The self-proclaimed “World’s First Super Hand Model,” California girl Adele Uddo says she “fell into” her career. After being told she had nice hands--primarily by her grandmother--for long enough, she went on a casting call for OPI and landed a big campaign. Naturally, her grandmother was the first person she called to share the big news.
Her typical day's work can range from caressing a celebrity's face, chopping vegetables, shooting for Essie, or standing for hours on end with her arms tucked inside another model's armpits. (The latter is called "hand-doubling.") Her slogan is "working one hand job to the next--from Manhattan to Malibu." Of course, we had to know more...
Your hands are clearly an asset. How do you look after them? What's your skin and nail care routine?
"Honestly, the main thing I do is MOISTURIZE. You could say it’s rather obsessive. I probably average five to 15 times a day. But as far as a routine, my hands are always being worked on by amazing celebrity manicurists, so I rarely have to get manicures."
A sampling of Adele's work--she's really done it all!
xoVain did a story on salvaging broken nails with teabag wraps. Do you have any tips or tricks to fix nails in a pinch?
"Funny you should mention the teabag trick. The first big job I booked in New York was for Dior, and a few days before the shoot I was clumsily putting on a shoe while running out the door to dinner and one of my nails flew off into the garage. Thankfully, my sister-in-law found it. I called a talented nail tech friend of mine, who came over the next day and took out the teabag. No one ever knew at the Dior job, including the manicurist!"
What are some of the more unusual jobs that you've done?
"Isn’t making a living one hand job to the next unusual enough? Actually, one of the things I love most about this job is that every day is always different. Sometimes it’s a technical table-top shoot, and once in a while I’m asked to get ‘intimate’ with another model during hand-doubling jobs, when my arms are inside her armpits for an entire afternoon."
Hand models are often used in celebrity shots--do you get a lot of those kinds of jobs?
"Yes, I’ve hand-doubled for a number of celebrities: Penelope Cruz, Doutzen Kroes, Natalie Portman, Eva Mendes."
Here's the question everyone is waiting for: What are your HG nail and hand care products?
"I try to use mainly natural products, things you’d find at Whole Foods, for instance. I really like Burt’s Bees and Dr. Hauschka products, though I make a lot of homemade hand lotions out of things you’d find in your own kitchen. Coconut oil and olive oil are my favorite bases, and I usually mix in some other essential oils."
What's your advice for someone who wants to get into hand modeling?
"I get asked that question a lot on my ‘Hand Jobs’ Facebook page, and I always say the best thing to do is call your local modeling agency and ask if they have a ‘body parts’ division and what their protocol for submission is. Do you send in a photo, or do they offer open calls occasionally? There’s no need to pay for professional pictures until you have formal representation."
Have you ever considered a career in parts modeling? Doesn’t Adele just inspire you to up your moisturizing game? *reaches for lotion*