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Face of POND’S 2019 winner Nomfundo Mlaba

Q & A with the Face of POND’S 2019

We chat with the Face of POND’S 2019, Nomfundo Mlaba and discuss her highlights as the face of the brand, what inspired her to enter the competition, her future and so much more!

What inspired you to enter the Face of POND’S competition?

A colleague of mine named Taryn is the one person that pressured me to enter the competition almost every day. And my first reaction was, “No it’s not for me. There’s no way I could win. I don’t know anyone personally that’s ever won a competition so huge.” Yet she somehow kept pushing me and reminding me to enter, so I eventually did just to shut her up. [Laughs]

Tell us a bit about your journey during the competition before winning?

I entered during the extension of the competition and as soon as I did, I told Taryn and she was thrilled that I took her advice. Then fast forward a few weeks and I got a phone call while I was at work from the POND’S team and they let me know that I made it to the Top 10. I was so excited after the phone call and that’s when it hit me, like wow, I can actually win this, and Taryn thought so too, and she was just as excited as I was. So, making it to the Top Ten changed my attitude so much, I started wanting to be the Face of POND’S.

It wasn’t about doing it because someone wanted me to, it was about me and I knew from that day that I wanted to win the competition and I thought about how much it would mean to me. I mean, I’ve loved the brand for years and that’s why I’ve been using POND’S products since I was 16.

So, the thought of being an ambassador for my favourite skin care’s brand really got me excited and I couldn’t wait to see what the competition had in store for me. The journey was exciting as I got to meet so many beautiful women. But I remember being so sick on the day we had a photoshoot so I wasn’t really in the best space but I absolutely enjoyed the interview I had on TV because I talk a lot [giggles] and it was a chance for me to show the world what I’m really about.

 

“I’ve loved the brand for years and that’s why I’ve been using POND’S products since I was 16.”

What are some of the lessons you’ve learnt since you won the competition?

If there’s one thing this competition taught me is that I’m capable of achieving anything I set my mind on. You might already know this but, I grew up in a rural area just outside of Pietermaritzburg and I remember telling people back home that I wanted to study Journalism and no one believed I could because no one believed I would be successful in the media industry – simply because of where I come from.

At the time it was so discouraging but now I’m so glad that I got to do so much more than that. The competition taught me that it doesn’t matter where I’m from or what other people think I can or can’t do. What matters is what I think, and I believed I could win the competition (even though I didn’t at first) - and I did. And I’ll always be proud of myself for that.

“It doesn’t matter where I’m from or what other people think I can or can’t do. What matters is what I think, and I believed I could win the competition.”

What are some of the biggest highlights from your journey as the Face of POND’S?

I really enjoyed the first photoshoot I did as the Face of POND’S with the products. I’ve done photoshoots before but there was something about that specific shoot that made me feel like a star!

Take us back to the day you won, describe the feeling you had in one word.

Shocked? Okay no, shocked is a bad word [laughs]. Let’s go with dreamy, it felt dreamy.

You’re the face of one of the biggest skincare brands in South Africa, what does that mean for you?

For me, it means rewriting the narrative that girls from rural areas can’t enter spaces in this industry and encourage them to enter any space that they want to. It’s about setting an example for them so that they can follow their dreams and be motivated to do the same.

The Face of POND’S competition is back in 2020, and we’d like to know what advice you have for young women who would like to enter the competition?

I would say that they should believe in themselves because if they do, everyone else will too.

POND’S has provided you with a platform many young women in South Africa dream of – where to from here?

I would like to focus on coming up with awesome content for my blog and focusing on my modelling career. POND’S has given me an amazing platform to grow my brand so I’ll definitely be more visible on the modelling scene, and I want to be involved in public speaking so that I can continue to uplift young women because that’s what I’m passionate about.