Mr. and Miss Chinatown Philippines, aside from being the first tandem extravaganza, is also one of the most anticipated pageants in the country. With a theme of #BeautyInDiverCHity, the Mr. and Miss Chinatown 2018 Philippines promises to be its biggest and boldest Mr. and Miss pageant in the country. Started in 2013, the pageant aims to highlight and celebrate the distinctive Filipino-Chinese culture as we usher into modern times. Amid the exciting and whirlwind of activities, we caught up with candidate number 4, Chinzen Viernes, a young woman mixed with a cheerful youthful glow with a dash of cosmopolitan chic. She can switch from a girly 18-years old to a woman who seems to be wiser beyond her years in just a few seconds. Join us as we had a chat from advocacies to lip tints!
What made you decide to join the Mr. and Miss Chinatown 2018 pageant?
I have always been very eager to join a pageant even when I was just a little girl. I was inspired by the girls in my family who have transformed into such beautiful empowered women after journeying in their respective pageants before. Now that I have already turned 18, and I am already qualified to compete, I wanted to join a pageant that stands for the same things that I also believe in. Mr & Ms. Chinatown Philippines is not just a test of beauty. It is an avenue for me to showcase my skills, talents, intelligence, and most importantly, my love for my Filipino-Chinese culture. But of course, I plan to use this platform not only to develop myself but also to bring forth relevant calls and advocacies.
Speaking of advocacies, why did you choose to an advocate for mental health?
We all know someone who has struggled with anxiety, trauma, depression, among others. In the worst cases, we also know someone who has taken their own life. I, for one, have friends and family who have experienced or are experiencing different mental health concerns. The issue of mental health is non-discriminating. Meaning, whether you’re a child, an adult, or a senior citizen coming from any social class or background, it is very possible for you to suffer through a mental disorder. Hence, I believe the call for greater awareness and accessible services for our mental health should be strengthened. I aspire to help develop a society where people feel affirmed, validated, and unafraid to seek for help, and where the poor and the marginalized have access to quality mental health care services.
What is the hardest part of the journey that people of your age come across?
I do not think that I am in a position to say the hardest part of what people of my age go through. Although we are of the same generation, we are still coming from different backgrounds, different circumstances, and different perspectives in life. I find that it is dangerous and unhealthy to make generalizations about a group of people without knowing the full context of everything.
Who is the person that you look up to the most and why?
I am inspired by many people around me – those that work hard, spread kindness, and who excel in their own fields. But of course, like any other child, I look up to my mom the most. All that I am, and all that I ever will be, are all thanks to her. I would give her the world and more if I could.
What is the 1 word that describes you the best?
Ambitious. I believe there is no limit to what I can do as long as I am prepared to dream big, work hard, and show the world what I can offer.
What are the 3 things that you can not go anywhere without?
My phone, lip & cheek tint, and a small rosary.
How do you describe your personal style?
My friends describe me as a fashionista. Perhaps my love for fashion and style came from my mother, who is a fashion designer. When it comes to my wardrobe, I value comfortability and elegance more than anything. In school, you would see me in my sneakers, a basic top, and skinny jeans. But when I go out during the weekends, I wear clothes that are more edgy and stylish, but still classy.
What is the achievement that you are most proud of?
As I have said before, I am a very ambitious person. However, I do value humility and grace above anything. The only thing that I could be proud of at this point is that I never lose my drive to achieve all of my goals and to fulfill a greater purpose in the service of others.
Don’t forget to vote for Chinzen at www.zalora.com.ph/chinatownph and get 18% off on your next purchase at Zalora! You can also check out #Chin4theWin to follow her journey to Mr. and Miss Chinatown 2018!