Model, mama and founder of the No Wrong Way Movement, there isn’t much that Denise Bidot can’t do. She began her career as a makeup artist and found her calling when a friend took some images of her and shared them online. The rest, as they say, is history where Denise is now one of the most sought-after plus-sized models in the industry, gracing campaigns for Lane Bryant, Sports Illustrated and more. When she’s not jet-setting, she loves spending time with her daughter, relaxing and hanging out on her amazing terrace in New York City (#goals!). We had the pleasure to join her one morning where she shared some of her beauty hacks, future goals and the importance of instilling confidence in her daughter. Read on…
You’re one of the top models in the industry. How did you get started?
I actually started as a makeup artist, believe it or not. Working with models in that capacity really inspired me. In 2006, I decided to get out from behind the camera and was playing around with a photographer friend who then posted my photos in a forum which led to calls and emails for jobs. By happenstance, I realized this was my true calling and passion.
You travel a lot for work. How do you stay connected to your daughter when life gets so busy?
She actually travels with me a lot (especially in the summer when she’s not in school), and comes on shoots often. During the busy times, she really keeps me grounded and I try to spend as much time with her as possible. It’s important to me to always keep the conversation open, so that she knows I am always available and she can always come to me. When I am traveling and the schedules don’t work out, FaceTime really is a magical tool.
What are some of your go-to beauty hacks when you travel?
Drink lots of water! Stay moisturized and curl those lashes—it’ll make you look alert even when you’re running on empty and totally jet lagged. Oh, and vitamins, vitamins, vitamins.
What do you hope your daughter will learn from you about being a working mama?
I hope Joselyn will pick up my work ethic for sure. She sees that while it’s fun, it’s hard work. Also being kind to everyone that comes into your path while working (and otherwise) is something I think she can take away from seeing me on the go. I enforce the “no-diva” policy and she sees that first-hand.
Are there moments in motherhood where you don’t feel like you have it all together?
Oh, absolutely. Being a mom has it’s challenging moments but my love for Joselyn keeps me motivated to keep going. She almost feels like a best friend and knows when mom needs a break from being “supermom,” so for that, I’m really lucky.
What is your morning routine like? What products do you use?
I’m really big on skincare and I think taking care of your skin is another way I practice self-love. I’m adamant about washing my face in the morning and use Vitamin C face wash from Joanna Vargas. I usually follow this up with her sheet masks and under eye masks (I love them!), and top everything off with a gentle moisturizer from CV Skinlabs. I even layer the sheet masks sometimes (I’m all about a combination of brightening, lifting and keeping my skin looking vibrant!). I don’t wear too much makeup when I’m not working, but I do use the Glossier Boy Brow and a little Aquaphor for my lips. Besides that, a good lash curl goes a long way, even without mascara.
What do you like to do to decompress?
I’m a big fan of lighting candles, listening to music and relaxing. One of my favorite, “just-for-me” activities is to make floral arrangements. Meditation is big for me, too. I recently started loving the Inscape Guided Mediation app and all of the different types of meditations they have available.
I think taking care of your skin is another way I practice self-love.
Working in the fashion industry, you’re constantly confronted with distorted depictions of the body. Is there anything that you do at home to make sure that your daughter has a positive image?
I try to be open with her and show her examples of people in the media that are doing things that she can learn from. At the end of the day, I am here to support her and her dreams and teach her to be herself. I’m so happy there are positive role models in the media for her to look up to. That’s my goal.
Tell us about The No Wrong Way Movement.
I founded The No Wrong Way Movement because of the work I do and the exposure I’ve had to an industry and media that is sometimes unforgiving and exclusive. I wanted to see headlines that focused on the positive side of fashion and beauty, and so I founded the organization to celebrate that there was no wrong way to be a woman in today’s society. I wanted to put my energy into a voice and platform that focused on the positive and created a safe space for women, girls—everyone—that needs it.
Why was this important for you to start?
Honestly, looking at Joselyn and wishing that there were more voices out there for her. Voices and people who spoke to a perspective that included her and whom she could look up to. I want all girls, daughters, mothers, sisters, people to feel that they are seen no matter their weight, or size, height, color.
I enforce the “no-diva” policy and she sees that first-hand.
How has motherhood changed your career? What has it taught you about yourself?
It wasn’t until I had Joselyn that I knew I had to do something bigger and hustle harder. She’s the reason I work so hard and I want her to know that if you put in the effort, you can accomplish anything.
What are your ultimate career goals?
I love acting and being on camera, so anything that allows me to continue on that path and would would still allow me to bring my daughter along for the ride would be my ideal. I’m really open-minded to the future, though and have a lot I’d like to accomplish.
Photo credit: Stevi Sesin
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