It’s Wednesday and you know what that means: We’re being flooded on our social media accounts with #WomanCrushWednesday posts! One woman that is always tagged as a #WCW on every platform is Ana Braga. Having been featured in GQ, Cosmopolitan Magazine, People Magazine, TMZ, The New York Post, FHM, and Maxim, Ana Braga is an internationally renowned celebrity–but she is surprisingly extremely kind and humble. Originally from Rio de Janeiro, Brazilian model Ana Braga comes from generations of models, MMA fighters and soccer players. Ana’s grandmother, mother and aunt have worked as models and have participated in several beauty pageants in Brazil! Clearly, beauty, ambition, and success run in her family, and today I’m sharing Ana’s story on Lady Code, to show you that she is so much more than a #WCW and a pretty face! She is an inspiration and someone who cares deeply about others. I’m so excited that I had the chance to interview Ana for Lady Code and share her story, how she deals with bullying, and her passion for pet advocacy!
Hometown: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Current City: Las Vegas
Three words that sum you up: kind, stubborn and tenacious
Professional Accomplishments: Being published on several magazine covers such as Playboy Romania & Venezuela, and Entrevue magazine in France.
Favorite color: Pink
Favorite quote: If it doesn’t come from love I don’t wanna know
Favorite movie: Coming to America
Favorite beauty product: Retinol by Avene
Growing up, who was your inspiration?
My father: He has inspired me to work on my craft, be the best I could be and always to remain humble. We are all God’s creatures and all deserve a day in the sun.
He was also a musician and I wanted to be as accomplished as he was in all he did. He was a wise and kind man, loved by many. Every time I had a problem, I could come to him and he would make it all better. I miss him dearly. Please enjoy your loved ones, when they’re gone it’s forever!
What projects do you have going on at the moment?
I’m working on getting a single out with my friend Rita Lim, an accomplished singer in Las Vegas.
You are a very busy girl, what is a typical day like for you?
I love getting up and preparing my breakfast and my cup of coffee. Checking emails, doing cardio, later on hitting the gym and then cooking my meals. I cook daily and probably go to the grocery store 4 times a week.
What are some challenges that you faced on your journey to success, and how did you overcome them?
Great question!! I was told by a couple models and photographers I would never make it. I was too old coming back to the modeling industry. How did that work for them? 🙂
Speaking of challenges: Being in the public eye can make you an easy target for cyberbullying and criticism. How do you react to the negativity?
I have stopped reading comments about myself on news sites or pages on Facebook. I only check my pages and block them right away.
It’s not easy to deal with so much negativity. Cyber bullying is getting out of control. It’s dangerous and scary. It’s now convenient for the bullies to hide behind devices and attack everyone they envy. I tell myself daily that I’m one of God’s children and I worthy of living and being loved. You need to love yourself and surround yourself with people who lift you up. And to always remember the negative opinion of you is only a refection of how others feel about themselves.
To be honest, it’s a daily exercise to tell myself they cannot stop you. No one can close a door God opens for you. You better believe that.
Do you have any advice for our readers who may be victims of bullying?
Love is the answer. And I mean self love and self acceptance. Once you love even your flaws, no one can take you down. It’s okay to feel hurt and sad, but don’t stay down there too long, ok? Brush your shoulders off and know you are loved. Get up and stand up for yourself. You deserve all good things life has to offer. We all do!
Tell us about your passion for pet advocacy:
I have been through a lot, we all have right? I found that pets have a power to heal us. They have pure hearts and spirits. Have you noticed dogs and cats can’t gossip? They’re aren’t envious, they can’t betray us either. Not that I have lost faith in human race, but I prefer most pets than people. They love you unconditionally and we have a lot to learn from them.
I wished I could save them all from being mistreated or abandoned. I have 9 pets, yes I live in a zoo LOL. More like Disneyland, the happiest place on earth. 3 dogs and 6 cats. All abandoned babies, I feel like they have been saved.
What inspired you to get involved?
The fact so many die in shelters/streets. The numbers are alarming. Too many people buy pets then dump them. It’s horrible. All they want is to love and be loved. So I try to do my part. I wanna give back for all the love they can give us.
What can Lady Code readers do in their communities to get involved?
You can start by calling your local shelter and ask if they need anything. You can also donate either your time or money. Also, make sure your pets are neutered/spayed and microchipped.
I always carry cat food in my car. If I see a stray cat I leave a can open. There are many organizations you can call and have the cat trapped (trap neuter return). You can even register your own cat colony. Please google so you can be more informed about it.
In your free time, what do you enjoy doing?
Singing, reading, watching movies and cuddling with my pets.
Can you tell us about your 10 year plan?
I hope I’m alive and healthy. I would love to own a small ranch and rescue more cats and dogs and even pigs.
What motivates you?
My faith in God and to know I can always better myself. I hope to always be kind to all I meet.
What is the best advice you have ever received?
To love myself first before loving anyone else. My father was my mentor and always taught me to love myself first and to have a personal goal outside of my love life. Some of us just want to be loved by someone right? All that love is inside of us. A career should be the ultimate goal, specially for us women.
Do you have any advice for models that are starting out?
Have fun while you’re doing it. Don’t let anyone discourage you, believe in yourself and the dreams in your heart. Keep going even if you get many “NO’S” cause a “YES’ might be just the next door you knock!!
Keep up with Ana: