By Mthethwa Thandeka
First born in a family of two, Noluthando Mbali Mbatha (20) from Pretoria West, Gauteng, says because of her petiteness most people have mistaken her for a child which has somehow worked against her in competitions because she was always the invisible one but through hard she is determined to change that and stand out because her uniqueness will make her stand out from all the other models.
How did you get into modeling?
I started modeling at the age of four where I took part in a competition in Durban and won. After that I never looked back, I took part in pageants and modeled with people I have always admired which kick started my career.
What does modeling mean to you?
Modeling means the world to me but I also focus on school nut in a nutshell, modeling is something that allows me to be who I am fully while having fun. It is something I can use to help others so that they can better themselves.
Which models do you look up to and why?
Definitely the former Miss South Africa 2014 because she was the first Miss South Africa that won Miss World.
What lessons did you take from her journey?
She taught me to never give up no matter the circumstance, come rain or thunder, one has got to push.
Which corporate brands would you like to work with in the near future and why?
Ted Baker. I have a crazy love for bags but I wouldn’t say that is the only brand I would like to work with because I am all about working with different people who will teach me more about the business and make me a better brand that people can relate to.
Besides modeling, what else are you good at?
(Laughs), talking and acting. I recently took part in a competition about acting and modeling and I won so I am soon going to be representing South Africa in the United States of America for acting and modeling which I am looking forward to.
Do you have any limit when it comes to modeling?
Definitely not. Modeling is like living without knowing what is going to happen in the following second, so limiting yourself does not help, it just restricts your possibility for growth.
So you have no problems posing naked
Unfortunately, I do not do such. Like I said, I am a pageant girl so I have gotten comfortable with modeling with glitzy dresses and to the fact that we are never asked to take our clothes off for the camera. Not to be hush, but truth is, I am not one of those girls who are desperate to make it in the modeling industry. At the moment, I am happy with just entering competitions and not doing photo shoots that require me to lose who I am.
What does your five year plan include?
I see myself as a very successful person and driving a Mercedes Benz because I believe that a lady without a Benz is incomplete and I want to be complete. And plus, it is fast!
Who inspires you to be better?
Definitely my mom. She is a single mother, when I look at her, it shows me that I don’t need a man in my life to make it, I can make it on my own.
What kind of a model would you like to be remembered as?
A model that is wild and driven which is why I regard myself as a hard worker because I get what I work for.
What advice do you have for potential models who are exactly like you but are scared?
Never let the word “failure” define who you are, wake up and make a difference and always pray for success.
How do people get in touch with you?
Facebook I am: Noluthando Mbali Mbatha and on Instagram I am: Mbarlie queen.