In the early days of fashion and beauty pageantry, the whole idea of beauty revolved around looks. Beauty pageants and models were groomed to reflect beauty more on the outside, but all this appears to be changing as many girls in the fashion business now look on the inside.
Juste Juozapaityte is a London-based model who has taking part in Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model and Russia’s Next Top Model Shows. Apart from coming second in Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model, the model also became Miss Fashion TV 2007 and had a stint as presenter for the channel. In an interview, we picked her brains on modelling, beauty and fashion and the model had a lot to say:
• How did you get into modelling?
When I was 16, I took part in reality show in Lithuania, where girls competed for space in national beauty pageant ‘Miss Lithuania 2007’. After winning a title I was approached by modelling agents from Lithuania and Italy and kick started my modelling career 2 weeks later!
• As a model and a woman, what do you consider your most valuable asset?
As a model I would say my appearance and character, that’s how I get bookings and that’s what you see in magazines. But as a woman I think my determination and focus in business is what drives me in this industry.
• Do you have any other talent that people are not aware of?
I am Digital Visual Designer and I design mobile applications.
• What do you get up to when you are not modelling?
When i am not modelling I am a business woman, I am an Arts Director for family business ‘Alitasa’. We make pure healthy mineral enriched water and when I am done with that I love to spend as much time as possible with my family and my boyfriend, we love to travel, dine out and watch films.
• Some models have said they feel disadvantaged because of their race. Do you have any such experiences?
I have never had race issues, but sometimes I feel that Eastern European models are valued less that lets say British or American models. They would offer less money for the same job, so sometimes I feel that I have to fight my corner harder than some.
• How does your modelling background affect your sense of fashion? Do you have better tastes or bad tastes?
I believe it has influenced my style. On Fashion weeks we get the first look at next year’s collections, so while shopping I know what to look for. As well, while going to castings you have to look stylish and on trend and so models with no clue of fashion would struggle to stand out. As well, being model made me feel more comfortable wearing heels and designer outfits. I just feel that I can pull it off now; modelling made me more confident in myself!
• What have been some of your achievements so far?
I have won: Miss Lithuania 2007 Photogenic, Miss Fashion TV 2007, Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model runner-up and Russia’s Next Top Model runner-up.
• In what ways does being a model affect your personal life?
It doesn’t affect my life much… maybe I spend more time on my phone than average person and sometimes get told off for being unsociable, but I am lucky to have supportive family and partner.
• If I wanted to be a model, what would you say to me?
It is not as easy or glamorous as it might look at first, but if you have the determination and model looks, definitely go for it! One advice I would give is, don’t forget that it is very rare to make it as a Supermodel, so always have a backup plan! Not many women can still rock the catwalk at 60!