The rise of model influencers has been highly publicised and after the initial outcry, it is clear it’s a trend that will not only stay but also continue to evolve. Veteran model Yasmin Le Bon expressed feeling sorry for the next generation of models, as their job was harder having to give up so much more of their privacy in her latest interview for Modist Magazine.
We caught up with the new model citizens pitied by Le Bon; the hybrid model-influencers Danubia Sousa (20.4k Instagram followers) and Diane Jordan (108k Instagram followers). Danubia is an international, seasoned editorial and runway model, actress and influencer who started in the modeling industry 15years ago gracing not only magazines and the runway but also TV screens and movie theaters.
Diane has been modeling since the age of 17. She came to London to pursue her dream of a modeling career. Now working as a runway and editorial model she has also collaborated with brands like Badoo, Mindful Chef, La Roche-Posay, Vichy, and Protein World as an influencer-blogger. She is also a brand ambassador for the Specter Wireless, Glass Reign, Elixir By Sarah and Vitamin Buddy. We had a candid conversation with two very different girls, who were happy to share insights into their stories.
Model, Blogger, Social Influencer – What came first?
Danubia: (laughs): I was a model first. The influencer stuff didn’t exist years a go.
Diane: For me too, I was a model first and I started pursuing the influencer thing back in April 2015.
Where are you from? Where are you based?
Danubia: I am Brazilian and based in London.
Diane: I’m Russian born to a Russian mother and Russian-Azerbaijani father. I was raised in Russia but now live in South-West London
How did you get into modeling?
Danubia: I started really young back home in Brazil, where I did a modeling course to make my posture better and it went well and got invited to Mega models competition. Things took their course from there.
Diane: I started in Russia, but I didn’t have anything happening there, as I wasn’t the type for the local agencies. I knew I had to make a move. Paris didn’t happen and I decided to move to London. This is when all the things started happening for me.
How has the modeling industry evolved?
Diane: The industry offers more opportunity to models of different ethnical backgrounds. On top of that, the health issues like anorexia are addressed better than before. Change seems slow but it is in progress. I think there is a big drive for models to be active as bloggers and on social media in general. It is now seen as an essential part of your job.
How important is social media influence in your career as a model?
Danubia: It’s important, as it is a way to connect with us model & influencers with everyone and share the normal things we do every dayI. People these days are so curious and happy to see they can have all we have and do all we do.
Diane: It definitely helps to get noticed by brands. It helped me get signed with my current agency Frame Perfect. I think it would be very difficult to make it in this industry without social media in today’s world.
How do you see the future of the modeling industry?
Danubia: All I can say I’m not sure, I think it’s will continue to develop with more emphasis on being an influencers & bloggers.
Diane: I think the future of the industry is bright as it becomes more open-minded and diverse.
What are your biggest challenges?
Danubia: Finding time to do everything I want.
Diane: Sleeping before big events. I get very excited as a matter of fact. I lose sleep yet I don’t feel like I need it. It’s like being in love.
What tips do you have for others following your footsteps?
Danubia: Always work hard and be kind one to another.
Diane: Believe in yourself. It’s good to work hard for your dream because if you have it all served on a golden plate you take things for granted.
What motivates you?
Diane: My desire is to be on top of my game. I am driven to push myself to my absolute best and raise my games with each new assignment.
Danubia: The passion for my job & try to be a better person every day.
How has your personal life influenced your career?
Danubia: Yes my personal life as influenced me for sure. My inspiration comes from a strong & powerful mother who had 4 kids by herself. She always said ‘You don’t need to be rich to succeed in life, you just need to work hard and never give up.’
Diane: My bad circumstances did get the better of me, but I decided to fight back and was determined to follow my dreams.
What has been your career highlight so far?
Diane: Working with Fashion’s Finest for the past few season has it helped me to get noticed, recognized and further my career. It has opened so many more doors in my career as a model-influencer. I am meeting so many amazing people.
Danubia: I have done lots of London Fashion Week shows; being in The Dictator movie & another film, which will be coming out soon. Plus all the internationals jobs! I love being able to travel and work.
What are your plans for the future?
Diane: I plan on writing a book about the working in modeling/influencer arena.
Danubia: For me, it’s to have my own clothing or bikini line. I see it as a natural progression.
Tell us something we don’t know about you.
Diane: I’m a domestic violence survivor. I had to rebuild myself at a time I felt my identity was buried alive.
Danubia: I used to play football & volleyball for my town, back home in Brazil.
I also speak English, Portuguese and Spanish.
You girls look amazing! What are your beauty secrets?
Diane: My beauty essentials are Drops of youth lotion. I love it more than the toner as it allows me to get more from my serum or cream. Moisturising is very crucial to me. Dehydrated skin caused me a lot of problems. Moisturising and nourishment should be as important as cleansing. Even my cleansers preserve the skin moisture levels. I also use products with sun protection, for example, BB Cream by Vichy with SPF 25. Sun causes a lot of damage to the skin. I also take supplements as looking good is an inside and an outside job.
Danubia: I keep it simple, I eat healthily, exercise, moisturise and try to rest enough. My daily beauty routine consists of Lip balm, deodorant & moisturiser.
Where will we see you appearing next?
Danubia: Apart from social media London Fashion Week is coming up and I have a few shows booked amongst them Fashions Finest. I will be in a movie coming out later this year so if you want to find out follow me on Instagram.
Diane: I am also booked for them too and have more things in the pipeline and of course since I am influencer I will announce my updates on my social media.
Tickets to Fashions Finest Fashion Event can be purchased here: http://www.fashionsfinest.com/tickets