Before Rebecca Judd was a TV presenter, blogger, and speech pathologist, she was a model.
While working in Asia for three years, Judd learnt how culturally bound our beauty ideals are, and had quite an eye-opening experience trying to fit a very different mould to what she was used to in Australia.
“I did Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand, and South Korea for about three years when I was 18, 19 and 20,” she told Mamamia in a Facebook Live interview.
“Their skincare was all about lightening and brightening… When I was booked for work, I needed to have white skin.”
The now 33-year-old, whose skin is naturally olive-toned, said she even had to sign a clause in her contract stating she “wasn’t allowed to go out in the sun” to ensure her skin didn’t tan.
“I had to look ‘Asian’ to sell Asian products, so I had black hair and the whitest skin. That was really interesting; their beauty is a lot different to ours, and their ‘idea’ of beauty,” Judd said. (Post continues after gallery.)
It’s a lesson in how standards of beauty aren’t objective; they’re arbitrary and change depending on context.
So maybe some day, in some far away place, I can be a model too… where short people and asymmetrical faces are the ideal. Right? RIGHT?!
During the interview, the new face of The Skincare Company also explained how her modelling career began.
“I signed with Vivien’s Model Management when I was 16. I was pimple-faced, I had braces, and overplucked thin eyebrows that looked ridiculous and did nothing for me,” she recalled.