Heart Evangelista shares her honest thoughts on self-love, why she decided to let go of some people, and learning how to value herself more
This is an excerpt from MEGA’s February 2023 cover story.
After she put her hand up to the public’s face, Heart Evangelista unapologetically made big changes in her life. She also became more open to having new, and even scary, experiences. At the core of this feat is quashing the pressures of pursuing certain societal standards.
“I think it was a lot about being pressured to have a baby,” Heart Evangelista reveals. “It was not necessarily from certain people. It was really like a shift in my life: the pressures of being a wife, the pressures of being a certain mold, and I just wanted to get rid of that. And I did, by doing what I felt like doing. And if people don’t get it, then they don’t get it.”
She has, in her own terms, become “allergic to people being so opinionated about something they don’t know.” Although, after a period of thorough self-analysis, she understands that the profession she chose brought her here, in front of inquisitive and, sometimes, invasive strangers.
“This is my bread and butter, so I get it,” she says about being a public personality. “But it’s really more about how you deal with that. I guess I never really learned the art of dealing with being in showbiz completely. People will always have something to say. But, now, I totally don’t care. And if I do want something, I’ll do it my way. I do have plans and I do like to pressure myself, but I have no regrets. And you never know when the time is up. So, I will just work towards my dream. I will work towards building something for my family, for myself. But if I don’t get there, I won’t get heartbroken about it.”
Shrugging her shoulders, she spurts out her own version of a famous quote: “I’m not here to live up to your standards, and you’re not here to live up to mine. I’m glad that I said ‘no’ to a lot of people. I’m glad that I put my foot down. And I’m glad that I was supported by the people who truly matter.”
Evangelista admits that as she walked the path of the road less taken, she “lost” some people along the way: some doubted her, some actually tried to stop her from reaching her goals, while others simply turned their back on her and walked away.
“I went through a stage where I went under fire,” she tries to explain, to tell her story, while obviously still keeping that newfound shroud of privacy around her. “I had to pass through fire and not a lot of people could pass through that fire with me. That’s why I’m very appreciative of my husband, my friends, because they were really there for me when we needed to go through a certain time in my life. It was painful, but it was good.”
A pause follows, and the conversation stays on course. “There are certain people that feel like you can’t make it without them,” she continues. “I don’t want to be a hostage of anything and anyone. And I’m just very appreciative of my husband for seeing that. I think, in a way, maybe he was afraid for me, that I would be hurt by the world, or the letdowns, or people doing things to me, because he knew that I had such a gentle heart, and he thought I wouldn’t survive a heartbreak. But I can survive anything.”
Strangely, having been in the middle of turbulence for quite a while led her to a place of calmness. (Also, FYI, these days, when she’s in a plane and experiencing literal turbulence, she no longer feels afraid—a big change for someone who has admitted a few times to having panic attacks while she’s in the air.) “Before, if you pushed me to the limit, anxiety and depression would kick in,” she says.
PARIS IN HER MIND
In February 2023, probably during Fashion Week, Evangelista is planning to move into her new place in Paris. It’s a two-bedroom modern space, and—she smiles as she reveals this—it has a “cute” spiral staircase.
Photography CAMILLE ROBIOU DU PONT
Creative Direction NICOLE ALMERO
Fashion Direction RYUJI SHIOMITSU
Beauty Direction MIA CASTRO
Styling RYUJI SHIOMITSU and IZA SIM, assisted by BITHIA REYES, RAYA AÑASCO, and NAVZ ABDURAJAK
Makeup JUSTIN SORIANO
Hair JECK AGUILAR
Shot on location BATALANG BATO BEACH RETREAT
Special thanks to XIUTIN UY of BATALANG BATO BEACH RETREAT
Video Production REGINA ACERON
Videography EXCEL PANLAQUE
Jewelry by TIFFANY & CO.