In this five-part series, we’ve picked out five local faces who all have one thing in common: They’re reflective of changes in one of the most change-resistant industries – modelling. It’s a business that, until recently, stuck to its own and championed only one kind. Now the playing field is more inclusive, and the “standard issue” model is no longer the standard. What is: Being unique and having a daring attitude – qualities the five ingenues here have. Oh, another thing: They’d rather be super role models than supermodels.

This fourth part features Phoebe Tan, 17:


Photo: Elvina Farkas / Anue Management


“I want to be the best person I can be for myself, and my friends, family, environment, and society.”


Newbie model Tan has mad ambitions: The Singapore Polytechnic interior design freshman wants to appear on the covers of international magazine titles, walk the runways of the big four Fashion Weeks, score a scholarship to the National University of Singapore’s architecture department, and eventually open her own interior design firm.

And she’s not doing them one after another. She’s tackling her to-do list every minute she has. “If I am not working on my school assignments, I am practising my catwalk skills and poses, and I run for an hour three times a week. I don’t like to waste time and I don’t mind making sacrifices like forgoing entertainment for schoolwork and working out.”


Photo: Instagram / @phoebetankit


Her interior design studies do not teach her the use of graphic design software, so during her recent school holidays, she juggled modelling assignments with self-taught graphic design lessons. She has since managed to design her own stickers.

“I actively pursue my goals by always doing something that brings me closer to them, and I like the sense of accomplishment and contentment I get after seeing hard work pay off. I hope this will also inspire youths and adults to keep chasing after their passions.”


Photo: Instagram / @phoebetankit


The young go-getter is eco-friendly, too. She is part of her school’s environment club, and walks the talk by recycling and avoiding plastic bags wherever possible. “I always keep a tenugui (a traditional Japanese hand towel) in my bag which I fold into a reusable bag when I need one. As a design student, I produce a lot of waste materials, especially paper, so I make sure to categorise my trash at home and recycle the paper waste every month.”




This story first appeared in the August 2018 issue of Her World.

Photography: Elvina Farkas/Anue Management

Styling: Bryan Goh

Hair: Jimmy Yap/Kenaris Salon, assisted by Amanda Sim

Makeup: Melissa Yeo, using Chanel, assisted by Nikki Koh

Outfit: Sweater, $1,420, and necklace (price unavailable), Balenciaga.