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Zimbabwean socialite Paloma shines in 'Queens of Mzansi'

by Staff reporter
20 Aug 2022 at 07:14hrs | Views
Earlier this year, fans of Netflix were mesmerized by the television reality series "Young Rich and Famous", which featured some of Africa celebrities as they work, play, flirt, and feud in Johannesburg.

Zimbabwe was partially represented by businessman, Kudzai Terrence Mushonga, who by virtue is dating one of the actors in the series.

Although some locals thought we need full representation, many wonder what is in store next on Season 2.

By the way, it is alleged that producers of the show have said they are looking for the Zimbabwean representative for Season 2.

And social media was agog with names such as Mai TT, Pokello Nare, Madam Boss, Passion Java and Prophet Ed Branson, among others.

Let us wait and see who eventually land the role.

Enough of the Young, Rich and Famous!

There is another brand-new reality show trending too in South Africa dubbed "The Queens of Mzansi" on SABC1, which premiered last Monday, August 15.

"Like most South African women, The Queens of Mzansi face hardships from gender-based violence, divorce, financial difficulties, and being widowed. That is what makes them Queens…they all had a rebirth and have found their voices and crowns again," reads a press release from the channel.

So where do we come in as Zimbabweans?

Zimbabwean born influencer, socialite and entrepreneur, Paloma Mlunjwana, affectionately known as Loloskloset, is starring in the show.

Remember, in March Paloma landed another major role on prime time television on the new reality show, "Diamond & Dolls" on  Showmax.

Checking on her social media pages, she has more than 100 000 followers and it needs no introduction, you could already judge and tell that definitely all those reality shows she stars in she deserves it.

She is a die-hard fashion icon and Hollywood celebrities like Beyoncé, Nick Minaj or Rihanna if they ever get a chance to follow her, definitely they would be green with envy as she is the next big thing to happen in Africa.

Now, in The Queens of Mzansi, many people are what makes her tick and determine how her lifestyle has been after being so far the most sought after reality show star.

Well, The Herald on Saturday Lifestyle caught up with the lanky, curvy light skinned socialite who shared her story.

"My real name is Paloma, but everyone knows me as Lolo," she said. "The name Lolo is from my first business, Loloskloset, which was one of the first Instagram online boutiques.

"I am an award-winning fashion blogger who has been featured in local and international magazines. I have an honours degree in strategic brand communications and I'm studying towards my MBA.

"I am a digital content creator and luxury travel blogger. I am passionate about my one business called curated by Leaux which is an extension of my brand building expertise.

"I curate bespoke, unique, memorable events. I run another company called Leaux Consultancy. This caters for companies seeking branding and communications strategy."

Asked how she landed the role of The Queens of Mzansi, Paloma said: "I think at this stage it is now clear that I have a dynamic, authentic brand and most reality television shows now are serious and looking for people who are brave to be honest about their real lives and make a connection to their social media lives.

"I should say that I am quite relatable and have invaded and been on social media space for quite some time and been creating content for my followers. I am now perfect for many shows, entertaining and captivating my audience and now it is easy to transfer and transform it to reality television."

 Paloma, who is currently donning long inches' blonde hair, said she was head hunted by the producers.

"The producers called me and asked if I was available for this," she said. "At first I didn't want to be vulnerable again, you know with reality television, but I thought it was a great opportunity to grow my brand and showcase my talent.

"This show is perfect for me because the woman who starred in it resembles me and was chosen not because I have an interesting personality, but because I am also a businesswoman, educated and it is nice to see these women's profiles alongside mine."

Paloma opted to be on reality shows "because there are not many Zimbabweans on such shows".

"I would say that it has been my dream to be on these shows," she said. "As Zimbabweans, we do take up spaces in countries we live in and I have noticed many were querying why am I in the South African shows.

"I raise my country's flag high and it is an opportunity to represent women, give them a chance to talk.

"There is a need to show people that this is who we are, remove the tags on slay queens, gold diggers and all sorts of names women are called too. We can achieve it; we can do it given the space. On the show, I keep pushing against the stigma and xenophobia. This narrative has to change."

On her acting background and education, Paloma said: "As a child, I was a ballerina and was on stage at the Reps Theatre and attended the college of music, but I chose sports over acting.

 "I play me as this is reality TV and there have been a lot of rumours and misconceptions about my brand and personal life. I will be using the show to bring viewers into my everyday life. It's an intimate invite and I feel exposed, but this is my truth.

 "I have not allowed location and place to curtail my progression and vision even in foreign lands where I have excelled and achieved great success. My role in this reality television show is key and integral to the popularity and success of the show.

"Much has been said about my controversies on social platforms, but behind all the social shenanigans is a very business savvy lady running a very successful curator enterprise."

Paloma said her mother was her role model.

"Definitely, my mother," she said.

"She is my hero. My mum is a successful entrepreneur studying towards her PhD.

"I would say now this is my time to dismiss all the crazy rumours, to tell my story and to help other women who feel like they can't reach their potential or dream.

"I have two degrees over four years and graduated cum laude. I had to balance university, my career and lifestyle with a full time education schedule. I wanted to quit so many times."

So why in South Africa?

 "I left the United Kingdom five years ago as I wanted to pursue my education," she said. "I actually applied to a university in China. South Africa was my second choice, but I prayed and South Africa seemed to be calling my name. I am so happy that this was my final destination.

"My next project is going to be diverse and interesting on the show. You get to see my work with Nail Day Spa, on their brand identity. I want to start my charity project. I do feel I owe a lot to the young women as they look up to me. I have young girls following me on my social media pages. The flashy life overpowers the real life."

Paloma said it was time that women get identified as hard workers, not the other way round.

She is always in the gym and keeps her body and skin at watch.

"I know many people have been telling different stories about my body structure, skin and all sorts, but let me clear it," she said.

"I have worked very hard for you to see what you talk about and admire. I only did lip fillers and whitening my teeth. The rest is all me."

Paloma promised to come home and host a seminar for young women and a workshop on entrepreneurship and self-care tips, among others.

Source - The Herald