2015 Iconic Beauty Modeling Competition

2015 ICONIC BEAUTY MODELING COMPETITION

In July of 2015, I was on a mission to find the Face of Iconic Beauty, along with a handful of other models to represent my new brand. This was such a life-changing experience for so many women. Not just those who ended up signing with Iconic Beauty after the Competition, but for most of the women who just got to participate. Honestly, it completely changed my life too. It changed the way I look at the world, the way I look at others, treat myself and fight for what I believe in. It’s made me wiser, a harder worker, a bigger dreamer and an overall better person. Part of me wishes that everyone could experience the 2015 Competition at some point in their life, and another part of me is so glad that no one ever have to again (lol) because the Future of Iconic Beauty is so much brighter than anything that 2015 had to offer. Nevertheless, it was an experience and I’m happy to share the memories with you…

Pre-Competition

Prior to the 2015 Iconic Beauty Model Competition, I created Iconic Beauty social media handles (@iamiconicbeauty), launched the new website and started accepting applications to find the new models and Face of Iconic Beauty to represent my brand. I, personally, reached out to a handful of women who I believed would do well- some decided to enter, others never got back to me, and most were skeptical so they declined.

For those who did enter, however, I sent out TONS of emails to keep them updated on the status of the event, answer any questions and ease their minds about what to expect since most of them didn’t have any modeling experience at all. I followed the aspiring Iconic Beauty models on Instagram and Twitter and the aspiring models followed each other which lead to a lot of new friendships prior to even meeting in person. (Which I LOVE!)

The 2015 Competition had VIP members and General Admission members. I individually Skyped or FaceTime’d the VIP members to get to know them, answer their questions and in a separate call, we practice the interview portion of the competition. VIP members also had access to the bi-monthly training webinars that I hosted, which helped them further prepare for the Competition.

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Upon Arrival

Honestly, it warms my heart that so many of my Beauties befriended each other prior to the Competition. Many of the models traveled from out-of-state to compete for their chance to become the Face of Iconic Beauty so while I was running around like a chicken with its head cut off, trying to prepare for the long weekend ahead, my Beauties were getting settled into their hotel rooms and meeting up with their new friends.

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Day 1: Registration

At the registration, I checked in all the girls personally and already knew each of them by name because I had spent so much time emailing, FaceTiming and following them on social media prior to actually meeting them in person.

Everyone got to choose an Iconic Beauty shirt (which they were asked to style however they wanted- to show off their own personal style- for the Iconic Beauty Fashion Show) And can we talk about how AMAZING they looked in their shirts?!

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Okay, thanks. Because they’re perfect.

After they checked in and chose their shirts, everyone found their seats in the orientation room where a pink notebook and a black pen were waiting for them to take notes. And I just have to tell you: it makes me SO happy to know that so many of them still have their pink notebooks and review the notes they took on a regular basis!!!

Day 1: Orientation

I shared my story with everyone: who I am, where I came from, what I’ve overcome, how I got to where I am today, and what even makes me qualified to be the President of Iconic Beauty. I’m not gonna lie, it was a little intimating opening up and being so candid and raw with a room full of strangers. But it was during that time, when I went from being a celebrity’s fiancé or “InstaModel” in their eyes, to someone just like them. Someone who is absolutely ordinary with extraordinary dreams. I believe it was in that orientation that 53 women looked at me and thought “if Bryiana can go through everything she’s been through and still come out on top, then so can I.” Maybe someday I’ll get raw with you through blogging, and maybe you’ll just have to come to an event and get to know me. Only time will tell.

After opening up to everyone about myself, I gave a presentation on goal setting and achieving.

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I also had a guest speaker, Katie, who gave a phenomenal presentation about her company: WANT. Women Against Negative Talk. (And everyone LOVED her! Check her out at @WomenAgainstNegativeTalk @KatieHorwitch)

During the break, Beauties snacked on cheese and crackers, coffee and whatever else was there? or ran off to the restrooms and took pictures with me and my then-fiancé (now husband 😍 and FOREVER love of my life)

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When we got back from the break, I did an impromptu photoshoot with Iconic Beauty photographer (and my dear friend) Charlie Couch! To give the models a behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like being on the set of a shoot AND to give them some pointers on what to do for their own photoshoots the next day. (Since, again, this was a first time thing for most of them!)

To finish out the orientation, I walked the Beauties through the itinerary for the weekend, gave them the low down on what to expect and then we practiced the runway portion of the competition.

Day 2: Early Morning Call Time

All aspiring models had fresh faces and clean hair for their digitals to be taken with Iconic Beauty photographer, Charlie Couch then everyone had their hair and make up professionally styled before shooting with 4 of my favorite photographers: Charlie Couch, Ryan Astamendi, Ramon Bryce and Christos Sewell. My favorite part of the shoots was getting to be on the set to help out with BTS (behind the scenes) stuff. So I was able to see these Beauties’ dreams come to life!

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Day 2: Iconic Beauty Fashion Show/Runway Competition

Each aspiring model rocked the runway in two outfits: (1) Outfit of choice (evening gown, swimsuit or cocktail attire) and (2) Iconic Beauty outfit of choice (styled Iconic Beauty shirt to showcase personal style on runway)

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This portion of the competition was judged by 4 judges: Our keynote speaker- Katie from WANT, fitness model and YouTuber Paige Hathaway, Stephanie DeSouza and Durrani Popal from E!’s DASH dolls, and make up artist/Bellami hair spokesmodel Marjan.

After the models hit the runway, Paige, Rob and I went backstage and interrupted an epic group photo to congratulate the models for a job VERY well done and it was so amazing to back and live in the energy and excitement of it all with them.

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After the fashion show and group photos, all models were released to get ready for the after party while I went up to the penthouse with Katie, Paige, Stephanie, Durrani and Marjan to discuss their favorite aspects of the fashion show and who stood out/why.

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(Left to Right: Marjan, Steph, Bryiana, Durrani, Katie, Paige)

Iconic Beauty After Party

Desserts and drinks of all sorts were served to celebrate my Beauties after an already dream-come-true day.
Paige, Steph, and the photographers joined. While my dad and Rob took over the dance floor.

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Day 3: Interviews

I had the honor and privilege of spending more one-on-one time interviewing each model individually to get to know them a little better on a personal level and to get their thoughts on their experience with Iconic Beauty.

Halfway through the interviews, we took a break for the VIP Brunch hosted by Rob for the VIP members. He talked about goals, did a Q&A and talked a little bit about our personal/real life while the VIP members enjoyed coffee, juice, assorted pastries and fresh fruit.

After the VIP Brunch, we finished the Iconic Beauty interviews with all remaining models and the rest of the day was a FREE DAY! for the models to go exploring Los Angeles together or on their own.

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During the models’ free day, the scores were tabulated and kept a secret from me, which is exactly what I wanted because I wanted to keep the Competition “fair”.

Day 4 (The Final Day): Awards Brunch

All Beauties walked in and saw their photoshoot pictures from Friday on two big screens as they took their seats. It was a pretty magical morning. Although the weekend was officially coming to an end, we all had made new friends. We suddenly saw ourselves in a new, brighter light. The models had beautiful, new professional photos to start their modeling portfolios. And everyone gained an experience of a lifetime that would not have been possible, had it not been for their participation in this inaugural event.

On the final morning, however, it was really hard for me. It hadn’t hit me until that morning that I was going to have 20 absolutely thrilled new models and over 30 absolutely devastated ones right in front of me. I wasn’t prepared to take on that kind of heartbreak. And it was in that exact moment, that I realized “this isn’t Iconic Beauty.” I had the best of intentions in creating Iconic Beauty. I wanted to create an opportunity where it didn’t matter what you looked like, where you came from, what battles you’ve fought in the past, or anything that SOCIETY likes to define you by. I wanted a system where YOU define what perfect is.

I didn’t have anything to do with who was awarded modeling contracts. (Except for Iconic Beauty, Meraiah. I chose her as the winner of the Director’s Choice award.) Moving forward, that is changing. A LOT is changing and I’m excited to share it all with you by introducing the NEW Iconic Beauty. It’s basically what dreams are made of 😉 And you’re going to love them! So stay tuned. Big things are on the way 😘