She’s blonde, she’s beautiful and she has the personality to attract millions. So it was no surprise that Fargo, North Dakota native, CariDee English (28) won Tyra Bank’s seventh cycle of “America’s Next Top Model.”
Though CariDee has a thriving modeling career now, she did not have an easy path to the top. Diagnosed with Psoriasis at age 5, CariDee grew up dealing with the insecurities and pain that stem from the auto-immune disease. At its worst, red, flaking skin covered nearly 70% of her body. Those who didn’t understand that the disease is inherited and non-communicable mistakenly thought she was a threat to others.
Determined to fulfill her dream of becoming a model and eager to showcase her potential, CariDee reached out to local modeling agencies and entered modeling contests. Each and every agency she contacted rejected her and strongly encouraged her to choose another career path.
Though disappointed, she did not allow the negative feedback to crush her dream. She stayed true to her motto “Don’t let Psoriasis have you!” CariDee sought out multiple dermatologists and physicians in attempts to conquer her condition.
Around that time, a friend informed CariDee about an “America’s Next Top Model” casting call. Entering the casting call, she was apprehensive but projected confidence. She had dealt with rejection before, but never in front of millions of viewers. She was chosen and her confidence soared to new heights. CariDee stole the judges’ hearts and ultimately won the entire competition. Her season was the highest-rated in the history of the show. She is the fan favorite as validated by Yahoo and AOL. Shortly after being crowned “America’s Next Top Model”, CariDee signed contracts with Cover Girl and Elite Model Management.
CariDee has graced the covers of numerous magazine publications including Seventeen, Healthy Living, Runway, Self, Cover Magazine, Inked, Social Life, Vogue Knit and American Salon. Her opening/closing runway appearances include Carlos Campos, DKNY, Jill Sanders, BisouBisou, Heatherette, Richie Rich, T.Rains, Red Dress Foundation, Indashio, Guess, and JC Penney. She has appeared in fashion weeks in New York, Miami, Los Angeles, Honduras, Paris, Puerto Rico, Ireland and Canada.
In 2007 she became the first celebrity spokesperson for Psoriasis for the National Psoriasis Foundation. She is a Global Ambassador for Psoriasis and has spoken publicly in Ireland, Canada, Switzerland, Italy, Argentina, France and Spain. CariDee continues touring and working to educate people about her disease.
In 2010, CariDee took on a new challenge and became the host of Oxygen’s show “Pretty Wicked.” The show followed self-proclaimed “prima donnas” on their transitional journey from beautiful on the outside to beautiful on the inside. With no one better suited for the gig, CariDee re-entered the homes and hearts of millions.
Before becoming a model, CariDee was trained in classical music. Beginning her musical education at the age of 4, she is now an accomplished drummer and singer. In 2014, CariDee was the only female enrolled in The Musicians Institute in Hollywood’s drum program. In addition to her modeling success, her musical acumen has enabled her to broaden her career to include singing, drumming, and songwriting. She now drums along-side some of the top industry DJ’s, a favorite being DJ Lindsay Luv. Together they to form the ultimate girl drummer/DJ power duo. She recorders and sings out of Los Angeles.
CariDee has also enjoyed acting success, having landed roles on “One Tree Hill” and “Gossip Girl.” She has appeared in over thirteen Cover Girl commercials and two national, primetime commercials for the Psoriasis medication Stelara®. CariDee has recently completed filming a pilot titled “In the Bag.”
A born performer, CariDee is a positive role model who has achieved her dream by believing in herself and persevering over adversity. Even in the face of rejection, CariDee never lost hope and never took “no” for an answer. She has proudly overcome many obstacles in her road to success. CariDee believes in the American Dream because she is living it. Her favorite saying to live by is “There is no elevator to success, you have to take the stairs.”