The first thing one notices when meeting Dominique Cojuangco, only daughter of actress Gretchen Barretto and businessman Tonyboy Cojuangco, is her candor. This young woman who turns 19 in a few weeks quickly puts people at ease with her open smile and self-deprecating humor. She is one of Bench Body’s endorsers for its new whitening range.
“I never imagined I’d endorse anything when I was young. I was this huge, obese kid so I never thought I’d end up endorsing any product,” she said.
Dominique, who is studying fashion design in London, said she enjoys her daily skincare regimen that consists of washing off makeup with facial soap, rinsing thoroughly and then applying sunblock with SPF.
“I don’t like to use an excessive amount of product on my face but since I turned 11, I’ve religiously used sunblock with high SPF.”
Dominique narrated how she and her friends went to the beach to celebrate her 11th birthday.
“We thought it would be cool not to use sunblock. We came home in pain, completely sunburnt with bubbling blisters on our shoulders. From then on, I’ve put on sunblock every day.”
She quickly added, “Oh, the Suprawhite variant has SPF 10.”
There are three variants of the Bench Body Whitening Lotions and they come in three sizes—50 ml, 100 ml and 200 ml. Suprawhite, Hydrawhite and Naturwhite are all backed by the company’s Nanobright technology that promises whiter skin in seven days.
The aforementioned Suprawhite contains SPF10, encapsulated glutathione, arbutin, and vitamin complex. Hydrawhite is perfect for dry skin as it has 48-hour moisture lock while Naturwhite is suitable for sensitive skin.
Dominique is joined by Sam Rodriguez, the 23-year-old daughter of the late actor Miguel Rodriguez, and Addie Manzano, daughter of actor and TV host Edu Manzano. Only Dominique and Sam, however, were present at the launch.
Inquirer Lifestyle asked both whether having whiter skin was an issue for women their age. (Sam is 23.)
“I feel it’s good to use the lotion because it evens out your skin tone,” Dominique said.
“I don’t think the issue is necessarily about having whiter or lighter skin; it’s about taking care of your skin. Here in the Philippines, it feels like summer all the time—the rays of the sun are so bad. I think Filipino women should take care of their skin, make sure it’s never dry to prevent wrinkles and sunspots,” Sam said.
Both shared anecdotes of the TVC shot months ago.
“I hadn’t met Addie and Sam. Well, I did meet Addie when we were kids but I’d never really spoken to her,” Dominique said.
“On the first day of the shoot, they wanted a group shot of us hugging in the most awkward positions. Remember, I didn’t know them and we were forced to do these weird positions, our faces were so close to each other and we were like, ‘Hi! Hi! How are you?’”
Meanwhile, Sam said the portion in the TVC where she appears to be glamorously leaping into the air was anything but.
“It looks so easy, like I’m flying, but I was on a trampoline. It was the most ‘wa poise’ (graceless) thing; it was the furthest from what the video looked like. I had to keep jumping for an hour; it felt like exercise,” she said.
They both were excited about the endorsement deal because “Bench is big.”