A name is worth a thousand words and, when you say Ice Cold Champagne, many words come to the minds of her fans. But, when you say just Steph, many have no clue about the real beauty behind the exotic photos. Don’t be dismay because by the time you finish reading this article you’ll add a few more words to the category, one being Stephaine.
Steph as I will refer to her, most who gaze at her provocative pictures may think differently, but upon meeting, you will be totally surprised by her shyness and, warm persona. Ms. Champagne invites us in to share a very intimate side of her as she talks about the business, family, relationships and her plans for the future.
J’ADORE: So you’re shy? Yeah right?
CHAMPAGNE: Seriously! I am shy initially, and then, I’m really laidback! [Laughs] I’m a cornball, think Carlton meets Sade meets Doogie Howser. But yes, I hear the intimidated thing all the time! I recently met a fan and he was just floored by how down to earth I was. I do think people look at the image and take it as the personality.
That’s interesting! So, were you born and raised in Detroit?
Yes I was born and raised in Detroit (Westside).
What was it like growing being Steph?
I was (and still am) very shy. I know it seems strange given my site and my comfort level with my body but it takes me a while to warm up to people. I think I am socially shy if that make sense. I developed people skills much later in life. I was a nerd for real! My parents didn't prioritize looks at all. My IQ was very high when I was younger (may still be but haven't been tested) but I was extremely sheltered (no sleepovers, mall trips, phone calls all night, etc). No not at all. My focus was school and, I wanted to be like DR Huxtable or Flo Jo! Then, I saw that movie in health class showing childbirth, YUK! [LAUGHS]
So, is that when you knew, you wanted to model?
Actually, It was a little later when an ex boyfriend who was fledgling photographer, one of my ex boyfriends was a fledgling photographer and I was his test model. He submitted some of my shots and it started from there.
Did you ever strip for a living?
Yes! My Dad was old school and felt at 18 you should take care of yourself...I was a 2nd semester junior at an expensive University!! Stripping was cool, I was able to have a carefree lifestyle and still pay my tuition, but there is a stigma that goes with it that I understand. I think personally about 85% of the women that strip fit into the stereotype but the 15% of us that don't...its a job not a lifestyle!”
How does your family feel about your modeling?
Well to them it’s a hobby. Like I said I was a wiz in school. My Dad used to want me to get married and settle down but understands that, ‘they don't make men like they used to’, and
[laughs] he says, ‘he feels sorry for young girls nowadays’. Personally, I really don't think there is anything shameful about the nude human body at all. I do understand that some people have given it such a stigma and so it’s a bad thing. I feel that in its natural sense it is beautiful and
innocent, Americans make it such a negative thing.
Speaking of beautiful body, how do you maintain that curvous shape and, what do you feel are you best assets, physically that is?”
I work out, not regularly like I should but I do take it serious. I do about 30 minutes of cardio and then about 45 minutes of weights/resistance, then end with another 15 minutes of cardio. I don't eat pork, I do eat lots of green veggies, but I lovvvvvve sweets, not chocolate so much but candy, cakes, pie (cherry), etc. I want to become a complete vegan but I love steak too much and Popeye's, dangit! I think my best assets are my eyes...but they give away my mood and thoughts sometimes. My worst? My legs...I know some people love them but to me they are too big...Even when I was skinny I thought they were too big!”
I think a few fellas would disagree about the legs, Steph. Girl, you know you’re sexy right?
I am a corn/goof ball. I think being comfortable in your skin and being open-minded is sexy. I think that not hiding what you perceive as a flaw is sexy. I don't limit that to dark or light skinned, small or curvy frame.
Do you think it was harder for you to get into the internet/video modeling biz, than it is for ladies today?’
Yes, I think its harder now. Girls are doing any and everything to get a feature spot in a music video. Also, the average size woman is considered fat and too shapely (yes, I have heard that...from Black casting directors and magazines at that!) But, I am very fortunate to be the owner, administrator, web-mistress of my site: www.justmesteph.com . I am an aspiring Soccer mom. [Laughs] Seriously, I also dabble a little in day trading. One of my members introduced it to me and, it’s been pretty cool so far!! Of course I would love to do some acting but nothing has come thru yet, so we’ll see!
Okay time to spill the beans. Are you dating Steph?
No, I’m single. Even if I were in a relationship, I wouldn't tell. [Laughs] It is very hard to maintain a relationship in this biz. The fans don't want to think they have a possibility of being with you and the man you date has to understand that yes, you are a fantasy woman to lots of people. That's why I like open-minded men who are secure within them selves.
What else you like in a man?
I am really into a man’s stance...how he carries himself. I love confidence, not arrogance. I have run the gamut in terms of looks and size that caused me to have superficial relationships, so now I go for personality security in his manhood and open-mindedness. A lot of folks think I only date ballers, athletes or corporate guys, so not true!
So, you haven’t dated any famous guys? I’m so not believing that!”
I plead the 5th! [Laughing] An R&B singer; a Pittsburgh Steeler; a Houston Rocket’ and, an Arizona Cardinal. But hey, a lady never tells! Besides, I later found out they were married and hiding it. That's why I don't focus in other celebs!
Okay, ever have any stalkers or negative encounters with females calling you out about what you do? And, I know you went straight up, Detroit style on their behinds, cause 'um, we don't play in the 'D'!! [Laugh]
Yes & yes! I just feel like they [the women] are insecure with themselves. I mean why else would you care what I do? I am not flaunting my job to you don't judge me by how I am able to pay my bills...find your hustle in life and work it whatever it may be!! -I am so not a fighter...I was well into adulthood before I had my first fight (have only had two). My mother taught me not to lower myself to their level...like, ‘don't let a loud mouth idiot make you mad and fight, at the end of the day, they are still a loud mouth idiot and you have become one too!’ As far as a stalker, I’ve had one before. It was crazy because he wanted me to have his son and give the child up.”
Wait, was his name Loc? [We both laugh, at our little secret] Okay never mind, continue. “she gathers her composure and finishes the story”
Well, I turned him down and then he proposed marriage. When I declined that too he got loony. Sending crazy packages to my job, sending letters to my ex-boyfriends and their families, he supposedly sent letters to the local government trying to implicate me as a call girl, it was crazy.”
Whoa! Now, tell us about the craziest thing that ever happened during on a shoot?
Hmm, I better keep it PG13 huh? I am very clumsy...like unbelievably so, have always been. So, I was doing a shoot on
a hammock and it is difficult to balance. Well, I am posing and flipped it right over...just like in the cartoons!!!”
That’s funny! Who were some of your favorite models to work with?”
See, you gonna have me "catching shade" because of this question [laughing], SaphirraChanel (she is wild but I love her ambition and business drive), Tiara (same zodiac sign and she is very positive and about her biz), MiaNorr (very business and laidback), Montana (surprised me too...she is crazy but again about her business)...notice a theme? And last but not least my D-town models kami2hot and Foreverafox, I know that I don't know nearly enough about this job of marketing yourself so anyone that I can learn from.”
Yeah, I hear those girls really handle their business. Steph, where do you see yourself in the next five, ten years? Married w/ kids and, the little house with the white picket fence?
In 5/10 yrs, a soccer mom!! I want the minivan and, chair the bake sale for the school events! I would love to have another child. I want to be married and settled though. I crave a "regular" life where my family I can enjoy the fruits of my 20's.
Well, fellas, a Cold glass of Champagne or, a warm embrace from Just Steph? How about a little of both, I’ll let you decide. Either way the shy, humble, and sometimes silly, carefree cornball behind both names will keep you intrigued by this beauty.