8 Questions with Public Figure | International Model Crystal Cunningham

Crystal's smile is as bright off the camera as it is on.The burgeoning 5'9 Trinidadian beauty is a television host, on air radio personality and international model. Currently one of the faces of SportsMax TV, Crystal also hosted 3 seasons of "Splash!" On BET/Centric. She is also the voice behind Star947's mid morning radio show, "Connections". Star947 is Trinidad and Tobago’s first HD radio station and is the second largest pop radio brand in the T&T market. As a model, Crystal has worked with clients such as Levis, Ponds, Oprah Winfrey Magazine, Badila, Pantene and Coca Cola and she has also walked many a Caribbean runway from Jamaica to St Kitts, Antigua, Barbados, Trinidad and even as far as Cape Town, South Africa for   established designer houses including B. Michael, Bas Koster, Ed Hardy, Lois Samuels, Heather Jones, Meiling and Claudia Pegus to name a few.

H.P: You have so many talents; which would you say demands the most attention?
CRYSTAL: I'm also a social media manager and I would definitely have to say that this takes up a considerable portion of my time as it involves constantly researching, developing and exploring content to satisfy your clients' individual needs.

H.P : How did you get started in the Fashion Industry?

CRYSTAL: I have always dabbled in a little bit of modeling, participating in fashion shows at church, UWI, promotional gigs, etc however my major break came after I entered the Ms Trinidad and Tobago competition in 2004. That year the pageant company had 7 franchises and I was selected to represent Trinidad and Tobago at Miss Maja Mundial in Colombia and Miss Caraibes Hibiscus in St. Maarten. However I did not go to Colombia as I received a management training programme opportunity with First Caribbean International Bank and decided to pursue that instead which required me to relocate in Barbados.While living in Barbados I met late designer Kingsley Cooper (RIP) and the then organizer of Barbados Fashion Week, Malcolm Smith. They both believed in my talent and sent my photos to Dweight Peters on Saint International  (Jamaica) and from that things really started taking off. After participating in Fashion Face of the Caribbean, I signed with Saint International, took part in the mega fashion event, Fashion Block, flew to New York to develop my portfolio then Dweight signed me to Base Models in Cape Town.

H.P : How do you balance Work + Life?
CRYSTAL: Because I enjoy what I do, it never really feels like work and more like me living the life I'm supposed to live. Time management is also key and being realistic - I try not to bite more than I can chew (lol). Lastly, my family has always been very supportive in all that I do.

H.P : Tell us all about the preparation for auditions
CRYSTAL: I always get nervous before an audition, especially with respect to a potential TV job despite having hosted many a tv shows. But I'm a firm believer in destiny and God's purpose for my life so I lay it all on Him through prayer. If it's meant to be, then it will be. If not, another opportunity will present itself.

H.P : Any Hidden Talents?
CRYSTAL: Hidden talents...hmmm, I guess in a world that's dominated with so much fast food I guess being able to prepare a sumptuous home cooked meal could be considered a talent (lol). I come from a family of cooks. Both my mom's and dad's side of the family can really throw down so it was only natural that I learned to cook as well - chow mein, lo mein, lasagne, shrimp alfredo, tacos, mousakka, BBQ, curry and of course a traditional Trini Sunday lunch of macaroni pie, potato salad, callaloo and stew chicken.

H.P : Do you think the Fashion Industry is biased towards one body size?
CRYSTAL: Yes indeed. I've always beem very slim, even after my pregnancy - I have the most handsome 5 year old son by the way. Naturally however I retained some of the pregnancy weight (I was 10lbs heavier than my regular model size) and because of that I did book far fewer jobs than I normally would have. But in recent times, the world has shifted a bit (although not much) to accept more plus size models and with celebrities like BeyoncĂ© and Nikki Minaj making curves trend, there has been some wiggle room for models who are not waif thin. However it is still the norm to demand skinny especially in the main markets and where the money counts like on the runways of Milan, Paris and NYC.

H.P : Where do you see your self in 5 Years?
CRYSTAL: 5 years....difficult question these days especially when technology updates at a pace that can literally make a year long goal accessible within a few months.
I can safely say however that my goal is to continue to develop and grow my brand as a TV personlity within the Caribbean region and beyond. On a lighter note, to be the best soccer mom that I could possibly ever be - never miss a game, attend every school play and continue to nurture my little boy into the best young man that he could possibly ever be.

H.P: Finish the Sentence ... " I cannot live without my ...
CRYSTAL: After God, I cannot live without my son, Ajani. I could have never imagined life with him and now that he's here, I cannot imagine life without him. I've never known a love so pure, so genuine....I've never experienced so much joy and happiness genuinely...I could be having the toughest day - mentally and physically challenging but nothing that his smile or hug can't melt away. Ajani greets me...every day...like he's seeing me for the very first time after a long time...every day when I return to pick him up from school he greets me with arms wide open, a great big smile and joyously shouts "mummy"...how lucky am I? How blessed am I?  Now honestly, who can live without that?

Keep up with Crystal on Social Media

Instagram: @itiscrystal
Facebook: Crystal Cunningham 
Twittet: @crystalcunning



Twitter: @hautepeople
Instagram @haute_people

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