Celebrity News

Rachel Hunter: There’s no shame in being called ugly

The model and New Zealand's Next Top Model judge pens her perception of beauty.
Rachel Hunter

Over the years I’ve taken a lot of flack for how I look. Plenty of people have said they don’t think I’m attractive and ask why I’m a model. If you put yourself out there in the public eye, you have to learn to expect that.

We’re almost halfway through New Zealand’s Next Top Model, and we’re starting to see who’s shining and who’s struggling. Competitions like this really put the girls in the spotlight, and if you’re not careful how you handle it, it can totally change how you think about yourself.

The important thing to remember is that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and there’s no shame if someone votes you out or calls you ugly.

Bianca was the black sheep when she came in, but she’s the one to watch, in my opinion.

Her bone structure is incredible and her photos are getting better each week. Modelling is about transformation and she’s the ultimate butterfly – Bianca’s becoming more stunning and more confident with every shoot. Yes, she’s goofy, and she was very reserved when she started, but she’s beginning to peel back the layers and it’s really starting to excite her. To me, she’s the girl.

I’m also a huge fan of AJ – she’s fantastic. She has the face and the personality, and she wears her emotions on her sleeve. She calls it like it is and in that way, she reminds me of me.

But while Bianca and AJ are flourishing, some of the girls are not dealing with the stress of being in the competition so well. Although Tyne says she doesn’t have an eating disorder, modelling in any form – let alone in a competition on TV – breeds insecurity, and any hint of a deep-rooted issue needs to be taken seriously.

I hate vomiting – I’d do anything to stop myself throwing up – and I have never followed the “dying to be thin” motto that some models have succumbed to, but it certainly exists. To me, there’s no debate – if someone looks like they have a problem, they need to be given the care and treatment they need to get better. It’s not about destroying someone’s dream – eating disorders exist in all walks of life, not just modelling, and it’s actually rarely about being skinny and more about issues surrounding self-confidence.

For the most part though, the girls are obviously still learning. Applying makeup properly is a skill they’ll never regret learning. Your face can be completely redefined by it. Shading alone can change your face entirely – creating the right shading on your face can give you an instant jawline and prominent cheekbones.

As I said last week, Amber hasn’t been up to the same standard as the other girls. Like all of the final 13, she’s done well, but it was her time to go. Arihana and Hillary worry me – they have a lot of work still to do. But I’ve got high hopes for Aroha and Rosanagh – they are proving to be consistently good. As we get closer to the end, every photo matters.

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