American based Cherry Dollface has become a big name in pin up modelling in the last few years and her youtube hair and makeup tutorials are a must for anyone who loves vintage style. The more I read about her the more inspiring I found her to be, her sites are always full of positive messages advocating beauty at all sizes and she supports the Bombshells Against Bullying campaign. She was kind enough to agree to an interview via email so I’d love to share with you guys what she had to say 🙂
Photographer: Ray Guitterez
Hi Cherry! Thank you for taking the time out to chat. I found you one day when I got stuck doing Victory rolls and watched one of your youtube videos! I may not have mastered them yet but I’ve been following ever since!
How did you get into modeling, was it something you always wanted to do?
I was actually just sitting in my truck at Viva Las Vegas in 2004 and a photographer snapped a photo that ended up on the cover of a magazine. Modeling wasn’t something that I ever thought about or sought out, but once it started rolling I loved it!
I love your videos and tutorials but what made you want to share your thoughts and advice with others and how did you go about promoting yourself?
I didn’t have much to choose from as far as hair and makeup people in Portland when I first started so I always styled my own shoots. I had tons of girls asking how I did certain styles so I started my YouTube channel to help teach and to also show some behind the scenes of my shoots. I think I already had a good loyal following so I didn’t really do much to promote myself. I just try to teach useful things and share fun personal parts of my life.
You have a very distinctive look, what is it about ‘pin up’ and ‘vintage’ style that you like so much?
I just love the classiness and femininity of it. I think it is a good contrast to how people perceive my tattoos. I like to be interesting and suprising.
How have you found the modeling industry; we hear a lot about the ‘big steps’ it’s taking to be more inclusive on a wider scale in terms of diverse looks and body types, have you found this to be true?
Honestly the pinup field is worlds away from the fashion industry. There are no rules in pinup. There are girls that are 5’ tall, plus size, multi racial—pretty much every shape, size and type. I feel like the fashion industry is working in the right direction but still has a way to go.
It is often assumed that ‘bigger’ individuals are more so targeted by so called ‘body shaming’ but through research I have found it to be prevalent in regards of smaller women too. Have you ever experienced this?
Absolutely! It is very frustrating hearing about body shaming and most of the time people speak out about body shaming, they body shame us small girls in the process. I didn’t choose my body—just as most of us didn’t. I was super skinny growing up and was always told I was too thin and “disgusting.” I was put down and made to feel guilty by my peers that weren’t my size. I had a counselor in junior high assign someone to follow me to the bathroom after lunch because they thought I was bulimic or anorexic. I found out when I was 24 that I have a heart condition, which probably led to my low weight. It is very sad to me that a medical condition I had no control over led to such shaming and bullying. But somehow it’s ok because I have the “ideal body type.” Ideal to who?? I would trade the pain and hospital stays for a few extra inches around my waistline.
I find your sites are always very positive spaces full of good thoughts on health and body image; as I myself am in the process of putting together a project on the subject of body image i’d be interested to hear your thoughts. With such a high majority of women these days disliking their bodies and appearance, where do you think it stems from and what would you suggest as a remedy?
The media! As a society, we are inundated with more images through various media outlets now then ever before. We also have to deal with social media where it is easy for any anonymous person to harass others. I also think that with social media young people have stopped learning social skills. It is harder to teach kindness when kids live most of their relationships through the internet. I think that kindness starts with parents. Honestly, if I had of been mean or abusive to other kids growing up, my mom would have shut me down in two seconds. I was taught to respect and show sympathy to other people.
A lot of people seem to become more confident with themselves as they get older, what advice would you give to your younger self?
It is SO true! I always say that I would definitely take back my 20 year old ass, but I wouldn’t trade back my 20 year old brain for anything. I think that as you get older, all of the fluff in life matters less. I focus on what TRULY makes me happy versus things that make me happy in the moment. I would tell my young self to just take a minute, step back and evaluate what is truly important. And would also tell my young self that all of those boys that I thought were the world absolutely were not! Everything is so dramatic when you are young. Haha.
And finally, finish these sentences:
My favourite part of my body is….
Happiness to me is…
A banana milkshake, a good book, and snuggles with my man.
My favourite quote is….
“Jealousy is, I think, the worst of all faults because it makes a victim of both parties.” Gene Tierney
Thank you Cherry!!! xoxo
Photographer:Caitlin Gustin 2006
If you’d like to see more of Cherry…you know you do, then you can follow her across the internet in various ways:
She also has a gorgeous line of cosmetics in collaboration with Bomber Betty.