Meet The Model Game Changer With A Heart Of Gold — June 2019 Digital Cover Girl, Iman Fandi

Humble, energetic, and fearless. These are simply the perfect adjectives to describe Iman Fandi Ahmad, the up-and-coming model known for her unparalleled sense of hard work and playfulness. Her knack for modelling and dedication for success is built into her DNA and this becomes clear the moment I shake hands with Iman at our studio. I don’t know if I was expecting someone more restrained of a 19-year-old model, but instead, I’m met with the poise of a professional (and the envious curls), ready to make this shoot her own with her indomitable spirit.

Fast forward from growing up in the limelight and her world just keeps expanding: Iman Fandi is unequivocally a pioneer in her own right with her down-to-earth attitude and sense of bewilderment, shaping a unique path with her valour. Others are undoubtedly taking note of it — and following suit.

Whatever is next for the young model maven, future supermodel on the rise, and aspiring actress, it will be of her own making. “Keep hustling and take risks,” she says of what she hopes to achieve, and adds that she’s even working on pursuing a secret passion of hers. Reflecting her journey, Iman Fandi reveals some of the steely resolve that rests beneath her tough-like exterior.

MAKEUP (ALL chanel):
chanel les beiges water-fresh tint in medium, $106
chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder in N°20, $82
chanel les beiges les indispensables palette, $139
chanel les beiges lip balm in intense, $52 
WEARING (all chanel):
j12 watch in WHITE HIGHLY RESISTANT CERAMIC AND STEEL, $8,150
tweed top in white, $3,600
washed denim jeans in light blue, $1,830
belt in metal & strass, gold & crystal, $6,240

 

ON HER ACTING DEBUT

“Last year, I was approached to audition for this Toggle series called Emerald Hill. Thankfully, I got the role. The series is basically about high school drama within a sports school. My character was Jasmine and she was part of the tennis team. I got to meet really talented individuals on set. We filmed last year in October for around 4-5 weeks and all the cast and production team were super cool to work out with, and for that, I’m really thankful.”

 

PURSUING MORE ROLES

“Without a doubt, if another acting opportunity arises, I would love to grasp that chance again. I’m driven by a desire to evolve and always try new things. I’m open to other genres like comedy and even challenging myself for those future tear-jerking scenes. [Laughs] We’ll see.”

MAKEUP (ALL chanel):
chanel les beiges water-fresh tint in medium, $106
chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder in N°20, $82
chanel les beiges les indispensables palette, $139
WEARING (all chanel):
j12 watch in white HIGHLY RESISTANT CERAMIC AND STEEL, $8,150
coco beach top in white, $1,530
coco beach shorts in white, $1,690
 

SECRET PASSION PROJECTS

“I have an upcoming top-secret project at the end of June. I think that, increasingly over time, I realised I had a passion for this. It is completely the opposite of modelling and is something I have actually cut my teeth into since young — but I have only just pursued it, which I felt needed to happen now.”

 

STAYING FIT WITH A HEALTHY MINDSET

“My family is very active. Back then, I was brought up doing all type of sports activities; football, tennis, swimming, gymnastics, ballet, dance. Right now, I’m willing to try whatever can keep me fit. I recently threw myself into boxing and it provides me with a sense of stress-relief. Without a doubt, staying active serves as a form of therapy for me. What’s not to love?”

MAKEUP (ALL chanel):
chanel les beiges water-fresh tint in medium, $106
chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder in N°20, $82
chanel les beiges les indispensables palette, $139

WEARING (all chanel):
j12 watch in white HIGHLY RESISTANT CERAMIC AND STEEL, $8,150
coco beach dress in pink, $2,710

 

THE CHALLENGES SHE’S FACED AS A YOUNG MODEL

“My young, starry-eyed self would always question if I was good enough for this industry. It’s true that the modelling world is tough and there has been a real learning curve. Since I started, there have been doubts in my head about my height, size, looks, etc. But as I grew up, I learned that there has to be a certain openness to rejection. If and when it happens, you just have to assess, learn, strive on, and repeat. The only way to do this is to just be me.”

 

HOW SHE JUGGLED SCHOOL AND MODELLING

“Where do I even begin? I mean, I’ve done photoshoots with my mom since I was a baby. It has always been part of my routine. Sometimes, I would have to leave school earlier for a shoot — there were definitely comments that got to me and I was bullied as a result. My strongest weapon was self-awareness and not letting the unsavoury remarks get to me.”

MAKEUP (ALL chanel):
chanel les beiges water-fresh tint in medium, $106
chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder in N°20, $82
chanel les beiges les indispensables palette, $139
chanel les beiges lip balm in intense, $52
WEARING (all chanel):
j12 watch in black HIGHLY RESISTANT CERAMIC AND STEEL, $8,150
earrings in metal & strass, gold & crystal, $1,390
cashmere cardigan in white and blue, $3,690
top in white and blue, $2,690
washed denim jeans in blue, $1,830

 

ON BRANDS THAT AREN’T INCLUSIVE

“I try my best not to focus on that. I prefer to take a step back away from all the noise and drama of comparing brands. I feel that if that’s the character of a brand, then we got to respect that.”

 

THE BEST BEAUTY ADVICE FROM HER MOM

“Always remove your makeup off before bed… and use lip balm!”

ON HER PERSONAL STYLE

“Being a model, I get to try a whole bunch of new looks all the time. I feel that has resonated with me as I like to change up my style every so often. If I had to describe it, probably edgy chic? I’m more of a one-statement-piece kind of girl.”

STYLE ICONS

“Zendaya. For me, it’s seeing her grow up on television and watching her fashion looks evolve as well. She’s incredibly humble, chill, strong worth ethic, down to earth — I’m talking as if I know her.”

MAKEUP (ALL chanel):
chanel les beiges water-fresh tint in medium, $106
chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder in N°20, $82
chanel les beiges les indispensables palette, $139
chanel les beiges lip balm in intense, $52
WEARING (all chanel):
j12 watch in black HIGHLY RESISTANT CERAMIC AND STEEL, $8,150
earrings in metal & strass, gold & crystal, $1,390
coco beach swimsuit in black, $1,320
coco beach shorts in blue, $1,690

 

FIVE WORDS THAT DESCRIBE HERSELF

“Adventurous. Mysterious. Chill. Independent. Loyal.”

 

HOW SHE TAKES CARE OF HER MENTAL HEALTH

“With my lifestyle — which modelling keeps me very busy — I’ll have to say I always try to manage my time as best I can without letting the hate affect me.

So, when I was younger there was this platform called Askfm, and people weren’t afraid to say anything they wanted. It used to get to me… now I just ignore it. But recently I’ve been telling myself that everything will be okay, you know, as long as I’m constantly trying my best. I’m cool with that.

I also exercise every morning to kickstart my day and try new things like my secret project. I like to take it one step at a time, so I’d have to say risk it or keep wondering.”

GROWING UP IN THE LIMELIGHT

“People do ask to take pictures here and there. There was this one moment where I was at some fashion week event in Singapore; I was brought around for interviews left and right and then I had a solo moment on the red carpet. I was 16 at the time and it was pretty surreal, you know?”

 

ON BEING HUNGRY FOR MORE

“Even though I was brought up as Fandi Ahmad’s daughter, I had to work even harder to get where I am. Things weren’t gifted to me just for being Iman Fandi. I’m also taking this time to explore my options and continue to work as much as I can — I’m going to Los Angeles in June for a modelling job.  Like, I want to do stuff that keeps me happy. Just keep on hustling.”

Follow Iman on Instagram here.

PHOTOGRAPHy and styling BY ADELE CHAN, photographed USING THE LEICA M10-P + SUMMILUX-M 35MM F/1.4 ASPH LENS.
MAKEUP BY peter khor using CHANEL MAKEUP.
HAIR BY JAMES CHIUN FROM PRO TRIM HAIR SALON.