While Phoenix has built an impressive portfolio, including ad campaigns for Alternative Apparel, Coca-Cola and Target, she still faces prejudice and ridicule in the fashion industry due to her unique skin tone and features.
"I've been to castings where the clients, photographers and casting directors will speak negatively of you in front of your face as if you can't even hear them," Phoenix told HuffPost Style. "I've been dropped from shows because of race. When that model of color quota has been met, that's it."
In spite of adversity, her positive attitude has helped her to "tough through it."
Phoenix said, "I know that I'm not perfect. I have these spots all over me and stretch marks and scars. When I look in the mirror sometimes I see those things, and sometimes I don't. Yes, I've had my moments when I wished that I could just fit in with a crowd, but I'm glad I stand out. Through the good times and bad, I’ve learned to love what makes me me."