Barbie Ferreira is casually changing the modeling game

Barbie Ferreira is a model, actress, and self-love advocate with a naked cat named Mortimer. She models in Aerie’s most recent body positive campaign, and originally shot to social media’s attention for being vocal about the realities of photoshop in the modeling industry.

Barbie also recently wrapped the first season of her show, “How To Behave,” where she explores the jobs that women have from all different backgrounds and experiences. Her goal is for women to be shown as the complex people we are. We want that, too, Barbie!

Check out our interview with her below, where she talks to us about her naked cat, the shortcomings of the modeling industry, and how to just love yourself.

How did you first get into modeling, and how do you think you’ve changed over the past 4 years?

I fell into it pretty much accidentally. I started off doing small jobs when I was in high school. Throughout the following years, I met photographers and happened to work on some cool projects.

I’ve evolved through the years as any adolescent girl. I had strange circumstances, but definitely faced pretty mundane things as most young women, which was overwhelming when partnered with trying to navigate a niche industry. I would say I’ve done a lot of growing up!

How do you think the industry has changed since you first started?

The industry has become increasingly open to trying new things. I see that companies are genuinely trying to get it. It’s refreshing, because we do need that push and intention. I wouldn’t have booked any of the jobs I’ve gotten if it weren’t for the vigilance of all the diverse and plus models out there in this narrow standard industry – we’ve been trying.

You’re paving the way for young women with real ass bodies. Do you think there’s still a long way to go before the modeling industry fully incorporates all body types?

A shift of an entire culture based on beauty is not going to change overnight. A brand promoting mildly plus-size, white women every so often is not going to change anything. We need to have conversations on why we have such strong feelings towards these specific standards of beauty and why we value them so highly. There’s a shame in letting yourself be okay and happy with your own self and body – but why?

READ ALSO: Why celebrities’ hair extensions look so much better than everyone else’s

What are your favorite size-inclusive brands?

There aren’t many stores that cater to a ton of sizes, but I love Outdoor Voices because the brand’s message is so refreshing. Working out is not just for a certain body type!

What do you wish women would understand about their bodies?

Your body’s job is not to be sexually appealing to everyone. You have way more to offer than just striving to reach a standard that most people can’t achieve.

You just wrapped the first season of your show, “How To Behave.” You talk to people of varying backgrounds, and sometimes try doing what they do for a day. What was your favorite episode you filmed so far and why?

All the episodes are wildly different and helped me learn a lot. But, I definitely have to say the episode with Mistress Thick, because she is truly like no other. A dominatrix with an amazing worldview is right up my alley.

What do you want viewers to get out of watching your show?

I want people to realize the complexity of women. We are people with multiple dimensions and sides and we are complex. We can’t be pinned down to one label.

READ ALSO: Why there’s no such thing as dressing “too sexy”

What do you enjoy doing outside of acting and modeling?

If I’m not working, I’m locked in my home plotting ideas and watching terrible YouTube videos.

What’s next for Barbie?

I directed a music video for Dounia, and it’s coming out really soon!

Tell me about your brows. How do you take care of them and what do you use to style them every day?

I truly just clean them up a little and use mascara to brush it up. Yes, black mascara.

Favorite Benefit product?


Favorite cheap beauty buy?

Mascaras ­– any of em.

Daily skincare routine?

It varies. I use Biologique Recherche Lait U and Masque Vivant, Caudalie Divine Oil, raw shea butter, jojoba oil, and Origins Clear Improvement mask.

Favorite thing about yourself?

My sensitivity.

READ ALSO: Maggie Lindemann spills her goth-chic style secrets

What advice do you have for young women who feel that they don’t fit a certain societal mold?

Do it yourself. If other people don’t get it, you have to find a way on your own. Go around the fence, over the fence, through the fence – whatever it is you need to do.

You’ve got a naked cat. Tell us about him!

Mortimer is a delightfully annoying sphynx cat. He likes to bite my laptop and cuddle on my neck. He also has impeccable fashion sense.

Photographer: Marcus Cooper
Stylist: Lisa Jarvis
Hair: Evanie Frausto
Makeup: Alexandra Fragga for Glossier
Nails: Riwako
BTS Video help: Jean Joffe Joe
Model: Barbie Knox @ Wilhelmina

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