Daring & Unapologetic

with Playboy Finland July 2023 cover star Cici Sarmiento / @cicioffici.al

Photographer / @yassmin_photography

Venue & Hosting Steve Mertz / @steve_mertz_

Bodysuit by MichiBikinis / @michibikinis

Lashes by KiraKiraBrand / @kirakirabrand

Such an absolute honor to have you on Playboy! Tell us about your daily schedule as a model, do you have a routine? The honor is mine, thank YOU! When I’m productive I start the day with gym (lower body MWF, core). Come home and walk Gyoza, my doggo. Shower, makeup, then plan my outfits for content. If I have any, do Skype calls, pack e-commerce orders, then livestream afterwards. At the end of the night, I’ll settle down with ice cream and anime until I nod off.

How do you like to begin your day? IDEALLY, I like beginning my day with goals in mind, but I’ll scroll social media for cute dog videos. It’s a bad habit I’m working on haha.

What are some of your biggest dreams you hope to achieve? I’d love to own a digital media agency/studio where my fellow creatives can build their portfolios, secure gigs, and network with other companies. Running my own little e-commerce art shop to fulfill my creative outlets, being financially stable, and becoming an umbrella girl for Formula Drift are also goals I’m working towards!

What helps you decompress and relax? A day where I don’t have to think. I feel like I’m managing a billion apps and coming up with a million entrepreneurial goals so when I have free time, doing absolutely nothing but watching my favorite animes are my fav way to relax when I have 1 brain cell left.

Who has been the most influential person in your life and why? My mother and my mentor. My mother’s work ethic is UNRIVALED: she never misses work and kept 5 kids fed while working double shifts at 2 jobs on no sleep. My mentor, Michelle Yee, has always guided me through opportunities I wouldn’t have been able to find easily on my own. She’s an amazing model and hustler as much as she is a mother and wife. These are SUPERWOMEN!

How romantic are you? Ironically, I’m NOT. I gave up on dolling myself up in the fanciest lingerie, dining on top of the world, hoping for marriage and flowers, and ultimately being someone I’m not for guys who didn’t appreciate me. I learned the best relationships prosper through transparency, respect, and being unapologetically crackhead goofy. Romance is overrated and I’m ok with that.

What is the most memorable date you’ve ever had? My hubby took me to the OC Museum where David Arsham’s Pokémon sculptures were being exhibited. It was so inspiring and reignited my passion for art. Right after, we said F—IT and spent the rest of the day at Disneyland! Best day ever!

What was the biggest lesson from your worst breakup? Don’t go to jail LOL (For details watch Amped Asia’s podcast on YouTube for my backstory). I thought I had something to prove by being loyal to my ex at the time but he was the absolute worst and truly didn’t give a damn about me. I did everything right and still got cheated on too. The lesson here: don’t lose yourself in a toxic relationship trying to be a good partner. Stop ignoring the red flags and get your shit together.

Would you rather be loved, respected, or admired? People who love you can still disrespect you. At the end of the day, respect is all we’ve got when there’s no love to give. Even your worst enemies can still respect you. 

Are you a city traveler or nature explorer? I love both but I wish I explored the wildlife more. It’d be nice to get away from busy cities and then getting down and dirty with nature!

What’s on your travel bucket list? JAPAN! I took Japanese classes for 4 years in high school, unfortunately, I didn’t have the money to join my classmates for our Senior Japan trip. One day I’ll redeem that lifelong dream and see the Sakuras bloom in person! だってばよ!

Where can our readers catch up with you and stay updated with your work? My official websites are trucici.com and ciciofficial.com. All my links are at onlycici.com and I’m always playing video games with my community on Kick, Twitch, and YouTube livestreams! Thank you for having me.