Thursday, October 3, 2013

Models Are

When I was in elementary school, all I wanted to be when I grew up was a model or an actress. Or Micheal Jackson's wife (wow. glad that one didn't pan out). I also really loved (still love) horses, so I actually wanted to be a model/equestrian/beautiful actress/Micheal Jackson's wife. As I got older, that dream of being a model never really died. I used to look through magazines like Cosmo, Seventeen and Allure filled with images of supermodels like Christy Turlington, Christy Brinkley, Naomi Campbell, Claudia Schiffer and Cindy Crawford and wish with every ounce of my being that I could just be them.

Interestingly, I think my mom, who was beautiful but never believed she was, must have wanted to be a model/beautiful actress, too, because she was full of advice on what models 'do' (I think she was too probably old to love MJ).

My mama. Sorry about the glare. There was glass. I'm an amateur.

'Models stick their tongue slightly between their teeth when they smile.'

'Models wear Vaseline on their teeth so it's easier to smile.'

'Models have to be versatile, even when they come out of the water and have soaking wet hair.'

'Models have to look good with bangs, with long hair, with short hair, with no bangs.'

'Models have to have straight teeth and full lips.'

'Models have an oval face.'

'When you stand perfectly straight, your legs should only touch at the calves, the knees and the tops. These are perfect legs. Models have perfect legs.'

So I would practice my smile, sticking my tongue slightly between my teeth. I would put Vaseline on my teeth, and practice my looks with soaking wet hair and no bangs. I would play around with my makeup to make my lips look fuller (FYI, DO NOT line outside your lipline, as this is not a good look in real life).

But when I looked in the mirror, I knew that I wasn't what a modeling scout would be looking for. My teeth were too spacey, my mouth was too small, my face was not oval and I certainly didn't look good with soaking wet hair.

My modeling career was not destined to go very far. And I was crestfallen.

Fastforward to 2013. I was at the doctors office yesterday, perusing yet another magazine filled with beautiful models (and advertisements for the first 80-some pages) while I waited to be called back. But this time, I had the truth in my arsenal.

'Models are airbrushed.'

'Models are sometimes seen as expendable and are dismissed when they don't have the right 'look'.'

'Models have great lighting, great makeup and hair people, and are perfectly posed. I only see what is considered their 'best shot'. What I don't see are the hundreds of photos that didn't make the cut.'

'Models are real people, yes, but the image that they are representing is not.'

'Models are people. Models are not perfect.'

Sometimes, I just need a little truth-talking to my heart.


Models are also apparently very confused. Again, glare. It's hard to hold a phone and a magazine in the waiting room and get a good picture while trying to be casual about it.

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