We asked Bella Ysmael the question that everyone is dying to know the answer to. Read below an excerpt of this month’s cover with the beauty queen.
Will she once again compete for a chance to represent the country again in Miss Universe? Ysmael, as she has time and time again during our talk, takes a breath before answering. It’s obvious she’s been thinking about this for quite some time now, not perhaps wondering if she should, but why. “Definitely, yes. It’s funny that I never answer that straight up because people expect me to join again. I don’t want people to expect a certain time,” she says.
“Of course, I want to, it’s something that I find a lot of fun in and also peace, in the chaos of it all, I guess. What I like about pageantry, especially in 2020, is it really led me to the path of self discovery. And that sounds so cliche, but it’s really true. And for those wondering if she’s keen on taking, say Miss World or Miss International, Ysmael is equally forthcoming. “From where I stand right now, Miss Universe has always been my dream, it’s always been my goal. Not only related to my aunt right?
I guess every girl, when she joins, she has a specific goal, and maybe we’re not the same, but from where I stand right now, Universe if my goal. If not, then maybe it’s just not meant for me. Maybe there are other things that are meant for me. For now, that’s all that I can say about it.” So yes, she is doing it again. But as to when, well, only time will tell.
“One thing that I’ve learned from our experience last year is that life is never sure. You’re never sure of tomorrow. So one thing that I want to actively do is to make sure that I take everyday, kind of like a step. One step at a time, one day at a time. But for future plans, one of my goals has always been to have a business. That’s something that I’ve always wanted. So I’m slowly starting the swimwear business—that’s kind of been my dream since I was in high school. So slowly starting. Hopefully that can grow. Basically I want to be my own boss. I want to be a boss babe.”
“So that’s something that I want to do, but also at the same time, I love pageantry, I want to try it again, give it a try, see how my stars align. Maybe explore more modeling. Basically I just want to live my best life. And I can’t say what that is yet, because nobody really knows.”
Photography DOOKIE DUCAY
Creative direction JANN PASCUA
Art direction and Production design NICOLE ALMERO
Fashion Direction JEB FRONA and LYN ALUMNO
Styling GEE JOCSON assisted by IAN REY
Beauty Direction TRINA EPILEPSIA BOUTAIN and MIA CASTRO
Makeup GUILLY VALENZUELA
Hair JEFF VALENZUELA
Shoot Coordination ERICA LUNA and LOUIS ESGUERRA
Shot on location at SHUTTERSPACE STUDIOS