It wasn't just self-esteem. He literally had his entire career riding on his image. Vitiligo can be soul-crushing for regular people because of the daily reactions from strangers, thinking you've got a communicable disease, etc. But for him the stakes were 1000x greater - his entire livelihood, his family's livelihood, all the people who worked for him. They all depended on him keeping the business going. Anything to avoid the chance of being labelled a freak, and then tossed aside by a fickle public. Being black was tough enough, but piebald? Not a chance he could risk it.
FWIW, I'm not sure how I feel about this instagram. If she didn't have vit it would be just another instagram-hottie. Is instagram-hottie-with-vit a positive thing? I guess its better than the callous indignities of strangers that most people with significant vit experience on a regular basis. Still, seems like substituting one form of objectification for another.