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Interview with Molly O'Connell

Fighting Toxicity in Modeling with Molly O'Connell

Episode 12: Show Notes

For today's episode of the the Next Page Podcast, we are very excited and lucky to welcome the amazing, inspiring, and beautiful Molly O'Connell! Molly is an experienced fashion model, who you may know from the 16th cycle of America's Next Top Model (ANTM). She is also a mental health advocate and is committed to eradicating toxic behavior in the fashion industry. In this in-depth chat with Molly, we go deep, exploring many interesting areas of her life and work and talking about her early dreams of modeling, the struggles she has faced with body-image, and some of the best and worst moments from America's Next Top Model. Our guest also shares some really interesting insight into how the show is edited for shock value, the power of ketamine therapy, and her passion for music and further education. You’d better be ready for Molly to get real, vulnerable, and unfiltered! We are so grateful to have had such a candid conversation with a such a shining star! Tune in today to hear it all.

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Recent events and highlights from Todd and Laura's lives.

  • Insight into Molly's background and her route into the world of modeling.

  • Molly talks about her family life, the impact of being adopted, and meeting her birth mother.

  • Thoughts on the toxic nature of the fashion industry and the progress that has been made.

  • Self-advocacy in the fashion industry and why it is so necessary.

  • Bad experiences Molly has had and the negligence that occurs so frequently in the industry.

  • Molly's troubles with body image and the cyclical nature of negative thinking.

  • Reflections on Molly's experiences at America's Next Top Model and the selection process.

  • The 'weave episode' and the allergic reaction that Molly had after visiting the salon.

  • Molly speaks about the motivations for certain comments and critiques by the judges.

  • Editing and prompts on the show and what this does for the presentation of the contestants.

  • Thinking about Tyra Banks' actions, presence, and personality in relation to the models.

  • The legacy of appearing on ANTM; differing receptions of the models who competed.

  • Molly's return to school, the grades she has achieved, and thoughts on work in the future.

  • Commitment to music, auditioning for a local band, and the many roads to fulfillment!

  • Molly's self-care practices and the work she has put into managing her mental health.

  • The ketamine treatment that Molly underwent and how this has helped her.

  • Molly's involvement with The Trevor Project and her passion for this kind of support.

  • Our question of the day with Molly about her dream job.

  • A live performance on the tuba from Molly!

  • Our reflections on our chat with Molly and the issues we unpacked with her.

  • Todd and Laura also share their dream jobs.


“It's rare to find someone who truly cares about you. We are all pieces of meat.” — Molly O'Connell [0:21:28]

“Men are allowed to age, and it's almost 'sexier' when a man ages. For women it's not like that.” — Molly O'Connell [0:22:47]

“Some people liked me on the show. Some people liked my photos and I got booked specifically because of that.” — Molly O'Connell [0:49:38]

“I loved going back to school. It made me feel really accomplished making such good grades.” — Molly O'Connell [0:53:02]

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

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