We love their leggings and cozy sweatshirts, but this fall, Victoria's Secret PINK gave us even more of a reason to love the brand. Janine Tugonon made history when she landed a spot in Victoria's Secret's little sister line as the first Filipina model for the company.
Even though she wasn't the lead role in the ad, the internet was overflowing with positive reactions to the groundbreaking move.
Tugonon was in her fourth year of school and planning to take over her family's pharmacy in Guam when she was encouraged to participate in a school pageant. Competing as Miss Pharmacy uncovered a passion that soon brought her to the title of Miss Universe Philippines. Not long after, she came to the United States for the first time, entered the Miss Universe pageant in Las Vegas, and left with the title as first runner-up. Not bad for a relative newbie to the industry, eh?
Her achievements as the first full-blooded Filipino VS model have spread worldwide, but the support from her home of the Philippines has truly been overwhelming for the model.
"I do still feel a lot of pressure from my country because that would be huge for them, but at some point, you've just got to let that all go. Just do your best," Tugonon said.
As someone who strives to be at the top of whatever she is pursuing, Tugonon continues to reach for the tippy top of the modeling industry. However, while we wish her the best of luck in her future endeavors, let's not forget how truly inspirational it is that she has come this far already.
In an interview with Elle, Tugonon stated, "For me, I believe that each and every one of us has a purpose. It's just finding and knowing that purpose. You don't have to do what everyone is doing; you don't have to chase money or fame. You just have to find that one thing that you think you are really made to do. Never compare your path or route to others. You just go through your lane and keep running in your lane."