Runner-up Monika Sta Maria on life after ‘Asia’s Next Top Model’

Alexa Villano
Runner-up Monika Sta Maria on life after ‘Asia’s Next Top Model’
Monika updates us about her upcoming projects

MANILA, Philippines – She may not have won the title of Asia’s Next Top Model, but 1st runner-up Monika Sta. Maria is reaping the benefits of doing well on a high-profile show. (READ: Monika Sta Maria makes top 3 of ‘Asia’s Next Top Model’)

In an interview with Rappler at the recent Preview Ball, Monika said she did not expect the reactions from fans of the show. 

Indonesia’s Ayu Gani won the title. (READ: PH bet Monika Sta Maria on ‘Asia’s Next Top Model’ confrontation with Gani)

“The ride has been insane. Kasi now that I’ve seen the reaction of the people watching, talagang naniniwala sila sa akin (they really believed in me) even if I did not bring home the title. 

Sobrang thankful ako. I did not expect it. it’s an overwhelming response pero push talaga ako,” Monika said.

In the third season, Monika was one of the contestants who was praised consistently for her photos. Two of the challenges she won – the Subaru and Close Up challenges – earned her the opportunity to step up her game. 

“I am the Subaru ambassador… I’ll be traveling around Asia so it’s exciting, and I’m the new face of Close Up, so I’m shooting the new campaign. And sobrang grateful ako na kahit hindi ako yung title holder, may mga projects ako,” she said. 

(I am very grateful because even if I am not the title holder, I have these projects.)


About last night  Thank you @grooveling for being by my side  #previewball #houseoflaurel : @rynong #preview20 #previewball

A photo posted by Monika Sta. Maria (@monikastamaria) on


In her previous interviews, she’s often said that she wants to try her luck in Europe. “I can still make that happen,” she said. 

“[For now] Asia muna because I want to fulfill my responsibilities as an ambassador [of the brands] and after that I will travel na out of Asia talaga… push na  talaga.”

Aside from Monika, two others from the Philippines, Amanda Chan and Franchesca Lagua, participated in the show. Both were eliminated in earlier episodes. –


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Alexa Villano

Alexa is one of Rappler's Lifestyle and Entertainment reporters, covering local entertainment news to a wide range of topics from beauty pageants to reality shows.