EXCLUSIVE: Meet Melissa Lori
|Melissa Lori is a multifaceted model, artist, and spiritual practitioner with a passion for spreading positivity and self-love. Her extensive modeling career has been featured in over 50 print magazines, including prestigious publications such as Playboy and Maxim. However, Melissa is more than just a pretty face – she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and owns her own LLC, which encompasses her modeling, music, and art careers, as well as her holistic healing practice.|
As a social media influencer and brand ambassador for lifestyle, health, and wellness companies, Melissa uses her platform to promote authenticity, anti-bullying, and women supporting women. She also shares her personal experiences through her YouTube channel and NFT collection.
Aside from her professional accomplishments, Melissa has a quirky and unique personality that sets her apart from the rest. Standing at 5’1″, she packs a huge personality and a contagious energy that makes others feel comfortable being themselves. Melissa is also a fitness fanatic who can eat more than any grown man, and she has over 20 tattoos and is extremely double-jointed.
Despite her busy schedule, Melissa loves to travel and is a thrill-seeker at heart. With her genuine spirit and infectious energy, Melissa Lori is a true artist who wears many hats and is always looking for new ways to spread positivity and inspire others to embrace their true selves.
Can you tell us about your journey in the modeling industry and how you got started?
I started modeling when I was 10 years old then stopped to finish school and began again in college at 20. From there my career just kind of took off and it went from a hobby to a full time career. It has definitely been a wavy windy up and down hill in the industry, I have even stopped modeling on and off but always come back because it is one of my true passions. I got to experience so many things like traveling, events, meeting others in the industry, working with top companies and magazines and it has really allowed me to become myself and yet continue to reinvent myself over the years.
How do you balance your various careers, including modeling, music, and art, and how do they complement each other?
Sometimes it’s a struggle because I am passionate about so many things and I have a lot of ideas, I do find myself scattered at times. I think because all of the entertainment industries are so wavy, you just have to ride the waves and see what comes and what goes. I really think they are all encompassed, if you ask any artist, I feel like there isn’t just one thing. Just like there are different zodiacs and energies, they are all connected. I feel the same way about all my careers, they’re all connected to excite our senses. Music and modeling are art forms. I think it’s how we define things and that shapes our reality. I want to write my own songs, sing them, model and dance in my own music videos that I came up with to create an entire story for people to experience! How cool would that be?!
What inspired you to incorporate spirituality and holistic healing into your brand, and how do you think it sets you apart in the industry?
It’s apart of who I am and what saved me. I think it’s really important to spread awareness and I know how much it has helped me and that’s what makes me want to incorporate it into everything I do and share it with the world. Especially in this industry, we deal with a lot from backlash on social media, finding it hard to date or have partners understand the craziness of the limelight, our own insecurities and mental health, and I have found so much grounding in my practices to really help me navigate the muddy waters of what being in the industry comes with.
You’ve been published in numerous magazines and worked with various brands. What has been your favorite project or collaboration so far and why?
Oh, that’s a tough one because I really have had some cool experiences. The first thing that comes to mind is definitely shooting with Holly Randall for Playboy, it was always my dream since I was younger to do playboy and getting to work with her was my dream coming to life. She was so kind and we shot such beautiful stuff that I will cherish when I am old and grey haha. I also remember getting to drive a porsche on the racetrack in Las Vegas for another shoot with the other models and that was a really cool experience. So many come to mind.
As a social media influencer, how do you approach brand partnerships and ensure they align with your values and brand?
I definitely get approached at times by things that do not align with my values and image. I have been approached by alcohol companies for instance an turn down or coffee because these are things that I don’t personally drink and don’t want to promote something false to the public. I like to be as authentic as possible on and off my social media. I really love partnering with health and wellness companies especially organic and vegan products because I want my followers to know me on a personal level. I do not want to lie to them.
Can you talk about your experience in the NFT world and how you see it evolving in the future?
I never really understood the crypto world if I am being honest haha, so getting into NFT’s was interesting and ironic but I was approached by friends that that really knew what they were doing. It definitely took me a while to understand. We made a beautiful collection that I am so proud of and even sold 3 pieces before the market totally crashed. The collection is still for sale but I have not been super in the crypto space as I have taken a step back to focus on other projects, but you never know that could change. I would like to make music videos and turn them into NFT’s.
You’re an anti-bullying advocate. How have your experiences shaped your advocacy work, and what advice do you have for others who may be dealing with bullying?
I have sadly dealt with bullying my entire life and it’s something I do not tolerate at all. Putting yourself out there and in the limelight unfortunately attracts a lot of attention as we know and quite a bit of it can be “bad” so to speak. We live in a world where people are hurt so they hurt others and that’s what bullying is, it’s a cry for help. Happy people, truly happy people don’t feel the need to tear others down. Plant medicine has really helped me reshape my thoughts and be more compassionate for the hateful comments or judgements. I would tell anyone dealing with bullying to remember that how people treat you, is how they feel about themselves. Most people are projecting their hurt and harm onto you because that’s what they feel. If you are happy with yourself and how you show up in the world, pay no mind to what anyone says because the only opinions that matter are between you and God, or the universe, or whoever you believe in. Everyone is struggling with their own demons and we do it in different ways.
How do you maintain your confidence and self-love in an industry that can often be superficial and competitive?
It can be hard and by hard, I mean I may look confident but some days I am so utterly mean to myself. We are continually told and shown what “beauty” is right? Bigger boobs and butt, tiny almost unattainable waistline, long thick hair, perfect skin, more filler in your lips, more likes, more comments, the list goes on. You have to know yourself or this industry will swallow you whole. It has taken patience, time, plant medicine, talking to myself in the mirror time and again to actually love myself. Even in present day, I STILL struggle comparing myself to others like most women do. I have been told I was not as pretty as the other models, that I should get bigger boobs and I would look better, if my skin cleared up I would be prettier…It is a harsh industry and you can let it eat you up or you can define yourself and what beauty means to you. Over the years I have stopped with my fake lashes, my massively over filled lips, allow my body and skin to age gracefully, and remind myself that self love will never ever come from the outside, only within.
You’ve mentioned your love for music. Can you talk about your creative process when it comes to writing and performing music?
I write sometimes every day. I could be driving, working out, or cooking and a song will just come to me and I’ll grab my phone and start to write or even sing it out. I imagine what the song would look like and it’s normally when I am going through something whether it be super happy or painful. Mostly when I am in pain, I write my best stuff. It’s when you don’t wanna feel everything you’re feeling, that everything comes rushing in and you see your life like that movie or music video. I am ultra shy (I know, hard to believe), when it comes to singing. Mostly being bullied caused me to have serious stage fright so I don’t do live performances and even get nervous when I record sometimes. Again, plant medicine has really helped me open my throat chakra and use my voice because it is what makes me happy and feel alive.
Finally, what are your plans for the future, both personally and professionally?
I personally plan to be the best version of myself on a spiritual, mental, physical, and emotional level lol. I want to continue traveling the world, laughing a lot, making art whenever and however I can, making memories to las a life time, and most importantly being authentic to myself. Professionally, I’d love to continue modeling, doing social media, singing and writing, and working on my reiki/coaching business, and helping others step into who they really are unapologetically. I want to spread awareness and be a voice in the world for whoever needs it.
You Can Follow Melissa On Instagram @MelissaLori