As the star of Seafolly's spring 2016 campaign, Melbourne-bred model Shanina Shaik was proud to be the first Aussie face in a couple of seasons
She's the Aussie girl turned international model who's become a regular on the Victoria's Secret runway and on the coves of Vogue India and Harper's Bazaar Singapore. But like most Aussie models, when you score the chance to shoot a swimsuit campaign at the beach - there's no better place than home. Touching down in Sydney last week for a whirlwind trip (before heading off the Paris to walk in Ralph & Russo's couture show), Shanina found time to attend the official launch of Seafolly's spring 2016 campaign. Shot in the northern-NSW paradise of Byron Bay, Shanina was lucky enough to bring model friends Hannah Ferguson and Nadine Leopold along for the shoot with Ben Watts. Here, she chats to Yeong Sassall about bikini shoots, diets and planning her upcoming wedding to fiancé DJ Ruckus.
We haven't had an Australian face of Seafolly for a couple of seasons. Were you excited about this?
Yeah, I was very honoured to have been chosen to be a part of the Seafolly campaign, being an Australian brand, as well and a brand that I grew up with and I love. When I was younger I always bought Seafolly, so to be part of something so amazing, great and part of Australian culture makes me happy and really excited.
Tell us about shooting in Byron Bay. Did you have to do much prep?
I work out throughout the year so I've been lucky, but leading up to the shoot I started cutting out the carbs and hitting the gym a little bit more. But yeah, I love being on the beach, love being in my swimsuit. We had gorgeous weather, too. We were very lucky.
What's your diet like? I read that you follow the blood type diet?
I do. I eat according to my blood type. Over time, [I've seen] results and I've found that it keeps me energised and well balanced. With all the travel I do, it's very important to learn about what's right for my body. It definitely works for me, [my diet] is very protein-based. I'm an O-blood type, so a lot of protein is very important and vegetables too.
What sort of training do you do?
I like to mix up my workouts, I think it's important to keep your workouts exciting so you don't get bored with what you're doing. Hitting the gym can be very tiring at times so anything to mix it up. I do yoga, Pilates, boxing (every now and then) and different types of classes with friends like SoulCycle. Working out with friends also keeps your adrenaline, which also makes your workouts more exciting.
What's your favourite type of exercise?
I really love yoga. I do a class in America called Y7 Yoga. It's a vinyasa, it's a faster flow in a dark room with candles lit and they play hip-hop. They take you through three flows and your last flow you do it by yourself, you can do what you want, mix anything that you want. They play hip-hop, so you hear Drake and The Weeknd, Beyoncé, Rhianna... I love it. I think when you work out you need great music and that's what I needed to get into yoga, I didn't actually like yoga before and when I found these classes I was like, 'This is great, I'm motivated while I do those hard poses'.
Do you ever have cheat days?
I think it's important to have an 80/20 balance and eat in moderation. Don't keep yourself from having something that you want. I have a huge sweet tooth so that's my big issue. I like chocolates and cupcakes and cookies and ice-cream - I'm obsessed. So it can be quite difficult when I go out to restaurants and the dessert menu comes along!
Lastly, how are your wedding plans coming along? Are you in the midst of planning?
Yes, slowly. We definitely want it on a beach - warm weather is important for our wedding - but not too warm! We have a lot of family and friends, so obviously it's a bit tricky finding a location. It's a lot to do so we're planning very slowly. I've found a dress that I really adore, and its very my style and would suit me, so I'm looking forward to that being made.