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As you’re probably well aware, models and sex workers represent a huge part of the market for lingerie stores and designers. In fact, lingerie brands big and small often borrow from sex-work-inspired imagery, like BDSM or exotic dancing, to sell their clothes. But when it comes time to actually support the people whose imagery and personality they profit from, many brands keep their mouths and wallets shut.

I spoke with Celina of Belle de Nuit, who’s looking to change all of that, one bodysuit at a time.

If we could, let's just start with your story. So, who are you, what's your career arc been like, how did you end up where you are now?

My name is Celina. I'm the owner, founder, and designer of Belle de Nuit Lingerie. My arc is kind of interesting. Since I was a kid I was really into theater, drama, so maybe it was the costuming that led me into fashion. It's been several factors. Watching old Hollywood movies and just getting really into clothing and fashion, and I spent a lot of time sketching outfits. And a lot of times, that turned into sketching lingerie. The outfits underneath the outfits. But I wasn't already sure that I wanted to design lingerie; that took a couple of years. Because of the old Hollywood stuff, I kind of veered towards pin-up, and especially Bettie Page. I was on Tumblr and I was like seeing all these vintage, burlesque pin-up images, and I was really fascinated and excited about the lingerie.

I moved from the Bay Area to L.A. to pursue fashion. I actually didn't go to school initially, I just worked a bunch of internships and jobs, trying to decide if I really wanted to pursue design. I didn't wanna be that person that was like, “I'm gonna be a designer,” and then go to school and figure out that I couldn't do it. So, I worked a lot of the behind the scenes jobs, marketing and PR and styling before I realized, oh, I actually do wanna do design. I went to a trade technical school, and they taught me womenswear. So lingerie, I actually still had to learn on my own time through interning with a lingerie designer in L.A. I still work with them actually, when my own orders are a little slower.

The designs were there, it was more the construction that I needed to learn, because bra-making, and intimate apparel in general is a very different animal when it comes to fashion design and pattern making. It was very different from dresses, or menswear, or anything else.

I always knew I needed a niche, and I had always been really drawn to lingerie and especially the fabrics used in it. So, it just seemed natural to me. I’ve always been into these very feminine and subtly, if not overtly, sexual designs. But always to empower the wearer. It was never like, “Oh, I wanna make this because I want my customer to attract a partner or a man.” It was always that I want the wearer to feel really good about themselves, and strong and beautiful, and to have this secret under their clothes. Another part of their identity that the world doesn’t always get to see.

 

You talked a little bit about your inspirations. At one point it was classic Hollywood and pin-up styling. Are there any movies or costumes in particular that really inspired you?

Actually, the inspiration behind the name of my brand; I read the book first, and then I watched the movie, "Belle de Jour." The movie is with Catherine Deneuve. Her fashion in that movie was all done by Yves Saint Laurent. And oh, man, I mean, I was obsessed with her looks - she had this Peter Pan-collared dress, like a very classic black and white Peter Pan get up, and I was really into that. And this black vinyl trench coat, and her lingerie in that, too. That movie in particular. I like the Alfred Hitchcock movie with Grace Kelly, "Dial M for Murder." I loved a lot of these kind of like very feminine-fitted silhouettes. But "Belle de Jour" I liked a lot because I love the story, and I loved the styling of the clothes in that. You could see the story arc in her clothing as well, how she kind of like went from this repressed house wife, and her clothes were a little bit more reserved or uptight, and then you could kind of see it blossom along with her. The story is very dark, but the fashion is amazing.

Are there any contemporary designers, outside of the lingerie world, that you're inspired by?

Yes, oh my God! I've always really liked Valentino. I know it's so corny to say Chanel, but that was definitely an influence - I read a lot about that fashion line, obviously Gabrielle Chanel, Coco Chanel, her life. Obviously these are like the big fashion houses, but there are a lot of small brands that I like. Adam Selman is a recent favorite and inspiration. I think I've just been so wrapped up in lingerie, I think everyone that I'm thinking of is lingerie.

Vivienne Westwood. Jesus Christ. I always loved Vivienne – her pieces are more avant-garde than even what I design, or maybe even would wear, but I've always been drawn to her. This punk, sexual, feminine, powerful, empowering, image that all her stuff resonates.

 

Tell us a little bit about the brand's ethos, its mission, the guiding principles behind the brand.

I have a few underlying principles. My tagline is "Multifaceted lingerie for multifaceted women," and people always ask me, “What does that really mean?” It goes hand-in-hand with what I was saying about how I want my customers to wear stuff for themselves. I've just always rejected this idea of women being pigeon-holed into certain types and categories. In a lot of the movies and TV shows and books I consumed as a young girl, women were sorted into categories: this is the hot girl, this is the smart girl, this is, whatever. But personally, I feel like I embody a lot of these different qualities.

Victoria's Secret put out this collection, for PINK, their younger line, called Bright Young Things. And it was all because this dad wrote a letter about how he didn't want his daughters having to feel like their worth was tied to wearing these underwear, these little thongs. He was basically saying, “I want my daughter to focus on what school she's gonna get into and what her career path is gonna be.” He was almost making it seem like a daughter wanting and liking cute lingerie, and being a professional working woman, or going to school, was mutually exclusive. It’s that type of idea that I totally reject.

A lot of my customers are professional women in science and medical fields. And they like to wear lingerie too. I think it's kind of against this idea that only a certain type of woman wears sexy lingerie. And also the idea of who you wear it for, or what you wear it for - it's all about that. I think first and foremost it should be for you. I don't think it should be something that you give to your partner. Of course you can, and you should – but only if you want.

The name of my brand, Belle de Nuit, I took that from that movie and book, "Belle de Jour." I remember telling friends or colleagues that I wanted to name my brand that. And in French, that's actually slang for woman of the night, which is supposed to be a sex worker. I remember a ton of people who knew that, and they were like, "You know what that means, right?" "Are you sure you wanna make that your brand name?" I'm like, "Why not? I know what that is, and that's actually the whole point.”

In the name of it, I'm already shedding light and showing my admiration and respect, and acknowledging the fact that sex workers are some of the top clients of the lingerie industry. I try to really make that a big part of my brand mission, to not shy away or shun sex work as a means of using its imagery in my pictures or even in design. I also make a point of hiring sex workers as models.

Lingerie is supposed to be uplifting and empowering for all kinds of women, so it’s important to me that my pieces be accessible - whether that’s through sizing, or hiring different types of models. To me it's a no-brainer - obviously it's nice to get the credit and have people say it's cool, but to me it was always something that I knew I wanted to do, even before I launched. I wanted it to seem accessible to all kinds of women. You don't have to be a certain type. You don't have to buy lingerie to do a certain thing. It doesn't even have to be for the bedroom, it could just literally be for yourself. Like your secret superhero costume.

 

Obviously, sex workers are gonna be a huge market segment for any lingerie business. What do you think are the implications of being a business with a marginalized clientele? Do you feel that you have any sort of responsibilities that come from that, or are there any ways that you should be or shouldn't be talking or advertising yourself as a result of that?

I think even if I wasn't in this business, I think that I would try to be as vocal as I could about these issues. But because of this being my career path and my passion, this is what I've chosen to do, I think it is particularly my responsibility to uplift and support sex workers. Especially because a lot of lingerie brands, mainstream and even small ones, they still try to exploit and profit off the imagery of sex work, but don't actually uplift and acknowledge and support sex workers, or even hire real sex workers as models in their campaigns.

I have like a sex worker discount on my site. I think it's an important thing as a lingerie designer and as a business, because you see so many popular mainstream lingerie lines that do lookbooks and campaigns where it's this very pro-dominatrix vibe or a red light district, strip club kind of vibe. But they use regular fashion models. And it always has kind of this vibe that she's not actually a stripper. Like, she's not actually a call girl. “We don't want you to associate with that, but let's go profit off the imagery of it.” It’s really gross, and I think it actually heightens this negative stigma, and it just keeps them marginalized. I think if you're gonna be using that imagery, like, the least you could do is express support and solidarity and admiration and respect to the people who inspired you.

 

Or at least pay them.

Yeah, at least pay them!

Let's talk a little bit about symbolism. Do the symbols that are used in your logo have any significance?

I have kind two logos; the text logo, the one that says "Belle de Nuit" was designed by a long-time friend of mine from high school, actually. Her name is Anya and she's a killer graphic designer. We were working on that together for a long time, I wanted it to be really perfect. I was always very into the crescent moon, you see that in the image logo as well. My name means goddess of the moon, Celina. I've always just been very drawn to moon symbolism, feminine energy. I have a crescent moon tattoo, I was always very drawn to it. Belle de Nuit, woman of the night, beauty of the night, the moon, it all ties it together in one concise symbol.

The cross, the way that it's formed, it's actually supposed to look like the Venus symbol. It's all about that kind of like strong, feminine energy.

And then the logo of the girl on the moon, too, is done by another friend of mine, Hannah, also a great designer, animator. I wanted a pin-up girl on the moon. A very 1920s, paper moon image, but I wanted to twist it into something that resonated more with me and tie in a little bit of my own culture. The imagery of the woman, I wanted her to have Middle Eastern features, because I'm half Iranian. It was inspired by the character of Scheherazade from "A Thousand and One Nights" or "Arabian Nights," to inject a little bit of my own culture into it without being super overt.

 

If you had $10,000 to invest in your business today, what would you spend it on?

I've actually been thinking about expansion a lot recently, because my business has been massively expanding in just a year. I would invest in a good local team of seamstresses. Hiring some outside help, but still keeping it local. I would definitely find people to help me with marketing. I would just really try to build a good, strong team, all women, just to further expand my brand, and at the same time helping the women that I'm also trying to help with my designs by actually hiring them, if I can.

What's a business lesson that you learned the hard way?

There's been a few of those. When it's your own business, your baby, it hurts a little bit more. But I always really quickly turn it around into a good lesson. Now I've learned this and I'm not gonna make the mistake again. One example is that I was afraid to be too bold or demanding. I think this is something that's ingrained in women; you don't wanna come off as aggressive or bitchy, especially when you're in a leadership role.

I always try to give everybody chances, and I'm very nice, and I wanna always see the best in people. But I have done that in times where I've actually been taken advantage of, or I have worked with someone who I was trying to give a chance, and the work that I received just was not really what I wanted to pay for. Losing money that way definitely teaches you to be a bit more discerning of who you work with.

Just try not to dwell on those things, and just keep it pushing, and learn from your mistakes.

 

For your marketing strategy, are you able to run digital ads on mainstream platforms? Are you able to advertise on Facebook, for example?

You know, it's funny. I've already run into some trouble with being on Facebook, because any shred of female sexuality, like lingerie, even if there's no nipple, it’s considered to be basically showing porn.

When I was trying to name the URL, I was trying to say, "Belle de Nuit Lingerie," because "Belle de Nuit" was taken. And it told me I couldn't because it violated their guidelines. They basically said using the word lingerie was pornographic, and I was like, "What?" So, I haven't even really tried to do Facebook ads. I made the page, but I really kind of neglect it because Instagram is my, you know, best form of marketing, and it always has been.

So, I haven't really tried to do a lot of mainstream advertising. I really do everything on Instagram. My big thing is I send products free of charge to women who have a lot of followers, who I think represent the brand well.

I actually recently sent stuff to the porn star Charlotte Sartre, and she's been so sweet. I sent her a set a while ago, and then she just posted pictures, and it bumped me up - so many followers, I got so many orders and I just sent her another thing she wore to the AVN Awards. To me, it's like the cost of making the free lingerie and sending it to them is like my paying for advertising.

If you could make one change to the lingerie industry that every other company had to abide by, what would it be?

Representation. Representation of not only having a large range of sizes, but also of working with all kinds of different women. And it's not just sex workers, it's also women of color, queer women, trans women. It's just making it very accessible to everybody.

I want to represent lingerie as something that’s for you - we want you to feel good. Not like, “you'll get the guy of your dreams if you wear our lingerie.” Well, fuck you, that's not what we're about.

Thanks so much to Celina for chatting with us. Check out her website and Instagram, and make sure to take advantage of her sex-worker-exclusive discount.

Fan Clubs have been around for over two months now. Are you using them to their full potential?

To get an inside look at what’s working and how to increase your subscriptions, I took a look at some of our top earners, the tactics they’re using, and what they have in common.

Now I’m passing on those lessons to you.

Let's break it down.

Pricing

 

The obvious place to start – how much should you be charging for your fan club?

It’s not a cut-and-dry answer, but there is a rule of thumb:

The more you include, the more you should charge.

As you know, there are lots of things you can include in your Fan Club, like:

- Exclusive photos

- Exclusive videos

- Fan-only discounts on your for sale videos

- Text posts

- Messaging

- Custom perks

So if you’re keeping it simple, and just offering a discount and messaging, try a lower pricepoint, like $5-10/month.

If you’re offering the full package, you can push it up to $30/month or more.

And if you’re somewhere in the middle, try pricing your Fan Club around $12-15.

Accessibility

 

The easiest way to get new subscribers is to make sure people can find your Fan Club!

Try linking directly to your Fan Club instead of just to your profile.

On Modelhub, just add /fanclub/ to the end of your URL, like this:

https://www.modelhub.com/andy/fanclub/

On Pornhub, add this extension to the end of your URL: ?becomeafan=1

It should look like this:

https://www.pornhub.com/model/andy?becomeafan=1

By linking directly to your Fan Club, you're taking one more step out of the signup process. The easier you make it to sign up, the more likely people are to subscribe.

Consistency

 

For your fans to justify the monthly cost of your Fan Club, you gotta keep ‘em engaged.

We’ve seen Fans unsubscribe when they don’t think they’re getting enough for their money.

This means posting new content regularly, engaging with fans through text posts, and answering messages.

If you wanna keep your subscriptions, make sure to give your fans their money’s worth. Try to engage with your fans in some way at least once a week!

 

Something Special

 

The biggest draw for your Fan Club is exclusivity – the thrill of finding something that’s not available anywhere else.

So exclusive content is one of the best ways to get new subscribers, and to keep them subscribed.

Think about what you’ll offer in your Fan Club that’s special – that’s only in the Fan Club and nowhere else.

That might be videos – you could make every third or fourth video you produce exclusive to fans.

Or it might be messaging – maybe your Fan Club is the only way for your fans to interact directly with you.

You might also consider giving your fans early access to your videos – make ‘em Fan-exclusive for a month or two, then release to the general public.

Whatever it is, make sure it’s something special, and make doubly sure it’s not available somewhere else – especially not for free.

 

Acquisition vs Retention

 

In marketing, getting a new customer is called Acquisition. It’s super super important to get people in the door as new customers, new buyers and new fans.

But even more important is Retention – i.e., keeping a customer around. This matters most in subscription business models, like your Fan Club.

Don’t sacrifice one for the other. Both are important. But if you’re wondering where you should be focusing your attention, consider this:

To attract a new customer takes time and money. You need to convince them that you’re what they want to spend their money on. They need to be ready to pull out their credit card and enter their info. They’re looking at the thousands of other models out there and making their choice of who to subscribe to. There are a number of hurdles in your way.

But to retain a customer? They’ve already decided that you’re what they want to spend on. You’ve already captured their attention. They’ve already entered their payment info. The friction of retaining a customer vs. acquiring a new one is much, much lower.

So yes – make your fan club enticing. Make it worth signing up for. But above all, make it worth staying subscribed to!

Ok, that’s enough for today. Let’s recap:

1. Set a price that makes sense for what you’re offering

2. Post new stuff often enough that it’s worthwhile for your fans

3. Give ‘em exclusive stuff they can’t get anywhere else

4. Keeping a customer is easier than getting a new one

Keep these in mind when you’re building and maintaining your Fan Club, and you’ll be off to a good start.

We’ll follow up with expert-level Fan Club tips soon, so stay tuned for more marketing advice!

For this edition of Model Citizens, we had a chat with LittleBoo. She's a little who specializes in DDLG content - and it's not just a job. For her, it's a lifestyle.

Read on for her experiences with this type of content, how she got her start, and what's coming next:

I wanted to be a pornhub hoe. I just wanna make like-minded naughty people happy, and bring some fucking joy to dirty old men.

 

What’s your favorite genre or category of video to film?

BDSM DDLG and ABDL content. It’s not just something I do, it’s part of who I am and I love sharing it. I was categorized by the internet as taboo. Starting as a cam girl I’d just do me, but eventually it it transcended into turning the cam on during private points of my life, which is where my submission and littleness shined through.

  

Do you have any plans to shoot boy/girl content? Why or why not?

I've done some really good natural raw videos with Voodoo in the past. I was very lucky to be given an opportunity to play with such a natural Dom of a Daddy, because it’s fairly hard to find people for me to connect with. I'm always looking for like-minded people, and trying to broaden my horizon of naughtiness, but as a natural submissive little, what I do on camera is just what I do in the bedroom. Finding someone who's not role playing, acting or scamming their way to the top has become near impossible.  

 

You’ve already racked up over 200k views on Pornhub. What is your marketing strategy for your content? 

It wasn't really a strategy as much as life just kinda went that way, but definitely dedicating my life to porn is the best thing I can think of. I do my best to get my weirdness out there. Every day, every week, every month. People want someone they can rely on to be there a year, two years, down the road. I’ve dedicated all of me to all of my fans on Chaturbate and of course Pornhub to show them they are all I’ve got in my life, because honestly – they are.  

What’s your #1 personal goal for 2019? How about your #1 professional goal? 

They are both the same for me. My life is my porn and my porn is my life. The only goal I have is to spread myself out for more people. As for 2019 goals; Pornhub love. Pornhub subscribers. Pornhub views. Let’s break the internet and spread Pornhub. I wanna fuck some Daddies in a Pornhub varsity jacket. 

 

If you could meet anyone from the adult industry, past or present, who would it be?

Ron Jeremy. I would just be honored to have my ass smacked and grabbed broadcasting at an expo or some wild shit.

 

Is there anything unique about the Canadian porn industry, when compared with the American or European industry?

Well there’s always the going rumor all Canadians have a secret maple leaf tattooed somewhere on our body, but mainly what I think sets us apart from the rest is our love of pouring maple syrup all over our bodies instead of oil. It’s a sticky situation, but nothing a good little Canuck can’t handle. I've moved on from the Canadian industry though, and am doing my best to move forward and see what the great United States has to offer in porn.   

 

What’s something simple and inexpensive that models can do to improve their next video? 

Honestly, there is so much you do can to improve yourself, but it depends on what kinda content you’re making. I’d have to go with light cause I'm a color nerd. If you’re planning on filming during the day, use the sunlight - just the sun, just turn off all the lights and use it. Au naturel does a beautiful thing to your body. If you’re filming at night, use one straight little white 10$ lamp from the IKEA kids section right by your camera. Turn the other lights off. It’ll give a pretty light upon exactly what you wanna showcase in your video. 

Have you ever worked with a professional studio? If not, would you? Why or why not?

Nope! I have not. Not sure if I’d do it. I guess depending on the studio. I'm not into professional porn because it’s all acting, its written, scripted, directed, arranged, managed and so forth which is too Hollywood for this little little. That being said, I have issues with IRL strangers as well, so working with someone I haven't connected with also seems too forced. Then again I'm sure it would be a wild project to try and get me in a professional video and find another taboo lifestyle Daddy to destroy me. Who knows, maybe Greg Lansky would be up for game changer to test his skills, but I'm sure I'm brushed off as “too real taboo to handle.”

 

Do you do anything special with your makeup for the camera? 

Oh my. I'm so bad at doing special stuff with my makeup. I don't really care for it most of the time - Christmas, holidays and random stuff aside, I just stick to basics. My skin is WAY sensitive. Like baby bum sensitive. So I stay away from basically everything all over my face. Slap on a little eye liner and some mascara and I'm good! Shout out to Vika if you’re out there, you beautiful blonde slut, teaching me how to do eyeliner, high as hell before school! I will always follow her teachings on how to follow my eye lines!  

 

If you had $1000 to invest in your porn career, what would you use it for? 

I think I’d invest it some extra Pornhub promo. I'm not trying to create professional porn, nor am I going for any kind of image, I merely do me. As long as I have enough to feed myself and keep a roof over my head, I'm happy to just turn on my weird webcam with my old laptop and just do me as I always have. Any extra money I’d see as savings for the future or an investment in trying to get myself out there and spread my love to fellow naughty people, rather than making my room into a porn shoot. 

 

Any exciting projects coming up, or anything else you wanna tell us about?

I'm really excited to be on Pornhub. To have an outlet like Pornhub to be able to release some of my stuff and get people to yourlittleboo.ca so they can support me further is amazing. If we can continue to get love on Pornhub there will be lots more fun new weirdness boo projects coming out. For now, just working my best to get out everything and anything that will make my naughty fans happy.

Our first Modelhub contest of 2019 has come to an end!

The theme for #SEXERCISE2019 was sexy self-improvement - be that mental, physical, or otherwise!

We broke a serious sweat going through all of your submissions and choosing three highly-deserving winners.

But choose, we did.

We've awarded three amazing grand prizes, and the top 20 videos have also been featured on the front page of Pornhub Premium, which means a chance at some serious Viewshare ad revenue.

And now, without further ado - our grand prize winners for #SEXERCISE2019!

3rd Prize - $1000

 

Third Prize goes to 80' aerobic FUCKING DREAM! Best POV SEX ever! by Kathia Nobili!

2nd Prize - $2000

 

Second place goes to Abigail Mac and Dana Dearmond A Lesbian Fitness Fuck by Abigail Mac!

1st Prize - $3000

 

The grand prize goes to Nude Tourism SEXERCIZE 2019 by Sasha Bikeyeva!

Thanks, gratitude, and congratulations to our winners and everyone else who entered.

Remember, even if you didn't get top three, you still have a chance at being featured on the front page of Pornhub Premium for a full week, which means a shot at a major boost in earnings.

Watch the playlist on Pornhub Premium:

 Watch Playlist 

For this edition of Model Citizens, our Pornhub model spotlight series, I had the privilege of chatting with one of the industry's most recognizable names. An industry veteran who never lost an ounce of steam over the course of her career. A true entrepreneur and maven who controls her business, her content, and her life.

I'm talking, of course, about Brandi Love.

Along with our regularly scheduled programming - tips, tricks and production secrets for models, by models - we're very excited to break some big news in this interview:

Brandi is now exclusive to the Pornhub Network, and we couldn't be happier to have her!

Andy: If we could, let's just start with your story. How long you've been in the industry, how you got started, that kind of thing.

Brandi: I have been in the industry for 15 years now. I got started in the adult industry, just me and my husband having some fun. We both come from a corporate background, we thought this would be so much fun. We're kind of sexually adventurous and wild, so we thought, “Heck, why not share it with the world?” That literally was our mentality. And very quickly, we realized, "Wow, this is super fun, we enjoy doing it every day," and both quit our corporate jobs and dove head first into the online experience. That was how brandilove.com was born. And within 6 months, and being on Howard Stern, we realized that this wasn't going to be a hobby, that we were really going to make this a career and go for it. Have a blast, be successful, and kind of go against the grain if you will - and we certainly accomplished that.

 

Tell us the Howard Stern story.

Well, back in 2004 when brandilove.com was launched, Howard was at a high. And I listened to him all the time, and I thought, “How fun would it be, and what a great way to let the world know that I'm there online, to get on Howard Stern.” And as a longtime listener and fan, I started writing - remember we're talking decades ago, mail-mail was effective - I literally sent a handwritten letter every single week. It took about 6 weeks, maybe 7, I'm driving down the road, I get a call from Gary, and he's like, "Howard wants to have you on the show." I'm like, "What?" I could not believe it. So, literally 7 days after that phone call, I was in New York, I was at the studios and I did my first appearance, and it was amazing.

Howard's incredible, the whole experience was incredible, and for about three months after that, we crashed servers getting traffic to the site, and that really started everything.

 

That really shows the value of just getting yourself out there.

It really does. I mean, even today, you think about it, there's thousands and thousands of entertainers, there's thousands of websites people could choose to go to. What makes one better than the other? Well, obviously content, obviously the types of personalities or people involved, and then number three is marketing.

 

What is your favorite scene that you've ever filmed?

It might sound like a lame response, but my favorite scene in the adult industry would simply be being able to shoot hot passionate sex.

They're fun, the acting community is a blast, I like a challenge. I find that very interesting and the challenge of a new character is always exciting for me. But ultimately at the end of the day, my favorite scenes, the ones that stick in my head and hopefully my fan's heads are the ones that are just balls to the wall hot sex.

 

Sort of related; do you have a favorite genre or category that you like to film?

Well, I would be crazy not to say the “moms bang teens,” “moms teach sex” genre. It's just hot, it's a little taboo, it's exciting. The older-younger dynamic is very niche-y, but it's also very popular; I think all of us can remember a time when we were just learning about our sexuality, and what it could mean to have somebody that you care about teach you, kind of show you along the way, and most of us never had that. So, of course, in the adult industry, we have to push the taboo and make it a stepmom or somebody closely related.

But the core of the psychology of those scenes are so hot to me.

"I've always lived my life to my own beat, to my own drum."

I'm gonna ask you about your hometown of Detroit - one of my favorite cities. How different is it there today compared to when you were growing up?

I don't even recognize it, to be honest. I left Michigan in '95. I lived there, and went to college there, and got married and left. Literally; after our honeymoon, we never came home. You know, 20, 21 years of those 6 months, 7 months of steely gray cold winters was just more than I could handle. But as far as the state and specifically Detroit, when I lived there, it was thriving, it was a Motor City, we had automobiles and music, and all of that stuff. And it's very sad when I go home because right now, it's hit bottom. You're looking at a Detroit that has more agriculture and farmland than manufacturing plants and thriving retail. So, for me, it's hard to go back, but, you know, it still has its little crevices of good things - the best chili dogs, amazing jazz and blues bars downtown.

Give it 15 years, maybe 20, and I believe Detroit will be back on its feet.

They hit their bottom, but they're very resilient people. They don't back down to failure, they keep pushing forward, so I have no doubt that that town will have another heyday.

 

Plus, you can't beat a Coney dog from Lafayette.

I swear to God it's the truth. Where I live now in North Carolina, the best chili dog is a place from a guy, he's from Detroit and every couple days, he brings in fresh chili from a Detroit vendor.

 

Your personal motto is “Dare to be deviant.” What does it mean to live by that motto?

When people think of the word deviant, they think for some reason of evil, that it comes from an evil dark place. But in my opinion, a deviant is simply someone who lives away from the norm. I've always lived my life to my own beat, to my own drum. I don't know that I've ever really cared what other people think of me, because at the end of the day, it's my life, and I only get one chance to live it.

I have a propensity to like things or do things that don't exactly help me fit in, and some days are harder than others for making those choices. But I also live with zero regrets. So, when I say that to my Love Troopers, [ed. note: Brandi’s fans call themselves Love Troopers) I'm simply trying to convey a message: "You be you, live by your own rules, enjoy your life your way."

 

So it's about being true to yourself and living life your own way.

Without question. I know it's not easy, but it's the only way to find true happiness.

 

Here's a little thought experiment; let's imagine you had a time machine, and you could go back in time to 2004 to when you first started making content. What's the first piece of advice you would give yourself back then?

I decided on the day that we created brandilove.com that, regardless of where my career went, I was only ever going to do in my content what I personally enjoy. And what I mean by that, in the industry, you get lots of crazy offers to do things - whether it's gangbang, whether it's anal, whatever. Whatever they can imagine, there's usually a price. And I decided way back in the beginning that I didn't care about the price, I cared about whether I would personally enjoy it. I've always been very protective of my sexuality, and I never want to do something that I would not enjoy.

And I have absolutely stayed true to that. The only other thing that I would tell myself would be to enjoy delayed gratification, financially. Remember I said financially, not sexually! That's a whole another thing.

What I mean is, when you're young and you're starting to roll and it's starting to make sense, and you're starting to make good money, it's very easy to spend a lot and think that it's always going to be there. If I had saved a lot more... I did okay, but I didn't do great. I would tell myself just live on the minimum and put it all away for a rainy day and for your future. That's advice that I'd give to my younger self, and it's also advice that I'd give to anybody getting into the adult industry - absolutely try to practice delayed financial gratification.

"I've always believed in doing what you love and loving what you do."

It’s really important to set yourself up right for the future. Because as we know, it's a volatile industry, it's feast or famine, you might get a great paycheck today and none for six months.

It is feast or famine, and it's also those of us who get interest, we have to be aware and know that future is more difficult. It's not like you can go to work at IBM after you've been in the adult entertainment for 10 years.

I'm not saying it's impossible, but it’s going to be more difficult. And having some financial backing if you choose to work…well, you have to have a plan, is what I'm trying to say. You're going to have a difficult time walking away from this industry and just walking into a "normal” retail or corporate situation, and think that they're not going to have a problem.

 

What's something easy and inexpensive that models can do to improve their videos?

The number one thing is lighting. Sounds dumb, but you can take a great cell phone video if you have good lighting.

When I am editing and I'm watching things back, or the things I find myself drawn to on Pornhub, those videos that stick out are the ones that look really well lit.

 

Do you use a special lighting setup or do you try to use natural light?

I personally love natural light, I think it's the most attractive. I also think it works better than anything else. But we do have a really great... well, I can't tell you, it's my secret. [laughs]

 

Of course. The secret sauce.

But we absolutely do have and utilize a really, really nice LED set. LEDs have come a long way for photography and they don't produce heat and they light the entire room.

It’s great that they don’t produce any heat - when you're shooting the right type of content, you're hot enough as it is!

 

If someone gave you $1,000 to invest into your career today, what would you spend it on?

That's a great question. I've got the content thing down as far as I'm aware today, so I would spend it on marketing. Making sure people know where to find me, where they can spend time with me and/or watching my favorite content. So, I would absolutely put it into marketing.

 

You are the number four porn star on Pornhub, with almost 650 million views. To what do you attribute all your success?

I've always believed in doing what you love and loving what you do, and in doing that, I work really hard. It's hard to call it work - it sounds silly, but when you love what you do, you don't really work a day in your life. So, when I put in 12 hours a day, 7 days a week doing what I love, the success comes. And on top of that which I do every day, there's not a day that goes by that I don't participate, whether that’s online, uploading, shooting, answering email, Twitter. Obviously, spending a lot of time in my Pornhub profile and things of this nature, that's what pays off.

And on top of it, the truth in the matter is I absolutely adore my fans, and I think I've connected with them through the years. Whether it's a personality trait, whether it's the types of people that are my fans, we've connected. And I have a really, really cool army of Love Troopers that I spend a lot of time with, and their loyalty beyond everything else is what's helped create my success.

 

So, it was really about building a community.

For me, it is. That community began with brandilove.com, where it started off as nobody knew what to call me. You know, I was 30-something, 33, 34, something like that. I wasn’t a babe, and MILF didn't exist, mind you, so what was I? I was what was referred to at the time as a hotwife; my husband and I loved swinging, we were very sexually liberated, we're out there. So, that's kind of what the site was, but more so, it became a community where you could be whoever the hell you wanted to be, and talk about whatever you wanted, without judgment. I think that's where the bond and the loyalty came from with me and my fans.

 

Talking about your day to day marketing work that you do, you mentioned Twitter. How important is social media for your business?

It's imperative because first of all, we live in a culture, in a society, where people spend more time on social media than doing anything else. It's connections, it's communications, it's leading people where you need them to go or want them to go, talking about politics, religion, sex, all the things you're not supposed to talk about and fight about.

Social media has become something very interesting and necessary for business. If you're not there, you're missing millions of potential views and opportunities to connect with your fans. I can't imagine what we did before.

Now we connect on such a personal level because of the things that we talk about, argue about, debate about, you name it.

It's really an incredible way to find like-minded people.

 

There are communities for just about any interest group, anything you could be into.

It's also cool to have these layers of intimacy that come with the different platforms - if you want to just hang out and be in a public forum, you go to Twitter or Instagram. If you want to communicate with me daily and one-on-one, you go to my private Snapchat. And I mean, there's millions of other forms, you know, of communication, there's phone calls, there's this, there's that.

 

With the recent pornography ban on Tumblr, what do you think is coming next for social media and the internet, as it relates to sex work?

I 100% believe that somebody will recreate a Tumblr that is absolutely secure. It's for open-minded sexual conversations, groups, people, a non-judgment zone. That's what so many people utilized Tumblr for was the whole non-judgment thing. People of every thought, every kink, you name it – they were on there, and they were connecting with other people and sharing those things. And I have no doubt that within 4 to 6 months max, another one pops up that's going to be very similar and hopefully better.

 

What is your biggest professional goal for 2019?

My biggest professional goal for 2019 would be to continue what I'm doing, but push it a little bit further. And what I mean by that is bring the fans even more intense, even more passionate, even better, bigger, more interesting scenes, number one. And number two, of course, I'm very competitive – I would love to scoop up some more Pornhub Awards and be number one! My goal is to get back to number one.

And on top of it, most importantly, have more fun than I've ever had. That's going to be hard to top, but I'm gonna try.

"Scenes cost money, paying talent costs money, paying for all of it costs money. So, somebody's got to ultimately pay for it."

What can your fans do to support you and all models better?

Well, that's a dual-edged sword because, of course, there's the comment "pay for your porn." The reason that's important and supports the industry is that it allows things to go round and round and round. As you know, scenes cost money, paying talent costs money, paying for all of it costs money. So, somebody's got to ultimately pay for it. And it's not just the scenes, it's doing things like going to FanCentro and getting your favorite model's private Snapchat. It's going to girls’ Pornhub profiles and connecting with them and downloading and buying your favorite scenes. Those are ways to keep the models supported. And then for me, of course, when it comes to award season, it's nice to know that your fan base is voting for you to get the awards that you're up for.

Between Xbiz, AVN, and Pornhub - as a former athlete, shit, I'm competitive, I'm not going to lie. I'm amongst some of the greatest talents in the industry in the categories that I'm nominated for, which is an honor in and of itself, but yeah - I want to win. And when I do, I know it's because of my fans, and that means that I put out great content and they loved it. And then on the other side, they loved it so much they're voting every day and that's how I got it. So, it's a dually exciting thing to win an award for me.

 

You hear that folks? The answer is pay for your porn and vote, vote, vote.

Exactly!

 

We do have an exciting announcement to discuss: you are now exclusive to the Pornhub Network. What brought you to that decision, and how is that going for you so far?

So far, I could not be happier. I'm looking forward to the beginnings of 2019 when we really start to roll out the hundreds of photo sets, and videos, and content that I am going to be working with you guys on. There is unbelievable confidence that comes with working with the best in the industry. The team that you guys have between your software, your technology, your handling of the models, is the best in the industry. Every time I email, I get an instant response. Talking with you, you guys know what you're doing, you've got the people, and the professionalism and the intellect to put this whole team of people.

So, for the first time in my online career, I feel like I have the best team I could have behind me. And that allows me to go out and shoot the scenes I want to see knowing that my content is taken care of and being delivered to my fans. So, the decision for me was easy; when we started talking, I just went, "Oh my God, this would make life so much easier!” Instead of me and Chris having to do everything, we actually have this super amazing team that's going to help us get the content out there and manage it properly. So, for me, this was a win-win and a no-brainer, I'm thrilled to be a part of the team.

 

We really do care, and we're just trying to help everybody make more money, be more successful. I'm so, so glad to hear that from you.

 

I can tell! For me, it's not always been an easy path - working hard is something I was born to do. I've done it my whole life and I have no issue doing it, but to get those little moments in life where you have a reprieve, and just know that something's taken care of that you've worked your whole life for, it feels awesome and it makes me just I want to hug you guys! I'm totally thrilled and know that we have a great synergy here.

I'd like to take a moment to thank Brandi not only for becoming an exclusive Pornhub Model, but also for taking the time to share her wit and wisdom with me, and with all of you. It's not every day that you get a glance at the creative process and business acumen of a veritable industry legend, and we're very grateful for her contributions.

Thanks and love to Brandi, and to our whole Model Program family.

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