Myeisha Essex is in love with all things pop culture, thanks in large part to her hometown. This Los Angeles native has an encyclopedic knowledge of the entertainment industry and she loves a good trivia game. She received her bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies from Bennett College for Women and her master's from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Her work can be found in Sister 2 Sister, Harlem World Magazine, Clutch and on Essence.com. When she's not keeping up with the news or learning Beyonce's latest dance moves, she enjoys watching stand-up comedy on YouTube! Follow her on Instagram @more_about_me
Tyra Banks says she enjoys being a boss more than walking the runway. During a recent interview with Parade, the former supermodel said she’s raking in dough as an executive producer for “America’s Next Top Model” and has no desire to be on the other side of the camera, again.
“I don’t miss modeling very much because I have “America’s Next Top Model,” so for the past ten years I’ve been creating photo shoots, executive producing the television show, and doing a lot of photo shoots myself,” she said. “I do look back to those modeling days when it was just some people on your nails, somebody on your hair, somebody on your makeup, and you’re just like, ‘What angle am I going to do today?’ So it was a pretty non-challenging life in terms of not having to micromanage and wear so many different hats, but it wasn’t easy.”
After more than 20 years in the game, Tyra said the industry can take a toll on your self esteem, so she encourages all women to find their inner confidence. “There’s a lot of isolation with modeling, you’re by yourself constantly, there’s a lot of people telling you to lose weight and that you’re not good enough – your hair, your skin – there’s a lot of pressure,” she said. “Look in the mirror and find one thing that you think is beautiful about yourself: your eyebrows, hair, skin, lashes, neck, knees. I have this one friend who is like, ‘I have the cutest knees,’ celebrate those knees!”
As far as breaking racial barriers, the 40-year-old beauty said there have been positives and negatives. “The milestones that I’ve had in my career have been really amazing. I used to say in interviews that I don’t necessarily want to be the first black woman or first model to do certain things; I just want to see it done. And then to be able to be that woman and do those things, it’s a negative and a positive,” she explained.
“It’s a negative that this late in our society there hadn’t been a black woman on certain things and I was the first. It’s a positive because it’s now like, OK, been there, done that. It should just be normal. When I’m an old lady and I’m like, ‘I used to be a supermodel,’ I don’t want people to be saying, ‘Oh my gosh, this girl is the first black woman on this,’ I want that black girl to be like, ‘Whatever! I got my covers and I’m happy.’ That’s what I want to see. I want her to be numb to it. I want it to just be her right. And I think we’re getting there.”
The 21st cycle “America’s Next Top Model” is currently casting.