Before The Face season finale aired this week, Devyn Abdullah was known as “Sally,” not to give away the big reveal. Well, she’s Sally no more. Gorgeous, outspoken and original, she is now fashion’s newest face! The Bronx born beauty has landed a contract with Ulta Beauty, after years of hard work and hustle to both support her young daughter and achieve her dreams. Finally, it’s her moment! We met with Devyn and her supermodel coach Karolina Kurkova for a celebratory lunch at the Peninsula Hotel in NYC. She excitedly talked about the next chapter of her life, inspiring young girls, and finally set the record straight about not considering herself a black girl model, but one that every woman can see a bit of themselves in when they look in the mirror.
StyleBlazer: Congratulations on your win! How does it feel to be able to finally share it with the whole world?
Devyn: “It feels amazing! Just holding on to something for such a long time, it just feels good to get it out of my system and be honest about it. I’m still a New Yorker, I still take the train. And there was actually this situation where I was sitting on the train and there’s a lady next to me and she’s just kinda like peeping me and eyeballing me. I know she’s going to say something. She’s like, “You’re the girl from The Face! Did you win?” And I’m like, “Just tune in on Tuesday at 9pm!” It’s definitely a pleasure and an honor to be the face of Ulta[Beauty]. So I’m definitely proud and I’m excited for everything that’s going to be happening to me.”
SB: What advice did Karolina give you when you stepped out for your final runway walk?
Devyn: “I remember exactly what she said going on the runway. She said have fun with it. And that was the best advice she could give me in that moment. At that time, the best thing is just to exude all your emotions on the runway. So this way everyone can see that even though this is the final four and my life could is depending on this, I’m having fun with it and I’m enjoying it. I’m loving it. Hopefully you love what I’m wearing and what I’m doing, too. And obviously it worked! And one thing that I love about Karolina as a coach and is a mentor is that she does have that mommy vibe, which is like the perfect nurturing, most effective way to mentor someone. To give them guidance but say, you know what, you’re going to be yourself. I’m going to let you do this on your own. And just kind of shove them along the way. You have to learn from what she’s doing, take her as a mentor example, and just go about your own path. Make your own career. And I think she did an amazing job, and I love you, KK!”
SB: You’re a girl from Bronx. How does it feel having little girls from your neighborhood watching you, and hoping to make your dream their reality? What’s your advice to them?
Devyn: “It feels amazing, honestly. It’s incredible to feel like a role model, especially with all the struggles and things that I’ve gone through in the last three to four years. It’s been a long, long journey. Living in New York is hard enough in itself, so I know anyone living in New York can relate to that. But my message to them and what I want to personify to them is never to give up. Always know your value. And that’s for every woman out there, besides just like little girls. Always know what your value is no matter what skin color, no matter what race, you are a queen. And you should treat yourself like a queen and everyone will treat you like a queen.”
Devyn found herself in controversy when she said she didn’t consider herself a black model. Was she taken out of context? Keep reading to find out.