© Sundowns MediaAuthor: Sijabulile NdlovuLebohang Kgosana Maboe, better known as "Lebza" by his fellow teammates is a firm believer in the importance of looking good, to feel good. The 28-year-old Puma athlete is known for being fashionable and having an ultra-modern approach to grooming.A fairy-tale case of "like father, like son", Maboe is the son of a retired football player, Sidwell Maboe who also played in the country's top-flight during his career. The Brazilians' attacking midfielder made his professional debut with Mbombela United in what is now known as the Motsepe Foundation Championship, before moving to Maritzburg United where Masandawana took notice of his formidable potential.

Lebza is famously known for netting a hat-trick against Black Leopards during a hard-fought final victory during the 2019/20 season to secure a tenth Premier Soccer League (PSL) title for Mamelodi Sundowns. His versatile style of play has seen the winger feature in multiple positions in the team.

Mamelodi Sundowns caught up with the well-groomed winger to chat about his travelling essentials and find out his grooming secrets.

Road Trip!
LEBOHANG MABOE'S TRAVELLING ESSENTIALS What is your go-to travelling outfit?
When I'm travelling, I always want to be comfortable. My pair of Puma suedes are the first that come to mind, paired with some sweatpants and a fashionable t-shirt. I also carry a Puma sweat top or hoodie in case the weather changes and becomes chilly.
What are three things that you never travel without?
  • Well, I think the first thing that comes to mind has to be my phone.
  • My AirPods. I always keep them with me to play music, especially when travelling long distances.
  • Last but not least, I would never travel without my Bible. Not being able to play football due to injuries has helped me grow my relationship with God, it has helped shape my spiritual life. I have been spending a lot more time with God and reading my Bible lately. Before, I would have said my NINTENDO switch.
What are your favourite travelling snacks?
When it comes to travelling snacks, I always try to go for healthier options. My top three, among many others, are mango strips, peanuts with raisins, and biltong. My choice of snacks is also dependent on how long the trip is. Sometimes I just pack Crunchie biscuits.
Which music genre dominates your travelling playlist?
Well, to be honest, my playlist heavily depends on my mood. On days when I feel like my morning wasn’t the greatest, I play something that I can sing along to, regardless of the song’s genre. However, Amapiano has been dominating my playlist as of late.
Is there any specific artist that dominates your playlist?
At the moment, it’s definitely Kelvin Momo and Msaki.
You have travelled extensively with the team. Which trip has been the most memorable for you and why?
It's quite difficult to choose because we have had so many amazing trips. However, I think our trip to Algeria in the CAF Champions League in December where we had to spend Christmas away from home in a foreign country was the best. We were so used to having our families around during the festive season but had to be in camp with the team. Receiving heartfelt messages from each player's family members was so precious. Having to dress up and have a singing competition in different languages (Spanish/English) was quite an experience for me. Being away from my family and celebrating Christmas with my football family, outside South African shores was a great experience.
LEBOHANG MABOE'S GROOMING SECRETS Which skin care tips do you swear by?
In my opinion, it’s not just about knowing your skin type and which products to use. It's also about making sure that your body is well-hydrated. With that said, I try to drink as much water as I possibly can. Additionally, using cold and warm water, instead of hot water on my skin really works for me.
Your nails are always manicured and alluring. Do you prefer gel or acrylic nails and why?
I prefer gel over acrylic nails. I just don’t like the whole process of removing acrylic nails using hot water. If there was an easier way of removing acrylic nails, I wouldn't mind having them all the time.
Why are self-care and grooming important to you?
My self-care and grooming routines are just a reflection of who I am as a person. I really enjoy expressing myself in different ways. Having nail art being one of them. It just keeps my nails looking healthy and in good condition, which is a confidence booster for me. Grooming is a good way of taking good care of mental wellness. Sometimes it helps to take some time off to take care of yourself. It's also a good reflection of one's self-image.
What is your favourite form of self-care?
I believe that self-care plays an important role in ensuring that we are at the top of our game in life and in our careers. Having dealt with all the pressures that come with playing for a big club, taking time off, and taking care of my emotions in the smallest ways has been good for my well-being. It could be taking some time off from everything and just going to a grooming parlour or spoiling myself by doing a bit of shopping. It’s so important to take care of your emotions and ensure that you're mentally well and prepared for all the troubles of life.
In parting, Lebza highlighted the importance of acknowledging one's emotions for a healthy state of mind. "We often downplay how we feel which can be exhausting emotionally and mentally. It's very important to forget about what people say and take care of your mental health by doing what makes you happy. For me, having art and gel on my nails is one way," expressed Maboe.