Model Deborah Kolade: “Never stop believing”

Model Deborah Kolade has chosen “sky is the limit” as her motto and she is determined to stick to it no matter what.

The Nigerian born model, 21, is dark skinned, petite, slim, with medium length hair and brown eyes. She is now based in the UK where she studies Law.

Deborah is a finalist for Miss Universe Great Britain 2012 and is preparing for the big event to be held on 5th May at Town Hall, Victoria Square, Birmingham B3 3DQ.

“I am so proud and grateful to have even been considered for an interview, let alone being chosen as a finalist. I’ve watched several pageant shows like Miss Universe and Miss World and like many girls wishing I could be one of the contestants,” Deborah says.

Whenever she expressed her desire of taking part in a beauty contest, people used to tell her that she was a dreamer. Deborah is now happy that one of her dreams is about to be fulfilled.

“This is a great confidence booster and as a girl who is only 5ft 2 I hope this helps to encourage other petite girls like myself,” she says.

Deborah has always been a go-getter and that attitude made her start her own company when she was 18. FAME Production Company has been very successful in delivering productions from talent shows to theatre shows. She writes, produces and directs in most of their productions.

“Being a girl who is full of energy I don’t want to stop at this! I would love to win Miss Universe GB and then go on to represent Great Britain abroad. This will drive forward my dreams to be able to travel the world and be a patron of young people. This would be absolutely incredible. I believe this opportunity will give me the chance to show that young people are not all about rioting, rebelliousness but rather we are smart, we are ambitious and we are a new generation of go-getters,” she says.

Deborah would like to be an inspiration for young people who have dreams. “Never stop believing and keep on achieving the best that you can,” she says.

Here’s an interview Deborah granted The AfroNews.

Deborah, please tell us something about your childhood.

I was born on 10th April 1991 in Nigeria but moved to the UK as a kid whilst at the early stages of primary school. I’m the eldest of five siblings; I have two younger sisters and brothers. Being the eldest child has made me as independent and caring as I am today as I took on more and more responsibilities when my siblings were born, I really took on the role of a “Big sister”.

Right from a very young age I knew what I wanted to become; it was either I became a barrister or a General Practitioner (GP). Both careers involved helping people with some serious life problems, either its some sort of health issue that could result into death or lawful issues that could result into imprisonment or even death in countries where capital punishment still takes place. I later on chose the law path when I started college. It wasn’t an easy course but I wanted to challenge myself so I carried on all the way to university and hope to keep going further till I become a fully qualified barrister.

Modelling was something I always dreamt about, everything always looked so glamorous and fun. America’s next top model was one of my ultimate favourite modelling shows. I watched it growing up and I must say I learnt a few tricks from it. Some of my supermodel icons include Tyra Banks, Alek Wek, Heidi Klum and Jessica White.

Why did you choose to become a model?  

I’ve always wanted to model from around the age of 16 but I never thought it was possible for me due to my height, as the media always portray models to be tall and mainly Caucasian or fair skinned. But I kept trying and I signed up to a few online agencies where I would apply for modelling jobs and wait for responses. I wanted to model simply because I love to walk the walk and being in front of the camera isn’t too bad also.

For how long have you been modelling?  

I’ve been modelling from the age of 16, doing mainly print jobs and catwalk shows.

How does it feel to be a model?

Being a model really helps boost my confidence as I am nowhere near confident about myself and it’s always a good feeling being in front of the camera and getting a makeover.

You aspire to become Miss Universe Great Britain 2012. Any idea if a black model has ever held this title?

I really do aspire to hold that title and going on to represent Great Britain at the ultimate final. I’ve done my research and it appears that no black model has in fact held this title.

We hardly see black models in major fashion shows, magazine covers and in advertisements in the UK. Why do you think this happens?

I always ask the same question but to be honest I think it’s due to companies’ maybe feeling like the audience might not be able to relate to their product or service if a black woman is the face of that product. It’s important to always show diversity in beauty, from blacks, whites to Asians.

What’s your message to those who organise fashion events in the UK but deny models of colour a chance of taking part?

No one should be denied anything because of the colour of their skin!

As a model, is there any particular thing you’d like to campaign for or against?

There are many things I would like to be able to campaign for or against but a situation that a lot of people undermine is bullying. I would like to campaign against bullying. Bullying strikes fear and anxiety into the lives of individuals, not much emphasis is given on this hence there isn’t enough awareness of the harm and effects of bullying.

What’s the part of your body you like most?

I love my eyebrows, I’ve never had to trim or shape them.

What do you like most about yourself?

I like that I have an ambitious personality, and that I am very outgoing, loud and also friendly.

What are your career and personal ambitions?

I am currently a student, studying for my law degree as well as running my own small production company. My personal ambitions include finishing my law degree and then going on to Law School, getting my masters degree and then on to get a PhD. I would love for my company to expand and get more recognition for its work within the young community.

What’s your message to the black community members, especially to the young people who quite often don’t think they can make it in life?

It’s almost ridiculous for anyone to think they can’t make it in life especially as there is a great variety of opportunities out there. Being part of the black community shouldn’t stop us from wanting to make something of ourselves.

I believe that persevering in anything you are good at will set you in the right direction to making it in life. Be more optimistic than pessimistic.

Do you have any fashion, beauty and style tips to share with our readers?

This summer is going to be a major one when it comes to fashion, so go wild but know your limits. For the darker skin tones don’t be afraid to wear bright colours like yellow, mustard and green as brighter colours compliment and enhance the skin tone.

For the fairer skin tones be creative with the colours, try to avoid pale colours so it doesn’t drown your complexion and wash you out. Remember colour blocking is going to be big this summer, the sky is the limit. I think it’s always nice for makeup to be kept minimum, especially foundation. You can get creative with eye makeup and lip designs. A great website to go to and check for the latest trends in fashion will be, they provide new trends and tips weekly.

What are the qualities of your ideal man?

My ideal man fits every description of the man in my life right now. Tall, dark and handsome, takes good care of himself, very modest and down for his girl.

Any advice to those aspiring to become models?

Go for it! Take good care of your body. It doesn’t matter if you don’t look like the models you see on TV, remember not everything that glitters is gold. Another important thing to remember is that modelling is not just limited to walking on a runway, there are so many categories and paths you can take. If walking isn’t your strongest point then maybe posing would be right for you, and vice versa.

Any other comments?

I’m so grateful and excited to have had the chance of getting an interview here. I’m really excited and looking forward to the pageant, it’ll be my first and I’ll need all the support I can get.

Also I’d like to say thanks to for sponsoring me and please show your support by helping me raise money for my assigned charity organisation called ‘The Joshua Foundation’. You may donate by visiting this website Thank you.

Full Name: Deborah Kolade
Date of birth: 10th April 1991
Place of birth: Nigeria
Height: 5ft2
Dress Size: 6
Shoe Size: 4
Eyes: Dark Brown
Hair Colour: Brown
Qualification: A-Levels, Undergraduate student

By Stephen Ogongo Ongong’a