MANILA - Kapamilya actress Jessy Mendiola has been voted the "sexiest woman" in the country by readers of the popular men's magazine, FHM Philippines.
The magazine's staff personally relayed the good news to the actress when they visited the Star Magic offices on Thursday.
“I’m overwhelmed. It’s a nice venue to send the message that everyone is sexy and if I can win this, if I’m hailed as the sexiest of FHM, lahat tayo puwedeng maging ganun. What’s important is loving yourself, being healthy and being the better version of yourself. I guess kaya ito nangyari kasi I am on that journey of being better for myself,” she said.
It was a huge jump for the "Maria Mercedes" star, who finished in 23rd place in the 2015 list.
In the weeks leading up to the vote deadline, Mendiola trailed Nadine Lustre, a young actress feeding off the phenomenal success of her onscreen tandem with boyfriend, James Reid. She overtook Lustre, however, just days before voting closed.
"Sa lahat ng nag-vote kaya ako nanalo sa polls, thank you," Mendiola said in a statement released when she learned of the partial results last month. "It just proves na there are all kinds of sexy. Hindi na lang physical ang sexy, nasa personality to at sa pagkatao na. Lahat tayo sexy, iba iba lang."
Mendiola made headlines in early in the year after being tagged as one of the possible replacements for Angel Locsin for the coveted "Darna" role in the planned Star Cinema adaptation.
Aside from being a mainstay in the Sunday gag show "Banana Sundae," she was also cast as one of the stars of the late night drama, "You're My Home," alongside screen veterans Richard Gomez and Dawn Zulueta.
She spoke up against online body shaming last May 20, saying: "My body may not be perfect but that will not stop me from being confident with myself."
"I've had my fair share of body shaming comments," Mendiola admitted. "So I know how it feels like to be called 'FAT' or 'TUMABA.' Well, just to inform some of you 'PERFECT' people. We all come in different sizes and shapes but that shouldn't stop us from being happy with our own bodies."
She continued: "There are times that you will gain weight and there are times that you will lose it. It's normal. It just shows that you are a human being."
"So whether you are curvy, malaman, skinny, too skinny, on the plus size or even on the plus plus size, you have ALL the right to be confident with yourself because that is who and what YOU are.
"If you don't love yourself enough, who else will? Think about it. So go ahead girl, wear that bikini and FLAUNT it. After all, it's YOUR body. Not theirs. Sabi nga ni Demi Lovato, What's wrong with being confident?" Mendiola concluded.