Try to smize through your tears, “America’s Next Top Model” fans. The Tyra Banks modeling competition show has come to an end, crowning its final winner Friday (Dec. 4). Who took home the last grand prize?
The final four came down to Nyle DiMarco, Mame Adjei, Lacey Rogers and Mikey Heverly, though right at the top of the hour Lacey and Mikey were eliminated after last week’s cliffhanger.
Nyle and Mame faced off in the finale runway, which was a futuristic, fashions-of-the-world adventure in Los Angeles — the first time Banks’ hometown has hosted the final runway. The judges were complimentary on both contestants’ runway walks, but it seemed like Mame edged out Nyle on the runway. However, the winner is also based on body of work and that is what gave Nyle the edge.
In the end, Nyle, the 25-year-old, 6’2 model from Washington D.C., was named the winner of “America’s Next Top Model” Cycle 22. He was only in the bottom 2 one time all season and had the second-highest average score going into the finale with a 34.1 (only Lacey’s 34.5 was better).
Nyle is “America’s Next Top Model’s” first deaf contestant. He struggled early on in the competition — not with the challenges, but with feeling very isolated among his fellow contestants because it was hard to participate in the fun they were having around the house. But he was all smiles and happy tears after learning he won the competition.
“I don’t think anything will ever compare to this moment, ever. Winning right now, it’s a big deal,” says Nyle. “When I came into this competition, I had little experience … But I definitely feel like I’ve become an amazing model.”