Irina Shayk is a Russian model with unusual looks, but we can tell you that they absolutely work. She’s often taken for South American, but she actually gets her dark skin from her ethnic Tatar father. Her light green eyes, on the other hand, come from her Russian mother.
Born in 1986, the young Irina spent seven years at a music school, where she played piano, and sang in the choir. Her father’s death, when the future model was fourteen, left the family pretty hard up. After school, Shayk took up marketing studies, but found it wasn’t for her, so she and her sister enrolled at a beauty school. Here, her beauty was spotted by someone from a local modelling agency, who persuaded her to enter the Miss Chelyabinsk contest. Of course, she won! What did you expect?
In 2007, she was chosen as the face of Intimissimi, and after three years, became official ambassador. That year, she was also rookie in the annual Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. She is now a regular in the publication, and in 2011, was its first Russian covermodel. Modelling jobs followed for the likes of Lacoste, Morellato, Cesare Paciotti, and the Victoria’s Secret catalogue, with covers for Woman, Jalouse, Twelv, Bolero, Paris Capital, and Annabelle.
In recent years, the Russian has modelled an Armani Exchange campaign, appeared on the covers of GQ South Africa and Ocean Drive, and taken part in Kanye West’s Power video. A switch to high fashion came with a feature in Harper’s Bazaar Spain, and a cover shoot for Elle Spain. Still on a Spanish theme, that country’s Glamour magazine proclaimed her as Best International Model of 2010, while back in the swimwear world, Shayk was the face of Luli Fama’s 2011 campaign and lookbook.
We’re not surprised that life’s busy for the supermodel now, with highlights that include work with Lacoste and La Senza, fourteen Cosmopolitan covers internationally, a Vogue Spain editorial with Mario Testino, and an Elle Spain Christmas cover. She took to the runway for Jeremy Scott in New York, and for Givenchy in Paris. She has even found time recently for her first acting part, in Hercules: the Thracian Wars, and in addition, is supporting a hospital in her home town of Yemanzhelinsk.
If she’s not careful, all those beach shoots could lead to dry skin, so Irina drinks plenty of water. Apart from that, she doesn’t bother too much about dieting, although she believe in healthy eating, with fruit, vegetables, high fibre, tofu and citrus juice always on the menu. She enjoys the occasional cake, ice cream, or pizza, preferring TV suppers to restaurant fare. At home, she shops for Russian food to cook, but never overeats.
She can always combat the occasional dietary lapse with a workout, although she avoids any heavy work. She sticks to jogging and cardio exercises, like boxing, cycling, running and Pilates, but believes that it’s important not to overdo it. Her partner, footballer Cristiano Ronaldo, obviously thinks she’s found the right balance – and who are we to argue with his good taste?
Irina Shayk Photographed By Vincent Peters For GQ Spain’s December 2010 Issue
Model Irina Shayk In Vanity Fair Photographer lan Gelati
Russian model Irina Shayk Shot by photographer Yu Tsai For Esquire Magazine February 2012
Russian Model Irina Shayk Modelling For S Moda May 2012 Photography By Alvaro Beamud Cortes
Irina Shayk Models For La Clover Lingerie Fall 2013 Campaign