Beauty is only skin deep, such a cliche. Easy to say if it was true. Women today can prove that, I believe. We have flawless women on television and magazines that show us the epitome of a female. What is the real secret? Is it the make up that help mask the imperfections? Or the designer label clothing that flow over the curves we don’t like to be seen? All these may help a woman’s self esteem but I do believe it is the confidence that is gained through the years. Women are able to face challenges with greater meaning, whether in their chosen careers or leading their own family households. We have seen this in numerous occasions where the women in our families and celebrities whom sometimes succeed even more when becoming a mother. Education plays a big role, and women have taken advantage in todays society. We have seen women lead countries, beautiful women inside and out.

The perfect example of proving women with beauty and brains is in the pageantry industry. Women whom represented their countries to show the world that beauty and brains exist. Ambassadors of goodwill and examples for young women that would dream of being in their positions. It takes pure passion to be able to achieve confidence to face the world and many Filipinas have shown their success in doing so.

Gloria Diaz Miss Universe 1969, Margie Moran Miss Universe 1973, Aurora Pijuan Miss International1970, Melanie Marquez Miss International 1979, Precious Lara Quigaman Miss International 2005 and Megan Young Miss World 2013 to name a few.

These women have shown the world that the Philippines breeds intelligent, compassionate and of course beautiful gems. Standing on stage holding your poise and keeping a genuine and composed smile is not an easy job. It is a duty that your country has given to you to enrich the people that you are a winner and deserve to represent the whole world of good will. That, I may say, is a huge challenge to face and the winner will not regret it.

Proven fact that hard work, confidence and feeling good is beautiful. Women are classified world class beauties when they feel good inside and out. I too was lucky to have beautiful and confident women show me the goodness in life. My mama, in my eyes, has shown me how to assert myself in the real world. A world filled with challenges that only you can decide which to attain. Women tend to be taken advantage of more than the opposite sex. Its a known fact that it’s happened more so in the past generations than today. I can definitely be an example of a woman that allowed society to change me, but not for long. Having the support system I had I was able to emerge on dreaming big and making those dreams come true. We can judge a book by its cover, but a book will never be read if it doesn’t have an engaging story to tell.

My name is Mafae Yunon-Belasco, Bb. World 2003 and Miss World 4th runner -up, and this is my storybook.

I started Kindergarten with a fade haircut and was handed a boys uniform. I grew up boyish and only played with G.I Joes and a few teddy bears with my little brother. I only knew sports my whole life, my one true love was my tennis racket. I played tennis for over 10 years in Australia. And then I turned 18. This is where the femininity all began. I was spotted at a family party by my dad’s friend who happened to be an organizer for the Miss Philippines-Australia pageant. My boyish ways slowly slipped away and after winning both major titles of the pageant my racket seemed to have collected dust in my closet. Long story short, I was exposed to the opportunities of what a beauty queen can achieve and I dreamed big! Soon after I graduated college, flew to the Philippines, and auditioned for the 2003 Bb.Pilipinas Pageant. Lucky to achieve the World crown, I was honored and overwhelmed to be able to represent my country. Dreams are often just dreams. But little did I know I was fulfilling mine. Now I am writing to you, and this is where I am at now. Beauty pageant expert, a model, a wife, a mother of four, Esthetician, Bartender, Businesswoman and a Storyteller.


Philippians 4:13