Helping someone. When you help others you can feel beautiful internally and feel great about yourself.
Alana Monteiro is a fashion model based in New York City currently signed with Wilhelmina Models. As an influencer, she currently has over 780,000 followers on Instagram, as a fashion model she has graced the covers of major magazines including Numero, L’Officiel and Elle.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to get to know you a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory of how you came upon this career path and to where you are today?
I got really inspired by watching the Victoria Secret Fashion Show in 2014. I was still in high school at the time. I remember googling “How to become a Victoria Secret Model” right after watching the show. I had no idea about modeling or that it even was a viable profession. Google had said to sign with a top modeling agency in NYC, so the idea was in my head, but I didn’t completely take action towards pursuing it yet.
At the beginning of 2015, my friend had opened a clothing line in my city. She had asked me to come model for it. I ended up really liking how the pictures came out, so I sent those pictures to local Boston modeling agencies. I was immediately signed with a Boston agency. I was doing so well in Boston for a few months, so I figured if I’m doing this well then let me go to the top and try New York. Then I ended up getting signed to a top New York modeling agency.
Today I’m living in NYC and signed with Wilhelmina Models New York. I’m also signed to prestigious modeling agencies all around the world. I’m currently working with brands that I’ve always wanted to work with since the beginning of my career, and there are so many more brands that I want to work with. Modeling has also led me into other career paths such as acting. I still have so much more to learn and accomplish, but I’m extremely grateful for everything I have accomplished so far.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
I would for sure say my family number 1. They made sure that I got to every open call, audition, casting, job, and helped me get settled in New York. They sacrificed so much to make my career happen and I’m extremely grateful for them.
Can you share a story with us about the most humorous mistake you made when you were first starting? What lesson or take-away did you learn from that?
I don’t have a humorous one, but one misconception about the modeling industry that I made when I first started was, I thought to be beautiful I had to wear makeup to castings and straighten my hair. The industry loves us natural and I learned to love being bare face and wearing my hair natural. I’ve also got a lot more jobs by being my natural self.
As an influencer, you have been blessed with great success in a career path that many have attempted, but eventually gave up on. In fact perhaps most people who tried to follow a career path like yours did not succeed. Do you have any words of advice for others who may want to embark on this career path but know that their dreams might be dashed?
I would say believing in yourself is number one. At the beginning of my career when I was first starting out, I had a bunch of people laugh at me and tell me that I could never become a model. People had also told me that I could never get signed in New York or get signed in any market as a model. These comments even came from friends, family members, and agents.
Definitely don’t listen to the opinions of others. If you believe that you can do something and your whole heart mind and soul is set on it then do it. Never give up no matter how long it takes. It can be a slow process but eventually, you will get to where you want to be with hard work and perseverance.
Can you share with our readers some of your strategies you’ve used to build an engaged, loyal, and large online community.?
Stay consistent. Post frequently. Post your work and be proud of it.
You are a busy person with a demanding schedule, can you share with our readers two self care routines, practices or treatments that help your body thrive? (Kindly share a story or an example for each.)
I go to bed early when I have early call times. Some shoots can be long. Over 10 hour days so you want your body to have stamina and not be fatigued.
I also exercise to stay in shape and to keep energized.
Can you share with us two routines that you use to help your mind or heart to thrive? (Kindly share a story or example for each.)
I eat a well-balanced diet and work out for mental/ physical health.
Can you share 3 ideas that anyone can use “to feel beautiful”? (Please share a story or example for each.)
- Dressing up. When you look good you feel good. Putting on an outfit that’s your style can boost your confidence and make you feel good.
- Getting your hair done. Whenever I come out of the salon after getting a blowout. I feel really good and beautiful. Again when you look good you feel good.
- Helping someone. When you help others you can feel beautiful internally and feel great about yourself.
Is there a particular resource, a practitioner, expert, book, or podcast that made a significant impact on you and helped you to thrive? Can you share a story about that with us?
A time that inspired me was when I had met Naomi Campbell on a movie set in 2017. At the time my career wasn’t really where I wanted it to be and I had people telling me that I could never do fashion or be in a fashion magazine.
It was just me and her in the same room at one point in the day. I had no idea that she was going to be on set. I turned her and asked “Are you Naomi Campbell” I had asked this because I didn’t know if the set had a look alike. I couldn’t believe that I was in the same room as Naomi Campbell just me and her. Then she had turned to me and said “ Yes I am, are you a model”?
From her asking me “Am I a model”, that changed a lot. I was like if one of the GREATEST top supermodels in the world thinks I’m a model then I am. Point blank. No one can tell me that I’m not. So after that, my drive was super high. After that encounter with Naomi, I ended up leaving the people that said I could never do fashion and ended up surrounding myself with different people that believed that I could. I also started landing my first high fashion magazines about a year after the encounter.
Do you have a story about the strangest, most bizarre or funniest wellness treatment that you’ve ever experienced?
I think the funniest treatment was taking an advanced yoga class when I had 0 yoga training. I was so behind in everything and made a complete fool out of myself.
As an influencer, you are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.
I would love to start a positivity movement. I feel like if people were to spread more love and positivity, the world could be a happier place.
We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world with whom you’d like to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this. 🙂
I would love to have lunch with Beyoncé. She has been inspiring me since I was a little girl to this day. She is a full-on entertainer and can do it all.
What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?
On Instagram @alanaamonteiro_