In celebration of Oxygen's new modeling competition, The Face, we caught up with executive producer, featured judge, and supermodel extraordinaire, Naomi Campbell, to learn more about her reality show style.
Real Beauty: How does the show and your role on it differ from Tyra Banks in America's Next Top Model?
Naomi Campbell: Well first of all, I am different. I have a lot of respect for Tyra and what she's done with America's Next Top Model, and what she's done for young women out there who want to be in the fashion industry. I don't like to compare anything that I do, but this show is a completely different type of format. Also, I'm more of a mentor and a coach, than a judge.
RB: After all these years, why did you finally decided to do reality TV?
NC: What attracted me was the mentoring side of it. Because that's never been offered to me before. I've been asked for many years to do television, but I didn't feel comfortable in telling someone, 'You're not right. You're not this.'
RB: What sort of qualities do you bring as a mentor?
NC: My style of coaching is very honest. I said to my girls, 'Forget who I am as a person and just take what I've got to give. Because we don't have so much time and I want you to get as much out of me as possible.' My style is very straightforward. It's very elegant. It's very poised, driven, passionate, hungry, and focused.
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RB: Did you get along with the other supermodel coaches?
NC: I did get along with both girls, but at the end of the day, this is a competition and we have someone's career in our hands. I want my team to win, obviously. I think I have the best girls, and for me, it's a competition even between the coaches. Our mentoring styles are each very different and we are in different places in our careers-I've been doing it longer than both Karolina [Kurkova] and Coco [Rocha] together. So you'll see that we mentor our girls in a very different way.
RB: How did you choose the models?
NC: I'm from London so I felt it would be nice to, even though the show is in America, to mix it up and bring in some international girls. That's really what a model competition is about, it should be worldwide. And with a name like The Face, you want to make sure that's what you're going to get-a great face. But we were also looking for very well-rounded individuals. We did not want to just figure out what they look like, whether they were tall enough, or could walk the runway, but find out what her story was, why she wanted to be a model, and what kind of an ambassador she could be.
RB: What beauty advice do you give your models?
NC: Taking care of your skin is so important because that's what you're selling-that's your product. You need to care of your body and hygiene. I would always arrive to a job with a manicure, pedicure, hairstyle-everything ought to be done. Even though I'm going to get it done there, it's always good to arrive prepared, that was how I was always taught.
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