Catwalk Talk: Lessons I Learned as a Professional Model

{by Caitlin Muir}

Imagine going from sitting on the curb to strutting the catwalk in 36 hours.

It sounds like the plot of a chick-flick but it happens in real life. I know because it happened to me. 

In October, I had the opportunity to model not once, but twice. That’s right, I’m a professional model now. A professional hair model. 

I can now say that I’ve modeled for TiGi and Paul Mitchell. What did I get out of the experiences? Besides a great cut + color, confidence, and a few hundred dollars, I learned some important lessons. 

1. It’s okay to be a woman
“We’ve all learned how to walk with our shoulders slumped forward, shuffling with our feet,” said Elyanna, the glamazon model who was teaching the rest of us how to walk. “Throw your shoulders back, lift your knees up, and let your hips sway. People would not know you are a woman by the way you walk.”


We’ve all seen androgynous people. The “is it a girl or a boy” that walks down the street without any telltale signs of being part of either sex. I don’t know about you but I don’t want to be that person. 

So I learned how to walk like a woman. Letting my hips gently sway instead of taking long strides. It’s okay to embrace your femininity. To relish being the sex God created you to be. Instead of trying to mask it or adapt it, own it. 

2. We’re all freaks
There is no perfect body. By my measurements, I should be happy with my body. But I’m not. I still have the beginnings of cellulite and if I don’t start exercising, gravity is going to take its course. Trust me, swim suit shopping is not my favorite hobby. But looking around at the other models at the TiGi show, I realized that there is no perfect woman.

We all have flaws. 

There was the glamazon couture model who towered above us at 6’6. The tiny woman from the Air Force who had big hips. And then there was the professional model with the huge nose and ribs that stuck out. No joke. 

It’s what you do with the flaws that make the difference. If you try to hide them all, you’ll end up looking like a Barbie doll. Or a Paris Hilton wannabe. 

3. Every woman delights in beauty
Something happens when a woman steps on to the runway. All of her fears and insecurities are put aside for a moment. Because for 30 seconds, the whole world is delighting in her beauty. 

When she walks, everyone watches. She can walk confidently, head up, knowing that she’s beautiful or she can watch her feet, try not to stumble, and blush when the flashbulbs go off. 

A truly beautiful woman doesn’t need five pounds of hair product, two pounds of makeup, and five inch spike heels to own a catwalk. All she needs is confidence. 

Confidence in that she is beautiful and that she is loved. The writers of Captivating knew this to be true. That’s what half the book is about. When your beauty is revealed and delighted in, you become more beautiful.

4. True beauty is from within
“Alright everyone. I want you to hold hands with the person next to you. We’re going to give thanks to the Lord.”

I blinked when I heard the director of the Paul Mitchell show say that. What? God? Here? Cool!

Maybe it’s because I’m in Texas or maybe it was heartfelt, but before the last hair show, the director gathered all 100+ models around and prayed. It wasn’t a “Dear God, help us not to trip…” prayer but one that weighed more.

“God, help us to remember that beauty isn’t about our faces or our hair. But about our character and our relationships with others and you.”


Talk about a reality check. 

A beautiful face can’t mask an ugly soul. Not for long anyway. Neither can a disfigured face hide a radiant soul.

It’s okay to delight in beauty. Your beauty (and yes, you have it) is a gift from God. Women are different from men in that we were created to bring beauty. That soft touch. That hot+holiness. 

Some people think that beauty should be hidden. I don’t agree with that. I’ve seen what happens to women when they become fearful of their beauty. When they believe the lie that they are the ones to blame for the sins of men. 

That desire inside of you to be beautiful? It’s from God.

That desire to be delighted in? From God.

The desire to dress in a way that suits your personality and your body? From God.

Exploiting beauty is a problem. Enhancing is healthy. If you know that you are loved and that you are beautiful, you can own that runway. Even if your face is breaking out, your hair is a mess, and you’ve never walked in high heels before. 

You are beautiful. 

And You are loved.

That’s what I learned from my turn as a hair model. I wouldn’t change it for the world.