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The Future Of Fashion With Alexa Chung

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By jessica Gonzalez
@alderredor

As if we needed another reason to adore the always chic, effortlessly cool Alexa Chung, British It-Girl after our own hearts, in comes Future of Fashion, her latest two-part mini-series for British Vogue. In this clever and informative series of videos, the contributing British Vogue editor and, most recently, face of French fashion house Longchamp sets out to interview various influential figures in fashion today. Her interviews and subsequent commentary inform viewers on the new directions in which fashion is heading.

Throughout the series, Alexa takes on such important, relevant topics as social media and the blogosphere’s influence on designers, buyers, models, and fashion followers, how to go about scoring internships and/or jobs at major fashion houses and publications such as Vogue, the different disciplines and areas of business within fashion, and more. Divided into several parts, each FOF segement concentrates on a different part of the fashion world. The series successfully counters the stereotype of fashion being frivolous and demonstrates the impact fashion has as an art form, offering endless inspiration through its various avenues, worldwide. Alexa’s witty charm shines through during her interviews and perhaps, at times, even outshines her impeccable style. And that’s saying something!

Some of the fashion heavy-hitters Alexa speaks with include young and unapologetically chic Olivier Rousteing, 26-year-old creative director of Balmain; Jaime Perlman, Vogue’s creative director; Opening Ceremony’s Carol Lim and Humberto Leon; Scottish designer Christopher Kane; and many more. During part one of FOF, Alexa speaks with fashion experts about the ins and outs of fashion and how to breakthrough the industry. During part two, the series takes a deeper look into what influences trends, buyers, and fashion followers. She examines normcore and offers her opinion on the ubiquitous trend, in addition to numerous other pressing issues. For anyone who works in or follows fashion, The Future of Fashion is a must-watch!

Real Men Wear Pink, And Real Male Models Wear Make Up

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So fellas, you think you want to be a male model? Just as I tell my female aspiring models, it is important to do research and get familiar with what you could be doing as a male model. Most men think, “All right, I get to look all sexy and chiseled, show off my muscles and pose with hot women!”

Ummm, yeah, sure but there is so much more to being a male model than that. Along with perks come the other things that you may not like but come with the territory. For example, most female models dread having to wear next to nothing in freezing temperatures but pretend like they are on a beach in 90 degree weather. For male models, the following are some aspects of the job that you’ll have to be cool with if you want to seriously pursue a career in the modeling industry:

– Makeup: You better believe it! Just as women need to wear makeup, male models wear make up – not all the time and not as much as the female counterparts – but makeup all the same. Now, guys, before you stop reading and throw your idea of being a male model into the trash, give me a chance to clarify. Makeup is a must for both male and female models because it helps you photograph better. Plain and simple. Powder and foundation serve to give your complexion a more uniform appearance and also cuts down on shine, which photographs terribly. It is supposed to make you look better, not like a clown.

Additionally, you’ll be working with professional makeup artists that know what they are doing so you’re in good hands. So it is a good idea to be comfortable with wearing makeup and not let it make you self conscious. I’m sure you’ve seen ads where the men even wore eyeliner and maybe even eye shadow and blush but they still looked sexy and masculine. Trust me, if you can pull off the manly look while wearing makeup, you’ve got nothing to worry about.




– Questionable outfits: If your idea of masculinity is the Marlboro Man, then you’ll be sorely disappointed in the outfits you may be asked to wear on your modelling jobs . While some gigs and fashion shows will let you sport jeans, comfy shoes and tank tops (or shirtless) and other everyday types of clothes, you may also be asked to wear outfits that you would normally never touch with a 10-foot pole.

This could include fishnet shirts, long wraps/skirts (believe me, I’ve seen it on runways!), speedo type underwear, jewelry, plastic, etc. Whatever the designer or client wants, you’ll have to do it if you want to work and get paid. Sometimes male models are required to look slightly feminine in appearance. If this makes you really uncomfortable, then chances are you may not be cut out to do high fashion modeling.




– Having people within your comfort zone: Models are commodities…that means you are basically told what to do, when to do it and how to do it. Have problems with authority or don’t like following rules? Then sadly, male modeling is not for you. Being in this industry is all about working with different types of people, from your agent/booker and other models to the client, photographer, wardrobe stylist and other crew members. You’ll have to take direction, criticism and everything in between.

Not only that, while on shoots, you’ll have to get used to people fussing over you: doing your hair, putting makeup on, helping you get dressed, etc. During fashion shows, you’ll have to deal with the same thing but also the insane rush to dress and get undressed–additionally, you’ll have to be comfortable with changing and oftentimes being naked at some point in front of other male models and even female models. Shyness is not a requirement in the industry.




– Living in model dorms: High fashion and editorial male models are required to travel for work, both locally, nationally and internationally. This involves living in model dorms with other male models. The facilities can range from a comfortable apartment or loft to teeny tiny living spaces. When traveling internationally, it isn’t uncommon for a group of male models to share a living space with only 2 beds.

When you are working in your local market, you may be required to live full time in model housing where you are responsible for cleaning up, maintaining the facilities, grocery shopping, etc. while going to and from castings and jobs. Like the reality shows, sometimes things can get ugly when you’re cramped into a space with a bunch of people you don’t know. Some male models end up making lasting friendships with their follow coworkers, while others would rather leave and never look back.




If your first thought was, “I would never be caught dead in that/posing like that” or the more crude response, “That’s so gay,” then I would say you probably don’t want to be a male model in the high fashion/editorial market, nor would I recommend it for you.

Regardless of whether you go for it or not, remember that modeling (no matter the gender) is easier than it looks. Don’t judge unfairly and be respectful of the time, dedication and hard work it takes to make it to the top as a male model. Remember, male supermodels are small in number and the grind it takes to be successful is a difficult one.

Oh, and before you think that a male model looks “so gay” in a magazine or strutting down the catwalk in a questionable outfit, they make a pretty nice paycheck at the end of the day – that should put things in perspective for you.

A Model’s Diary – Modeling 101
By Dania Denise

The Beauty Benefits Of Exercise

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By Gritty Pretty
@gritty_pretty

There are plenty of reasons to exercise.

For some, it’s because you booked a beach holiday or have an upcoming wedding while others are focused on staying healthy overall. Whatever your motivation, there is no better time than the present. And, it’s not just your body, health and mind that will reap the rewards.

There’s another, stealthier payoff: healthy skin.

“Skin is the body’s largest living organ and sweating through the skin is the best form of detox,” says co-founders of Bodypass, Carla McMillan (yoga teacher and healthy chef) and Georgia van Tiel (exercise scientist).

Here, the experts weigh in on the extensive beauty benefits…

INSTANT GLOW

Ever catch someone walking down the street with a radiant pink flush and post-workout glow? Working out not only boosts circulation but also improves lymphatic drainage, resulting in a glowing complexion. And, while exercise like yoga can’t minimise cellulite (which is genetic), maintaining a healthy exercise regime alongside a healthy diet willminimise fatty deposits, which contribute to pesky cellulite.

HEALTHIER HAIR

Regular exercise can improve blood flow to your scalp, keeping your hair stronger and healthier. And, because exercise lowers stress levels, lower stress means your hair is less likely to be brittle or, worse, fall out. “Each hair follicle (hair root) has blood vessels that nourish the follicle by supplying it with nutrients and oxygen,” explains van Tiel. “The supply of nutrients and oxygen to the hair follicles is necessary for hair growth to occur.”

ACNE RELIEF

Some people believe exercise can cause acne. But, the truth is sweat, caused from exercise, actually helps to create a better skin protection barrier as it in increases the skin’s acidic levels. It’s important though not to use cheap-quality body wash post-working out. Some body wash formulas can strip the body of acidity, tipping the body’s pH state towards alkaline. When the body is alkaline, bacteria can form, leading to the development of blemishes acne, so it’s important to invest in a low-irritant, pH balanced formula like QV Body Wash or Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser.

SWEET DREAMS

Our skin regenerates at night – calling it “beauty sleep” for a reason – so can regular exercise lead to a better, deeper sleep? “Considering how much time we spend sitting still and being sedentary, any form of exercise that gets the heart rate going and the metabolism stimulated, makes the body tired and lethargic at night,” says van Tiel. Adding, “Exercising first thing in the morning really gets the metabolism firing and burning fat from the get go.” But, if you can’t fit a morning workout in – because let’s face it: life gets in the way! – van Tiel recommends trying to aim to exercise at least two hoursbefore heading to bed. Why? “You don’t want to be over stimulated as you start to wind down for the day,” she says. Good point and good night.

STRESS LESS

Feeling stressed? Go for a run, do some yoga, practice pilates, take a walk or do whatever else tickles your fancy (and most importantly, doesn’t feel like a chore). Exercise is an excellent stress reliever as it produces all of the happy hormones (like serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine) in the brain. “It also helps to balance your entire endocrine system (including stress, sexual, reproductive and metabolic hormones),” explains McMillan.

As for the best type of exercise for your skin, McMillan and van Tiel says all of it is good. “Every modality will improve circulation and reduce stress but it’s a wise move to mix up your workouts as often as possible.”

Try adding 30 minutes of a few simple yoga postures or a brisk walk to your day three times a week, McMillan and van Tiels says, to see the best beauty returns all round.

It Shouldn’t Matter If You’re Black Or White

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By Julia Datt aka This Model Eats A Lot
@thismodeleatsalot

Women come in every shade of skin colour: from deep ivory to pale alabaster and everything in between. This Model Eats A Lot looks at skin colour trends around the world, and why the grass is always browner (or whiter) on the other side.

Here in Australia with our glistening beaches and outdoor culture, we love our blondes with brown skin – tanned to an inch of perfection, with the lines to prove it. Instagram accounts dedicated to tanning oils have hoards of followers to prove the obsession is not just a phase, with snap-happy users clambering to be featured on the popular accounts, thus initiated into the coveted ranks of the cool.

In the last 10 years, the Australian modelling industry is slowly cottoning onto models of other ethnic backgrounds, rather than just your traditional True Blue, caucasian Aussie sheila. With the notion of ‘Australian’ gradually changing, it’s refreshing to see Asian beauties Shanina Shaik and Kelly Gale transforming the international scene and returning home to Australia to front some of fashion’s biggest campaigns.

The obvious itch to scratch however is: would these girls have been so celebrated in Australia had they not killed it overseas? Is Australia a homogenous market, still slow to adopt other nationalities apart from Caucasian and the occasional African model?

One apparent rule is that naturally dark skin is acceptable, as long as you have the discerning tradeoff of light eyes. Take Sharina Gutierrez for example: bestie of Shanina Shaik. Both the girls are almost identical in appearance and name – the difference being one has green eyes, the other brown. One is represented by IMG Worldwide and is a celebrated Victoria’s Secret model. The other was relatively unknown and has only just been signed by DNA after being seen for a while with the right people. Seems uncanny, right?

As underlying as the racism may seem in Australia, it’s a lot more obvious in Asian countries such as China, who have a blatant preference for either Caucasian models, or native models who sport ‘non-Asian’ characteristics such as bigger eyes or a larger nose. In Japan, the Miranda Kerr craze is such an epidemic that ordinary women undergo painful, expensive surgery to be transformed into the likeness of the supermodel.

There are some companies bravely taking a stand in the fight against racism. Clothing giant Benetton has for years fronted interesting looking models from all ethnicities as part of their ‘United Colours of Benetton’ campaigns, while Desigual has gone one step further and recruited model Chantelle Winnie, smashing long-ingrained societal perceptions of beauty.

What’s so special about Chantelle? She has vitiligo (a medical condition where one’s skin is both dark and fair and often results in patterns or splotches) and refuses to undergo any treatment to make the colour of her skin uniform, preferring to embrace her individuality and rise to the top of the brutal fashion circuit by being exactly who she is. In a world where everyone is conforming to be the right shade of accepted, THAT’s a cool chick.

Then we have my own experiences as an Aussie-Indian girl modelling in Mumbai for nearly five years. It was 2010, my hair was subtly balayaged, my olive skin burnished a deep brown from the Aussie sun. My agency freaked, made me dye my hair black and loaded me up with a skin whitening product called ‘Fair and Lovely’, to be applied twice a day. I was indignant, but couldn’t disobey if I wanted to get work. Thus began the days of avoiding the sun (and the start of a serious Vitamin D deficiency).

Within a year, I started rebelling against what was considered beautiful and presenting myself exactly the way I really was. And guess what – I haven’t looked back!

 

Don’t forget to follow @thismodeleatsalot on Instagram and check out thismodeleatsalot.com for diet tips, food news and restaurant reviews.

I’d love to hear your experiences either as aspiring models or just girls who are proud of their ethnicity and won’t change for the world!

 

Love,
This Model Eats A Lot xx

Topshop | A day in the life of campaign girl Taylor Hill

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To see more of this campaign click here