Tyra Banks Explains Why “Perfect Is Boring” And Shares How Mama Carolyn Helped Her Build Confidence

May 13, 2018  |  

perfect is boring


Although it seems that supermodel and entertainment mogul Tyra Banks never has a day where she isn’t smizing confidently while making career moves, the former Victoria’s Secret Angel and author has always been transparent about her struggles with self-esteem and acceptance. The 44-year-old recently admitted to having surgery on her nose early in her career and spoke on how harshly women judge each other on what they choose to do (or not to do) to feel beautiful each day.

Last week, the businesswoman sat down with the TODAY Show and discussed a her new book Perfect is Boring: 10 Things my Crazy, Fierce Mama Taught me About Beauty, Booty and Being a Boss, a project she co-authored with her mom, Carolyn London. Banks shares that like many young women, she battled with body-shame in her early teens and her mother, Carolyn London was one of the first people to teach her how to build confidence:

“I think one of my biggest insecurities growing up was losing a lot of weight.”

“People would stare at me because it was so awkward and I kind of looked ill…I was a very sad girl during those years.”

Banks recalls her mother taught her that intangible traits were just as beautiful as physical ones:

“Or she would compliment me on my handwriting — you know, just other things so that I didn’t always think (my appearance) was the only thing that mattered.”

London shares that uplifting her daughter’s spirit was a gut reaction as a mother and she felt it was important that her daughter always felt beautiful from the inside out:

“I just had to go with my gut because, as women, we all experience (body shame) in one way, shape or form. A lot of what I did was instill in her things that were much more important than your physical being — I tried to work really hard on the inner Tyra and to get her to focus on the great qualities that she had.”

Her tactics might be the reason why Banks has such a bomb personality and business savvy, in the past hosting several talks shows including FABLife and producing and hosting her show America’s Next Top Model which has been on the air for 24 seasons with over 30 versions of the show being produced internationally. Banks shares her mother is a big reason why she’s such a go-getter, a trait she hopes to pass on to her almost 2-year-old son, York:

“I think what made me what I am today is my mom being really tough on me in certain situations. Sometimes when I was having a pity party, she would shake my shoulders and say, ‘I did not raise a quitter.'”

“I want (my son) to have crazy work ethic and tunnel vision — to have a goal and go forward. Hopefully he understands that to reach something, he has to sacrifice today to enjoy things tomorrow.”

Banks told People magazine that she hopes Perfect is Boring… will serve as inspiration to readers to reach out to the “mamas” in their life to help lift one another up through being honest and sometimes awkward:

“No matter what the situation was, my mama always had my back. I want people to feel like someone’s got their back after they read the book. By having conversations about taboo things or uncomfortable topics, it’s actually being real. I want them to have the confidence to reach out to their “mama”—whether or not it’s their actual mom or dad or auntie or BFF, etc.—and be able to talk about stuff that makes everybody at the dining room table blush.”

Perfect Is Boring… is now available at a bookstore near you, but in the meantime Banks and Mama Carolyn teamed up for another project for PAPER magazine in which they tackled impersonating some other iconic mother-daughter duos. Check out the them getting their smize on below:


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