Germaine N. is a model, professional make up artist, and fashion blogger for Healthy is the New Skinny. She is represented by Natural Model Management.
Please tell us how you started your career as a model.
I got my start in modeling somewhat randomly. I have been a makeup artist for over six years and over the years, I heard countless photographers tell me that I should be in front of the camera. I was barely becoming comfortable with my own skin, so the idea of it absolutely terrified me. So after a lot of persuading I decided to try. My first shoot was amazing I was completely shocked at the outcome, and it really made me think, Wow I might be able to do this. So from there, I did my research (what I suggest to everyone who wants to start modeling) and decided to take those pictures to agencies primarily to get advice, but what happened surprised me even more. On my first open call, I was called back and then later signed with a big named agency. I never saw myself as a model, but everyone else around me did, and it’s funny that one of the things I was teased for growing up would be the very thing to help me shine.
What does being a part of Natural Model Management mean to you?
Being a part of Natural Model Management is like a rebirth for me, not just with my own modeling career but with myself as well. I was previously with a very big “named” agency and had somewhat a bad experience as well as taking my confidence level down to zero. I have always been hopeful and it seemed like this opportunity came at the perfect time. Not only do I know I will achieve many things with Natural Models, but I am extremely excited to give back and make a difference in the lives of young girls–even if it’s only one.
What is your definition of beauty?
I believe there is beauty in everything on this earth and it saddens me that a lot of people in the world are so blind that they can’t see their own beauty staring back at them in the mirror. I believe true beauty lies within and it’s in the love and goodness you spread throughout the world.
What do you enjoy about modeling? What is it about your career that brings you joy?
Growing up, modeling is something that I never ever thought I could do because I never looked at myself as beautiful (mostly because I was teased a lot and was awkwardly taller then everyone).
In terms of your career, what has been the greatest piece of advice you have been given?
Never give up!!!! I almost gave up several times before because I felt I wasn’t where I wanted to be and it seemed like I had more setbacks than triumphs, but I haven’t given up and I’m pressing forward and I know soon my hard work will pay off.
Out of all of the places modeling has taken you, which has been the most memorable and why?
I would say Definitely Puerto Rico for sure. Not only were the people I was working with great, but the culture, food, and people in Puerto Rico were amazing.
Have you ever suffered from body image or self-esteem issues? If so, what advice would you give to young girls and women who are currently struggling? What kinds of pressures do you see the girls in your life facing these days?
I have definitely struggled with body image and self-esteem issues. A lot of it started when I was in middle school number one because I was the tallest kid in my class and I was awkwardly chubby. I was teased a lot growing up, it was very detrimental to my self-esteem, and it took me a very long time to recover from it, like after high school at twenty years old. I would say to young girls that, first of all, if you’re teased and made fun of it’s because they see something in you that is great and amazing and they want to put you down for that. Don’t be afraid to stand out from the crowd because those that usually do, go on to do amazing things later in life.
The pressures young girls have and even women in general are to be thin, “pretty” perfect, and popular. The sad part about that is all of those are false hoods because no one can be perfect no matter how hard you try, we are all human. I think the most important thing for people is to not try to be like everyone else, but try to be the best and most amazing person you were meant to be.
What can we as mentors do to better address these issues?
I think the media and entertainment industry, etc. are major culprits and it’s really sad that a lot of the images I see send such deep messages that young girls just don’t understand. I wish I could let women across the world know that 85% of what you see in the media is fake, air brushed, and generated by something. I think as a role model and mentor just being strong, and sharing your own story of strength and overcoming can really help. Also talking about it gets the issues out on the table and can instill confidence.
Who taught you about real beauty?
My mom taught me about real beauty, because no matter what was going on in my life or how I felt she always reminded me of who I was and that I am a beautiful unique creation of God.
What do you wish you would have known at the age of 13?
I wish I could have peeked into the future to see the amazing woman I have become, because then I wouldn’t care about all the teasing and name calling back then. But I will say because that happened to me, I feel I can say look at me now–in your face jerks. I’m not ugly and stupid like you told me–so there!!
Who is your role model or hero? Why?
My mom, because she is the most amazing woman I’ve ever known and she gave me an amazing life despite of all the odds against her she raised me right.
What is a fun fact about you?
I am ridiculously clumsy. It’s hilarious sometimes when I fall just walking or drop so many things. I’d also say, I’m extremely goofy. I love to laugh, joke, and play because that’s what life is about.
If you could travel anywhere in the world on a vacation, where would you go?
I would go back to Europe, but instead of just London and Paris, I would travel all over and go to Italy, Spain, and lots of other small places in between.
Lipstick or Lip gloss?
Well a majority of the time I go without makeup so it would be more like Chapstick, but when I like to get glam, I prefer lip gloss, and my favorite color is Prrr lip gloss by MAC.
What beauty invention has made the greatest impact on your life?
I would definitely say Mascara. I know it sounds so basic, but although I am a makeup artist, a good 75% of the time, I wear only mascara because I love rocking my NATURAL beauty.
What are your favorite beauty products or must-haves?
Top 3 favorite Products:
#1 Revlon grow luscious by Fabulash Mascara
#2 Oil of Olay moisturizer for sensitive skin (I hardly ever get breakouts)
#3 Mineralized skin finish natural by MAC Love, love, love this powder instead of foundation.
Do you have a quick beauty tip to share with us?
Always, always, always use mascara because it gives such a definition to the feature of everyone’s face that is absolutely beautiful, also try sweeping bronzer along the cheekbones and the outer edges of the face for a natural everyday glow.
What is your go-to outfit?
T-shirt, jeans, and boots. I wear boots year round because I just love them!!
What are your favorite pair of jeans?
Honestly, I have so many pairs and I feel like I’m still in search for a pair. I love everything about them.
Where do you love to shop for clothes?
Torrid, H&M, Zara, Forever 21, Gap, and I absolutely love to go downtown LA to the Alley because they have great little trinkets.
Although my favorites don’t make clothes in my size I love the structure and designs of Chloe’, Marc Jacobs, and Yves saint Laurent.
What does being healthy mean to you?
Regular exercise, healthy eating habits (not eating junk all the time), and having a positive out-look on life.
Do you have a favorite workout routine?
I love to swim!! I’ve been swimming since I was a little girl swam and played water polo all through high school. I recently had a job as a lifeguard so the water is my second home.
What makes you uniquely beautiful? What do you love about yourself and why?
I think beauty is the outward expression of the amazingness one possesses inside. I think that I am such a real and genuine person, and every day I strive to treat everyone, no matter what, with kindness. I think that is what makes me uniquely beautiful. I also feel that I completely love myself perfections, flaws, and all. It’s taken me many years to feel that way.
In my purse you would find…
EVERYTHING! First of all my purse is like ten pounds that I can use as a weapon in case of emergencies. I have everything in my purse from bobby pins, nail polish, spoons, lip gloss, mascara, safety pins to granola bars, an apple, and a bottle of water. This is all in conjunction with the normal stuff like your wallet, cell phone, and keys. I’m the person you want to be with in an emergency situation because we could live for day.
What are you listening to right now?
India Arie she is my all time favorite artist!! Love her lots and a new artist Miguel who I love his voice and music style.
Is there something you have always wanted to try or learn, but haven’t yet?
I would say how to Crochet. I usually have no technical skills, so I believe it might be a challenge.
“Serendipity” with John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale…I am an absolute sap and hopeless romantic.
Begin and end each day with positivity, and no matter what, all else will fall into place.
What is one of your fondest childhood memories?
It’s crazy but I really have so many fond memories as a child, and that is because although my mom was a single parent she did everything possible in and above her power to give my sister and me the best life and raise us right. I will say my mom has a great skill of surprise. I remember when I was young, she told my sister and I that she was taking us to the store so we could find things to organize the entire house and in the middle of the car ride, she told us to reach into the car seat pouch and inside was the coolest fanny pack ever (it was the 80’s of course and it was watermelon shaped) and inside were tickets to Disneyland…so awesome!
What are you excited about right now?
I’m excited about being able to accomplish my own personal and professional goals. I have so much I want to achieve and with the beginning of each day, I feel I’m that much closer to achieving them.
*Thank you, Germaine!