When I meet Kim Feenstra on set for the Oriflame Athena Campaign shoot, she’s wearing a long white dress. Her skin is golden and her hair and makeup is impeccable. It’s hard to believe that this glowing beauty has had anything but a perfect life. Nine years ago Feenstra worked as a prostitute, starred in pornographic films and was even convicted of stealing. Today she is a top model and the face of top brands all over the world, co-hosting TV shows and starring in feature films.
How did you start modelling?
– I was discovered when I was 20 years old, by a Parisian modelling agency. The moment that they found me on the street really changed my life. One year later my best friend signed me up for Holland’s Next Top Model and I won it.
You’ve gone through a lot in your life. Do you think that your past experiences have hurt or helped you?
– I learned a lot from my past and it helped me not be naïve. I have a strong personality thanks to it and that’s one thing a model should have. People who are not in the fashion industry think that modelling is so glamorous, but the truth is you have to have thick skin. Models deal with rejection all the time, people criticise you and sometimes you are just a product and not a human being. You can also feel really lonely as a model because you travel alone a lot.
You’ve been quoted saying “life is a party – but you have to hang the banners yourself”. What did you mean by that?
– Sometimes life is a bumpy road but you have to stay positive. You can have a lot of people around you who want to help you, but in the end it’s only up to you. I could be negative about the fact that I grew up with 50% hearing loss but I choose to think of it as a good thing because I have the advantage of completely switching off all sounds if I want. I mean, just stay positive; nobody else is going to do that for you.
Kim Feenstra on:
–I’m always careful in the sun and use sun protection.
HER FAVOURITE LOOK:
– I love the summer glow look. Shiny, shimmery, and bronzed! When I’m on TV or doing an interview and they ask me what I want, I always refer to J.Lo and her glow. Her makeup is not too heavy but still beautiful. It’s actually the look I got at today’s shoot too!
HER HOLIDAY DREAMS
– I’ve been to 58 countries now and I’m still counting! I want to remember all of the experiences when I get older. I have never been to Russia – but I really want to go! My dream holiday spot now would be Lapland, because I want to see the northern lights.
– One of my most beautiful experiences was visiting Ethiopia; it was stunning.
HER PROUDEST ACHIEVEMENT:
– The first film I was in that appeared at cinemas. I’m also very proud of my first editorial for Italian Vogue.
– I really like to spend time with my friends and family… and my dog. It sounds clichéd but those are my hobbies!