DARE TO ASK: Are hottest models imported?
By PHILLIP MILANO, The Times-Union
How come the hottest-looking models are always from foreign countries?
Roland, 15, Fleming Island
Supply and demand. Import vs. domestic. In a purely market-driven economy,
even the hot models are more attractive simply because they come from somewhere
other than America. Truthfully, the foreign models are quite hideous and must be
air-brushed to hide the multiple flaws. The term "coyote ugly" applies to models
from other countries.
Spartan80, 44, female, Texas
It's probably because most models you see are from the Victoria's Secret
Angels "team." We have plenty of American supermodels: Tyra Banks, Cindy
Crawford, Niki Taylor, Kim Alexis, Rebecca Romijn, etc. One reason it may seem
there are so many foreign-born models is that the fashion capitals of the world
are primarily in Europe . . . .
Nicole, 22, Jacksonville
Maybe they just seem hot to you because they look more exotic than corn-fed
U.S. models. I'm not sure what those foreign beauties eat - not much? I do think
the foreign models look a bit different since they tend to have a certain ethnic
look vs. U.S. models, who are often a combination of many nationalities. Kinda
like a purebred vs. a mutt.
Buford, 43, Adamsville, Tenn.
Roland, meet Kim Alexis. Well, probably in your dreams, but at least we can
introduce you via the printed word.
"You're probably looking in the wrong place," Alexis says she'd tell you if
you posed your question in the flesh.
The former supermodel, who lives in Ponte Vedra Beach, says that yes,
Victoria's Secret and magazines like Maxim mean there are more chances for
models willing to show more skin to do just that.
"Some girls in other countries are raised with a more liberal outlook on
their body and what they will do with their body," said Alexis, who now counsels
girls considering modeling to "be careful about doing anything that makes you
feel uncomfortable or violated."
"I suppose there's 'hot' and then there's 'beautiful.' And there are
beautiful girls all over the world," she said. "Sometimes young boys don't care
Real beauty to her is a classic, fresh look, not gaunt and haunted, as is the
Stylist Darleen Unger of the Northeast Florida chapter of Fashion Group
International would agree, and adds that Roland might be thinking he's seeing
"exotic" models when in fact they may hail from Alabama or Chicago.
"The other thing is that Armani and other European designers now hold shows
in New York, and years ago they didn't do that.
"They will bring models with them, so you have a chance to see these foreign
models whereas perhaps in the past you didn't."
Phillip Milano, author of I Can't Believe You Asked That! (Perigee),
moderates cross-cultural dialogue at Y? The National Forum on People's
Differences. Visit www.yforum.com to submit questions and answers. Send general
column comments to phillip. firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also hear his
podcasts or watch his