Singaporean model Viven Ong has had a bumper start to 2013. She’s graced the cover of Elle Italia Feb issue and HerWorld March edition (on shelves now), plus she’s been selected as a face of Audi Fashion Festival along with ‘It’ model Sheila Sim. We chat to model of the moment Ong to see what she thinks about the industry and fashion.
You burst onto the modeling scene with a win in the New Paper New Face competition in 2010 – what do you think it was that set you apart from the other competitors?
I think it helped that I had some experience before joining the competition, so it definitely helped me overall. It was strong competition though and we had no telling who would win. I honestly didn’t think that I would win the title. After they announced first and second runner up I just went straight into my stoning mode. Hahaha.
Although you’ve experienced the upside of the industry, I read that you haven’t always had it easy in modeling…
At first there were issues with my weight and I struggled with self esteem quite a bit. After a while I adjusted my mindset that if the clients don’t book you, it doesn’t mean you’re not a good model- just not suitable for that season or brand or event. But all of these take time, and I really was affected at first. It’s all good now!
You’ve walked in Milan and Paris Fashion Weeks and worked with Vivienne Westwood in person, but what job would mark the zenith of your career?
I think doing an ad campaign for an international label. That would be recognition that you’re good enough to be shown to the world.
Your off-duty style seems to be casual cool to me – lots of black, denim and boots. Where do you shop here in Asia? Who is your fashion inspiration?
I shop at the Salvation Army occasionally, and I like Topshop’s mood usually. Actually, my tip is to shop cheap since your style evolves frequently. My shoes are always worn to death before I would buy a new pair. I don’t specifically follow any style icons but I do get inspiration looking at various street style blogs. I like London and Berlin’s street style.
Chanel or Balenciaga?
Balenciaga. And a Chanel bag or shoes. (Greedy)
What’s the most over-used phase in fashion?
“I don’t eat meat, it makes me fat.” No it doesn’t.
You have fantastic skin – what’s your beauty regime?
I’m using Philosophy’s daily exfoliating wash in the day, purity cleanser at night, and I recently started using hydrating masks!
What’s the craziest thing you’ve done in the name of modeling? Not including bleaching your eyebrows!
Walking in a show till my feet bled and not saying anything because I really wanted to be part of that show (can’t name names because I still want to do that show every season hahaha)
If you weren’t a model, what would you be doing?
I would be either a print or broadcast journalist.
interview by Yvette | images Carrie Models