Whether talking to random strangers on the Las Vegas strip or laying low with her dog Sasha, Jessica Perez may be the most down-to-earth of all SI's swimsuit models. She is certainly the only current model who holds a Psychology degree, which she received from Hunter College. Perez, a native of Costa Rica who also grew up in Honduras and Ecuador, appeared in the 2012 and 2013 swimsuit issue. In this interview, we asked her about her first modeling job and what it's like to be a SI Swimsuit model.
On her first modeling gig: "My first ever modeling shoot was for YM Magazine They put so much makeup on me that I looked Asian. I was so excited to show my friends and they were like, 'That doesn't even look like you.'"
On being a SI Swimsuit model: "I was a big fan of so many SI models growing up. I really loved Kathy Ireland. Stephanie Seymour. Elle Macpherson. These were models that I always looked up to and thought, 'These are the most beautiful women in the entire world.' And I just never thought I'd end up doing something similar or the same thing that they've done in their careers. I really didn't think I had what it takes but yeah, I feel pretty confident about it now. I think I've done alright."
We think she's done all right as well. These photos from Jess' two swimsuit appearances should convince you as well.