When we see a model who gets so many magazine covers and jobs, one wonders how much effort and perseverance she puts into everyday life to stay on top of the wave. We spoke to Amber Zhaoyang Wang to find out where her passion for fashion comes from, how she cultivated it and how she maintains it. From her beginnings in Pennsylvania, back to China and then back to the US, Amber has always followed her instincts and what about her, so far she hasn’t been wrong for sure.
What was your life like before starting your modeling career and what plans did you have?
Before I started modeling, my family always told me I should become a lawyer. I joined the debate team at Penn State but realized that this wouldn’t be the passion I would fight for my whole life. I still loved fashion, so I participated in an internship during NYFW. Later on, I fell in love with the fashion industry and knew that I would love it for my entire life. So passion led me into modeling.
Your social media fanbase is growing a lot. How do you feel about “influencing” the new generations? It can be a great responsibility, isn’t it?
In the beginning, I treated Instagram as my modeling portfolio and tried to feature amazing photos and runway videos. At first, I didn’t think it was growing a lot during these years. At the same time, I noticed that I was actually beginning to influence others. I first noticed this when a modeling coach in China used me as an example when teaching modeling to other children. From that moment, it pushed me to work harder and think about how the way one behaves is important as you do not just represent yourself.
How do you shop normally? Like many young people today, do you prefer online shopping? What are your favorite e-commerce sites?
Honestly, I love to shop in stores, because that way I can feel the fabric and color. Fabric means a lot to me. However, during Covid, online shopping became more and more popular. But I will search on TikTok to see how the clothes really look without a filter and then decide if I want to buy them. It works really well!
After so many shoots, what is your favorite so far and why?
I have had so many shoots, but my favorite is always with photographer Jorge Duva. Recently I was on the cover of Marie Claire Mexico. I loved that shoot, which was shot in Everglades, Miami. That location has a lot of alligators hahaha, but it is so beautiful. I remember when I took the cover photos, I saw baby alligators swimming. That was a little bit challenging but at the same time after living in Miami for two years, you get used to the alligators.
You have worked for many magazines and fashion shows. What do you prefer about the creative process during filming?
Teamwork is so important when taking magazine covers. We need an amazing make-up artist, stylist, hair stylist, light technician, and photographer. Every small step is so significant. Missing any one of these points can stop you from achieving your ideal result. I love to see when everyone participating is so good in their own field and then boom! We creating an amazing result and everyone is so happy about it.
We know you were educated by the great Coco Rocha. Coco was also our cover girl, a wonderful person. Have you attended her courses? Any funny anecdotes?
Yes, I attended the Coco Rocha course. Coco is a fantastic mentor, and she taught us how to pose! She instructed us on playing with your pose within the first 5 min and had us practice, and she has a book called “Thousands of Pose”. After practicing every day, this became muscle memory. When the photoshoot starts, you change your pose when the camera begins taking photos. After each click I hear, I know to change to a different pose. This becomes a form of communication between photographer and model.
What is the best part of being a model? The incredible emotion of live shows or seeing your face on the covers?
I love the lifestyle that modeling brings me. I love eating healthy food, working out, and staying hydrated. Your mind and your body are connected. When you feed your body with good fuel, your mind also feels happy.
Speaking of personal care: we want to know everything, from your beauty routine to how many times you go to the gym!
When it comes to skincare, you don’t need expensive products to have good skin. However, it is important to understand what is in the products, such as rose water and other important ingredients. I personally love ordinary, simple products. In terms of exercise, I work out every day. I enjoy doing various forms such as running, biking, boxing, and jumping jacks. However, one thing I always do is take a walk after dinner. In China, we have the old saying that goes “Walk a hundred steps after a meal and live to be ninety-nine years old”. Walking after a meal is something I always do.