Fresh off her Asia’s Next Top Model Season 5 win, 19‑year‑old Maureen Wroblewitz sits down with SparkUp at her recent meet‑and‑greet at SM Makati, talking about the qualities that will help anyone land success in the age of social media. Despite her job, they have nothing to do with mere physical beauty.


You have to stick to your instincts and go for it.


Ms. Wroblewitz got discovered by a local modelling talent agency when she was just 15 years old on photo sharing app Instagram. She was still living in Saudi Arabia at the time, but when she was contacted by the agency, she knew in her heart that she wanted to give modelling a try. Her father allowed her to go, but on one condition: that she finish her studies first. Maureen graduated high school and flew to the Philippines on pure faith that things will work out. “I’m afraid of regret. I knew it was a great opportunity for me, and I had to take it because I know not everybody gets that chance,” she recounted.

After a few months of landing minor gigs here and there, Asia’s Next Top Model announced they were holding their fifth cycle and were accepting applicants for contestants. The naturally shy beauty almost backed out from joining but, in the end, it was this motto that forced her to really go for it.


Always tell yourself that you’re beautiful and that you’re worth it.

While she was accepted at the prestigious competition, she quickly took on the role of the underdog. She was criticized for being too short for a model, and at one point, was even told that she only had a pretty face with no talent. She emerged as the grand winner, proving her detractors wrong.


You have to believe in yourself so that others will believe in you.


In fact, whatever job it is, not just in modeling, if people are trying to pull you down, tell yourself that you deserve the spot you were given. Don’t let them convince you otherwise.


The half‑Filipina model realized that jealousy and insecurity are the primary reasons for putting other people down, so one mustn’t succumb to the negativity.


It’s the crab mentality that people have. It’s like, if they can’t have it, you can’t have it.


Social media is an opportunity for business. Everyone’s on it.


To tell you the truth, I wasn’t expecting this at all,” she admitted, referring to the interest the local talent agency showed to her.


Beauty is not only about the looks. It’s really about what’s within. Your personality, your beliefs, the way you carry yourself… that’s beauty.


Sometimes people are too busy looking up to people that they forget what they love.


She continued that people should wear what they want to wear, and do things because they love it and not because they intend to be like others.


Style yourself appropriately. Don’t be too showy or too casual when at work, and stuff like that. Fashion is such a useful tool to help yourself find work, so always dress well or dress accordingly.


Don’t force yourself to be confident, it really takes time. Up until now, I admit, I’m still developing my confidence.

After all, it is when a person is comfortable with herself that she begins to shine.