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Jan 24, 2011
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Let it be known that today, January 24, 2011, a Filipina stood atop the world of fashion. [firstpara]

And that Filipina is none other than Danica Flores Magpantay, a student of Fine Arts at the University of the Philippines, and now the 2011 Ford Supermodel of the World.

She is the first Filipina, and only the second Asian (after South Korea’s Kang Seung-Hyun in 2008) to have ever won the pageant, considered as one of the most prestigious in the world.

At 17 years of age, Magpantay is also the youngest to have won the title.

Not only would winning a title like that be an awesome story to tell friends, it also carries a $250,000 modeling contract with Ford Models, and the opportunity to work with the best in the industry.

Although this young lady, as her mother and 1990 Ford Models Supermodel of the World-Philippines tells Spot.Ph, is still very much a rookie in the business, we know for sure that she indeed has a very bright future ahead.

We say, you go girl! New York and the rest of the fashion world is all yours to conquer.

Before Magpantay though, there have been other supermodels that have made the country proud. Here now are six of them:

Bessie Badilla

From the working class district of Tondo, Bessie proved that nothing is impossible for a Pinay as gorgeous as her. She became the most beloved mannequin du cabine (house model) for the prestigious House of Balenciaga from 1977-1985.

She went on to model for a very exclusive list of clients including Christian Dior, Yves-Saint Laurent, Giorgio Armani, and Gianni Versace.

And it wasn’t only the fashion world that she conquered, as she also won her battle against thyroid cancer in the mid-2000s, was hailed as the queen of the Sao Paolo Carnival in Brazil in 2008, and now has co-produced a couple of local indie films. Not all models age with grace, but we can definitely say she’s one of those who does.

(Video by francoismedina2008)

Tetta Agustin

Before all these supermodel contests even became en vogue, Tetta Agustin was rocking it in the 70s. She is considered the first Filipina supermodel, and for all the right reasons: She had very strong, chiseled cheeks, she had a size zero body type (which we heard is supermodel-perfect), and physical features aside, she was graceful, and confident. Givenchy, the famous designer who had discovered her, also noted that Tetta’s grace was made for the catwalk.  

Eventually, these traits helped her become Yves Saint Laurent’s favorite model in that era, and was in fact, her only Asian house model then. Larry Leviste of the Philippine Daily Inquirer noted that Saint Laurent “relied on Tetta’s positive ebullient energy to cheer him up when Saint Laurent needed inspiration to do sketches for his couture collections.” Beauty that inspires, that’s who Tetta was, and still is.