JASMINEWHO I AM AND WHO I'LL BE
WHY COULDN'T I EXPRESS MYSELF WHEN I WAS 8 YEARS OLD THROUGH MY CLOTHING? WHY IS THERE AN AGE LIMIT ON WHEN YOU CAN START DOING THAT?
19/99 Take us through your daily beauty routine.
Jas In the morning I don’t do anything. My beauty routine is all at night and it is two things. One of them is The Ordinary’s Matrixyl 10% Acid and then I use Differin, which is a retinoid cream. I was getting break outs on my foreheads a few years ago, so I went to my doctor and they prescribed this and it has been great.
For moisturizer right now I’m using a body milk my mum got me from a lavender farm near the small town I grew up in in Quebec. I’ve been using on my body and my face. I am very inconsistent with my beauty routine. It changes all the time.
19/99 What about makeup?
Jas I usually use a tinted sunscreen & a tinted lip balm.
19/99 Are you loyal to any brands for your makeup?
Jas No, it is really just what is on sale, or what my friends have told me they like. I get bored with consistent makeup and skin routines so I’m always change it.
19/99 What about for your hair?
Jas Ever since I started bleaching my hair I’ve had to take care of it. I got this Argan oil from the Ordinary and it has been awesome.
19/99 How long have you had short hair?
Jas Four and a half years. When you cut your hair really short it feels so nice, and soft, so I’ve gotten really addicted to that feeling and cut it all the time. But I want to grow it long so I have to stop; I miss being able to put my hair in a ponytail or a braid.
19/99 Where do you find out about your beauty products?
Jas From friends; my friend Melissa is always searching for new products and she is my go to when I want to get something new. She has so many options of what I should get. I like using the same products as friends because then you can talk about it after, and compare results.
19/99 Do you feel pressure to look a certain way?
Jas Ugh, yeah. Especially now during the quarantine, I’ve been spending a lot more time on Instagram. And working in the modelling industry; there are so many girls online that are literally perfect. I don’t even know how some of them exist. So right now spending a lot of time looking at images like that isn’t great. But then I remind myself it is Instagram — it is supposed to make you feel that way. It is cyclical; I go through times thinking ‘I have to be skinnier, I have to be this, I have to be that’, but then I remind myself that is not a happy way to live, and even if I did look that way it wouldn’t be what makes me happy.
I HAD A REALLY BAD HIGH SCHOOL EXPERIENCE AND GOT BULLIED A LOT. SO I REALLY DIDN’T WANT TO MODEL...BUT THEN I DECIDED I WOULD GIVE IT A TRY BECAUSE IT WOULD BE A GOOD OPPORTUNITY AND IN A WEIRD WAY AN OPPORTUNITY TO RECLAIM THE WAY I LOOKED; NOT FEEL WEIRD OR ASHAMED ABOUT IT.
19/99 How did you get into modelling?
Jas I started getting scouted when I moved to Toronto about 6 years ago. I had a really bad high school experience and got bullied a lot. So I really didn’t want to model, I didn’t want to put the way I looked there out there in the world. When I first moved here I would just say no. But then I decided I would give it a try because it would be a good opportunity and in a weird way an opportunity to reclaim the way I looked; not feel weird or ashamed about it. I remembered that when I got scouted by Sean, he had told me that he had certain ethical issues with modelling, and he was doing something alternative with Want, so he was the person I wanted to go with.
19/99 Does the term ‘age appropriate’ mean anything to you?
Jas I think the only time anyone has used the term ‘age appropriate’ with me is in elementary school… I was about 8. I had decided I wanted to have this new punk look; I wanted all my clothes to be ripped and have all these glitter skulls on them. I asked my mum if I could buy all these new clothes & obviously she was like ‘no’. So I decided to DIY my pants, and I got these material markers and drew all over my shirts — wrote on them ‘PUNKY’, and ‘Cool Girl’. I was so proud of myself and I wore my new clothes to school and all my teachers told me they weren’t appropriate for my age, and they were clothes I should only wear if I was older. It crushed me, even when I think about it now I am slightly pissed about it; why couldn't I express myself when I was 8 years old through my clothing? Why is there an age limit on when you can start doing that? I am sure I will have a whole new idea of the term when I get older and I want to wear a mini skirt or something.
19/99 If you could share advice with your younger self what would it be?
Jas Thinking about the last question, when I was younger creatively expressing myself through the way I looked, like dying my hair for instance, felt very wrong, or not appropriate for my age — it was something I was supposed to do when I was older. I would tell myself just go for it — wear whatever the fuck you, dye your hair, do what you want. I really held back when I was younger because of how small & rural the town I come from is, and everyone looked the same and I felt like I couldn't look too different.
19/99 What makes you feel beautiful?
Jas When my body and mental health feel good I always feel prettier. Sometimes if I’m feeling really sad or disappointed I will think I look gross, or disgusting or whatever. But I recently realized how much it has to do with where I am mentally and emotionally. And to not take it so seriously when I feel that way; it is just a little phase I am going through and that it will pass.
19/99 Is there anything that scares you about aging?
Jas Not into my thirties or forties or fifties, I’m excited about that. But thinking about being very very old and loosing control of my body, loosing my sight, having a different relationship with my body. That really scares me. I can’t even imagine it as an able person. Also though, lots of people live with those things and they’re good and they have their own experience, so it’s not something I should be afraid it is just very different to me. Also my grandma is always in some kind of pain; what is that going to be like? To always be in pain.
19/99 My grandma is in her 90's and she talks about the different pains she has — her shoulders, her hips — and I can’t relate. I always wonder what the level of pain is — is it excruciating or alright? I know what shoulder pain is like, but is that the same as 90 year old shoulder pain? I guess it is just a new normal living with it everyday.
19/99 If you could ask the older generation one question what would it be?
Jas Many older women who I know don’t care what people think as much as I, and the younger people that I know, do. It’s like advice my mum has given me: as you get older other people really just don’t matter that much, you don’t have to constantly please them, but I feel that in little ways and I have this anxiety about it all the time. So I would want to know how they got there — what are the experiences they’ve had that allowed them not to care what other people think? Because I would love to feel that way.
19/99 That is a great question. We have interviewed a lot of older women and many answer that question saying that they have learnt to let go and not care about what other people think. Their advice to their younger selves is basically always: do what you want, people don’t care. Which is one of those things that is really difficult to get before hand; they can say that with hindsight but before hand they couldn’t see.
Jas I feel like I am in such a rush to be at peace and not care, but I guess it is a process and you have to appreciate that process.
19/99 Mella, who was at the shoot with you, said that she was really happy with where she was, and that the only way she got to where she is was by going through what she went through before. So it is all connected.
19/99 Do you think there is a point where we stop learning and growing?
Jas No definitely not. There is this idea of a linear way of existing; you are supposed to go to school, study your dream thing, find your dream job, do it, retire, chill. And it is just not like that. Or least I don’t know how I would live my life like that. I would love to go back to school when I am in my 50's or 60's. I am sure after I have an art career I will have a new idea of what I want to do. So no — I don’t think so, and I’d really like to live my life in a way where I am always growing and learning new things, and taking my past experiences and using them to inform what I do next, instead of using this template that our culture has put on us.