Alyssa Muhlach Alvarez will be making her pageant debut at Miss World Philippines 2018.
But at first, joining beauty pageants was the farthest thing from her mind.
The 22-year-old daughter of Almira Muhlach and Bong Alvarez told PEP.ph, "I never thought of being in beauty pageants. I didn't really believe na beauty pageants were there to help empower other women."
But Miss World's slogan, "beauty with a purpose," made Alyssa think otherwise.
The young singer decided to give it a shot but didn't tell her family right away.
She continued, "I was really thinking about it very well. Siyempre, this is another industry from showbiz so I had to think it through. As a matter of fact, I've been with Kagandahang Flores (a well-known beauty camp) since January pa po, Binibining Pilipinas pa lang tini-training, pumupunta na ako doon. So I'm observing kung feel ko ba? Feel ko ba kung kaya ko?"
Part of her preparations was to ask her tita, Miss Universe 1994 finalist Charlene Gonzalez-Muhlach, particularly about the Q&A portion.
She said, "Tita Charlene told me to just keep being yourself. I was asking her questions for Q&A kasi she's so smart! Sabi ko, 'Tita, how am I going to answer questions like this?' So she told me, 'You know what Yssa [Alyssa's nickname], what's important is you really stay true to yourself and you answer something you believe in.'
"Kasi yung problema sometimes, some girls, they say answers based on what they think people want to hear. That's not who they are. I really loved that advice from her na stay true to who you are and tell the truth, kasi that's really what people will resonate with other people."
Is she going to join Binibining Pilipinas next?
Yssa answered, "I don't know po, because it's really Miss World's beauty with [a] purpose that's close to my heart. Maybe in the future, but for now talaga, Miss World Philippines."