With legs for days and a body to match, Erin Wong has earned her fair share of double takes. Though she’s made a name for herself in the world of sparkling crowns and glittery gowns, Erin’s the kind of girl who’s just as comfortable on the court as she is on the stage. In this issue, Erin brings us back to the basics. And shows us she isn’t afraid of a little sweat.
Images by Henri Oftana | Styling by Joan Awa
Hair and Makeup by Michele Dotdot & Roni Rosario
Wardrobe by DNA Evolution/Dizzy, Inc.
Sweatpants, hair tied and chillin’ with no makeup on. We’re convinced Drake wrote that line for Miss Erin Wong, who sauntered into our interview with her signature laid back look. It’s a wet and gloomy Tuesday, and Uno was lucky enough to spend time with Erin during this cozy cuddle weather. “I like shoes or slippers, shorts and a t-shirt. I don’t really put effort into myself,” she said. Though Miss Earth Guam 2014 knows how to work the stage and shine in the limelight, this free spirit isn’t married to her makeup, appreciates a high-calorie meal, and knows that it’s okay to not take everything so seriously.
At 18 years old, Erin Wong was one of the youngest contestants in the pageant, and for most girls coming straight out of high school, her win for the crown was a complete shock. “I was so surprised, I didn’t think I had it in me,” she said. From being scouted to play for the national teams in volleyball and basketball to joining pageants or even modeling, the towering beauty has always been under the radar—with scouts having to find her instead of the of the other way around. She was personally approached by the Director of the Miss Earth Pageant because of her height. “It always works for me, but I’m always hesitant to try. I don’t have confidence in myself.” But Erin had to push all her worries aside and build “temporary confidence” in order to compete.
Growing up going to a Catholic school and attending church ritually, her parents had raised their family to be very conservative. “Although I lacked the moral and financial support, I was able to compete,” she said. Erin has eaten way too many slices of humble pie and credits her win to a little bit of luck. Boys, we hope you’re noting all this down. Ms. Wong can teach you a lesson or two on choosing a real woman as your next ideal girlfriend. Wise beyond her years, Erin knows you reap what you sow. “Whatever I made while I was working, I put it into the pageant,” said the beauty queen. She admitted to thinking that even if she didn’t win, the whole journey itself was quite the experience.
Her whole image was a major transformation. “If you saw me before, oh my God!” she exclaimed. We think she was too hard on herself by saying so, but Erin claimed she went from beast mode to a blossomed beauty. Competing internationally in Manila with girls from all over the world changed her as a person too. “I didn’t know how to put on makeup, and these girls were helping me.” Although pageants could come off as a major competition for guts and glory, Erin shared that it wasn’t as ‘nasty’ as everyone claims it can be. She’s made so much friends, girls from Australia, India, Mexico, Colombia, Fiji…the list goes on. And just a heads up, boys, Erin has been such an awesome ambassador for Guam during her travels that her new BFFs have grown interest in coming here. Hint, hint…you might run into these international beauty queens during their visits.
Eat, Pray, Love
At 18 years old, Miss Earth 2014 has visited countries in four different continents, to places like Brazil, Spain, and Thailand. Her experience in each country varies, but she always looks forward to the simple things in life—meeting new friends, trying new food, and soaking up the total experience of getting to know a place. But wait, there’s more. Erin loves to read on her spare time, and her current obsession is John Green. Close your eyes and imagine, Erin in her bare beauty, soaking up the sun at the beach on a towel, reading…sounds like paradise to us.
A Man with a Plan
That’s someone you have to be when trying to snag a woman like Erin. “You can’t just ask me where to go or what to do because I’ll just shrug and say, ‘I don’t know,’” she admitted. In other words, gentlemen, taking her on a date will require some planning. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you need to woo her with something over the top or expensive. Erin shared with Uno her ideal date: “It could just be something like star gazing, and just talking, getting to know each other…” She admitted that it might sound corny, but she prefers that over dinner and the movies, which we
agree is too cliché. Another shocker for Uno, Erin told us that she’s never been on an official date. “I’ve had boyfriends, but you know what, none of them actually asked me or taken me on one.” The title is still up for grabs.
Every Day is a New Day
When we asked our crowned Miss Earth what her New Year’s resolution was, she blatantly said, “I don’t believe in one.” A resolution is unheard of in Erin’s plans. “Why do we have to start with a new year, why can’t we just start off with a new day?” Point taken. Everyone does have their own personal goals, but it doesn’t take a new year to initiate it. Erin’s level of hotness is immeasurable at this point, we can't bring down the heat. “I just challenge myself everyday to become a better person.” Her humble upbringing is all thanks to her mom, who keeps her grounded at all times; Erin admitted that sometimes, everything that’s happened to her in the past year can get her head up in the clouds. “My mom keeps me in check, and I’ve stayed grounded from that.”
What did you mean when you said, you didn’t think you would win it?
Because with pageants you have to be a certain “way”. It’s just not me, I’m more of a tomboy. Walking a certain way and being more presentable with my hair and fixing my makeup was something I don’t normally do.
How did you mentally and physically prepare for the pageant?
It wasn’t planned but he (Kyle Ramirez) saw me and wanted to help me. He helped me a lot with my walk and what to wear because I was clueless.
How did you get your body to how you wanted it to look?
Even if my body type was thin, I needed to lose a little more weight or tone out a little bit more. I never have been on a diet in my life! It was a good change because I usually eat junk food then it had to be fruits so it was a good change if anything.
How is the experience so far?
Basically, I just went to the Philippines for an international pageant and that was for a month. Winning, has opened the doors to traveling more and to promote our island and that’s something I really liked to do.
How do you stay active?
I’m in volleyball, rugby and basketball. I got gym membership at paradise for winning the pageant. I would go during the pageant and on top of that I had work and school and the pageant. I recommend the Governor’s Hill, and it’s free too!
What are you studying at the University?
I want to get into Early Childhood and Special Ed. I want to be an elementary schoolteacher but I really love travelling, to have a job to get paid to travel would be awesome. I want to finish school before I branch out into anything.
Favorite spectator sport?
Which gender am I watching? I don’t mind watching other girls play, because I play sports. But for men’s I like watching soccer, it’s very entertaining. Even the sports I play, Rugby, Volleyball and Basketball.
Favorite soccer player?
That would be Messi. He has a good story too – he’s really small and a lot of people didn’t really think he could make it pro but even despite his height, he managed to make it and look at where he is now…he’s a phenomenal player.
Where would you like to travel to next?
I want to go to Italy, Rome, Africa – because I’ve made friends there, who care if there’s Ebola. Even, Australia!
What was your first reaction when you were going to be on the next cover of Uno’s next issue?
Why me? I was really surprised! Guam has a lot of talented and beautiful women.