Every day we see social media influencers, as well as anyone with a social media account, talk about how fake everything is. They rant about how everything is curated, modified with photoshop or facetune, and how no one is showing who they really are. This stance has always frustrated me because the way we present ourselves on social media is often times the same way we present ourselves in the real world when we want to make a good impression. This idea of trying to be our best selves, or even something as ill-conceived as “fake it ‘till you make it” was not born on social media, it’s something nearly everyone on the world does, while simultaneously craving something real. Michelle, a.k.a thewickedlady is one of the most real influencers I’ve ever encountered. Sitting with her via video chat, I feel immediately at ease because she’s normal. There’s no performance, no hyped up mess, just a really cool girl.
Where did Wicked Lady come from?
Growing up watching Anime and Sailor Moon, I felt like I related very closely to the character Chibiusa, who is Usagi’s daughter who comes to visit Usagi from the Future. There’s a part in Sailor Moon R, where Chibiusa is convinced she is unloved by her friends and family, and she’s told that she is alone. This puts her in a really dark place and Wise Man turns her into the Wicked Lady. Growing up, I had a hard time finding myself and feeling very alone. I felt really unloved and I was in a dark place. But light was shed on me eventually and I realized that all these negative thoughts were not necessary and I should live my life to the fullest and be happy, and that’s also what helped Chibiusa return to her small lady self.
What got you into modeling?
It really wasn’t my initial plan to get into modeling, but I started when I was 18 and got serious when I was 20. I just started taking pictures when I had my pink hair, and my favorite hair dying brands started working with me. I started taking more pictures with my friends who were photographers and I grew from there. I did not do this on my own, I had a lot of help from my friends who helped me grow as an influencer and as a model and a person. I wouldn’t be anywhere without them.
Despite her modesty, Michelle is an amazing model. From the outfits she puts together to the poses the photographers capture there is pure magic in every image, even the silly ones that may or may not have been accidents. In my own personal modeling career, I pull inspiration from her work, because it’s not only beautiful but also carry an oddly perfect balance of elegance along with badass. Though from what I’ve gathered I’d say greatness with modesty is a fairly accurate way to describe Michelle. She’s absolutely incredible but doesn’t use her energy demanding you to tell her, or even acknowledge it. She’s just herself, just a girl with dreams, goals, and gifts like every other human being.
So along with everything else you have going on, you’re also a college student, what are you studying?
Currently studying Psychology, on route to receiving my bachelors, and eventually my PH.D. PSY.D in Industrial-Organizational Psychology. Psychology has always been my favorite subject, especially growing up in an unstable home environment, I felt it would be best to learn more about mental health to help myself and my loved ones. People tend to forget that mental health is extremely important in living a healthy, and happy life. But because we can’t physically “cure” mental illness as we do with the common flu, I feel like it’s left unattended, or not taken seriously. We’ve all heard the term, “It’s a phase”, and in some cases, it really isn’t and leaves us more bruised and broken.
Mental health is one of the number one things we’re dealing with in today’s world. From loud, known cases like Kanye West, to the closed-off kids in the back of hundreds of classrooms who are feeling overwhelmed with anxiety, depression, or anything else. However despite overwhelming evidence of this challenge people still act like it doesn’t exist. People poke fun, or minimize the importance of mental health, but scream about mental health every time someone is taken from the world. It needs to be taken seriously, and taken care of.
What is the goal for you?
My main goal is to figure out myself, and create a path for myself in a way that is healthy and happy for my family and I. I don’t want to live a life dependent on money but I do want to live comfortably. In general, I would love to be able to make a difference and help people when they are feeling alone or in the dark. I know at times people feel really hopeless and let down and I want to set a reminder that people feel the same way and we should all be there for each other as a support system. (Enough serious time I also want to be the greatest pokemon master ever YAAAGGAA)
The minute she makes this joke I break and can’t stop laughing. The fact that she can go from completely serious to completely ridiculous is so comforting. I find myself laughing not only at the joke, but at how nervous I felt when I was preparing for this interview. I’m laughing at myself for being nervous, for worrying that the real person would be different from the person on instagram, or from the Twitch streamer who will randomly stop playing a game and instead let her audience watch her bake cookies at 2am. We’ve become so used to the endless performance of content creators, that seeing someone who, it seems, is completely herself, is honestly disarming at first.
3 Breakfast must haves?
PANCAKES WITH CHOCOLATE CHIPS. (All time favorite food), Roasted Potatoes or anything with potatoes, and blueberry muffins!
Describe your perfect day
Honestly, waking up on a rainy day with my significant other and Goku(my cat) . A full 8 hours of sleep. Not having to worry about drama or struggles. Staying in binge-watching the LOTR/ Hobbit Trilogy, drinking Hot Cocoa, eating everything and anything that I can that has potatoes and corn. (I’m a mess but I’m a SLOOT for Elote). and not having to worry about work/homework assignments in college. I’m a simple lass.
Rave or mosh pit?
Considering I used to go to a lot of concerts and got used to being swiftly kicked in the head in mosh pits, now I would prefer raves mainly because it’s a more loving and sweet environment and it’s a lot more affectionate.
Top 10 songs on your playlist right now?
Sunflower- Post Malone
IDWK – Dvbbs
Girls – The 1975
Kamikaze – MO
Take me As You Please – Story So Far
In Bloom – Neck Deep
From the Outside – Real Friends
Disrespectin’ – 88Rising
Bright Pink Tims – BlackBear
Ocean – Martin Garrix / Khalid
This playlist is available through Google Play on our blog!
What advice would you give up and coming models to help avoid scam businesses/shady photographers?
– Be cautious for red flags, pay attention to their “creative” ideas such as import/lude/ implied. If they don’t allow you to bring a friend during shoots. Check in with others who may have shot with them to get their input with their experience. Also – always meet in a public area and do not shoot with them in a private area. Try to shoot outdoors first, to see how they vibe during the shoot, and FOLLOW YOUR GUT FEELING. If something is off about them, cut the shoot short.
What got you into Twitch streaming and what do you enjoy most about it?
I used to work for a shady ass stream house with 10 other girls, and those girls turned to be the sweetest and most loving girls I’ve met. Although the work itself was garbage, it was the people who worked with me who motivated and inspired me to continue twitch streaming. I met such amazing and wonderful people within that house. ❤ I love being able to get personal and talk to my viewers one on one, and I love making them laugh. If you’ve watched my twitch streams, I do dance parties in onesies because I know as much as it makes me look like a fool, it makes my viewers laugh and happy, and that’s all I want for them ❤
If you could live in any Studio Ghibli movie which one would you pick?
Kiki’s Delivery Service or Mary and the Witch’s Flower ❤
You’re very open about mental health and your struggles with it. Was that always something you were open to sharing or was there a moment where you decided to do that?
I used to shut everyone out. I bottled up all of my emotions because I grew up being afraid of them. I was told to keep my head held high and never let my guard down. Showing sadness meant a sign of weakness to me growing up, but it just felt so inhuman to me knowing people feel the same way too and I couldn’t express it. I had a really bad experience back in middle school that completely destroyed me and my mindset. It was all because of social media. It tore me down and turned me into this monster who couldn’t learn to love herself. It stressed me out and brought so much anxiety. I figured, if ever I came back to social media, it would be to help others who felt the way I did. I don’t want anyone to feel like they were alone in life. I get it, suicide hotlines and phone numbers and therapists are provided for those who feel like they want to talk to someone. But in all honesty, it’s hard to find it within myself/yourself to talk to a complete stranger about your problems. It’s better to even talk to someone who you feel like you can trust. As a young adult, I feel like it would be better if I had open arms to those who need it.
So I have to include at least one question about FBE and I have just one, important question: when they finish filming Try Not to Eat do they give you free rein?
NOPE, WE CAN’T EAT JACK SHIT AND IT MAKES ME UPSET BECAUSE IT’S THE ULTIMATE TEASE. ( I love me some honey glazed HAM)
If you haven’t watched the Try Not To Eat Challenge videos from FBE I highly recommend them. They’re hilarious, and Michelle is in most of them.
Do you know how dope you are?
God No. I honestly think I’m way too dorky sometimes. I like having this persona on Instagram but being able to be myself and be goofy and fun as well. I don’t like to be serious, I really don’t. But I do have a feisty side when I see something I’m not okay with. I’m not really afraid to snap back if something doesn’t feel right.
Whether she becomes a therapist, psychologist, model, or anything else Michelle is destined for even greater and more amazing heights than she’s already reached. The world could benefit from someone not only as amazing as she is, but as honest and she is. I’m excited to see what’s next for her!