As the Miss Ocean title winner you got to go to china to represent the USA at Miss Tourism World. Please tell us about that experience. What was it like?
It’s been a true honor to be given the opportunity to represent USA on the international stage to show everyone the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true. I wanted to use my voice and action to show the world that it doesn’t matter where you are from, what color you are, your dreams are valid! Maybe not all of us can do great things, but we can all do small things with great love.
I was so in love with life every minute of it, everyone’s so incredibly amazing and beautiful inside out. It was definitely one of the best times I’ve had in my life besides working for the Olympics and United Nations. I got to inspire people; share my love and passion everywhere I go; laugh with the people now I get to call them friends-for-life/pageant sisters; understand the beauty of the world lies in the diversity of its people; travel and live and explore the amazingness of different cultures, etc. I was just so beyond grateful for every precious moment life offered me, that allowed me to see the miracle in each experience. Also forever grateful for Dawn for that once in a lifetime kind of opportunity, for always believing in me and letting me be a part of something so great, it’s something that I can never put into words.
And I am still learning and growing through the good and bad everyday as I go. Oh it’s such a beautiful journey. ❤️
And from that moment on, I just know that you never know if you never try, and you don’t even know how strong or how awesome yourself could be if you don’t push yourself a little more. And I truly believe that many will question your moves or your ability on doing something, but don’t ever let someone tell you you can’t do something. Nor let people who have given up on their dreams talk you out of yours. Let them underestimate you, that way they’ll never know for sure what you’re capable of. Maybe they’re not the first, not the last, but they’ll be wrong. You got a dream, you got to protect it. You want something, go get it. Haha
Stepping into this experience with butterflies in my bones, with a nervous feeling so beautiful, I know I’m doing something right.
You were a participant in the Miss Bikini 2017 at Miami Swim Week, what was your favorite experience during that event?
Absolutely everything. Stepping into this experience with butterflies in my bones, with a nervous feeling so beautiful, leaving footprints in everyone’s heart, being able to share my love and aloha spirit everywhere I go. I know I’m doing something right.
Who or what inspired you to get started in modeling?
Posted a photo on Facebook many many years ago, a good friend said “OMG gorgeous smile, you are so photogenic, such a natural and you should totally be a super model.”
And I said “Aww thank you that’s very sweet of you maybe I’ll give it a try.”
Then I started it and found myself enjoying every minute doing it, so with an attitude of gratitude, been trying my best to unlock my potential and finding the most unique self with passion and love since then. Real story.
Tell us about your modeling experience.
It’s been, I mean. Wow. From building experiences and portfolio to big commercials, magazine covers, brands, even Maxim. I realized that everyone is beautiful in different forms. We all are good enough, beautiful enough, strong enough, and important enough. Something will grow from all we are going through, and it will be you. 👑
Everyone’s so unique in the most beautiful way and incredibly amazing. So my experience has truly been valuable, in modeling and in general or other field. I love it, and I think do it with passion or not at all. So I’d always go all out and create most magical arts, some days are good, some days are bad, but again, winners are dreamers who never give up.
What is your best fitness tip?
Set goals. Start running, or find whatever works for you. Show up. (The secret to success in the gym) Eat more fruits and veggies. Never skip breakfast. Drink more water. Get enough sleep. Love yourself. Show your gratitude everyday. Have fun and stay positive. It’s all connected.
The body achieves what the mind believes, and if it doesn’t challenge you, if doesn’t change you!
What are the beauty products you can’t live without?
Rose water/toner hahaha! I love it because it’s refreshing and it helps maintain the skin’s pH balance, and also controls excess oil, especially good for sensitive skin that I have With hydrating and soothing abilities, as well as natural antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial powers, it’s one of those ultimate beauty powerhouses.and somehow it just makes me very happy. The little things. Smallest things always take up most of the room in our hearts.
What is your personal style?
Always doing whatever makes me happy and sets my soul on fire. World traveler. Adventurous. Free-spirited. Once an adrenaline rush junkie, always an adrenaline rush junkie haha.
What is one of the most interesting shoots that you have done?
Oh god that’s hard. I want to say the shoot I did got published on Maxim and SavFaire Magzine, oh and SF Chronicle newspaper. I did that photoshoot in the Bay Area in California. We were creating magics in the backyard, laundromat, living room and bedroom, and on the metro. I felt we all brought out the best in each other, with the entire team I mean, it was so much fun and fire and passion. It just happened naturally and captured the moments we cannot put into words.
But also the every time when I shoot for New York Fashion Week, where I would wear a magnificent evening gown walking around in New York City stopping the traffic everywhere or in front of TimeSquare made everyone to stare.
Not just one of the most interesting shoots that I have done but also the best! They all are! Oh that’s a hard one haha.
What is your favorite thing to do in your free time ?
Singing; Dancing; Playing the piano; Traveling; Spending time with family; Movies; Hiking; Swimming and surfing; Going to the beach and being in the ocean; Helping people/volunteering work, Photoshoot, modeling and fashions shows. Eat great foods.
What is the most interesting place you have ever visited?
Every place I’ve been to honestly.
I’ve been to nearly 30 countries so far, for studying, for growing up, for living, for traveling, for work, etc. All made me realize that life is beautiful not because of the things we see or do, it’s beautiful because of the people we meet. Connecting with others, inspiring and being inspired. So everywhere.
What do you hope to achieve in the future?
I want to make a difference, to be an inspiration to all. I want to show the world that being a beauty queen isn’t about being the fairest or tallest of them all, but having a brilliant mind, a beautiful soul, and a pure heart.
I am so so eagerly and passionately want to make a difference and leave a positive impact on the world, sharing my love and aloha spirit everywhere I go.
I went to Sri Lanka for nearly a year when I was 18/19 as an international volunteer to teach English from 3rd-11th grade in a slum, very poor village. The day before I left, the kids started crying and begging to stay, and said “Teacher, I promise that I will go to the best university in Sri Lanka, I want you to be proud of me,”; “Teacher, I love you, you are not my teacher, you are my mother.”
And after being an inspiring public speaker for many years in all over the world at different leadership summits/conferences, people tells me in the most amazing way about how I completely changed their lives.
That’s when I realized, that maybe not all of us can do great things, but we can do small things with great love, and if you speak with your heart, have the ability to inspire, motivate and ultimately transform myself and other people, you are already a transformational leader. And if you’re crazy enough to change the world, you can change the world.
Miss Ocean 2018
5 Fast Facts about Candice:
— I hold an MBA degree and currently doing my PhD in Social Psychology with full scholarship and stipend. And one of the FBI special agent/recruiter told me that “you’re the perfect candidate we’re looking for.”
— I got bit by a baby lion (6months) in Mexico at a rescue center. I sincerely thought she was looking into my eyes and we were having a deep connection haha. Even though they were just being playful (maybe). But baby lions are still lions, let me tell you that from personal experience. 😆
— I’m also a guest lecturer at National University of Singapore. And I get hundreds of messages after classes from students saying things like “You’re literally the best teacher I’ve ever had in my life. “ or “You are the reason for me to finally feeling that I made the right decision to come to college” or “You changed my life”.
And it feels nice when someone calls you a professor or doctor haha.
That makes my heart full and makes me very happy.
— I’ve worked for the Olympic for about 4/5 years and I work with United Nations for SDGs and passionately involved with humanitarian work.
— I don’t eat rice and suck at math but love fired chicken with bones and watermelon, and I eat my watermelon cut in half with a spoon.