DANIELLE DAZA’s last name may be familiar but she’s a wide-eyed fresh face just learning the ropes of the industry. She’s just a rookie but it seems like she’s becoming quite the muse, with brands and designers booking her constantly. Maybe it’s her unique look or the energy she brings to the set but whatever it is, there’s something about her you just can’t get enough of.
"As a model, it’s always good to have snippets of your authentic self in your photos rather than just always wearing a mask."
She’s family-oriented, an animal-lover, and is one happy-go-lucky girl with a Stephen King book in hand. This kind of simplicity is exactly what sets her apart from her contemporaries. She knows that her job is beyond pretty pictures explaining, “As a model, it’s always good to have snippets of your authentic self in your photos rather than just always wearing a mask.”
But before joining the glitzy world of fashion and following in her mom’s footsteps, the 22-year-old’s first love was literature. This affinity to the written word played a big part in choosing her initial career path. She shares, “I wanted to be a writer for the longest time. I’m not so sure about that now but I can still do both.” This kind of ambition has no doubt stemmed from the support and love of her family in whatever she does. She shares, “They never really pressured me into doing something I would have a hard time accomplishing. They understand that I’m gonna do things in my own time, in my own way.”
Even though she’s just starting out, the morena beauty already has a strong sense of the kind of model she wants to be. She says, “When you have shoots, people aren’t there for you. You are there for communal efforts. It’s not someone’s privilege to be in your presence; it’s not like that. You’re not gonna get anywhere with that attitude.”
With her striking features, genuine personality, and respect for the industry, Danielle definitely has all the makings of a star. Read below as the rising model talks about her favorite book, the insecurity she learned to love, and her candid advice for those starting out in the modeling industry.
You majored in English in college. Was that your first passion?
Yes it was! I took it because in high school, I found literature to be the most fulfilling class. I would learn about all these different stories and it helped me not only academically but in own personal, mental, and emotional well-being. I love reading and learning about other people in different timelines.
Who’s your favorite author?
My favorite author is Stephen King. I really love his writing. It’s very descriptive and it’s very easy to read. You don’t even realize that you're reading a book because it plays like a movie in your head. My favorite book of his is The Stand. It’s over a thousand pages, but it was such an adventure to read. I got so attached to the characters.
Of course, your other passion is modeling. Who are the models you look up to?
I like Winnie Harlow. I think she’s so cool. She has a skin condition and usually people would be insecure about that ‘cause it’s different and it’s not the norm in beauty but she doesn’t care about that. She will still flaunt it and look amazing. She doesn't let her skin condition hinder her or make her insecure. She actually uses it to her advantage. I also like Bella Hadid, I think she’s really cool. For the OG models, Kate Moss and Cindy Crawford. They’re fashion icons for sure. I look up to them and it’s always key to go back to the classic models.
Do you prefer doing runways or photoshoots?
I like shoots better. Only because I’m still working on my runway walk. But shoots are fun because you meet a lot of people!
It’s a different landscape now in modeling with the influence of social media. What do you think are the pros and cons of this shift?
The pros are that clients find models a lot easier. They can just search their names on Instagram and see the photos that they’ve taken with other photographers or see the different people they’ve worked with. And also, with Instagram, you get to create the feed your clients see. They get a glimpse of who you are as a person and your taste, not just your face or the photos you’ve taken. It’s like a piece of yourself.
Do you get any hate on Instagram?
No, not really. But there are some people who would be like “My gosh, she’s asking for attention”. But nowadays, if you’re gonna be a model, you need to be active on Instagram. Social presence is key. That’s how photographers and makeup artists will find you. That’s also how you learn about different brands.
You come from a well-known and accomplished clan. Does that give you any pressure in your career at all?
Not really, because my family is very supportive in a way that they’re not the kind to say “Danielle you have to live up to this or that."
"You can’t do a skincare routine once or thrice a week and then expect to have flawless skin. You need to spend time and religiously do it. You need consistency and discipline."
Let’s talk beauty! As a model, you really have to take good care of your skin. Do you have any skin care tips you can share?
Water is the number one thing. But also, be consistent with your skincare routine. Even if you’re tired and it’s like 4 in the morning, always wash your face before bed and remove your makeup. You can’t do a skincare routine once or thrice a week and then expect to have flawless skin. You need to spend time and religiously do it. You need consistency and discipline.
Do you have any makeup products that you can’t live without?
I love Glossier because their makeup is very natural. It’s not that kind of makeup that will cover up your features. My favorite product of theirs is the Haloscope. It’s a highlighter stick. I love to use it on my eyes, my cheek bones, on my brow bone, on the inner corner of my eyes, I just love it!
What makeup are you into right now?
The kind of makeup I’m into right now is very like no-makeup makeup look but with sparkly highlight. Highlighting’s my favorite step!
What beauty trend would you not do?
The super defined, on-fleek eyebrows. Like not even a hair out of place. I don’t really like that just because it’s not really natural. It looks clean but who actually has eyebrows like that? (Laughs) Enhance the things you already have instead of covering up what you have.
What’s the best beauty tip your mom has taught you?
Don’t touch your eyebrows. You can clean it up, but don’t mess with them too much because once you get older, they’re gonna get thinner and smaller and drink water. That’s what she always tells me. I used to get annoyed sometimes when she would constantly ask me “Did you drink water today?” But I realized that it’s gonna help your health and keep you looking young.
We can’t help notice that you’re in tip-top shape! Can you tell us more about your workout routine?
I just always work out when I can and I try to be disciplined with the routine because in this industry working out is also part of the work. You have to take care of everything: your skin, your body. So you really have to be in shape.
Is there a particular workout that you love doing right now?
I usually just do at-home workouts. I go on the treadmill or do body weight exercises.
Do you have a favorite food to eat on cheat days?
My dad is a chef so I love to eat! My favorite food is fried chicken and sandwiches. I have a big sweet tooth so I love cupcakes and cookies too. I also bake sometimes.
"...growing up, people always teased me 'You’re such a noodle, Danielle, your limbs are so long, you’re like a stick' and I would get really insecure about it. But once I started modeling, I began to embrace those things about myself."
You’re in the fashion industry, you’re surrounded with a lot of stylish people. Whose style do you admire?
I really like Carly Cushnie designs. She’s a designer, I love her work, very elegant, sexy, and feminine. But not raunchy. It’s very classic. I actually like Mari Jasmine’s style too. It’s not flashy; it’s very chill and understated but fashionable.
What’s your go-to outfit?
My combo is usually a tank or tube top then long, baggy pants. I usually like to stick to clothes that are just one color rather than things with a bunch of prints on them. But if I do wear prints, I always go for stripes.
What accounts are you stalking on Instagram right now?
Most definitely Vogue. Also, Dior makeup and The Cushnie’s Instagram accounts. I love looking up makeup looks and I really like models who flaunt being lanky and long-limbed because growing up, people always teased me “You’re such a noodle, Danielle, your limbs are so long, you’re like a stick” and I would get really insecure about it. But once I started modeling, I began to embrace those things about myself. I really like it when other models do that too, because I’m sure they got teased for being a “noodle” like me too. Using the things that you would be insecure about or using the things that are not typically the norm in beauty to your advantage, that’s what beauty should feel like: you loving your flaws because flaws are inevitable. People usually wanna hide them but I find it cool when people just put them out there.
Speaking of Instagram, a quick scroll through your profile and it’s very evident that you love animals.
Yes. I love animals!
Can you tell us more about your furry babies?
I have four dogs and one cat. I love animals because the love you get and share with an animal is so innocent. You can go through a hard day at work, your boss yelling at you, you know all these things that make life hard but you go home and your pet is always happy to see you. They don’t care about the mistakes you’ve made in the past; they just wanna be with you. They just wanna love you. It’s such a sweet and innocent kind of love.
"I want to become a better model. I only started less than a year ago, so I’m still learning the ropes and I just really want to develop my skills."
What are you most looking forward to this year?
I want to become a better model. I only started less than a year ago, so I’m still learning the ropes and I just really want to develop my skills.
What’s your advice for those who want to pursue modeling?
Don’t hold back and don’t let shyness hinder you from trying or reaching your full potential. You really have to put yourself out there or you’ll miss opportunities. Also, learn to love yourself because if you don’t love yourself, it will register, and you won’t have nice photos. If you think “I’m gonna look ugly in this photo because I hate my skin” or something, chances are, you’re gonna look ugly in that photo. You have to feel good from within so it radiates on the outside. Also, communicate with the team because it’s a team effort. You can’t just go in there and be like “Ok everybody, serve me.” Communicating with your team is key because it will help you get better photos. People will tell you the things that you’re doing wrong, the things that you’re strong. Just have confidence and self-love.
Photographed by Kitkat Pajaro
Styled by Matt Panes
Makeup by Angeline Cruz
Hair by Sheryll Chua