What happens when you have a social media following of almost 100,000, and that gets suddenly wrenched from you?
Pearl was working as a social media influencer, alongside her day job as a chef, when her Instagram account was hacked.
That led to a complete reset—in more ways than one. She started from scratch again in building her following. But that also afforded her the opportunity to reassess her priorities and refocus on her burgeoning culinary career.
Today, Pearl still takes on modelling jobs as a side hustle, but her eyes are firmly focused on her day job—and true passion—cooking. If asked to pick between modelling and being a chef, she’d choose cooking, “in a heartbeat.”
We chat about how her two worlds intersect, and how one has fed into the other. Being a model, she says, has helped her to become more confident and overcome her natural shyness. Being a chef, especially in a male-dominated environment and working 12-hour days, has helped her to develop a strong personality that she carries with her into the modelling world.
A self-professed ‘island girl’ from the Philippines, Pearl is a long way from home now as she carves her own path in Los Angeles. It’s been a trying year as well, and we share several heartfelt moments as we talk about her experience with depression, and her path to overcoming her mental health struggles. Whilst Pearl is still active on social media, her attitude towards it has evolved. The desire to be an ‘influencer’ has now taken a backseat. Social media has become a platform to spread positivity and encourage female empowerment. (Plus sneak peeks of her culinary prowess.)
Hey Pearl, we’re rooting for that food truck dream, and perhaps a cooking show someday too.
Follow Pearl on Instagram.
Listen to Pearl's episode on our Podcast here.
All pictures courtesy of Pearl Steffie’s Instagram, unless otherwise indicated.