centerfold in the magazine's November/December issue.

"I am proud to be making history and breaking boundaries!" Rau, who is of North African descent, wrote.

"I want to thank the Hefner family and Playboy enterprise for the compliment! Being asked to be a Playmate was for me like getting a giant bouquet of roses, I am so flattered and beyond grateful!" she added.

Rau said in an interview with Playboy that she didn't openly identify as transgender for years because she was "scared" of what other people would think. She encouraged fans to embrace their own truths.

"I lived a long time without saying I was transgender," the model told the magazine. "I was scared of never finding a boyfriend and being seen as weird. Then I was like, You know, you should just be who you are."

"It's a salvation to speak the truth about yourself, whether it's your gender, sexuality, whatever. The people who reject you aren't worth it," she advised. "It's not about being loved by others; it's about loving yourself."

Rau was previously featured in the May 2014 issue of Playboy, but not as a Playmate, or centerfold. British star Caroline Cossey, aka Tula, was the first transgender model to pose for the magazine, appearing in 1991.

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