LOS ANGELES — Tyra Banks is getting back to her roots for the season debut of her TV talk show, and she doesn’t mean that as a figure of speech.
On Tuesday’s fifth-season premiere of “The Tyra Show” on the CW network, the former supermodel went on-camera with unadorned hair. Or as Banks puts it, “no wigs, extensions, no nothing.”
“It’s just me coming straight out of the shower with wet hair. My hairdresser’s going to do my hair live on stage,” said Banks, who interviewed women with insecurities about their own tresses in the episode.
She aimed to reassure them about how attractive their hair is naturally and “ask them to be brave enough to show it to everybody on national television,” Banks said.
It’s part of her mission to help redefine the emotional issue of beauty for women, both within and without, she said.
“The Tyra Show” — the title now uses only her first name — last week won a Daytime Emmy Award in the talk show-informative category. It moves from syndication to the CW network this season, airing 4 p.m. EDT weekdays.
Banks said she’s learned from past shows, especially when it comes to trusting the insights she developed in the fashion industry.
“It’s more honest. There’s nothing worse than sitting there and pretending” ignorance while a guest delivers tips she could share herself, Banks said.
Models used to queue for her makeup skills at Paris fashion shows, she said. And when it comes to clothing, “I’m going to be telling you how to make that sweater into a skirt. And into a skort. And into a dress. I know how to do that.”
Banks will also be front and center for the new run of her series “America’s Next Top Model,” which debuted with a two-hour episode at 8 p.m. EDT Wednesday on CW. This time around, women who are 5-foot-7 and under — generally scorned as short by the fashion industry — make up the field of contestants.
“I feel like it’s my calling to open up stereotypes of beauty,” whether in life or on the runway, said Banks. She ended up feeling especially close to the aspiring models and spent more time with them than usual, which viewers will see on air.
“I wonder if it’s because they’re shorter and felt like little sisters,” mused the 5-foot-10 Banks, who’s also a judge and executive producer for the show.
Banks, whose business empire is impressive enough to have landed her on Forbes magazine’s Celebrity 100 list of the rich and famous in 2008, launched an online magazine Tuesday — Tyra: Beauty Inside & Out, which she’s dubbed a “magaline” — to share her expertise on that and other topics.
“I’m really interested in helping women take control of their futures, take control of their destiny. One of my lines in my manifesto on the Web site is to be the CEO of your own life, be in control of your own life,” Banks said.
Learn more about the model-turned-mogul's new fashion "magaline," follow her Twitter posts, get more information about her daytime talk show and upcoming cycle of "America's Next Top Model," and more. More »
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