South African model and actress Jay Anstey decided to pay homage to both Skin Wars host Rebecca Romijn’s sultry Sports Illustrated shoot and the new show by recreating the latter’s famous cover shot

It may have taken six hours to complete but Jay was thrilled with the end result courtesy of local artists Airvolution: “It was inspirational watching incredible artists work to transform my bare skin into beautiful body art.”

International supermodel and actress Rebecca who knows her way around a jar of body paint as she was the first model to be body-painted for Sports Illustrated’s 1999 swimsuit issue before she made her big-screen debut as the blue body painted Mystique in the hit film X-Men.

Rebecca said of the Sony Pictures Television production;  “I love body art and have plenty of experience in the subject. X-Men was a nine-hour make-up job with another two hours needed to take it off! The amazing thing about being painted is that once you’re completely painted you don’t feel nude.

“Look at my shoot for Sports Illustrated and you are fooled into believing that I am wearing a costume. Skin painting could overtake tattooing. With skin painting you can shower it off. With tattooing you are stuck.”

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The gripping eight-part Skin Wars pits 10 talented and versatile body painters against each other for a $100 000 (R1,2 million) grand prize in a series of challenges that promise amazing reveals

Each week, contestants are given a particular theme and collateral. Once the clock starts ticking, contestants need to battle it out for the best body-painting design of the day, which guarantees the contestants a step closer to the ultimate grand prize.

Rebecca says viewers should get used to their eyes being tricked: “The camouflage challenges were my personal favourite and the level of art was fantastic. And then it’s time to wash off your canvas…”


Catch Skin Wars on Friday, 22 May at 21:30 on Sony Max (DSTV Channel 128).