Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model exit interview – Emily Garner

This week's departing contestant chatted to about being body conscious in the Top Model house and her special bond with Laura


Last week Emily waved goodbye to her best friend, Laura. This week we’re waving goodbye to Emily. After surviving five weeks of nervy eliminations, the former combat medic has left the competition after an overwhelming amount of hair produced an underwhelming picture in her photoshoot.


We caught up with her to hear all about her friendship with Laura, her body insecurities and that dreaded nude shoot…

Hi Emily, congratulations on getting so far in the competition. How would you describe your experience in the Top Model house?

It was a pretty unique experience. Definitely really stressful  because you’ve got all those girls in a house together and a lot of emotions flying. It wasn’t what I expected at all.

What were you expecting?

For it to be different, I guess. It was a lot more difficult to be away from home than I imagined and it felt very isolated being in there. I thought it would be a closer environment but it wasn’t. I could be friends with them but not as closely as I bonded with Laura – that was definitely a very unique friendship.

She was singing your praises in our interview with her last week… 

I was so lucky to have found someone like her because the others couldn’t talk to each other and didn’t have the support in the same kind of way. They were in competition with one another. They weren’t able to be open up about the competition because everyone was competing and it got quite stressful. Even friendships in there; they’d bitch about each other whereas we were the only two who kept completely separate. And when we were in the house we didn’t talk about the competition.

So you didn’t feel like you were competing with one another?

We weren’t competitive at all. I can genuinely say I would have been 100% happy if she’d won and I would have loved it, whereas any of the others I would have been happy for them but gutted it wasn’t me. With Laura it was like watching a best friend I’ve known since I was little doing so well for herself. Whenever she did well in a shoot, even if I didn’t I was so happy for her.

So that moment when you were together in the bottom two must have felt pretty awful?

It was horrible. I must admit I couldn’t watch that episode because I didn’t want to watch myself go through that again. That’s the only episode I haven’t watched. When we were standing there together I knew I wouldn’t be happy with either decision. If I go through then I have to do this without her, if she goes through then I’ve got to go home – there was no winning. Whereas this week when I was standing there with Naomi, as much as I wanted her to do well, I was sitting there thinking “I don’t want to go”.

This week was pretty explosive, though… 

All of the tension went on for way too long, it was ridiculous. Everyone went mental all at once. A lot of the girls just cracked. When the house exploded and went through its absolute worst, it wasn’t enjoyable anymore. That week the atmosphere was terrible – you’d walk into the room and there was so much tension.

Do you have a favourite shoot from your time on the show?

The underwater one. I have actually done an underwater shoot before so I went in there with a bit of confidence fom my experience. I enjoy doing things that are a bit different.

And do you have a least favourite?

Probably the nude shoot. If that was the first shoot I wouldn’t have been so uncomfortable but after you’ve been in the house so long, no matter how confident you are, it brings any insecurity out of you because you’re constantly comparing yourself to those girls and I was probably one of the biggest.

Would you like to pursue a career as a model?

I don’t know if I have what it takes to do it full time. With the criticism and judgement on my body not being up to scratch, I would have to make a lot of sacrifices. Criticism doesn’t bother me but that environment brought out my insecurities and made me more self-conscious. It’s very manufactured – in the real world you’d be critiqued but you’d also have your family around you and you wouldn’t be forced into shoots you’re not necessarily suited to.

Do you agree with the judges’ criticism that you talked the talk but didn’t always walk the walk?

I do dispute that to a certain extent as I think they got the wrong idea of what I was saying a lot of the time. I’m a judgemental person myself because I’m a perfectionist. I look at how I can improve next time. It’s better to be aware of that and say outright where I’ve gone wrong rather than deny it.

Did they give you any advice moving forward with your career?

The only thing they said when I left was that I had a beautiful face and that I was disproportionate when I photographed so it’s not anything I can massively work on apart from toning up. I came out feeling very body conscious and didn’t see where I could go with that.

Elle was particularly unimpressed by Angel and Holly’s row on set – do you think one of them should have gone home instead?

I do agree it was unprofessional but at the same time, that wouldn’t have happened in a real life shoot because they would have gone home and that would be it. That was 3-4 weeks of stress and tension building up so it wasn’t realistic. I don’t think either of them would have been like that in the real world so no, it’s not a justification to go home.

So, who would you like to win?

Either Emma or Sophie.


Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model continues on Thursdays at 9:00pm on Sky Living