From Ate Gay’s siomai, Gloc-9’s fried chicken, Jopay Zamora’s adobong mani, Derek Ramsay’s face mask to Gladys Guevarra’s palitaw—here are their hustles
The entertainment world has been battered by the Covid-19 pandemic. Live shows and tapings have been postponed and rescheduled, if not totally cancelled, contributing to the ballooning number of unemployment in the entertainment sector. In order to survive, some celebrities have to soldier on to fight a war none of us have prepared for.
Thankfully, many of them, whose bread and butter was solely show business on better days, have ventured into new businesses. Most turned to their culinary skills, some to their entrepreneurial mindset, and others simply to their survival instincts.
Available only at Herbosa St. Tondo Manila
Mashup songs are getting popular now on social media, and Ate Gay (real name Gil Aducl Morales) is thankful he’s recognized as the “Queen of MashUp.” This talent has been useful to him in quarantine. Companies doing online events hire him to entertain them via Zoom. But that’s not just what’s keeping him busy nowadays. Last month, he opened his siomai cart and there is no surprise that the business tagline is also a mashup, Siomai Himala.
It perfectly fits him because he impersonates Nora Aunor, who portrayed Elsa in the classic Himala. “Naniniwala ako sa sinabi ni Elsa na, tayo ang gumagawa ng himala,” Ate Gay tells Manila Bulletin Lifestyle.
Ate Gay’s body clock has totally changed. As a stand-up comedian, he stays up late until wee hours to make Klownz’s and Zirkoh’s customers laugh, now he sleeps before midnight so he can wake up very early to prepare hundreds of siomai and sell it himself in Tondo, Manila. The siomai is very affordable and also available with rice and noodles.
Business: Ecuadorian roses
Contact: SMS / Viber / Whatsapp: +63917 108 0528
How will you express your feelings to your loved ones who are not with you at this time? Benjamin Alves has an answer to that. Send a bouquet of beautifully arranged Ecuadorian roses. “This is one of the best ways to connect loved ones with each other,” says Benjamin. He decided to put up House of Roses, where arrangement of flowers is customizable to customers’ preferences and needs. Benjamin and his partner Chelsea Robato, who’s handling the marketing, started conceptualizing the business before the ghost month kicked in. Now they work very closely with their florist to get the aesthetic they’re going for. They are also thankful to their celebrity friends who help them endorse the bouquets. You can see samples of their flower arrangement through their IG account @houseofroses.ph, and this is where you can also order. So if you want to say how you feel to someone special without physical interaction, follow their hashtag, #SayItWithRoses.
Business: Cinnamon rolls
Contact: Mike Tan – IG @cinnamoans.mnl | FB Cinnamoans MNL
Since the taping of GMA’s newest soap The Seed of Love was put on hold in March, Mike Tan decided to look for an additional source of income. What he found is something too good not to share: The tasty cinnamon rolls baked by his friend Joana Almadin, a former executive pastry chef in the US. “Cris, my wife, convinced me that this was something we should sell, as the flavor is way better than rolls we order from a widespread coffee chain and a world-famous cinnamon shop,” he says.
They worked as a team in baking the breads. With his friend’s mentorship, he’ll soon add his own rolls in the oven. “The rolls are moan-inducing,” was a feedback they got when they had their family and friends try it. Thus Cinnamoans Manila was born, wit only two flavors for now, Cinnamoan (classic) and Choco Moan (chocolate). Check @cinnamoans.mnl on Instagram and Cinammoans MNL on Facebook to see more funny quotes related to baking like “Heal The World, Bake It A Better Place.”
Contact – IG and FB @lovelycosmeticsph [email protected]
Just recently, Lovely Abella admitted that she tested positive for Covid-19, but was asymptomatic. She also cleared that she is well now. She hid the information for fear that her online business might be affected. During her isolation, her boyfriend Benj Manalo, who tested negative, took care of her business. She got depressed and worried about her family, but it didn’t stop her from dreaming of her own line of cosmetics.
Lovely Cosmetics has just recently launched lipsticks that come in five shades and named after the comedian’s loved ones—Arllah, Meriel, Ara, Chrisha, and Ella. They are matte tint and smudge proof, and they’re vegan and 100 percent natural, made with certified organic ingredients, making them safe even for pregnant and breastfeeding moms. Lovely welcomes distributors and resellers find out how on her IG and FB account @lovelycosmeticsph.
Jopay and Joshua Zamora
Business: Snacks and food, online Zumba
Contact: Jopay and Joshua Zamora – IG @teamzamorawarriors
Diofanny “Jopay” Paguia-Zamora was ready to act and dance again after quitting showbiz to focus on full-time parenting, while her husband Joshua was busy with Zumba gigs, live guestings, and tapings, when the unexpected and unwanted lockdown happened. So diverting their dismay to positive thoughts, they decided to work from home, maximizing the use of the internet.
The former sex bomb dancer offers several items from food to healthcare devices on their Instagram and Facebook accounts teamzamorawarriors. Available on her food menu are pure honey, banana choco bread, sashimi, and “kutkutin” or snacks like adobong mani, squash, green peas, sweet beans, beer nuts and mix nuts. And since health care is priority, she sells 12 LED UV Lights and Pulse Oximeter. On the other hand, Joshua, one of the Manoeuvres’ pioneers, gets to earn through staging virtual Zumba and fitness classes on webinars.
Derek Ramsay and Andrea Torres
Contact: Derek Ramsay and Andrea Torres – @andreaetorres
Couple Derek Ramsay and Andrea Torres share on their YouTube channel AndrekVlogs that they didn’t see each other for three months because of the enhanced community quarantine. But that was physically only. Thanks to technology, they were able to communicate and do things together via video calls like exercising, praying, cooking, and shopping. Their relationship has since become stronger, having realized that they had a lot of things they wanted to talk about. One of it was coming up with a business that they could not just earn from, but could also help people. So they thought of selling the ProlabsNxt Gen protective mask.
The face masks that they’re offering are “high-tech.” Each mask has a rechargeable fan that allows you to breathe normally. The mask also comes out in a variety of fashionable designs you can choose from.
Business: Fried chicken
Contact: Gloc 9 +63 939 923 6246 and +63 917 835 6488
Aristotelle Pollisco or popularly known as Gloc 9 launched a new song last June on his YouTube channel entitled “Fried Chicken ni Gloc 9.”—a catchy rap song where he teaches how to cook from his fried chicken recipe. Yes, Gloc 9 can cook. And the Gloc-9 fried chicken is just one of the many products he is selling online. Also available on his IG account @glocdash9 are coffee, shirts, and jerseys, which come with a bonus, his autograph.
One of his fans, however, didn’t approve of his new venture, saying that what he was doing didn’t fit him. But Gloc 9 humbly answered with these words, “Tandaan ‘nyo mga kababayan iba na ang panahon natin ngayon. Kailangan nating lumaban para mabuhay para sa mga mahal natin. Wala kang dapat ikahiya kung ang trabaho mo ay marangal at wala kang tinatapakang kapwa mo. (Remember we live in different times. We need to fight for our loved ones so we can survive. You have nothing to be embarrassed about, as long as you don’t hurt other people.)”
Contact: Winwyn Marquez – IG @bread.wyner
In one of Winwyn Marquez’s Instagram posts during the lockdown, she confessed she was obsessed with bread but had zero knowledge about making it. So wanting to learn how to bake, she asked tips from her dad Joey Marquez’s girlfriend Malu Quintana, who loves baking, and searched the web for baking tutorials and recipes. She said that her siblings Yeoj and LA would tease her as the frustrated lockdown baker and one her best friends Aya Hamada named her “breadwinner.” Aside from the mini cinnamon raisin loaf and bite-size cinnamon rolls that she posted, Winwyn has also learned to bake Spanish bread, Tres Leches bread pudding, Pande-siopao, and Pandesal.
The beauty queen took her obsession to the next level, after her friends told her that they would order after trying her free samples. After that, she created an account adopting the name given to her by Aya, and took pre-orders. She was able to sell various types of pandesal, such as the classic plain, ube cheese halaya, regular ube, pandan, banana, and malunggay. Also, she was able to produce a number of assorted borahae pandesal for an online event last month.
Contact: IG @kitchenamore_
A former PBB housemate Marco Gallo ventured into the cake business not because ABS-CBN was shut down but because of boredom during the enhanced community quarantine. He was chatting with a friend when he thought of the idea to make cakes just for fun and not for business. He didn’t really want to make money out of it. All he wanted was a little hobby. That was why when he decided to sell his Oreo box cake, which is now under the brand name Kitchen Amore, he made the price very affordable.
This Filipino-Italian actor learned the Oreo cakes from his mother. During the quarantine period, he was able to sell 15 to 20 boxes a day, which he personally delivered via motorcycle to his customers. Kitchen Amore also tempts sweet-tooths with its Vegan Oreo cake, creamy ice cream cake with hint of cream cheese, and assorted cake balls.
Contact: FB: Gladys Chuchay Guevarra
Gladys Guevarra aka Chuchay experienced a roller coaster of emotions such as panic attacks, anxiety, and depression in the first three months of the lockdown in her home town of Olongapo City. Cooking was her diversion. The Culinary Arts undergraduate tried experimenting on food, including our local rice cake snack palitaw, which she decided to sell after coming up with palitaw de leche. Because of that, she was dubbed “Palitaw Queen,” something she is proud of. She doesn’t mind that people in Olongapo think of her as the actress who is now selling palitaw.
In one of her posts on Facebook, she shows how she properly prepares the food, as well as encourages her fellow food sellers to do the same–wear a mask, hair net, and gloves to ensure sanitation.