Every week, Bazaar's booking team highlights one name to note, from the industry's best-known faces to girls who are just starting out. This week, we turn our attention to Radhika Nair.
Nair's foray into modelling marked a Paris Fashion Week debut; dressed in bright head-to-toe florals as an exclusive booking for Balenciaga's spring/summer 2017 presentation, the 25-year-old became the first Indian woman to ever walk the runway for the house.
With her covetable curls, bold brows and incredible bone structure, Nair has since emerged as one of the most sought-after newcomers of the autumn/winter 2017 season following her appearances at Vetements, Miu Miu, Loewe, Etro, Mulberry and JW Anderson.
"Radhika's energy is contagious and she is the most outgoing and hilarious girl I have met," says Jordan Beam at Ford Models. "This is why clients love to work with her and why she gets rebooked over and over. She has that star quality that you are just born with."
We talk to Nair about being spotted in Delhi, her home of Kerala and photography.
How were you discovered?
"I was in Delhi last year when I met Henry Thomas through my friend Nikhil, he then scouted me for the Balenciaga show."
If you weren't modelling, which career would you pursue and why?
"I don't know what I would be doing now. I would have probably liked to study further, most likely in literature or films. Who knows?"
What would you say has been the highlight of your career so far?
"I would definitely say that being able to be a part of such passionate designers' collections, the quality of all of the work is gratifying. I wouldn't be able to single out any particular moment as being the highlight."
How do you spend your free time?
"I love to read and meet my mates, like everyone else. I also indulge in a lot of cinema and photographs."
Do you have any travel tips for those visiting your home town?
"Go to Kerala on the Malabar Coast. If you can find it, eat some Kappa and meen [tapioca and fish] curry. Watch a Kathakali performance, explore the backwaters, get an Ayurvedic massage and lastly explore the Western Ghats of Kerala."
What are the three products you can't live without?
"Coconut oil, honey and my perfume Florabotanica by Balenciaga."
What is your favourite form of exercise?
"All I really do at the moment is walking and a lot of climbing the stairs, but I am going to start kick-boxing lessons soon."
What is your dream shoot?
"I got to work with a young photographer from Paris called Camneh, I absolutely adore her work. I look up to Jamie Peter Hugo, Martin Parr and Bharat Sikka as photographers. Steven Meisel will always be a dream whenever that works out. I can't wait to find myself in Greenland and Iceland soon enough with any one of them, although not all of them are fashion photographers."
Name your five essential items you wouldn't leave the house without?
"Wallet, Metro card, my phone, mints and a book."
If you had to wear only one designer, who would it be?
What kind of advice would you give to new girls to the industry?
"You have got nothing to prove."
Is there a model's career that you admire and why?
"I have never really followed anybody's career, but I have made some great friends in the industry and am part of their journey."
What is your life motto?
"One day at a time."
Let's talk about favourites. What about…
…music? "Soul, hip-hop and everything in between. My first love is Carnatic music of southern India."
…movies? "Holy Motors blew my mind and I am still recovering from it."
…books? "I always have a book in my bag, but the first novel I ever read was at 14, it was called Afghanistan, Where God Only Comes To Weep by Siba Shakib. It is very intense and I think highly of people of that country and the way they cope with their struggles."
…food? "I wouldn't discriminate against food, I will eat anything. Food is a luxury, but Indian tops."