Actress Pearl Thusi has been reaping good rewards since she launched “Queen Sono”- Netflix’s first African original series about a spy from South Africa. The streaming site’s six-episode TV thriller stars Pearl as the eponymous secret agent.

While visiting cosmopolitan São Paulo, Brazil, the main economic and cultural center of South America, South African superstar Pearl Thusi posed exclusively for Galore in some of the city’s main postcards – from the busy Avenida Paulista, where 1.5 million people pass through daily, to the iconic curves of Copan and Oca, creations of the legendary Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer. Pearl is photographed by Higor Bastos

Boots Gucci, Leather Socks Wolford, Coat archive

Featured Interview:

Can you talk to us about your latest project?
It might sound a bit unconventional but I’ve reached a point in my life where, despite my life being deeply intertwined with my work, I feel the need to work on the broader aspects of my existence. For much of my life, I overlooked the importance of self-improvement, getting so immersed in my professional pursuits that I forgot to celebrate the sheer blessing of being on this planet and to prepare myself for the uncertainties that extend beyond my career. On my continent, I’ve achieved more than I, or many others, could have ever dreamed possible. Beyond just shattering glass ceilings I’ve crafted a career focused on breaking new ground, irrespective of societal constraints related to race and gender. While I appreciate the value of milestone achievements, it’s those achievements that have a deeper, personal meaning that
resonates with me the most. However, there comes a point where achievements alone have a cap on the fulfillment they can provide. I’m exploring new avenues, challenging myself not to be defined solely by what the world sees. I understand that to those who haven’t grasped how swiftly time passes, and who
are caught up in the pursuit of power, success, and love, my perspective might sound a bit unconventional. I want to look back and see beyond the visible accomplishments, making time to take care of my thoughts and peace—a realization influenced by the yearnings of my childhood, now evolved and often neglected, leaving behind a sense of emptiness that I must address before committing to creating again. The project of being an amazing mom continues to take precedence as I witness my girls grow, recognizing the irreversible nature of time slipping away. Now, if you’re curious about my plans to make a living, let me share. I’ve led the first African movie acquired by Netflix on the continent, which led to me spearheading the first Netflix series in Africa. I’ve also been the first in Disney animation and the first African ambassador for MAC cosmetics. While Hollywood beckoned after reaching a ceiling on the continent, I’m not done with African stories, and I’m currently working on writing—though I can’t reveal much about it yet. I’m also building my own business empire. I’m hyper-focused on my high-end alcohol brand, “Black Rose Gin,” a venture close to my heart for numerous reasons, with big plans that promise to make it a celebrated and top-selling gin globally. Additionally, my powerful hair care brand, Black Pearl Hair, which has long celebrated natural African curls, plans to expand globally once firmly rooted. There’s also my handmade/artisan candle business, an exclusive and limited endeavor that pays homage to my pre-teen entrepreneurial spirit, blissfully unaware of the potential danger in melting candles back then.

Full look Dolce & Gabbana by Kim Kardashian SS23

Besides ongoing negotiations due to the SAG strike, which have given me time to write and dream about the stories I want to tell, I’ve delved into making music. This has been a profound journey intertwined with my spiritual exploration. I prefer not to talk much about it. I want my work to speak for itself, as I’ve always insisted it should.

What’s your beauty philosophy?
My beauty philosophy centers on self-expression, authenticity, and self-empowerment. It goes beyond temporary comforts to embrace what makes you unique. Feeling beautiful is intrinsic; it’s about embracing what evokes that feeling organically. Despite self-care practices like drinking water, working out, and enjoying a beauty routine, I’ve maintained them even during dark times. Beauty lies in daily choices shaping your life, both physically and emotionally. In a world of constant scrutiny and competition, consider what you consume and contribute to the system. Choose who you want to be, guarding your soul, self-esteem, spirit, and consciousness. The inner elements impact your skin, eyes, and smile more powerfully than external factors. Kindness, not judgment, accelerates enlightenment, allowing acceptance of inner imperfections and understanding your worthiness of love. Embrace every part of yourself with unconditional love—a philosophy of wholesome beauty.

Full look Dolce & Gabbana by Kim Kardashian SS23

How are you breaking boundaries?
Breaking boundaries for me is living on my own terms, despite what others may say. I’ve grown tired of trying to please people. I believe that true freedom is breaking away from the chains of useless opinions and living freely.
Daily beauty ritual:
No social media until after I shower.
Sing in the shower. Have positive speech in the mirror.
Cleanse (or exfoliate)
Serums and moisturizer.
Lotion (that I make myself)
Face gym.
Lots of water
A wholesome breakfast/lunch
Check on my pets and plants
Get some sunlight

Spread love.

What has been your favorite acting role to date?
Queen Tala in Scorpion King. It taught me what my body was capable of and paved the way for everything that followed. Being part of the legacy, despite its current status, fulfilled a childhood dream. Learning to ride a horse during the role was a monumental milestone for me.

What advice would you give to your 16-year-old self?
Believe in yourself. Mom is gone, but her presence will endure. You’ll wish to be 16 again, so don’t doubt yourself. The rollercoaster gets wild, open your eyes, and hold onto tightly to your sanity and values. It’s okay to feel lost; it just means you’re on the brink of discovering something unique.

Full look Dolce & Gabbana by Kim Kardashian SS23

What’s your fav local cuisine?
Amadombolo and tripe.
Google it.
It just reminds me of better times before I lost most of my family.
What are you working on next?
The game is to be sold, not told—that’s my project philosophy. I never thought I’d do this, but now I’m grabbing the bull by the horns. Being a Taurus means taking control of my life. Also, I expect my music release to break new ground in a way I’ve never seen anyone do before.

Team Credits:

Photo: Higor Bastos @higorbastos
Video: Lucas Signoretti @lucassignoretti

Styling: Anita Rodrigues @notanitta

Beauty: Elcides Freitas @elcidesfreitas

Photo Assistance: Gabryel Sampaio @ogabryelsampaio

Retouching of Images: Caroll Ferreira @caroullis

Fashion Production: Ana Rodrigues @theboocorner

Gimme More

Do You Like?

Some things are only found on Facebook. Don't miss out.