By: Caroline Vazzana
There’s no denying that almost every girl in America grew up watching the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show- we sure did! But imagine if one day you were given the opportunity to actually walk in this iconic show, alongside the models you idolized for years? That’s just what happened to 22-year-old model and VS PINK spokesperson Zuri Tibby. After being discovered at only 16-years-old in her home state of Florida, Zuri moved to New York City to pursue her modeling career. Last week, I sat down with the 5′ 10″ bombshell at the exclusive preview of the Victoria’s Secret PINK Snowed Inn Holiday Pop-Up in Soho to learn how this model on-the-rise went from working in her hometowns playground to walking the VS fashion show not once, but TWICE- it's easy to say that she's totally Making it in Manhattan.
How did you get into modeling?
I was discovered at a mall, when I was about sixteen or seventeen, an agency just came up to me and asked me if I wanted to model. At the time I was working in a kids playground, and I was really shy and had to ask my mom for permission and then they assigned me to an agency in New York. Then I went to castings, and everything just kind of rumbled from there.
How would you say modeling has changed your life in terms of your confidence, your style, etc?
Modeling has changed my life in a bunch of ways, I’m definitely more confident like you said, because i was just a shy seventeen year old when I got discovered so now I just feel like I’m more comfortable with myself, especially when speaking to other people. I was also insecure about being tall, so now I use that to my advantage in my career.
Being tall, I feel you, what would you say is the hardest item of clothing to find?
Jeans. Jeans, for sure. I shop at Uniqlo for jeans. It’s really good and they’re affordable, they go all the way down to your ankle and aren’t cutoff, and they last forever.
What is one of your favorite projects you’ve ever done?
Still the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. This was my second year, last year was my first year, the second show was more special because I got to close the PINK segment and I had wings so I was really excited about that.
When you found out you got cast in the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, how did you react?
I was just really excited, I couldn’t believe it was me because I grew up watching Tyra Banks, and Naomi Campbell, and Candice Swanepoel, and girls like that. And Elsa Hosk, one of my idols, was a PINK girl too.
How did you start working with Victoria’s Secret?
I went to a casting and then did a photoshoot with them and slowly started working them more and more and then I became a spokesmodel.
How long ago was that?
I was officially signed in June 2016
Who are some of your biggest inspirations in terms of modeling?
Naomi Campbell, because she’s just amazing and how could you not love Naomi, and she works hard and she's been around forever and she’s still gorgeous.
Do you have a mentor and what is the best advice they’ve given you?
My agents give me pretty good advice. Just to work hard and stay true to who I am and don’t let criticism affect you.
In terms of criticism, what advice would you give to girls on social media?
I would say ignore everything. Be who you are, post whatever you feel you want to post, and just be happy. Ignore everything, only positive.
What are some of your long-term career goals?
I want to keep doing PINK, because I love being a PINK spokesmodel, it’s like totally me and who I am. PINK is targeted towards a collegiate woman so I would be in college now, so it’s totally my vibe. They go to campuses, they have campus merchandise, all that type of stuff is right up my alley.
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