From Viva Hot Babe to mega businesswoman

Published July 6, 2022, 7:06 AM

by Annalyn S. Jusay

Rachel Villanueva and partner Dexter Co, managing director of Autoflare

Back in the early 2000s, the Viva Hot Babes were a household name and feeding most men’s fantasies with their singing and  sexy dance moves. But as they say, life evolves. Most members of the group soon found themselves being married, having kids, or simply just doing something else.

Rachel  Villanueva was barely 20 when she became a member of the third batch of Viva Hot Babes around 2005. She was happy to be in the klieg lights, but was limited by the fact that her father was very protective and did not approve of any sexy poses in magazines. She also fell in love and dropped out of showbiz altogether when she found out she was having a baby. 

Fast forward to 2022. Rachel continues to reminisce her Hot Babe days with a sparkle in her eyes. She faced the showbiz press, this time to announce the opening of her back-to-back businesses in one location in Alabang  – Autoflare, a consignment hub for pre-owned luxury cars and Estetika Beauty and Wellness Clinic.

Rachel revealed that she found her niche in sales. This started when she joined BMW Alabang in 2013. One time, when she sold a customer’s preowned luxury car, she rolled over the commission from that sale to bankroll her first business. It is good that her partner in Autoflare, businessman Dexter Co, owns several car dealerships and is her mentor in the trade.

On the other hand, Estetika is Rachel’s first venture in the field of beauty. She’s confident about its success because they will deliver only the best products and services to their customers. An example are the Singapore-style lash extensions and hair extensions, which are unique to the shop. Rachel confessed that she likes prettifying herself, that’s why she entered the business.

Former Viva Hot Babe Ella V

Even if the threat of the coronavirus still around, she encourages people to look after themselves and look their best.”Hindi ibig sabihin na pandemic, kelangan pandemic na rin itsura mo. We need to take care of ourselves always.”

The sprawling HQ of Autoflare/Estetika used to be a condominium showroom. Inside, there are cars on display. In separate rooms are the hair salon, a mani-pedi lounge and soon to open is a beauty and slimming center.

One of the must-try flagship offerings in Estetika is the Esthemax skincare line distributed by US-based former Viva Hot Babe Ella V. Esthemax boasts of winning products like the hydrojelly mask which is made from organic Australian sheep placenta and reduces skin sagging.

Both Rachel and Ella V express gratitude to their time as Viva Hot Babes for teaching them many lessons and empowering them into becoming the determined, successful entrepreneurs they are today.

“Ang ganda pakinggan, hindi lang kami Viva Hot Babes, meron kami napuntahan. We would like to inspire all the mothers and women out there na gusto magnegosyo kahit konti,” said Ella V who is in town and owns V Glow Beauty Bar with three branches  in California.

Estetika Wellness and Beauty Clinic is located in Phase 1 Block 7 Spectrum District, Filinvest City, Alabang, Muntinlupa City (in front of Festival Mall on Commerce Avenue). They are offering 40 percent off all beauty services until August 2022.