Ysabel, On Air by Danielle Arcon

In a pile of content that tells you things to worry about, it’s a great find when you find a lighthearted watch that is authentic as much as it is endearing. Ysabel Ortega’s YouTube channel, an online chronicle of the Kapuso sweetheart’s life, is among such finds that is easy to binge watch. There is no shortage of vlogs churning out familiar content, but Ysabel’s is a unique view into her colorful life that will compel both old and new fans to keep up with her adventures.

Dress with floral appliques, JOB DACON; earrings, SWAROVSKI ; Blazer and jumpsuit, both ANGEL ESTEBAN

Whether she’s doing a cover of a heartfelt T-Swift hit, giving us a tour of her room on her YouTube vlog, or cooking for her parents, her charm transcends the other side of the screen. And perhaps an online commenter distills it so clearly: while others are focused on the hype and luxury, Ysabel shows us the elegance of living simply. With videos featuring their farm and plantation, it’s easy to admire the woman on screen and her pride for her home and inspiring pursuits. It’s a refreshing message to watch from a rising actress and her channel is proof that it’s her personality that stands out whatever the background, whether a video of her is shot in the city or in a tour of her home.

Dress with floral appliques, JOB DACON; earrings, SWAROVSKI ; Blazer and jumpsuit, both ANGEL ESTEBAN

Landing the role of Jamie Robinson in Voltes V: Legacy, starring in the upcoming What We Could Be, and being an endorser, Ysabel is propelled into great heights on and off camera. But the great flight of Ysabel’s breakthrough is beyond just her liftoff into a major role. Having appeared in Kapuso shows such as Maynila, Pepito Manaloto, The Gift, Daddy’s Gurl, and Dear Uge, Ysabel has been active with GMA’s Artist Center from 2019 and steadily ascends with the network since. Revealed to be part of the network’s stars to watch out for in 2022, she also joins other Kapuso celebrities as part of Sparkle’s brightest names.

Dress with floral appliques, JOB DACON; earrings, SWAROVSKI ; Blazer and jumpsuit, both ANGEL ESTEBAN

But even with such outpour of blessings, Ysabel maintains her humility and remains grounded even as she views her career in retrospect.

“I always thought that my first show would be my last. I thought that it was a one time thing but I am so thankful that that was not what happened. If you told 16 year old Ysabel where she was now, she wouldn’t believe you,” she muses. But even as the 22-year old keeps it humble and low-key, the talent of the young actress is not difficult to spot.

Top and pants, both EMAR VIDA ; Tube top and pants coords, MICH VIRAY

Though her appeal is apparent even without too much force or effort, it’s no reason for Ysabel to be idle as she is also equal parts effortlessly charming and diligently hardworking. There are mixed views about how celebrities with familiar surnames fare in the industry, but Ysabel does not rely on the influence of name alone.

Having actress-singer Michelle Ortega as her mother, Senator Lito Lapid as her dad, and having actor and politician Robert Ortega as her uncle, others usually have different views of how family members in showbiz can influence your career — some take it as a welcome headstart while others view it as a friction from moving ahead. But Ysabel sees it in a balanced view that recognizes it as a challenge to motivate and bring out her A game. “It is nice to be recognized as the daughter or the niece of the cousin of another actor in showbiz, but I never saw it as a bad thing because I’m proud to call them family,” Ysabel says.  “What could be considered as a challenge is trying to step out of a shadow and making a name for myself. But I see it as a good challenge.”

Top and pants, both EMAR VIDA ; Ruffled dress, ARHON MACARAIG

Motivated and hungry to learn more, the lineup of Ysabel’s projects to look out for is proof that while looks can turn heads, smarts and acumen distinguish a leading woman in reel and off screen. She’s no stranger to compliments about her beauty and charm but spend enough time watching the network’s rising star and it becomes clear that while her sincere smile wins the hearts of her audience, her personality and wit makes her a standout — a Kapuso sweetheart inside and out.

In a less-than-a-minute YouTube clip, Ysabel can show what it’s really like to fight like a girl. Moving with lightness but also strength, flexibility but also firmness of steps, and agility but also grace, the young actress shows that she’s more than just a familiar name, but also an actress carving out a name for herself.

Tube top and pants coords, MICH VIRAY ; Ruffled dress, ARHON MACARAIG

In Voltes V: Legacy, the show’s audience would get to see Ysabel’s combat skills. “It was a whole year [during the pandemic] of training nonstop for several hours a day preparing for this role,” she recounts. Ysabel enumerates her training in arnis, kickboxing, and muay thai as her activities for several months to prepare her with good foundation for the official stunt training. “There were times [wherein] I wanted to cry or just give up, but I knew that I have big shoes to fill and that is what kept me going.”  And sure enough, her dedication shines through even in a short clip released by GMA Network’s channel online to give the audience a glimpse into the action scenes of Jamie in the live-action adaptation series.

Blazer and jumpsuit, both ANGEL ESTEBAN ; Ruffled dress, ARHON MACARAIG

More of Ysabel’s acting chops can also be seen on the upcoming What We Could Be teleserye in GMA, starring alongside Miguel Tanfelix and it’s a no-brainer that many would be excited to see her star in the series before Voltes V: Legacy airs.

With these projects ahead, Ysabel looks onwards to the rest of 2022 with excitement, making her mark along with the constellation of GMA’s brightest stars. And when you’ve got an incredible actress with brawns, beauty, and wit, you already know that there won’t be a dull moment, the rest is history and sparks would fly.


Photographed Roj Miguel
Styled and Produced by: Janno Styles
Styling Associate: Nash August and Albert Robin of #TeamJannoStyles
Makeup: Justine Navato
Hair: Mark Daniel Familara
Story Danielle Arcon
Shot on location at Industria Edition Gallery

Special thanks to Chester Singian, Christelle Mamaril, Mich Viray, Felix Ilaya; to Industria Edition Gallery – Jude Tuotuico, Arthur Viray, RB Montes and Genesis Soliven