The Marian Rivera Effect
While many celebrities pursue physical perfection, Marian Rivera is among the chosen few who can show two kinds of beauty and prove that sexiness is beyond showing more skin onscreen
Text by Mylene C. Orillo
Photography by Fritz Tentativa
Makeup by Bambbi Fuentes
Hair by Mark Familiara for L’oreal
Professionel Styling by Eldzs Mejia
Assisted by Julianna Force
Shot at The Bulb Studios
Special thanks to Lester Echano
They say there are two kinds of beauty: inner and outer. Some are blessed with just one or the other, but some, like Marian Rivera, is blessed to have both. She is just the epitome of all that is sexy and beautiful in addition to her being articulate in Filipino, witty, smart, funny, and sincere contrary to what other people say about her.
Just what is it about Marian and her effect on people that we love (or love to hate) so much? She entered the studio that day without so much of a pizzazz. She was wearing an all-white minidress and sandals with no makeup. Marian greeted everyone warmly and cheerfully. We swore our jaws drop when we first saw her.
All prior prejudice and misconception caused by rumors and bad tabloid stories were completely vaporized.
Earlier that day, Bambbi Fuentes, Marian’s long-time makeup artist, was telling us that beyond the seemingly intimidating, mestiza face is a very professional and easy-to-work with person. He tells us in Filipino that if we told Marian to jump out of a building, she’ll jump. Of course, we didn’t make her do that.
The photoshoot itself proved Marian’s professionalism. She was even ecstatic to do it. “I like the role of being a man, because I haven’t been a man. At least it’s different, not glamorous, sweet, beautiful, or fabulous all the time. This is different,” she said. “When I saw the peg in this shoot and I have a lot to do, I was really excited. Okay, let’s do it.”
Life, according to her, is giving her a lot surprises, which keeps her happy as an actress. “Everything that is happening in my life is unplanned. It just comes and that’s the best part in an actress’ life, especially now, this is my first time to use Instagram. This is my first time to use social media and I am enjoying it. I’ve been on Instagram for only about two months and I really enjoy it. Because of social media I realized I am so blessed to have a lot of supporters and followers,” shares Marian.
What more can a ‘Marian Rivera’ ask for?
“A lot of people ask me that. I still have a lot of things to do like super heavy drama in movies. I haven’t had heavy drama only comedy. There’s a little drama but not heavy. I want something diff erent and challenging,” says Marian.
Marian believes that an actress should have no limitations, but for her, not to the point of portraying extremely sexy roles. For Marian, being an actress is not about showing some skin. “I can do any role but not super sexy. No frontal nudity. I don’t like that. But the rest is okay with me,” says Marian.
Marian is seen in comedy and drama, but when asked which she prefers among the two, she says she wants to be known both as a comedienne and an actress. “I’m a comedian in real life. [There are] no dull moments when you’re with me. I’m very talkative and bubbly. I like drama because it’s different. An actress can go through a lot, but she has to be flexible, not only in comedy or drama. She has to be good at both.”
If she’s not an actress, Marian revealed she would be working in a mental hospital or in a restaurant as a chef.
Before she became an actress, Marian worked in a mental hospital for a few months after graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology at De La Salle University in Dasmariñas, Cavite.
Working in a mental hospital made her realize how blessed she was that God has given her a normal life and state of mind.
“When you’re there, you’ll realize how blessed you are because He has given you other opportunities. You’ll realize a lot of things. I enjoyed listening to the patients although I may not be able to help them to the point of healing them, but by just being their inspiration and listening to them are already enough.
At the same time, “If I’m not doing that (work in a mental hospital), I would have become a chef. I wanted to own a restaurant,” says Marian.
“I like the role of being a man, because I haven’t been a man. At least it’s different, not glamorous, sweet, beautiful, or fabulous all the time. This is different”
CAREER VS. LOVE
“Balance na balance ‘yan! Chos!” exclaims Marian when asked how she balances her career and love life, adding that one has to enjoy work and should have time for love and family as well.
“My family is important to me. As long as I have time for them and they understand my work, I’m okay with that. I just tell myself as long as I enjoy my work and I am able to extend my happiness to my family be it financial or otherwise, that’s important to me.”
Marian feels blessed that Dong, referring to her beau Dingdong Dantes, who is one of the most sought-after actors in the country, understands her job. If they don’t have tapings, they see each other and spend time together by going on dates and dining out, which she also does with her family.
“Dong is a very open-minded man. He’s very supportive of my job. You won’t hear any complaint from him. He’s just behind me so I do the same to him, vice versa. There’s no one-way relationship,” she says.
When asked about wedding plans, Marian revealed that she’s open to the idea, but not at this time. It’s too early for them to think about it.
“Of course, a wedding and being married to the person you love is every woman’s dream. I’m an actress, but I’m also human. I have the same dreams, wishes, and happiness like other women,” she says.
“For me, being sexy is not about showing skin. People have different personalities and the reason they become sexy is not limited to physical aspects. For me, if I see someone who dances well, that’s sexy”
On being tagged as the “sexiest” woman in the country, Marian revealed that she felt no pressure and even felt good that men still respect her despite being crowned “sexiest”. She believes that it’s important for a woman to be sexy, but being “sexy” depends on one’s definition of it.
“Para sa akin ang pagiging seksi ay hindi naman pagpapakita ng katawan. May iba ibang personality ang tao kung bakit siya nagiging seksi hindi lang sa pangangatawan. Para sa akin kapag may nakikita akong magaling sumayaw na babae, seksi yun (For me, being sexy is not about showing skin. People have different personalities and the reason they become sexy is not limited to physical aspects. For me, if I see someone who dances well, that’s sexy).”
She added: “The overall aspect of a woman is important. Take care and love yourself and you’ll deserve more.”
Although Marian didn’t see herself becoming the country’s sexiest woman now twice, she’s very grateful for winning the title. “Of course, I’m happy. Whatever achievement be it small or big – for me, it’s valuable. But no matter how sexy or beautiful I am, if not for the people who voted for me, I won’t win this because it’s through voting.”
Marian revealed that she felt the need to prepare for the event since it’s been five years since she walked on the catwalk for the same title. So this time, she took Zumba classes and observed proper diet and exercise.
“I exercised literally until I got tired. I only focus on Zumba. Because I love to dance, my personality clicked with Zumba.” says Marian, adding that when it comes to skin and face, she follows a strict regimen. As early as high school, Marian’s mother taught her how to apply moisturizer, eye cream, and lip balm.
Marian admits that although a lot of women want to be sexy, her priority is acting. “Kasi doon ako eh. I love acting. I love being an actress. Maybe I’m just blessed for winning it.”
Marian understands that being in the entertainment industry makes her prone to a lot of hurtful comments and uncalled for criticisms from other people. But being the very vocal person that she is, she knows that she just has to accept that she is now a public figure and that she will be judged according to how other people want to judge her.
“I cannot do anything. I chose this life, but at the same time, I’m blessed and thankful for everything that’s happening in my life,” says Marian who adds that she has nothing bad to say for her detractors. In fact, she has no message for them at all.
“I felt that those people lack love so as long as I can give them my love and understanding, go! Pero message ko sa kanila, waley!”
Five to 10 years from now, Marian sees herself still in showbiz with a family of her own. “Maybe I have a family then and a lot of kids. I’m one of the happiest women around” says Marian.
Marian believes that a person who is full of happiness and positivity in life will live happily. “Nothing’s wrong with being happy, right? In my simple way of giving inspiration every day, whatever happens to my life, how blessed I am, I want to share everything to them.”
She adds, “I want them to realize [that no matter] how big or small, when you put kindness to it, nothing will go to waste. I want to be positive always. If you’re positive, many unexpected blessings will come to you.”
She advises women to love themselves first and enjoy the life that they have. “Be it your job or love life, enjoy it. That’s the magic word – enjoy your life. There’s this quote that says, ‘Life is too short. Enjoy life.’ So choose to be happy. Smile if you can – that I think is a woman’s most inexpensive accessory to be beautiful,” says Marian.
Lately, Marian has been very active in charity events, sometimes with her celebrity boyfriend, Dingdong Dantes and sometimes alone. While some charities were influenced by Dong, Marian said she personally accepted Philippine Red Cross because she believes in its cause.
“Red Cross came up to me and presented their plans and I told them, ‘Wow! Why not?’ If I can be of help, I’ll do it. I don’t like to accept something just for the sake of volunteering. I want to do something, which I am aware of what’s behind it, what’s happening, and I want to do it on my own. Ayoko ‘yung wala lang,” explains Marian.
She added: “The point that I was touched and was able to touch other people is important to me, not just being a beautiful or sexy celebrity. Maybe it’s a bonus, but your life becomes more meaningful if you have touched other people’s lives and you become their inspiration and cause of happiness.”
That, we think, is Marian’s true effect on people.
“The overall aspect of a woman is important. Take care and love yourself and you’ll deserve more”