In the Middle with LRFS Models

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Ever wondered what it is like to be one of the Leeds RAG models? Aoife and Eleanor tell us more about the experience.

Aoife is 22 years old, and a fourth-year medical student. She first modelled in LRFS last year, and has since done a few bits around Leeds, mostly for other students. Eleanor is a second-year medical student, and this was her first-year modelling for LRFS.

How did you get prepared for the show?

Aoife: I made sure to be really diligent with my skincare routine in the weeks leading up to the show, and I used the ordinary’s AHA + BHA peeling mask the morning before for a bit of extra glow! I didn’t change my workout routine at all, but I did a gentle all body workout on both Friday and Saturday morning, because I find it helps me feel more toned and energised. I didn’t want to wear myself out though!

Eleanor: I didn’t prepare physically for the show- part of what made it great and unique is that you didn’t have to fit the typical “5’8, skinny, curves in all the right places” criteria.

How did you get prepared mentally for the show?

Aoife: I don’t tend to get nervous until I’m backstage just about to go on. I just try to really enjoy the whole day, spending time with the other models as we’re getting ready. It can actually be really boring sitting around after your hair and makeup is done, trying not to ruin your look, you almost forget to be nervous because you’re too busy trying not to be bored!

Eleanor: I did have to work on my confidence, but that just comes as you practice more. You start to just walk home as if you were on a catwalk. It’s fun.

credit: Sarah Mortimore

How did it feel to walk on the runway?

Aoife: It’s really exhilarating. I love hearing and seeing people’s reactions to the look, but most of the time it all goes by in a blur and it’s all over way too quickly. You spend the time trying to think about a million things at once, like not falling over and trying to look elegant while remembering the choreography.

Tell us about your outfit:

Aoife: My dress was by Unravelau, a Dutch clothing brand who use only sustainable resources. It’s made up of a patchwork of sandy coloured linen. It’s not a colour I’d normally pick out for myself, so I was really pleasantly surprised with how it looked on. It was also a gorgeous shape and felt really flattering.

Eleanor: My outfit was part of the Void scene, I wore a white turtleneck and shorts with a black coat with cut out panels on top. The makeup was really fun – thick black liner and lipstick. Not what I’d usually do at all!

Besides your look, which others were your favourite?

Aoife: I loved all of the looks in the fire section, I wouldn’t mind one of those for festival season!

What made you want to take part in the show?

Aoife: I originally did it as a challenge to test my confidence, but since then I have loved meeting new people through LRFS and getting to try out different styles that I wouldn’t normally get a chance to wear.

Your best sustainability tip?

Aoife: I’ve recently tried to move away from fast fashion, and now shop second hand a lot, on Depop and eBay. I’ve also recently discovered clothing exchanges which are really fun! As well as being better for the planet, buying second-hand means you find really interesting pieces, and you don’t look the same as everyone else which can sometimes happen when shopping on the high street.

Eleanor: I don’t have a specific sustainability tip but I do think that once you become more aware of your choices, you start to realise there are so many things you could do. Things like buying fewer meal deals because of the plastic, getting canned drinks rather than single-use plastics, and shopping more sustainably. There’s a really good app that Emma Watson pioneered called ‘Good on You‘, which gives fashion brands sustainability ratings, I’d really recommend it.