What it Takes to Achieve the Perfect Body for Modelling
No Comments • Uncategorized • By Melissa
Many of us – not just those seeking to pursue a career in modelling – are keen to understand what it takes to achieve the perfect body. And while society (particularly social media) pushes the notion that this is possible, the reality is that there is no such thing a a perfect body.
The false narrative pushed online that physical perfection is obtainable has had a damaging impact on the collective psyche of the general public, as well as those in the public eye like models. These feelings of imperfection are doubtlessly exacerbated by being in an industry that is centered around looking great at all times.
So how do models work hard to look their best, stay healthy and keep such a demanding industry happy?
Read on to find out.
What is “Perfection?”
Modelling, in particular high fashion, has strict requirements from it’s models. Height and body measurements must meet specific numbers that for many people are impossible to achieve, even with diet and exercise.
That means for many top models, they have their genes and good fortune to thank for their career success. They build on that fortune by working hard, maintaining their physique and by being in the right place at the right time.
It’s important to understand and respect this. For the majority of us, it’s impossible to increase our heights or force our bodies to meet the standards expected of the high fashion industry. Attempting to do so will only result in poor health. Fortunately, other forms of modelling like catalogue are much more forgiving about the standards expected from models.
Be realistic about your expectations and don’t force your body to do anything it isn’t naturally built for. Read on to find out what each niche of modelling requires.
The Requirements for Each Niche of Modelling
– A height between 5’8″ and 5’11”
– Fit a UK dress size 6-8
– Bust, waist and hip measurements of 34″-24″-34″
Your weight is not considered in any form of modelling, and it is a red flag if an agency asks. Remember – muscle weighs more than fat, so your weight is not a good indication of your size.
– A height of over 5’8″ is preferred. Those under 5’7″ may find it harder to be considered.
– A proportional body shape (hourglass) is desired.
– A UK dress size 8-10 is preferred.
– White teeth and a nice smile will help.
– Petite models are between 5’1″ and 5’7″ tall.
– An hourglass figure is desired.
– High fashion deems “plus-size” as those over a size 8
– Commercial modelling deems “plus-size” as anyone size 14 or over
– There are no height requirements, but those over 5’7″ will have an advantage.
Taking Care of Your Body
Stop Comparing Yourself to Other People
There is no such thing as the “perfect body”, but you can always work to improve yourself to be happy and healthy. Try not to compare yourself to others – a difficult feat due to social media, but an important one for your own wellbeing.
There has been a huge surge in apps created to transform yourself in photos and videos which has also added to a warped sense of what is realistic. Take time to educate yourself on these and understand that nobody looks the way they do on social media – the majority of the time, lots of editing and filters have been used to achieve the beautiful photos you see on Instagram and elsewhere.
Compare your journey to no one else’s. Focus on bettering yourself, hitting personal bests and working each day to improve, and you will soon see (and feel) the difference.
Workouts are a important part of being healthy. Working out looks different to everyone; if you live an active lifestyle, you probably wont need to find the time to spent working out at a gym. If, however, your lifestyle is pretty sedentary, you will need to carve time into your schedule to spend time on your health and fitness.
Working out can be broken down into two categories, both of which need attention – cardio and weights. Cardio is required to a healthy heart, lungs and respiratory system. Cardio also helps to burn fat and ensure we don’t gain weight. HIIT (high-intensity interval training) is a great way to quickly get cardio in each week.
Weights are required for toning and growing muscles. They’re also great for joint and bone strength and health. If you’ve short on time, try to do compound movements; these are movements that work more than one section of the body at a time. Squats, lunges and push-ups are all compound movements and can easily be done at home.
Working out is great for keeping up your metabolism, toning your body, burning off excess calories and is even proven to help with depression and anxiety. Your overall health should be a priority, and working out is a key ingredient to a healthy, happy mind and body.
Choose a workout that you enjoy. That looks different for everyone. Try running, rock climbing, yoga, spin classes, weight training, swimming… there are lots of choices, and you’re likely to enjoy at least one of them.
Once you have found some exercises that you enjoy, try to create a routine each week that you can stick to. It doesn’t matter if you miss a session every once in a while; what is important is that you try as best as you can to stick to your routine so it becomes a habit. Try to do at least 3 1-hour sessions every week.
If your goal is to build muscle, try to lift heavier each week and aim for 3 sets of 8 reps. Once it becomes easy, add more weight. If your goal is to have lean muscle mass and tone your body, use lower weights but higher reps.
If you have never worked out before, try hiring a personal trainer who will be able to assist you with your workouts.
Nutrition is just as important as working out. We need to get enough fruit and vegetables in each day, and enough protein in to repair muscles and help prevent aching after a hard workout.
Weight loss can be tricky for many, and it’s important to do it in a healthy, maintainable way. Speak to a nutritionist or your GP for advice before attempting to lose weight.
You need to be consuming the same amount of calories that you burn off during the day. This looks different to everyone depending on your activity levels during the average day.
A healthy diet will not only maintain your ideal weight but it will also prevent bloating, keep skin clear, help hair and nails to be healthy, give you energy and boost your immune system.
Keep some healthy snacks in the house and aim for 3 square meals a day, packed with lots of veggies like kale, broccoli and spinach. Try to limit your dairy intake and your complex carb intake; try to go for brown rice instead as a healthier option.
Don’t forget your protein; chicken is a great options, or tofu if you’re vegetarian. Turkey is a good option if you’re trying to keep your body fat low.
Your skin is the largest organ in the body, so you need to take care of it. As well as getting the right vitamins and nutrients to keep your skin healthy, a good skincare routine will help keep it clear.
Avoid things that speed up the ageing process such as sun exposure (your should wear sunscreen everyday), smoking and excessive alcohol consumption. Have a good skincare routine you can stick to; cleanse thoroughly at night to remove SPF, make-up and dirt/sweat. Use a moisturiser to keep skin hydrated and plump. Try to exfoliate up to 4 times a week to slough off dead skin cells.
If you can, try to consult a professional like a dermatologist, who will be able to give you advise and guidance on the best products and habits for your skin.
Don’t forget to pay attention to the skin on your body, too. Buff skin in the shower with an exfoliant or exfoliating mitt, then moisturise to lock in hydration as soon as you step out the shower/bath.
Female models will need to remove their body hair for work. It’s up to you how you do this; waxing, shaving or laser hair removal are all options.
Don’t forget to take care of your mental health too. Modelling can be a difficult industry to work in and you may face a lot of rejection and negativity. It’s important to stay positive and this can be done by paying close attention to your wellbeing.
– Know your boundaries and stick to them. Try not to do anything that will have a detrimental affect on your mental health.
– Get plenty of sleep – 8 hours is usually the recommended amount, but it may be more for some people.
– Meditate. Meditation is a great way to unwind and release negative feelings.
– Ensure your diet is well-rounded and you are not deficient in any vitamins or nutrients.
– Work out. Working out is proven to help with mental health.
– Consider therapy. Therapy is to the mind what exercise is to the body.