Over the years, Zerothreetwo has had the privilege to meet the beautiful women who win the crown of Miss Cebu. Last January, a 19 year old Eurasian stunner won the votes of the judges with her enigmatic stage presence and flawless answers. More than that, she won our hearts with her simplicity, down to earth attitude and unique perspectives that truly make her stand out.

The reigning Miss Cebu 2016, Raine Baljak showed us that she isn’t your average beauty queen.

We had the chance to talk with her over tea, this woman wears her crown in her heart.


Any celebrity crushes? or anyone particular from Cebu?

To be honest I don’t know very many celebrities because I am not into films and television; I like reading more, but I enjoy James Franco’s literary works!


So like Pia Wurtzbach?

Yes, my mom told me about that! She said, “You have the same answer!”


How is your lovelife after being crowned Miss Cebu?

Oh, single as a stack of pringles!


There are still people who think beauty pageants are only about make-up and heels. What do you think about it?

Growing up, I never saw myself to become one because I thought beauty pageants revolved only on physicality. But from my experience in Miss Cebu, other factors come into play. Throughout the months you are tested by intellectual individuals who overlook your knowledge on local and global current events (elections, COP21, etc.); at the same time, you are taught to be very knowledgeable of our Cebuano history and culture. I enjoyed the many workshops and seminars the commissioners prepared for us around our city, and most especially our Alegria canyoneering trip! Miss Cebu was a journey of self-discovery and personal growth. I highly recommend young ladies take this opportunity because just like me, you never know unless you try.



What do you think made you win Miss Cebu?

Practice makes perfect so do your research and prepare. That’s why passion and prayer play a huge role because it drives you to overcome each challenge. Most importantly treasure each moment with a positive mindset, because at the end of the day, you’re just sharing who you are with everyone on the journey with you.


How did you cope with the pressure given that your mom is also a beauty queen?

It’s not easy but counting your blessings each night, waking up excited and eating a well-balanced meal really helps motivate you to pushing yourself. Each day is an obstacle in itself, I’m just blessed I have a mother who is very willing to help me throughout the journey and a (Jonas Borces’ KF Cebu) team to help train me.


Any plans of joining a national pageant?

I want to focus on my reign and responsibilities now. It’s my mom who has more urge over that. She is very excited as well as the people who supported me. If they see potential that can be developed, I’m very open to that but I just want to take things one day at a time.


During the competition, who else do you think was a good candidate for the Miss Cebu crown?

All of the girls are very beautiful, articulate, socially aware and strong in their own way. It isn’t easy for me to decide because anyone of us could have snagged the crown. I am very grateful to have been the judges and commissioners’ decision.


Is there something interesting about you that we do not know of?

Shout out to the inked ones out there as I’ve got four on my left wrist! A revolver on my index finger because we hold the gun and we pull the trigger, shooting towards our bullet’s focus. Sometimes the negative words of others hit us skin deep, so it’s important to shoot forward to the better. That’s the irony. Located on my wrist is the only flower that blooms at a balance, emerging from the murky waters when the sun rises, an outline of a lotus. For now unshaded but when I fulfil my life purpose, that’s when it’ll be coloured. Growing up, visiting Thailand inspired me to keep myself connected to the earth but unafraid to chase the stars. Which is represented by my own design incorporating Ancient Meditation’s Om with an abstract elephant. Lastly, my ring finger’s sun and moon, because as long as light is present, I will grow in goodness in marriage to protecting our universe.



Did your mom allow you to have these tattoos?

The history of indigenous tattoos was introduced to me as a child in school. My mother has always been aware about my fascination for ink. Since then, I saved my pay checks to have my own one day. Before I went through with it I asked my mother on many different occasions and she was positive about it each time. So when I finally decided to get inked, she realised these “hennas” weren’t coming off. Apparently she thought I was kidding all these years but I told her, “Mum, when do I ever make jokes?”. Goes to show no one can understand you any better than your own mother, so I’m blessed to have the one I do and I hope to pay for her first ink when she turns 50!


We have heard that you support the skate community. Tell us more about that.

he history of Cebuano skating goes before the 60s and my mother was a skater in the 80s. With all these skate parks arising and population of skaters growing, I believe that one day Cebu can become the skate capital. Our Cebuano skaters have so much potential to compete internationally as they make incredible videos, but not enough members of our community supports this sport. I hope to help cultivate it through current collaborative efforts, so that is it recognised for the art and sport it truly is.


Talking to Raine is such a breath of fresh air. You should also know that she is a vegetarian, a stage performer and her face lights up whenever she talks about her brother. A well-deserved Miss Cebu.






Shaira Berame

She loves conversations and stories about life, love and everything in between. See her adventures at her website.

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