LONDON: South Kensington
When one thinks of Eastern Europe, the first country that comes to mind is Russia. With an arsenal of nuclear weapons and beautiful women, this Eastern European nation stands out above all others. Ksenia Islamova is part of this tradition of beauty, standing out above many others. Born in a small town in the Southeastern part of the country she grew up in Ekaterinburg. Attending school first, she started out her modeling career in her twenties by luck.
“Modeling was never a dream in my life. But it happened when I was 21 years old as I attended an event with my friend. I met a guy who was a manager in an international model agency in my town. He came to me and encouraged me to sign a contract with them as a mother agency. After few weeks I went on my first model trip…”
Where have you traveled for work?
“I travel a lot and always try to work in different countries. I have been to Turkey, China, Japan, Hong Kong, France, Italy, Spain, Finland, Germany, Sweden, New York and Miami.”
What was your first big job that made you feel accomplished as a model?
“I got my first Harper’s Bazaar job in Turkey when I just start modeling. It is my most memorable and has stuck in my head more than perhaps better paying or more prestigious jobs later…”
Who are you favorite designers?
“You know… I have designers, which I really like, but I’m also a designer. My boyfriend and I have our own brand called ERRORE. At this moment I have to say that our brand is my favorite one. Everything that we do, we do by our hands, just exclusive things, piece by piece. We create our stuff with our souls, which nobody does in fashion right now. @errore_official #ERROR3.”
What larger publications have you been in?
“Harper’s Bazzar, Elle, few Cosmopolitans, Glamour, GQ and I’m waiting for Voque – haha.”
What brands or companies have you worked with that are notable?
“I love brands!!!! I’ve done so many, so I will just mention the latest ones. I did some work with MTV in Sweden, Hevik motor cycle clothes in Milan and Misslyn cosmetics all over the world.”
What does your diet and exercise routine look like?
“Thank God I’ve never had a big problem with my weight. Any sort of workout I do is usually around running, even running to my castings! I have never been on a diet. I should thank my mom. I eat anything and everything that I like!!!”
What are your favorite foods and alcoholic or non alcoholic beverages?
“My favorite food is pasta with mozzarella cheese. I also love any kind of seafood and tiramisu for dessert – hehe. Basic foods, nothing that special. I don’t drink alcohol, so my favorite drink is peach and banana ‘Naked’ juice but without protein.”
What is your perception of the modeling industry now that you are experienced?
“Modeling is a hard life!!! It’s not just a job!!! It’s really a hard life to live day to day, and follows exactly the economic situation of the world! I can say the pluses are: one can travel, make fast money – usually but not always, meet cool people, make friends, good parties, everything is free for you. On the opposite side: a lot of stress every day because of your agency, manager, visas, friends, boyfriend and others. You almost don’t eat normally. Your skin and hair are dyed and painted all the time for shootings and climate in different countries. About 60% of models don’t earn money and live troubled lives and become unhealthy due to modeling, sorry for truth…”
Any other skills you would like to mention?
“I’m a video editor and fashion designer.”
Advice for young aspiring models?
“I want to add something for those who are just starting modeling or thinking about it… Don’t kill yourself by diets please! Don’t brake up with your boyfriend, don’t forget your family and friends, don’t start taking drugs and don’t party like crazy… I know that modeling is all about this but be careful. It’s a really hard life and you should be very careful about everything out there you are exposed to or offered in this life…”