It’s strange writing about “beauty”. Who has the authority to say something is beautiful anyway? Isn’t “beauty” subjective? I certainly never considered myself an expert on the topic; in fact, when I was asked to write about the subject for Cluster I recommended somebody else who had the proper beauty training as a makeup artist, a published makeup book and had provided several talks on the subject.
While I’ve endorsed beauty products for brands for over 10 years, I’m not a makeup artist. Nor was I ever truly a beauty product-hoarder like other people I knew. I just know what products I like, what works well for me.
Growing up, I liked playing with colors, creams and different products in beautiful bottles, and seeing the effect they would have on one’s skin. How a little eye glimmer would open and bring a sparkle to your eyes, for example. How ever-so carefully tweezing individual hair-strands from your lower eyebrows created arches, which provide the frame and windows to your eyes. It was so fascinating.
Then later, I would do several beauty editorials and beauty campaigns around Asia. I wasn’t tall, suffered from chronic rosacea and often had bouts of terrible breakouts through young adulthood. But as a fair-skinned Eurasian (a desired look in Asia at the time) and a strong commitment to my craft, financial independence and my own personal challenge, I booked beauty work and created somewhat a niche for myself. I booked several fly-in work across Asia, especially for banks, property developments and luxury products, particularly beauty brands.
I still love watching makeup artists at work, transforming my face into a chameleon different looks, while casually talking about cult favorite brands, new products, travel and our lives. Makeup is a process and a conversation, and each individual session is never the same from the last. Watching them closely, I started to learn how to use some of the tools of the trade, discovering what worked and what didn’t, what beauty products were worth buying and what weren’t.
In 2010, I decided to model full-time around Asia so I could pursue a Master’s degree. I lived in unbelievably small, tiny shoebox apartments -- and one suitcase. So, every beauty product purchase was carefully vetted, often had multiple cosmetic purposes and had to be worth every peso of hard-earned savings.
That’s when the careful analysis and early beauty reviews began.
Today, what excites me about makeup is its transformative nature. When used well, makeup has the magic ability to bring out the intrinsic beauty within. To make a woman just a little more confident and express her personality while she pursues her career, work and dreams.
I've always been about good skin, before makeup. I've also always had a deep appreciation for simple, natural and effective beauty products. Moreover, I am a strong believer in the holistic approach of beauty, which includes a woman's diet, fitness, mental health as well as a science-based approach to skincare.
For my column, you can expect to read about the following:
- Beauty editorials
- History, influences and references of beauty
- Makeup How-To's for Filipinos
- Beauty Tutorials
- Thoughts on Filipino ingredients, Australian products and global skincare
Please also tell me what you'd like to read about -- I'm always open to your suggestions!
Looking forward to sharing my beauty journey with you very soon.