The National Women’s Month came to a close some two days ago, March 31 - a month filled with the ever-energized passion for inspiring stories of women, driven by the reminding memory and optimistic vision of everything a woman is - a performer, a leader, a trailblazer, an icon. GMA Network’s #Sparkle10, a powerful ensemble of bold, brave, and beautiful women, give their individual takes on what makes them uniquely sparkling, and who they look up to as their icons.

‘Makiling’ star Elle Villanueva, loves award-winning Hollywood actresses Anne Hathaway and Meryl Streep to death. She admires their versatile creativity and poise. ”Napakagaling nila mag-acting, very versatile, I look up to them - the poise, the elegance, the acting skills. I love it,” said the 28-year-old actress in an interview with GMA Regional TV News.

She thinks it is her relentless energy when overcoming setbacks that young aspiring women must iconize about her. “Yung pagiging resilient ko and risk-taker, yun yung reason bakit ako nandito ngayon. I tried a lot of things and I failed, a lot of times, there's nothing wrong in failing. Learn from it, grow from it, keep on standing up kahit nadadapa ka nang ilang beses,” shared Elle. 

Shuvee Etrata's icon is Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray, the fourth and last Filipina thus far to win the prestigious MU crown. Shuvee admits to getting inspired by the beauty queen’s 2018 victory. “After she won Ms. Universe, I’m just inspired in so many ways, and I believe I can be like her someday,” she claimed.

The talented Cebuana’s unapologetic authenticity and realness are what she wants young women to emulate. “I want to inspire young women na very prone to struggles in life, gusto ko sabihin sa kanila na you can be authentic, you can be who you are, unfiltered, raw, you can be beautiful the way you are,” she noted.

Lianne Valentin’s icons are Meryl - for her sophistication and elegance; Viola Davis - for her proficiency in her craft as an actress; and her Mom - the person she looks up to the most. 

As for her trait that women can get inspiration from, Lianne thinks it is her approach towards gratitude. “Siguro ang masshare kong trait ko na sana maging inspiration ng other women is yung pagiging grateful, kasi yun yung natutunan ko - na you always have to be grateful, good or bad man yan, hindi lahat may kagaya ng buhay na gaya sayo. Kung himay-himayin mo lang yung mga idea na yun, makikita mo kung gaano ka ka-blessed in your own way,” the Caviteña remarked.

Ashley Ortega loves Princess Diana. “Grabe yung influence niya sa ibang tao, shes such a kind, humble queen. She's the queen of hearts.”

The 25-year-old pride of San Fernando, La Union believes that women must take after her optimism and positive aura. “To always spread positivity around. Kasi medyo kalog akong tao, every time I'm with my friends, I just want to smile all the time, share an aura that's positive. So sana yun rin yung maibigay ko sa young ones who admire me - spread love and positivity,” she said. 

Sparkle’s ultimate kontrabida Liezel Lopez, 26, iconizes no less than the late Cherie Gil, one of, if not the most iconic villain in the history of Philippine television. “The best kontrabida ever,” described Liezel, referring to the award-winning actress.

What she wants young women to see in her is her steadfast humility. “Yung pagiging humble, lagi ka dapat humble and grounded kahit saan ka mapunta sa life - isa yun sa napakagandang quality na dapat matutunan natin - always be grounded,” Liezel said.

Actress and NCAA courtside reporter Lexi Gonzales’ icon of choice is ‘The Notebook’ star Rachel McAdams, whom she believes is an actress with unlimited range. “She’s such a versatile actress and I love how confident she is, taking on different roles, and how malleable she is with her craft,” Lexi told GMA RTV News.

She wants young women to be confident and to always practice self-love. “... me being confident with my body and loving myself, and knowing my worth all the time,” she said.

Miss Universe Philippines 2020 Rabiya Mateo chose a fellow Ilongga, the late great Miriam Defensor-Santiago, as her female icon. For the 27-year-old pageant queen and actress, it is the former senator’s grit that she admires. She's a strong woman, she would always deliver her truth. Kahit may masagasaan siya, she would always fight for the rights of other people, kaya I wanna be somebody like her, kahit hindi naman ako abogado, but to use my talent into something beautiful for the benefit of others,” Rabiya said.

She wants young aspiring women to learn to be self-aware, just like she’s always been. She loves how self-awareness opens the floodgates to attracting good energy. “Yung self-awareness, because I am very self aware - alam ko kung maayos yung performance ko, alam ko kung hindi. I don't have this toxic positivity in my mind. I attract good things because I am aware that if I fail in one aspect, I can always come back stronger. So there's always that acknowledgement,” shared the Ilongga actress.

Faith Da Silva looks up to Heart Evangelista, a Kapuso actress and a true fashion icon, for her passion and work ethic. “Sa ngayon ang daming mga taong nakakakilala sa kanya sa fashion industry, pero i've known Heart at kilala ko siya bilang isang artista at singer, isa siya sa kinalakihan ko talaga bilang artista… and until now hindi nawala yung work ethic niya sa kahit anong industriya siya ilagay, nakikita mong nage-excel at nagsa-succeed siya kasi it goes to show how much effort she puts into her work,” explained Faith.

Asked what she wants women to take after her, Faith says confidently “yung kakapalan ng mukha.”

“Parang meron tayong negative connotation when it comes to kapal ng mukha, pero nakakalimutan natin in life kailangan magpa-bida ka rin, ‘di yung lagi inaapi, ikaw ang nasa gilid. Kailangan ikaw yung main character diba, hindi ka mapapansin kung di ka magpapapansin, so ikaw you go out of your way para sa mga bagay that truly matters to you,” she added.

They are labeled bold, brave, and beautiful for a reason. The Sparkle 10 consists of ten fiercely talented and unapologetically relentless women who have left undeniable marks even with relatively young careers - all iconic in their own sparkling ways.