No matter what hurdles you face in life, you should not stop dreaming. Meet Lavina Israni, a model, actor, and social media influencer who proves the same. She has been in the industry for a decade now. Born and brought up in Mumbai, Lavina graduated from Jai Hind in Financial Market and did her post-graduation from Welingkar. She has been participating in several fashion shows from a young age. She is the winner of Yamaha Miss Fascino Mumbai 2018 by Yamaha Fascino Miss Diva 2018, where she was part of the top 5 in the finals. Also, she is the 1st runner-up at Glam Icon 2015. After facing a lot of difficulties Lavina is still standing strong which makes her an inspiring personality. So, let us dive straight into knowing more about this super talented soul.
Initially, Lavina started her journey by doing advertisements. Being a student of Jai Hind College, she started participating in fashion shows. Eventually, she started doing shows outside the college as well. She used to find her gigs through social media. After graduation, she dedicated herself to pursuing modeling as a full-time career. If not modeling, Lavina could have become a doctor. Adding to which, she says
“I do not know but I always had this thing to be a surgeon. Then I realised it takes a lot of effort and always thought that God has gifted me with something else to share with the world.”
As mentioned above, she participated in a lot of pageants, so sharing the best moment, Lavina said that growing up, she used to watch a lot of fashion shows on Television. Few models inspired her a lot. However, she later worked with them but there was one model alongside her that motivated her. Explaining further, Lavina says,
“It was the final day of Glam Icon and my health was a little down. Because of which I could not perform well during the rehearsals. So someone came to me and said that I don’t seem interested. I was like I gave 15 days how can I not be interested. That made me a little upset.
There was one model whom I really like, named Gwen Athaide who came to me and said ‘Think about other contestants who are afraid of you but if you will sit like this, it will be their victory. So do you really want to give them that?’ This was the girl whom I grew up watching and she is coming to me and telling me this. That moment was quite empowering.”
When asked whether she faced any sort of societal pressure, Lavina told, that a lot of people initially criticized her for choosing modeling as a career. But her mother has been a real support to her and never let her bother what society talks about.
“I never paid any heed, rather I felt really sad for people who did not understand what I am into. Because they do not know this side of the world. I believe in life one should explore all stages that life has to offer”
Lavina started acting in TVC’s at a very young age. On asking how she managed her studies, Lavina replied that in her family, a degree meant a lot. So her mother made it very clear to her that education should be the top priority and everything else can be done in their respective times.
I used to go to class in the morning and then the whole day I would travel to give multiple audition whenever my agent called. I think after giving 100s of auditions, I cracked a TVC. So that one ad turned into four ads back to back for Nickelodeon. Later I signed a movie but met with an accident and alot of stuff happened. So I focussed more on myself.
While discussing the accident she met, Lavina said that she believes in god and in the divine plan. Also, all the time she spent in bed involved a lot of spiritual inner healing.
“When something happens to me in the gym while doing boxing and all, people ask me if I am hurt. But most of the time, I am like I have gone through so much in life that this is basically nothing. It is like peanuts in front of the kind of challenges I have faced. I think it is in a way God’s divine plan. So having a vision always kept me going.”
Currently, Lavina is more inclined towards her acting career and has involved herself more in social media influencing due to covid. Being on social media and having a large following Lavina has faced trolling as well. Talking about her pageant days, Lavina mentioned that she was trolled quite a lot. Elaborating more, She says,
“I was at a wedding function, and then I saw my phone buzzing quite a lot. I kept it on silent and enjoyed the function. Later, it just struck me that I can simply switch off comments than bothering so much by deleting them. I have learned one thing from my grandfather that no matter how the situation is, you can either cry about it or laugh it off. So when life gives you lemons make lemonade out of it.
I do get trolled, someone just made a meme page about me. In the last lockdown, I think people were sitting free so they made a meme page. But they were cute memes and sometimes I also share memes from there.”
Talking about the impact of social media on the industry, Lavina mentioned that social media has brought positive change. It has helped to increase the inclusivity of the LGBTQIA+ community and plus-size model.
Nowadays, fashion houses send requirements specially for them. Normal people do not know this but due to social media people form differnt communities have reached out. In a way it feels good. If you use social media for your own benefit it is good.”
The toughest part of being a model and a social media influencer according to Lavina is to create a trend rather than following it. One should know what their audience likes more. For her, people like her saree posts and videos. Throwing light on the current fashion trends Lavina says anything and everything from the 90s and 80’s era is trending these days.
The impact which modeling has thrown on her life is that she learned a lot in terms of fashion which also boosted her confidence.
“Modeling has helped in grooming myself. The confidence with which you walk in the room should turn heads. I learned a lot of fashion sense. I had that back then, but knowing what to wear when and how to style for an event came from modeling. How to face the press and how to network came from modeling itself.”