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Modeling Tip: Pick the Right Role Models

Supermodels seem to come in two extremes. There are the divas known for dating bad-boy rock stars, abusing their assistants, showing up for jobs high or not showing up at all, and then there are those who appear to be blessed with impeccable beauty from their faces all the way to the core of their hearts, the ones who not only are known the world over but want to save it too.

Tyra Banks

Beautiful Role Model Tyra Banks

It’s Tyra Banks’ 39th birthday today, so at the risk of OD’ing on Tyra (she’s in the previous post too), I’m picking her as an example of the kind of role model you want to emulate. Here’s a little background on what Tyra was up to way before she became the host of America’s Next Top Model.

When Tyra Banks appeared on the cover of my magazine, Tear Sheet, in 1999, she already had an endless list of campaigns, magazine covers, and acting credits, not to mention two appearances in People magazine’s “50 Most Beautiful People in the World” and her own beauty book—all this despite her claim: “People tell you that you have to schmooze. I haven’t schmoozed once and I am doing just fine.” From day one, Banks put being a role model at the top of her agenda. Way back in 1992, she established the Tyra Banks Scholarship for young African-American girls to attend her alma mater, Immaculate Heart High School in Los Angeles. She was spokesperson for the Center for Children and Families in New York. She conceived and hosted KIDSHARE, a holiday gift exchange program for needy children. When we interviewed her, she had just spoken—in fluent Spanish—to more than 3,000 teens at the Gente Nueva (New People) convention in Mexico City, tackling issues related to body image, teen sexuality, and family values.

All that before age 30. Awesome. As for all she has accomplished in her 30s, well, you may have to be superhuman to duplicate that.

The first step to changing the world: Get your face out there and make a name for yourself. Enter the Modeling Mentor Model Search!

Extra tip: If you want to contribute to charities while doing your holiday shopping, sign up for a giveback.org account and download the giveback app. It costs you nothing and part of every purchase you make will go to the charity of your choice!

Read more about Giveback.org here.