Modeling At Thirteen

Modeling At Thirteen

Q:

Dear Ms.Malcom,
I am only thirteen, I have braces, I'm pretty fit, but no where near what my goals are, among numerous other things. However, I've wanted to become a model for awhile now, and I don't have any experience. My mom sent me an article about you, and how you were only fourteen, and you had braces as well, with no modeling experience, and that was interesting to hear, so I decided it would be cool to ask you a question; Do you have any advice for me? Thanks so much!
Best Regards,
Zoë

A:

Hi there! Thank you for your question.

First off – if you want to be a model that’s great! However thirteen is too young (in my opinion) to be so focused on this. There are rules in place now that girls can’t begin working until they are sixteen chaperoned, and eighteen un-chaperoned. So you have loads of time – go be a teenager and enjoy your last years of childhood!

The modeling world brings a host of responsibilities that can be tough on young men and women. It becomes a whole lot easier to deal with these when you are a little older, and have had the chance to grow up slowly. I began working before the rules regarding age were in place (with my parents chaperoning me) and whilst I wouldn’t change my path for the world (it lead me here!) I do think it was a large shock for me as a teenager. I was completely out of my element, and it lead to a lot of school days missed. While I still got great grades and worked extra hard to make up the time I was away, I feel like I may have missed a little of being a teenager. It is a lot of responsibility that can come at a later age.

Another important point is that the most successful models I know are extremely well rounded, grounded people, who have interests that lie outside of the industry. This comes from growing up in an environment that encourages this – and being allowed to be a kid. Play sports, learn an instrument, read books, and learn as much as you can while at school. Please do not focus on your body at this age. It will change; this is healthy human development. Every single one of the models you see went through it! All you can do is focus on being happy and healthy, and then nature will take its course. How I looked at thirteen vs. sixteen vs. twenty-five is dramatically contrasted. Enjoy being active - but do not focus on achieving body goals, and eat healthily enough – but enjoy eating junk food with your friends and loved ones. Develop a balanced mentality and it will serve you for the rest of your life! Everything in moderation. Including moderation…

The only thing that is a given in life is that everything changes. Braces will eventually come off, and you cannot work in the meantime. So embrace being young and don’t focus your heart and soul on eventually becoming a model. If, at sixteen you are determined to give it a try (and your braces are off) then go into your local agency. I have tips in my FAQ section for getting started in modeling – go and give it a go. But in the meantime – be thirteen! Enjoy life and grow up slowly. Life will always be there when you’re a little older. 😀

I hope this helps!

 

Love,

Bridget