Miss Universe Philippines Mary Jean Lastimosa faces great pressure following the country’s four consecutive runners-up finishes in the Miss Universe pageant.
“The pressure will always be there, but I channel it to fuel me to become more competitive and focused,” the 27-year-old beauty from North Cotabato said in a press statement. “I don’t let the pressure get to me. The Miss Universe is a once in a lifetime event, and I hope to treasure every moment, be grateful for the experience and just showcase the beauty of the Filipina the best way I can.”
Under Binibining Pilipinas MJ took courses on personality development and cultural immersion, had Q&A practice sessions and also focsed on toning exercises at the gym.
She also got valuable insights from former beauty queens, including her best friend Shamcey Supsup.
“Shamcey told me to know myself better, to know my values and where I stand in life. It’s easy to be consumed by the competition, but knowing myself gives me confidence that allows me to shine,” MJ said.
She added that Venus Raj, Ariella Arida and Janine Tugonon advised her to just “look natural, bubbly ans show off the real me”.