Lina Cardona, An Inspiration for Aspiring Models



It’s said a modeling career demands great persistence and determination. And while it’s true the main way to enter the industry is “good looks” (or a “good look”: style, attitude, etc.), to keep current in the business takes work hard. One personality who’s been “acing” the modeling industry with her excellent survival tactics and relentless dedication is Colombian model and actress Lina Cardona.

Lina is an entity to look out for in the Colombian fashion industry, and has been the face of prestigious international brands including Renault, Telmex, Aguila Beer, Claro, Ego, 4-72, and many more. This kind-hearted individual was generous enough to spare some time from her busy schedule to answer some questions to inspire and guide others looking to create a similar career.

My journey as a model began when I signed up for “Señorita Bogota in 2013.” It was my first experience as a professional model, something I would cherish for the rest of my life. I did not win the competition, but successfully managed to secure the semifinalist position, which was a huge deal. As a newcomer, I was extremely satisfied with what I had achieved and was determined to perform better next time.

After my first public appearance in the show, many fashion houses, magazines, designers, and brand owners approached me to model for their brands. I enjoyed the new fame and attention I was getting but did not deviate from my goal. I had already planned my next move.

In 2014 I participated in “Colombia’s Next Top Model,” which is the Colombian version of “America’s Next Top Model.” The show is internationally recognized, and the stakes were high. I secured the position of the second finalist and was very happy with my gain.

Participating in this contest opened the doors to new opportunities. My confidence in my work had been boosted, which motivated me to appear in more TV shows like “La Reina del Flow” and “Operacion Pacifico.”

2014 was a good year for my professional life as I was selected to be one of the “Chica Aguila.”

Life as a model is not as easy as it looks. I know the movies and the media always portray the glamourous and fun sides, but there’s a lot more no one knows about.

Being a model is not simple. My life underwent a drastic change when I transitioned to this field. My entire routine had to be changed; I had to give up many habits in order to keep myself fit and relevant for the field.

Waking up before sunrise, daily workouts, healthy eating habits, keeping up with the hectic schedule, taking out time for myself amidst the hustle and bustle, not giving in to temptations, keeping myself away from picking up bad habits, and most of all, keeping myself sane!

Oh, it’s not easy at all. But if you are determined to stay and make it to the top, then as they say, “when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you achieve it.”

Learn to grab every opportunity you are offered because offers in this industry come to only a few lucky ones. Adopt the right attitude for work.

Maintain a strong work ethic; although this industry does not follow one, ensure you do. It reflects your professional personality and makes you come off as a strong individual. Most importantly, give each project your best shot; you never know what the future holds for you, so make every move count.

Balance is the key. It took me a long time to sort things in life and learn about maintaining a balance in everything. Everything needs to be done in proper proportions: from diet to exercise and work-life to leisure hours. Remember, excess of anything isn’t good, so refrain from such activities.

My routine includes a healthy diet, yoga sessions in the mornings, a simple gym workout, plenty of water, and sleep.

Never compromise on sleep. You don’t want to look exhausted the next day.

Interesting question. I believe that the Instagram fashion community is a quickly emerging fashion portal. I see it as a great place to find opportunities. Although it is very different from the “real” fashion industry, it is, to some extent, similar to its practices.

The Instagram fashion community has proven itself to be the best place to introduce your unique fashion sense and create an online portfolio to keep update frequently.

Walking hand in hand with technology is the need of the hour. Having a social presence is a must to survive in this technologically driven world. Recognizing its importance and need, I have an account on Instagram too and have recently gotten it verified.

Nelson Mandala said, and I quote, “I never lose. I either win or learn.”

One thing I would like to tell all aspiring models is to never give up. The road maybe difficult and bumpy at times, but always keep doing your best. You will succeed; maybe not today, but tomorrow.

by FWO

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