Smooth Operator

Smooth Operator

Meet the man behind Mrs Mpumalanga

A well-known personality in Lowveld beauty and entertainment circles, Mbombela’s Jacques Lombard is the energy behind many a local pageant and function. We fall right in and find out more about the man and his motivation.

Jacques is a creative man with a diverse range of skills. His career in the fashion industry started about 10 years ago and he specialises in function decor and styling. His work has been featured in several bridal magazines and he is also the director and founder of Timeless Group, with a range of services, including artist management, show productions and launches.

Mrs Mpumalanga is an established event on the local calendar. Why beauty pageants?
(Animated) Mrs Mpumalanga is not a beauty contest. It is open to women who lead a balanced life and who will make a good ambassador for the province. It is a confidence booster and positive experience for intelligent, multifaceted women – nobody runs around in a bathing costume!

So what is the reasoning behind it?
It offers someone the opportunity to put herself first for a change. Women get lost in the many roles they play – this offers her a platform to reinvent herself and to shine.
Many of the contestants have never been in front of a camera. I organise everything: hair, make-up, outfits, the works, and they undergo a transformation process before being photographed. It is wonderful how they see themselves in a different light. My job is to give women self-confidence and the confidence to pursue their dreams.

But these women are still scored or judged?
Not on beauty. There are no specifications in the competition regarding height or weight, and entrants come in all shapes and sizes. Eighty-five per cent of their score is made up of their business plan and ideas on how to be the best ambassador for the province. The finalists all have a story.
Some have been abused or raped, and perhaps they aren’t the “prettiest”. But every year, they go out there with a message of hope to other women.

What background do you come from?
Banking (laughs). I grew up in Bothaville and started working at FNB after school.
I quickly reached a management position and became bored, but branched into training and project management.
The move into function organisation and MC’ing came naturally. My ex-wife was a designer so I become involved behind the scenes at fashion shows and have been part of the fashion/beauty/entertainment industry ever since.

What else are you up to?
Claud Kruger, Marinda Smit and I have just launched Ladz Couture.
After 10 years in the industry, I thought it was time to branch out. We’re not reinventing the wheel in terms of fashion, but will focus on quality and fit. We each bring something different to the table and are excited about this new development.

What makes you tick?
I love working with and helping others. Also shopping and malls – and I can spend an entire morning doing people watching! I’m hugely involved in my children’s lives.
To me, it’s important to be a confidante, but also a parent. It’s important to know who you are and what you stand for. If you don’t have passion for what you do, it’ll show in your work.

Get in touch
Contact Jacques on 076-424-8042 or join Timeless Face SA on Facebook for more


April 2018

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