Pia Wurtzbach recalls working from ‘artista’ to waitress, offered sexy roles

Deni Rose M. Afinidad-Bernardo - Philstar.com

MANILA, Philippines — Apart from joining Binibining Pilipinas thrice before winning Miss Universe, Pia Wurtzbach revealed her other struggles, including becoming a waitress in United Kingdom despite being an actress and a celebrity in the Philippines.

“Ilang beses ko na narinig ‘to: sayang si Pia, maganda sana pero hindi nabigyan ng break,” she said at the beginning of her manifesto for the recent “Sayang? No, I’m worth it” campaign launch of international beauty brand L’Oreal Paris.

During her speech, Pia bared that she was also initially planned to have a love team partner and was offered sexy roles to boost her showbiz career.

“Masyado kasi s’yang matangkad, ‘di natin s’ya mabigyan ng love team,” she declared. “Sayang ‘di n’ya tinanggap ‘yung mga sexy na roles. Chance na n’ya ‘yun pero sinayang.”

Her provincial accent was also cited as among the reasons why she was not offered bigger roles: “Sayang, pwede sana ilagay sa roles pero rinig na rinig namin na taga-Cagayan de Oro s’ya. Rinig na rinig namin ‘yung Bisaya accent n’ya tuwing may mga dialog s’ya.”

As a breadwinner, when Pia was unable to rely on showbiz anymore to make a living, she went to the United Kingdom to explore other opportunities.

“Sayang, napag-iwanan na s’ya ng mga kasabayan n’ya. Buti pa sila. Sayang, nag-artista, walang nangyari. Ang nangyari, pumunta sa UK, naging waitress sa isang hotel. From artista to waitress – sayang.”

But life in UK was not easier for Wurtzbach.

“Nu’ng nag-culinary naman ako, which is a male-dominated space, sayang din, ako lang ‘yung babae sa kusina. Ayaw nila agad ibigay sa’kin ‘yung trabaho kasi akala nila hindi ko kaya buhatin ‘yung mga pots and pans. So nag-trial muna ako bago ko nakuha.”

L’Oréal Paris has tirelessly advocated for women empowerment through it's tagline - I'm Worth It. Following the reveal of its powerful hero film, the brand officially launched its "I'm Worth It" campaign in the Philippines last March 25. The "Sayang? No, I'm Worth It" campaign is anchored on a local cultural insight and is a first for the global brand to activate their iconic Worth lt movement for the Philippine market. Headlined by their ambassadors, Pia Wurtzbach-Jauncey and Iza Calzado-Wintle, the launch event was held in Puerta Real Gardens, Intramuros, Manila City.

The event held at Intramuros was an intentional choice for the brand — Puerta Real, translated to English means "royal gate." Gates are commonly associated with going through transitions and welcoming new opportunities, and this was the perfect symbol for the advocacy campaign launch to be held here. The event gave Intramuros, also known as old Manila, a Modern Filipiniana twist, representing the shift in outdated, traditional views on women.

The campaign, led by some of the most prominent names in the beauty industry, serves as a wake up call for anyone who still refuses to recognize that all types of women are worth it, no matter their choices and aspirations in life — turning every “Sayang ka..” into “Sayang? No, I’m worth it.” 

“Celebrating women and advocating for their empowerment have always been at the core of L’Oréal Paris, but the (campaign) definitely takes it to the next level," stated the brand's Philippines Brand Head, Von Cruz.

"Together with our powerful brand and campaign ambassadors, I am positive that we will be able to break barriers and be a loud voice for all our fellow women and all the modern Filipinas that constantly redefies expectations and creates her own path." — Videos by Deni Bernardo; additional video editing by Martin Ramos, Anjilica Andaya

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