Model B.Tserendolgor’s victory in Mongolia’s Next Top Model (MNTM) is causing a sensation among fashion enthusiasts in Mongolia.
The 20-year-old model says that the show helped boost her confidence and interest in fashion. She sees her life change right in front of her eyes now that she has signed a two-year modeling contract with Singapore’s Look Models Agency on top of winning a 20 million MNT cash prize and a plane ticket to Paris.
B.Tserendolgor was interviewed to get inside information about the first season of the Mongolian adaptation of the Next Top Model show, her lifestyle, and future aspirations.
Congratulations on winning MNTM. How confident were you that you would win?
Thank you very much. I can’t believe I won a world-class fashion show. I was so happy that I can’t remember what happened. To be honest, the other two finalists were very strong opponents so I wasn’t 100 percent confident of winning. My phone hasn’t stopped ringing since this morning (March 13) and my Instagram and Facebook page are full of congratulatory messages.
Yu.Baljidmaa received the most votes from the public in the final, but you won thanks to extremely high votes from the judges. Yu.Baljidmaa’s fans must have felt disappointed. What’s your thoughts on this?
Mongolia is a world of beauty pageants. People haven’t been fully convinced that modeling is a career. Had they understood this, there wouldn’t have been any problems. Even so, they have the right to express their views. I still don’t think I need to make a statement on this.
You and Yu.Baljidmaa are experienced models who worked at Mongol Model Agency. Did you know Yu.Baljidmaa before the show?
Seven months have passed since I joined Mongol Model Agency. Before I entered MNTM, I didn’t know Yu.Baljidmaa that well. I only knew her face. We became closer during the show. We battled it out fairly and tried to achieve our respective goals and dreams. A competition is still a competition. Throughout the show, we always had friendly and fair competition with each other.
Some people claimed that you lied about your age during the show. Is it true?
There were some issues about my age. When I was 14, I participated in a competition saying I was two years older. The organizers were aware of that. I had to lie about my age to be able to enter the competition. I didn’t want to deceive others.
Which task was the hardest during MNTM?
The hardest was the photoshoot with my mother. I was overwhelmed with emotions during the photoshoot because I was so happy to see her but also nervous modeling with her. I can’t remember how I finished the photoshoot, but I was definitely very happy.
Which main photoshoot challenge was hardest to do?
Out of the main challenges, the photoshoot in Khuvsgul Province was the most difficult. I’m sure all contestants think so. We had to wear light clothing when it was -40 degrees Celsius. The photoshoot might have seemed like it took only two or three minutes, but in reality, each person stood in front of the camera for 15 to 20 minutes. It was really hard back then. I guess it’s something a model must do.
…My imagination makes me stronger and more confident. I fantasize about everything. For example, I don’t eat fast food because I imagine how badly it would affect my health. I tend to imagine the consequences before making any decision. That helps me believe that I’m doing the right thing…
How would you assess the way MNTM was organized?
I’m sure it had the best organization out of all Mongolian shows. Judges’ skills, tasks given to us, and everything else was perfect. The objective of MNTM is to show what a model does to the masses. I believe it succeeded in fulfilling that objective.
When did you become interested in modeling? When did you first walk on the runway?
I never dreamed of becoming a model when I was a child. I developed an interest in fashion two years ago and started learning about it. Right then, designer Ariunaa Suri offered me a job and we met for the first time. She even picked me as her model. She’s the one who helped me the most in making my interests and dreams become reality.
Honestly speaking, I never expected myself to fall in love with the fashion industry this much. I believe in fate. I guess I was fated to enter the fashion industry.
Are you working with Ariunaa Suri right now?
The contract I signed back then has expired. People might have known me as a model for Ariunaa Suri’s brand. My successful participation in MNTM has made my existence in the fashion industry stronger.
You’re studying dentistry at Ach University of Medical Sciences. Why did you choose dentistry? Do you plan to focus on your studies or modeling in the near-future?
I think that dentistry is a very productive and good profession. There’s so many complex work like filling teeth. It requires so much time and concentration to specialize in dentistry. At first, I wanted to study cosmetic surgery, which then changed to my current field of study. I will graduate next year. I will definitely study hard and strive to become a good dentist. However, my near-term goal is to prioritize my modeling career. Since there’s time for everything, I’m sure the days for me to study more and work as a dentist will come someday.
Many viewers believe that you won thanks to your confidence, decisive and strong-willed personality. Are you usually confident?
My imagination makes me stronger and more confident. I fantasize about everything. For example, I don’t eat fast food because I imagine how badly it would affect my health. I tend to imagine the consequences before making any decision. That helps me believe that I’m doing the right thing.
It was easier for me to get into character during photoshoots because I visualized it beforehand. In a way, I improved my imagination skills by reading storybooks. In my opinion, books affect greatly on one’s behavior, views, and approach to things.
People in the fashion industry noted that you have unique features. How satisfied are you with your appearance?
A photo of my bare smiling face was shared on social media. A person 100 percent satisfied with their appearance doesn’t fear looking bad in front of others. Who can look beautiful all the time, right? It would be boring. I try to act and look myself.
Do you have a boyfriend?
I was asked this question too much on Facebook. I do have a boyfriend. We’ve been together for over a year. He works at New Media Group and studies.
Do you do any sport?
I’m interested in boxing. I’m embarrassed to say I train in any sport because athletes would laugh at me. I’m a sports fan. I like to do sports when I have free time. I actually enjoy adventure sports. I’ve been doing aerobics for three years now. I only recently started boxing.
Models use a lot of makeup for photoshoots. How do you take care of your skin?
My skin has become very sensitive right now. The skin can get damaged due to stress, too much makeup, and unstable emotions. I don’t like using different kinds of products for skin care. If I use too many beauty products when I’m 20, my skin will demand much more when I’m 40. So I try to use as few products as possible. Cleansing is more important than makeup. Also, I never leave the house without putting on sunscreen.
Do you buy brand products and clothes?
Many girls use beauty product sets. All my life, I’ve used Nivea Soft products. As for clothes, I don’t buy expensive brand-name products. I’m a student without a stable income. It’s impossible to buy whatever I want since I’m financially dependent on my parents. I try to find casual clothes that suit me and are cheap.
How has your life changed since MNTM?
For a fact, a lot of things have changed for my modeling career. That was my main goal for signing up for the show. However, the individual B.Tserendolgor hasn’t changed.
I was hesitant before deciding to enter the show. I managed to register just before the deadline. Now that I mustered the courage to enter it, I’m receiving tons of encouragement from friends and family. I’m glad I made the right decision. Everyone has a path to tread and a fate to follow. My bold decision has led me to this success.
Many people helped to successfully organize the show. I’d like to express my gratitude to all of them and my fellow contestants.
What makes a good model in your opinion?
Models must have a unique and attractive face. Models actually work unlike beauty pageants. That’s the main difference between them. Beauty pageants are peace ambassadors while models do jobs. It’s a profession. Models are people who are able to promote new creations of other people.
You signed a two-year modeling contract. How do you plan to stand out from among foreign models?
I will use the fact that I’m a Mongolian as my advantage. I want to show how beautiful and brilliant Mongolians are.
What’s your ultimate goal?
I don’t want to be boxed by anything. I don’t want to limit my potential to one thing by saying that it’s my ultimate goal. I will work hard to show what Mongolian models are capable of to the world.