Meet Lornalitz, Joanna and Ivory, three of season 2 Curvy Girls!
Season 2 premieres June 11th at 10pm on NUVOtv.
By Elia Esparza
The cable network, NuvoTV has been making news with its groundbreaking English-language programming targeting U.S. Latinos. At this year’s TV Upfronts in New York, it was announced that Jennifer Lopez had joined the network as an investor and taking on an active role as Chief Creative Officer. She will be contributing programming, work on strategy and assist in marketing.
But the show that is catching on like a wild California fire is Curvy Girls. In season 2, the ladies get sexier, more glamorous, and are bursting with all the drama and chisme the Big Apple can handle!
Season 2 features professional models: Lornalitz Baez, Joanne Borgella, Ivory Mae Kalber, Denise Bidot and Rosie Mercado. All five plus-size professional models take us inside their world where things change quicker than a fashion trend! In this new season, things get more personal dealing with fiery romances, baby gossip, getting along with the new model… issues of not just young women working in a glamorous industry… but confronts ladies,a lot of us who are dealing with or have dealt with: image problems, weight, and men.
Recently I got an opportunity to ask three of the ladies about their shows, lives and dealing with the challenges of being a plus size model in an industry that thrives on unhealthy skinniness.
Latin Heat: How has being on Curvy Girls changed your life?
Lorna: Being on Curvy Girls changed my life completely. I made the transition from straight model to plus model. After season one premiered, I signed with a plus agency and have been working for top clients such as Kmart, Ashley Stewart, Fashion to Figure, Lane Bryant, to name a few. I feel blessed to finally be living my dream, but most of all I am able to be myself, curvy and proud!
Joanne: I’m very happy to be the newest cast member on the show! I’m looking forward to the many doors it will open.
Ivory: It’s been so amazing to be a positive role model and inspiration to women everywhere. Curvy Girls is seriously the best thing to have happened to me!
LH: How has being a successful Curvy Girls affected your relationship with your girlfriends or siblings? Any envy or jealousy issues?
Lorna: My close childhood friends and siblings support my career and are proud of me. As for my friendships within the industry, I have to be honest I’ve noticed some change from some females but that just shows me who are true friends and who aren’t.
Joanne: I always stay true to who I am and never change as a result of being on a show so I have never had any jealousy issues or problems with friends or family. People that know me know that I love to entertain and be around others. However, I am new to Curvy Girls so check back with me in a few months and I’ll let you know if anyone’s acting up in my life [she laughs],
Ivory: Probably but they haven’t told me! Ha! Ha!
Lorna: As young as 12-years old, my body frame was of an18-year old. Curves run in my Hispanic household and I thought that was the norm. But in junior high school I was made fun of because of my full figured body and 5’9″ height. I would only feel comfortable when I attended my after-school modeling courses at Barbizon. Unfortunately, in the beginning of my modeling years I was told to lose my curves, which forced me to become bulimic and an addict to diet pills. A few years ago, I made the conscious decision to go against the stereotypes and stand up for what I believed in, which is to accept myself the way God made me, curves and all. I am the happiest now that I have ever been.
Joanne: Growing up I was fortunate enough to have never been bullied. I know so many people go through that in life, and have to deal with other people’s ignorance. What I can say to them is be true to who you are and always stand up for yourself. Being different is a beautiful thing and what makes each of us special.
Ivory: I’m not sure I ever endured bullying but of course I’ve heard negative comments over the years. One time I even received an anonymous letter in the mail saying ‘Ivory you should lose weight.’ It was obviously from a friend…very strange and hurtful. All of that negativity just made me eat more and feel worse about myself. So when I was in my early twenties I sought treatment for Binge Eating Disorder and that helped me so much in every way. I also happened to lose 15 pounds and I’ve kept it off to this day. I’m really proud to say I no longer binge and I have a healthy relationship with food.
LH: What gave you the confidence to shake off the negative social perceptions about weight and pursue your dreams of modeling, acting and becoming a TV personality?
Lorna: I think what gave me the confidence to shake off the negative perception about weight and pursue my dreams was my determination and ambitious personality. I also know there are many girls struggling with bulimia or diet pills addiction. I wanted to share my story with the world in the hopes of saving someone’s life.
Joanne: My mother and father raised me to believe that anything is possible and dreams can come true no matter what your nationality is, the size of your clothing, or the color of your skin. With knowing that and having faith, I pursued my dreams and every time a door shut I looked at it and realized that it closed because a better one was going to open. I have been on this journey since I was 13 and I will never stop believing in me. I want others to see me and feel inspired knowing that I don’t look like everyone else on TV, but I am there and I am pursuing everything my heart desires! Boom!
Ivory: Knowing that I was worth it and receiving so much positive feedback from everyone. I didn’t always have the confidence I have today… I’ve endured a lot of tragedy in my life so I knew I had to find my dream and my passion and go after it. It’s been the best gift I could’ve ever given myself. Now confidence is something I’m known for and I love that.
Lorna: I get many compliments from men. When I am encountered with a backhanded compliment I usually have a smart comeback. Something along the line like “Thanks! That’s a nice shirt”. [She laughs].
Joanne: Women have told me that, I’ve never gotten that from a man. I would just tell them thank you and sometimes I would say what about the rest of me? [She laughs]. They would then of course feel a little embarrassed and then give me 50 compliments… I’m not quite sure they would do it to necessarily try to single out my body… I think they were just paying me a compliment on a feature that stood out to them. I think men like my curves, more to love!
Ivory: Not only men but women also have told me this too. I tell them I have a beautiful body too!
LH: Now that you’re popular, how do you know someone is interested in you for who you are and not because of the show… will you go out with someone who would not have pursued you if you weren’t on the show?
Lorna: It is very hard to tell if someone is genuine or not. I think I just have to go with my intuition for that one.
Joanne: I am in an amazing relationship with my boyfriend Alexís Ramirez. We’ve been together for almost two years. He’s my best friend! So I don’t have to worry about that.
Ivory: I’m very good at reading people and I have a lot more to my personality than you see on Curvy Girls. It really doesn’t do a lot for me if a guy is just into me for what I’ve done on TV or in a magazine… if I don’t resonate with someone it’s just not going to happen.
Thank you, beautiful Curvy Girls! We can’t wait for your “Curvy” drama!
About Curvy Girls Interviewed:
A former contestant on NUVOtv’s Model Latina Las Vegas, Lornalitz knows all about fierce competition. She recently signed to Heffner Management and has appeared in ads for Kmart, Ashley Stewart, L’Oréal and Fashion to Figure. With her gorgeous looks and talent, you can expect this Puerto Rican Brooklynite to continue to trailblaze in her career with new and exciting clients.
Ivory Mae Kalber
Ivory was 14 when she made her first attempt at modeling — only to be told she “needed to lose some weight.” Unwilling to compromise her integrity, she put her modeling aspirations on hold to finish high school and graduate college. Now this smart and sexy blue-eyed siren is living her dream and has worked as a professional model for nearly a decade. Ivory has been seen in campaigns for Lane Bryant and Target and has appeared in Glamour and O.
Multi-talented newcomer Joanne is a force to be reckoned with. The singer-songwriter and American Idol alum is repped by powerhouse agency Wilhelmina Models. She is also a fashion designer with her own jewelry and plus-size clothing lines. One of the first plus-size beauties to walk the runway of New York Fashion Week, Joanne has also modeled for Ashley Stewart, Macy’s and Nordstrom and has graced several covers of Plus Model Magazine.