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Kira Balinger On Fulfilling Her Dreams One Step at A Time

By Janine Abejay
• Updated
Kira Balinger On Fulfilling Her Dreams One Step at A Time
See this fresh face shine as she embraces the spotlight.

One look at KIRA BALINGER and you’ll immediately understand what all the fuss is about. Porcelain skin, doe eyes, and pillowy lips, it’s easy to see that she’s not your typical teenage girl. But on top of her modelesque features, the Filipino-British charmer is brimming with star quality. At 18 years old, she’s an actress, singer, model, and perhaps in the near future, a beauty queen.

This has pretty much always been my dream ever since I was 6 years old. I used to watch America’s Next Top Model and I remember saying I just wanted to be on TV!

Moving to the Philippines from the UK proved to be a challenge to the then 10-year-old Kira, especially with the language barrier. The starlet had to learn Filipino by watching teleseryes and listening to OPM music. With her sheer tenacity, she eventually reconnected with her roots and now calls the Philippines her home. Recently portraying an immigrant in her film Familia Blondina, her experience was not far from her character. She shares, “I related because I felt like such an alien here. The language was the hardest. I adjusted quickly because I was young. But it took a lot of hard work to be able to learn Tagalog. I also had an accent back then so people couldn’t understand me.”

Overcoming her big move, Kira’s family was definitely the wind beneath her wings. An only child of dad Tony and mom Vicky, the fresh face is truly the gem of their kin. While her dad is Hongkong-based for work, mommy Vicky stands as her guiding light. Her parents have been truly expressive with their perpetual love especially during her 18th birthday. They are ecstatic, at the same time, looking closely on Kira’s transition to her life’s new chapter. As the breakout star comes of age, it’s immensely clear that she mostly values her independence but holds it with responsibility.

From her breakout role in the teleserye The Story Of Us with Kim Chiu and Xian Lim in 2016, her stint in the Spirits Reawaken reboot for iWant in 2018, to regularly appearing in the weekly musical variety show ASAP, Kira admits that her childhood dream has become a fulfilling reality. With clear enthusiasm, she explains, “This has pretty much always been my dream ever since I was 6 years old. I used to watch America’s Next Top Model and I remember saying I just wanted to be on TV!

Now after capturing the attention of almost a million followers on Instagram alone, eager fans are waiting for her next move. Here, the young talent talks to us about her surprising musical influences, her no. 1 skincare rule, and when she plans on pursuing the world of beauty pageantry.

You’ve had your fair share of both the drama and comedy genre. What other kinds of movies would you like to explore?
Action. I want to become an action star. When I was younger, I used to watch Kim Possible, Powerpuff Girls, and all that stuff! I want to try flying and doing back-flips. Because why not?

Aside from acting, you’re also great at singing. How would you describe your sound?
Actually, I haven’t found my sound yet because I’m just starting out. But since I’ve been doing a lot of covers on Instagram, I think I’m really going on the acoustic path. I like playing my songs with my guitar.

Is there an album currently in the works now that you’re signed with Star Music?
In the works, yes. But I can’t say when it’s going to come out yet.

What genres of music do you listen to? And from these genres of music, who are your biggest music influences?
It has to be the classics! I love Dolly Parton, The Beatles, Bee Gees, Michael Jackson. Just music from the ‘70s and ‘80s. As for music influences, I actually I love Tori Kelly and Ed Sheeran. They both play the guitar and write their songs as well. Their music has substance. You can really feel it.

I haven’t found my sound yet because I’m just starting out. But since I’ve been doing a lot of covers on Instagram, I think I’m really going on the acoustic path. I like playing my songs with my guitar.

Let’s talk beauty! You seem to have the clearest skin despite your busy schedule. What’s one reliable skincare rule you swear by?
Always, always, wash your face before bed. Never go to sleep with makeup on. I always have to because I’m prone to getting pimples.

What are your top 5 makeup essentials that you always have in your bag?
Brow products because kilay is life, mascara, lipstick or lip balm, powder, and blush.

Do you follow anyone on Instagram for makeup pegs?
Yeah, I do! I follow Karen Sarahi Gonzalez (@ilovesarahii).

What’s your power makeup look?
I love that no-makeup makeup look. I like it as minimal as possible.


My style is very simple. I could just wear a white t-shirt, shorts, and Chucks. That’s it.

You’ve tried countless makeup trends in your job. Which one would you say is the most memorable so far?
I think this look that we’re doing for this feature is one of the most memorable since I’ve never tried green before! So, this one’s the most shocking look I’ve ever done.

How would you describe your personal style?
My style is very simple. I could just wear a white t-shirt, shorts, and Chucks. That’s it. I would never ever wear skirts. But if it’s for work, it’s okay.

Who’s your biggest style icon then?
Kendall Jenner, of course. I super love her style. I love how she can carry any look.

A lot of your fans have been waiting to see you enter the pageantry scene! What are your plans on becoming a beauty queen?
Right now I’m still a recording artist and an actress, so I think I just want to focus on those first. I want to do things one at a time. Maybe in my 20s. That’s when I’ll start training to become a beauty queen.


How do you deal with criticisms?
Put it in one ear and out the other. It really depends on how you take it. It’s either you let it bring you down or you let it help you to level up.

What's one advice you can give to young girls who are just starting out with their acting careers?
You really have to work hard for this. Because there are going to be so many challenges that can put you off. Among the challenges you’re going to face are rejection and pressure. People will criticize you, so you have to be ready to accept that.

What projects can we see you next?
You can see me in a new teleserye! I’m doing Kapalaran. I’m one of the eight siblings there. My name is Lemon so I’m always wearing yellow. Our family name is Mabunga, so all of our names are from fruits. And I haven’t been on TV for a long time. So, it’s good to be back. That, and the album I’m working on.

What are the future plans and goals you want to achieve?
This is so cliché, but I just wanna be happy. Yun lang naman, and I wanna make my parents proud. I’ll try to achieve the most that I can right now.

This is so cliché, but I just wanna be happy. Yun lang naman, and I wanna make my parents proud. I’ll try to achieve the most that I can right now.

 

Photographed by Charisma Lico

Styled by Drew Lacia

Makeup by Julius Cabanisas

Hair by Darwin Siñel

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