by MIKE CHAIKEN
If you catch Bella Lyn on her Instagram Live episodes, you’ll find a rambunctious bouncy teen.
She will dance about. She will mug for the camera. She is a cartoon come to life. All the while, she shares makeup tips and shares stories of her life in the Midwest.
“I am a natural goofball,” said Bella in an email interview. “I’ve always been silly and energetic.”
“A lot of people think it is a character because I would be off and on with the excitement, but I am human and I do have bad days, which do sometimes, effects me on my lives, videos, etc.,” said Bella (@BellalynOfficial).
“I feel it’s important to have fun when shooting or filming because when you are being too serious, the fire will burn out and it won’t be fun anymore and start to feel more like a chore,” said Bella.
“Of course, you still want to be professional,” said Bella, “but it’s always fun to spark some fun. Besides, that’s just my personality.”
As she passes into her teens, Bella, 13, said she recognizes that where she was as a tween is in a transformative phase.
“I am maturing now and fading out of my ‘Disney look,’” said Bella.
As a model, working fashion shoots, Bella has more lofty fashion ambitions in mind (She likes the idea of being a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model.)
But she knows being a little off center on set will be an advantage.
“For my main goal, which is to model for Sports illustrated, I believe I will still have my goofball personality, as that is me, but it will probably not be as extreme,” said Bella.
Fashion model is one goal, but Bella would like to be one of those celebrities who does it all—actor, social influencer and social influencer.
“I would love to be the next Tyra Banks or Rebecca Romjin where they started with modeling, but it led to other opportunities and different media platforms,” said Bella.
In 10 years, Bella said, “I see myself on the cover of Sports Illustrated, in movies, doing makeup professionally, traveling the world, visiting schools to talk about bullying, donating to animal shelters and helping the environment.”
Recently, Bella joined up with Babes Against Bullying, which was an Instagram account launched by a fellow model Avaryana Rose.
Bella noted she has been criticized and cyberbullied on social media for photographs of her modeling swimsuits.
“I noticed early on that modeling swimsuits was something a lot of girls have been judged on, so I was very hesitant starting out because I didn’t want to be judged, hated, and bullied,” said Bella.
“The beautiful and kind Avaryana created this great page to help remind girls its okay to wear swimsuits, and it’s okay to be you and follow your own goals whether society agrees or not,” said Bella.
Even before the social media battles, Bella said she suffered bullying at school. Her peers would make a point of staying after class to taunt her. ”Girls (told) people to not to be friends with me, people ignore(ed) me when I (tried) to sit with them, (I was) called awful names, rumors (were) spread, and even my friends (told) me they can’t be friends with me because they don’t want people to hate them.”
“Besides being bullied by peers, I have had to endure judgment and bullying from adults as well,” said Bella. “I was judged by one of my cheer coaches, certain family members, and more model moms that I can’t even keep count,” said Bella.
“All because my goal was different than their goal or their daughters modeling goal, and they could only see the worst, expect the worst, and assume the worst, all because I wanted to model active wear or swimming suits,” said Bella.
Despite the haters, Bella said, “Even at my lowest points I chose to keep head up.”
When she heard about Babes Against Bullying, Bella said the thought behind the Instagram page struck a chord. She said she wants models to support each other and not knock each other down.
Even though there are distractions, Bella is keen on achieving success.
“I want people to know my name and know my story,” said Bella. “I want people to know that nothing came easy for me and I worked my way up and they can too.”
PHOTOS by MIKE CHAIKEN shot with the app CLOS remotely on iPhones while Bella Lyn was in Florida with her mother holding the camera.