Deaf beauty Christine Balaguer ‘forced to quit’ Bb Pilipinas 2015

christine-balaguer
Balaguer during the Bb Pilipinas screening

Deaf beauty Christine Balaguer made headlines anew after the Bb Pilipinas Charities Inc allegedly forced her to quit this year’s Bb Pilipinas.

In her Facebook page, Balaguer said she was “depressed” about the resignation, saying it has always been her “dream to be the first deaf candidate to win Bb Pilipinas”.

Netizens were quick to criticize BPCI for discriminating the deaf model, who also joined Miss World Philippines 2014 and placed in the Top 13.

BPCI remains mum on the issue, but someone close to the matter told your blogger that Balaguer was removed from the roster not because of her handicap. The source, however, did not give any details.

What is the real reason?
What could be the reason behind Balaguer’s “disqualification”? Based on previous related instances, there are three reasons that come to mind: citizenship/residency, contract conflicts and moral issues.

When a contestant applies to join the pageant, she is required to submit proofs of citizenship and residency in the Philippines. Balaguer was born an raised in the country so this is already crossed out.

Second, if the candidate has existing contract that is in conflict with the Bb Pilipinas’ rules. This was the reason behind Maxine Medina’s disqualification in 2012.

Last, if the candidate had nude photos/photoshoots or posed for a men’s magazine prior to joining the pageant. This caused the ouster of Sandra Seifert in 2009 (posed for sexy magazine); Bianca Paz (sexy calendar shoot), Roxanne Cabanero (viral nude photos), and Grendel Alvarado and Jenilyn Olivar (nakaed photos for Breast Cancer Awareness) in 2011; and Theresa Fenger (posed for sexy magazine) in 2013.

She works as a professional model so there is high possibility that any of the last two reason caused her “disqualification”.

Miss World Philippines 2014: My fearless predictions

History was made last year when Megan Young became the first Filipino to win the elusive Miss World crown. She promised “to be the best Miss World ever” and has so far done an impressive job as the ambassadress of the “Beauty with a Purpose” program.

For sure, the whole world is already keeping an eye on delegate we will be sending in London this December for the 2014 world finals. Who among this year’s 26 candidates measure up with the standards set by Megan? Here’s my prediction:

THE BEST BETS FOR THE CROWN

miss-world-ph-2014-top-contendersMiss World Philippines 2014: Valerie Weigmann (#19)
All eyes are on Valerie, who has been touted as “the girl to beat” since Day 1. Much is expected of her since she is already a TV personality and a professional model prior to joining the pageants. But since the pageant started, this 25-year-old Filipino-German just shines with her queenly aura. No wonder she won the Miss World Camsur special title during the pre-pageant activity held in the province.

Among the candidates, she is the most ready to conquer the Miss World stage. She has a toned and shapely body that is ready for the Beach Beauty segment. Her experience in professional modeling will surely work to her advantage if she competers in the Top Model competition. She could pull off some magic tricks that could impress the judges of Miss World’s talent portion. Though not that sporty, Val has been regularly going to the gym which could help her endure the strenuous Sports competition. Most importantly, she has an interesting advocacy. She is actively involved in Musikaramay (https://www.facebook.com/musikaramay), which aims to raise funds to provide livelihood and healthcare for the Aetas of Tarlac through music.

All these plus her stunning face and calm aura, Val is undoubtedly the best girl to wear the Philippines sash in Miss World this year.

1st princess: Rachel Louise Peters (#7)
Rachel has the best body in the competition. She was one of the standouts during the press presentation and also managed to wow the judges during the Miss World Camsur mini-pageant. Winning the Best in Swimsuit and Miss Photogenic awards in that pre-pageant activity cemented her status as a front-runner in the competition.

What Rachel needs to focus on is to make her catwalk skills more natural. Though not the most stunning facially, her universal beauty, good communication skills and impressive academic background are enough to bring her closer to the crown.

2nd princess: Lorraine Kendrickson (#1)
Lorraine has one of the prettiest faces in the competition. She was a sight to behold during the press presentation: she appeared on stage with a winsome smile, she introduced herself well and her catwalk commands attention. This 19-year-old print and ramp model is already polished though at times she appears too pageant patty. Despite this, she remains a strong contender for the title.

3rd princess: Christine Balaguer (#12)
Based on her credentials alone, 24-year-old Christine could already pass as a Miss World candidate. She is into swimming and is a dragon boat team member. She is an experienced print and ramp model despite her hearing impairment. Her advocacy on becoming a role model for deaf people like her would make a good Beauty With A Purpose campaign. Overall, she is a strong candidate. She just needs to work on finding that perfect look for the finals to make her look fresher.
4th princess: Gazini Christiana Ganados (#5)
Unlike the other front-runenrs, Gazini is yet to find her defining moment in the competition. But it can’t be denied that this 19-year-old Cebuana has one of the freshest faces and the sexiest bodies. She is effortless on swimsuits no wonder she made it to the Top 10 of Miss Bikini Philippines 2014. She still needs more training to polish her pageant skills, but that stunning beauty deserves no less than a Top 5 finish.

REST OF THE TOP 13

miss-world-ph-2014-might-take-it-all6: Ina Dominica Guerrero (#16)
It’s not hard for her to get noticed because of her exotic looks. But aside from that, 21-year-old Ina catches people’s attention because her stage motion is unparalleled. She has been among the most consistent since the screenings. But her best asset is her toned bidy, which has improved since her Miss Philippines Earth stint two years ago.

7: Nelda Ibe (#20)
Nelda, 21, was among the standouts in the presentation show but despite that, she remains underrated. But if her gala fashion show performance is any indication, this former Mutya ng Pilipinas candidate could be pull off a surprise come finals night. She flawlessly worked that blue dress, despite being side-by-side two heavy favorites. She should keep that good styling, too.

8: Alexa Rae Kirby (#3)
At 18, Alexa is no longer new to pageants. Back in the US, she joined Miss Teen Pennsylvania USA and Miss Teen Philippines before winning Miss Philippines Quest-USA 2014 that earned her an automatic slot in this year’s MWP roster. She already has the goods; however, her performance during the press presentation was a little subdued.

9: Eliza Johanna Cruz (#25)
Eliza, 20, isn;’ just banking on her famous celebrity surname (she’s the sister of Geneva Cruz) for a shot at the crown. In fact, she underwent training with one of the pageant camps. This girl is into marathons, no wonder she has a healthy, toned body. She looks pretty in photos but in motion, she is bordering boring. She needs to add a more fire to her performance to keep up with the rest.

10: Kristine Angeli Estoque (#6)
Kristine, 21, is a diamond in the rough. Her greatest asset is her morena beauty, which is perfectly complemented by her long straight hair. Aside from that, She has so much potential but just needs to tone that body a bit more.

11: Nicole Donesa (#14)
After her luckless stint in Bb Pilipinas 2012, 20-year-old Nicole is back for another shot at being a beauty queen. Her personality is more relatable now, thanks to her showbiz background now. However, her body and presentation skills remain her waterloo. Aside from that, her beauty just doesn’t suit the beauty queen template.

12: Jean Marie Feliciano (#21)
Jean Marie is very engaging to watch on stage with her toned body and good catwalk skills. No wonder, she won Best in Swimsuit in the inaugural Miss Grand Philippines pageant held last August. But despite being among the tallest, she just blends in when beside the rest of the girls. She just needs to find that perfect look for the finals to stand out.

13: Ranielah Marie Oval (#9)
Ranielah, 22, may not be a favorite but she has the pageant experience to prove her worth. She placed as a runner-up in pageants in Palawan and has competed in compete in Miss Casino Filipino and Miss Bikini Philippines. She may not be the best in the beauty department but she walks with so much confidence on stage. This adorable personality could be her ticket the semifinals.

ALMOST THERE

miss-world-ph-2014-almost-there14: Ruffa Nava (#18)
Tagged by Cosmopolitan Magazine as one of the sexiest models in the country, 21-year-old Ruffa is undeniably gorgeous especially when she hits the runway. However, her styling during the press presentation and gala night were disappointing. She needs to find the right hairstyle to complement her beauty. Just a suggestion: ditch the curls and go for a bun or do the wet look a la Miss Universe 2006 Zuleyka Rivera.

15: Priscilla Kimberley dela Cruz (#4)
With this 24-year-old Filipino-American-Latina’s pageant experience (she competed but went home empty-handed in Mutya ng Pilipinas and Miss Bikini Philippines 2012), it won’t be surprising to see her make the cut. Aside from her nice body, she has a radiant skin complexion that would make her noticeable and a warm smile that could catch anyone’s attention.

Miss World Philippines 2014: The celebs and the runway divas

The 26 official candidates of Miss World Philippines 2014 pageant face great pressure following the victory of Megan Young in last year’s Miss World competition.

Whoever wins the crown will eye for a historic “back-to-back” victory for the Philippines in the international pageant. Before the ladies battle it out for that opportunity, it’s time to check in on your favorite candidates:

The celebs
Megan’s experience as a TV host and actress played an advantage when she competed in Bali, Indonesia last year. These three ladies hopes to follow her footsteps.

PicMonkey CollageThe most popular among the candidates is Filipino-German actress and professional model Valerie Weigmann (#19). She recently joined the noontime show Eat Bulaga but is best remembered for her stint in the reality show Pinoy Big Brother in 2008. She has graced the runway for some of the best names in the Philippine fashion industry as well as a handful of magazine covers prior to joining the pageant.

2Next is former Bb Pilipinas candidate Nicole Donesa (#14), a contract artist of GMA-7. Raised in San Francisco, California, she used to perform in various Fil-Am events in the US before moving to the Philippines. She has appeared on the Kapuso Network shows My Destiny and Bubble Gang.

3Technically, Eliza Johanna Cruz (#25) is no movie star, but her family name gives her that celebrity status. She is the sister of singer Geneva Cruz and holds a human resource management degree from De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde.

Runway models
Top Model category is among the major competitions in Miss World. Last year, Megan was the first Filipina to win this fast track event. This year, two candidates are banking on their catwalk skills in hopes of gracing the Miss World runway.

4Christine Balaguer (#12) made heads turn when she introduced herself in sign language during the press presentation. Her hearing impairment didn’t hinder her from making a name in the modeling industry. She works for Elites Model Management and is a member of RCP Sea Dragons Paddler dragon boat team. She is also into swimming and soccer.

5Meanwhile, 21-year-old Ruffa Nava (#18) was included in Cosmopolitan Magazine’s eight sexiest models list in the country last Novermber. Early this year, she joined Miss Makati 2014 where she placed in the Top 10 and won Miss Photogenic.
Who among these girls will earn the right to represent the Philippines in the Miss World finals in December? We’ll find out on October 12.

Full version of this story was first published in Rappler.

Miss World Philippines 2014 candidates officially presented

The 26 candidates of Miss World Philippines 2014 crown were officially presented to the media on Wednesday, September 17, at the Solaire Resorts and Casino.

They are: 1 Lorraine Kendrickson, 2 Cyra Guilalas, 3 Alexa Rae Kirby, 4 Priscilla Kimberley dela Cruz, 5 Gazini Christiana Ganados, 6 Kristine Angeli Estoque, 7 Rachel Louise Peters, 8 Rachelle Emmylou Carandang, 9 Ranielah Marie Oval, 10 Grace Ann Bautista, 11 Moriel Olea, 12 Christine Balaguer, 13 Kimberley Anne Sarreal, 14 Nicole Donesa, 15 Theresa Regli, 16 Ina Dminica Guerrero, 17 Kimberley Pajares, 18 Ruffa Nava, 19 Valerie Weigmann, 20 Nelda Ibe, 21 Jean Marie Feliciano, 22 Abegail Galisim, 23 Frances Ruth Constantino, 24 Carina Jennah Aguilar, 25 Eliza Johanna Cruz, and 26 Jahziel Pernia.

The pressure is on the next winner to duplicate last year’s victory of Megan Young, who is the first Filipina to win the elusive blue crown.

The finals night is set for October 12 at the Mall of Asia Arena.

Check out the photos below (grabbed from Missosology):

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