There is no doubt that if you are scrolling on social media and come across Mindy Collette’s photo you will pause. Her beauty is striking but what most people don’t know is that this New York Native is very much the “girl next door” like most of us. She’s a mom, loves fashion, and has a passion for Early Childhood and Special Education. Whether she’s in heels or flip-flops “Mish Mindy“, as she’s affectionately known online, will be sure to greet you with high energy and a big smile.
Get to know our cover model Mindy Colette…
Please tell us how you got started in the modeling/influencer world.
I believe it was a little over 5 years ago, I had just joined Instagram (kinda late I might add) and I cannot remember who followed who first, but the beautiful Photographer/Model Nikki Gomez reached out to shoot with her. I was uncertain I fit the model criteria and shied away from it for a bit. Anyway, we finally shot and it was great! It ignited me.
Right after, I had gone to purchase a dress from the Rue 107 showroom in NYC where I bumped into the owner, Marie, and she asked me if I had Instagram. We exchanged info and a couple of weeks later I was shooting a campaign for Rue 107. Right after that, the amazing Monif C. reached out to shoot for her brand. The rest of the influencer work kinda comes with Instagram when you start shooting, you are suddenly being seen on a bigger scale and growing fast.
You are on the smaller side of “PLUS” and you have always been a big supporter of PLUS Model Magazine and size diversity. Can you tell us why you feel size diversity is important?
Yes! I support PMM wholeheartedly! When I started following, it was honestly the first time I saw plus women being represented in a high fashion way. All of these beautiful plus women celebrating their size and embracing their fullness. I was baffled, in awe, and intrigued. I was taught as a child that being big was bad; my father was very judgemental of larger women so I grew up obsessed with my weight and being slim.
When I got pregnant, I gained a substantial amount of weight due to months of bed rest. After I gave birth my body was COMPLETELY transformed! I went from a size 5 to a size 16. I was in shock, sad and depressed. Looking back… had I saw more women with my body type in ads or in stores I really think I would’ve been more accepting of myself during my personal weight journey. I wanted to wear pretty, fashionable clothes even in my larger size, yet, I didn’t see them. Humans come in EVERY SIZE AND SHAPE, being able to see this represented and marketed is vital. It’s not only great for the consumer it’s a blessing for designers too, whether they realize it or not.
Let’s talk about FASHION… I love your fashion aesthetic… how would you describe it and what are you loving for spring right now?
I love Fashion! Since living in Florida I’ve been living in flip-flops and shorts and it’s a nightmare! For me, it’s all about my mood, I do not have one particular aesthetic because my personality is so multifaceted. I’m edgy, sexy, classic, sporty, earthy, ultra-feminine. I honestly could go on but for this spring, vibrant colors, clean minimalist cuts, comfy soft and pretty dresses, and puffy sleeves are on-trend and always make a fit feel a little more elevated. I love that they can take a simple jean outfit and give it an edge or make a simple dress look more high fashion.
Being an influencer is a lot of work and throughout the pandemic, we all faced some difficult times. How has the past year changed you and what are you looking forward to the most once all of this is over?
It is a lot of work! So many think it’s as easy as just taking a picture and posting, and for some, it can be. It can be exhausting when you don’t have a team/support system like so many do or even just the right environment/finances to do it yourself. When you’re doing it for yourself and don’t have certain spaces or vibes around it can be discouraging, for sure.
In the last year or so, I’ve lost a job I was extremely passionate about, my child’s father, and then my uncle passed to Covid suddenly. When the pandemic really hit I was just trying to stay afloat, keep up with bills and find time to mourn while money became a huge issue. That has been the biggest test of all. I am beyond grateful to the brand(s) that kept me paid and allowed me to be home with my son who is obviously still mourning and dealing with the pandemic dynamics. It’s been a very lonely/stressful year generally speaking. As we head into Spring 2021, I feel a tremendous shift happening and I welcome the revitalizing energy. Lately, I’ve been feeling really eager to restart and refresh, not only my day-to-day but also my plans for the year and my future. I really look forward to a year with opportunity, fresh eyes, and an open heart.
What are FIVE things most people don’t know about you?
1) I am a mother to a 16-year-old.
2) I’ve been battling anxiety for the last two years.
3) In another life, I’m certain, I was a successful music artist – lol! I use music as a form of therapy and it’s been a lifesaver throughout this last year. I proudly own 3 shower Grammys – haha! I can definitely “sang” in there. I wish I had taken the time to learn to play the violin, but hey, it’s never too late… that would be a dream come true!
4) I’m extremely insecure about my “mommy” belly. I’ve come to terms with it, but still battle myself with exposing it. People think I’m ridiculously confident (to an extent, yes I am) but I honestly think we all have our insecurities and that is certainly mine. Working through it day-by-day, I’ve honestly come a long way.
5) I’m a FULL BLOWN clown. I sometimes joke that my Instagram is a liar. I don’t let everyone see the silly side of me. I’m literally the clumsy, walk into a wall type, speak in corny song, I use accents to have a regular conversation and I honestly make some of the ugliest faces that would probably help me lose followers with the quickness.
Follow on IG @mish_mindy
Photographer, Louie Bee IG @thelouiebee