Do This Don’t: Get A Mullet

Polarizing, divisive and dated, the mullet is ready to worm its way back into fashion. Thanks to Stranger Things, Miley Cyrus, Billie Eilish, Kesha and Zendaya (whose hair is a wig), there’s no way that we can escape that super choppy hairstyle. Short on top with longer ends at the bottom, this punky ‘do is not for the shy.

When I saw a mullet 10 years ago, it was Kristen Stewart’s haircut on The Runaways biopic, where she had super choppy layers with matte jet black hair to mimic Joan Jett. I had to admit that it disgusted me at first, but while I was googling photos of the band during zoology class in 11th grade, I knew that I HAD to have the haircut. However, I played it safe by constantly relying on my basic bob with bangs.

A couple years later in 2014, I was growing out my Miley Cyrus haircut and needed something to keep things cute. Since growing out a half shaved pixie cut was awkward as heck, my hairstylist at Sally Hershberger in Los Angeles and I agreed that it was time to do a baby mullet. The Joan Jett option wasn’t the most practical, so I gunned for the Marc Jacobs version, where a model with the same inky black hair had super spiky ends on top. Though it was similar, having a baby mullet was a great way to stand out among the sea of boob-length Pantene smooth strands on campus.

After growing out the baby mullet, I always kept it safe with a bob, pixie and shoulder-length layers without bangs. There was no middle ground for the lengths of my hairstyle. A round face like mine was hard to try a diversity of hairstyles. It was even harder for me to have fun with my own hair as countless magazines and blogs always advised moon faced ladies like me to stick to long layers and avoid forehead-grazing bangs.

Bored with all the options I had in the past, I loathed the idea of returning back to a pixie as I did it countless times. Ditto with a bob as I realized that anything that hits my chin makes my face look like a blob. Repeating my 17-year-old self again, it was time to pull up images of Joan Jett and her shaggy mullet.

When I saw my hairstylist last week, I asked him to cut my hair like that. He told me, “I haven’t cut hair like this in a long time” since he used to cut a handful of mullets in London. The moment the sharp end of the scissors snipped my hair, three inch long strands fell to the ground slowly falling down like falling leaves on a windy day. Shocked at the final results, I couldn’t believe that I was a totally different person. The girl I always wanted to be at 17 was staring back at my 26-year-old face. Free from all expectations of having to look more feminine, the mullet made me feel good about my slightly masculine appearance (i.e. squarish jawline), which I inherited from my dad. Much to my own surprise, the layers made my face look slimmer and they’re so easy to style!

Before we dip outta January, I firmly believe that you must try a mullet for once in your life. Trust me, your life will never be the same the moment you let it happen.

The Detox Down Low: A Candid Take On What It’s Really Like To Be On Sakara’s 10 Day Reset

A wise frog once said that being green is not easy. The same can go for anyone – myself included – who’s trying to live on a sustainable diet. Given that I was raised an omnivore, I’ve briefly experimented with a vegan diet when I was in high school thanks to Mr. A, who first spread the gospel of an animal-free diet. Though it miserably failed, I didn’t really think that the option to go vegan would be crucial until I had a minor health scare four years ago when I found out that I had a lot of heavy metals and high yeast levels in my blood. Since there were plenty of vegan options in LA, I saw it as a perfect opportunity to clean up my body.

Flash forward to 2019, I realized that it was time for me to go vegan again. Earlier in February, I was pigging out on Chinese New Year meals, where pork, chicken, duck and other animal-based products were heavily consumed. Though there were veg-friendly dishes, I noticed that most Chinese dishes that I ate with my family and distant relatives contained meat. While eating meat was already not my cup of tea (save for an additional B12 consumption I needed for my O+ blood type), I hated the feeling of waking up bloated, drained of energy and in desperate need for a morning coffee. So, I sought to try out Sakara’s 10 Day Reset.

Known as a food delivery company that caters to models and actresses, Sakara made a name for itself by using organic produce. In fact, it’s got such a wide cult following for its probiotic chocolates, detox and beauty waters alongside some of the most amazing appetizing plant-based recipes. Though I’ve had some Sakara snacks from the past (e.g. watermelon jerky and watermelon seed butter), the nostalgic feeling of eating their products made me want to push myself to try out the cleanse once and for all.

Since it’s a vegan and gluten-free cleanse, I felt like I’d have no problem letting go of eating a lot of animal products. However, the two things that I wasn’t ready to let go of are my cup of coffee and the occasional tipple. If you love eating meat, munching on ice-cream, drinking coffee and raising your wine glasses on weekends, are you ready to give it all up for 10 days?

Continue reading “The Detox Down Low: A Candid Take On What It’s Really Like To Be On Sakara’s 10 Day Reset”

No Scrubs: The Guide To Using Natural Exfoliants

Polluting the ocean isn’t the key to sexier, smoother skin. As public enemy #1, micro beads feel harsh and based on my experience, it hasn’t done anything to improve my skin texture. Rather than relying on plastic beads to clean my skin, I’ve realized that the best exfoliants come from the kitchen!

As a sustainable alternative, food-based scrubs exfoliate, improve my skin texture and make my cheeks glow. However, some ingredients are either a hit or miss. For instance, take Kylie Skin’s Walnut Face Scrub. Packed in an IG-friendly millenial pink tube, it’s a chicer alternative to St. Ives’ Apricot Face Scrub; however, its choice of using walnut powder has been dragged to filth due to the sharp edges of crushed walnuts. Since walnut powder has been linked to micro tears and abrasions on the skin’s surface, I wouldn’t want to use that too frequently on my face. (But, it works better on the body as it’s more aggressive!)

Since I’m on the hunt for the perfect natural exfoliant, what are some greener exfoliants that actually work on the skin?

Continue reading “No Scrubs: The Guide To Using Natural Exfoliants”

Are Superfoods The Superheros For Our Skin?

Eight years ago, I was an omnivore that enjoyed eating sushi, steaks, pizza and satay. I was also eating all sorts of yummy, but healthy snacks that somehow toed on the line of unhealthy. Even though I was on the way to start my senior year of high school, my skin was going through some puberty and stress-induced changes of spots, blackheads and oiliness. My mom sent me to see celebrity dermatologist Dr. Harold Lancer.

During my appointment, Dr. Lancer dropped the bomb that I was treating my skin horribly with meat, raw fish and pizza. Rather than eating all the no-no foods, he advised me to eat more greens. From there, I started to think twice about what I ate.

Flash forward to 2019, I love a cup of coffee with almond milk and two tablespoons of Moon Juice’s Beauty Shroom, count on gluten-free meals, subsist on acai bowls and avoid anything with dairy to keep my skin crystal clear. (However, I can’t keep myself away from deep fried food!) While eating the right food can obviously do wonders for my skin, the same kinda goes for the right skincare.

Enter Rooki Beauty. As a newly founded local skincare brand, they’ve been successfully launching themselves as a rising force with a superfood-based face cleanser, moisturizer and mask. They slid into my DMs, asked me if they can send some items for review and as a skincare/wellness junkie, that was an offer I couldn’t refuse. Before I continue to my review, can superfoods be applied topically to save your skin?

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A Girl’s Guide To Singapore’s Hidden Gems

Forget about seeing the Merlion statue or an obligatory photo of the Marina Bay Sands. If you think that Singapore is what you see in Crazy Rich Asians, believe me, the one you see on screen is just another Hollywood fantasy.

Deep inside the Lion City’s dense concrete jungle, there’s a buzzing energy that sweeps beyond the MRT. Inside the packed streets, there’s always a new café or art gallery popping around the block or a mere tap away thanks to Instagram. Given that it’s so easy to walk past anywhere in the +65, the best experiences are always from the hidden hotspots. 

Must you go to any coffee shop (not the Amsterdam kinds, mind you!), bar, restaurant or club, sometimes, a little post on the ‘gram is all it takes to immortalize the experience and tell all your friends about it.

Since Singapore’s been through 1,001 face lifts every year, here are some hidden gems that you need to add on your bookmark ASAP:  

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Lacoste Is Ready To Slay The Streets With Its Customizable Unisexy Sneaker

Cotton polo tees, alligator logos and perfume ads that bear bold capitalized letters are all it takes to recognize a Lacoste from a mile away. Known for its preppy meets sporty aesthetic, the French brand does the unthinkable: launch a sneaker.

Dubbed the “WildCard”, Lacoste’s fresh new kicks offer a street-friendly version of the old school tennis sneaker. Made with leather and mesh, the WildCard sneakers have a low platform that makes it easily wearable to walk whether you’re at the tennis court or the sidewalks at Orchard. Although it’s marketed towards men, it can be worn by us, too. Compared to its past sneaker designs, Lacoste gives us the option to customize it however we want!

In honor of its drop, Lacoste has thrown a party last Friday at Orchard Central. Featuring local acts such as Tabitha Nauser, a Singapore-based singer, and Dharni, a Poland-based beatboxer, this party was a night that I could never forget.

Catch a glimpse of the launch party here:

Continue reading “Lacoste Is Ready To Slay The Streets With Its Customizable Unisexy Sneaker”

Is This Influencer-Loved Activewear Set Worth The IG Hype?

Activewear brands come and go just like how we often tend to clear out our closets whenever we’re bored. Even as under the radar companies are constantly challenged to break the market, what’s more important is how they aim to boot up the game. Rather than me reviewing a new brand, it’s time for me to rekindle with a familiar face I reviewed a year and a quarter ago.

Rather than going by Touché LA, it’s rebranded itself LA Collective, an activewear umbrella that represents 3 brands: TLA by Morgan Stewart, Ren Active (whom they collaborated with model Alexis Ren) and Vita LA. Launched last year, Vita LA’s brought out an array of fun prints (e.g. tie dye), unconventional details (e.g. aged denim) and a range of colors that make you think of sorbets at the ice cream shop. Backed by 37K Instagram followers and a handful of sold out listings, it’s no wonder that this under the radar cult activewear brand is already on its way to knock the big dogs down.

Jaynee got in touch with me again to send me a new pastel rose denim-inspired set that consisted of leggings, tank top and sports bra. The moment I woke up, I was more than excited to review it! While it’s easy for me to be let down by the amount of hype than quality in today’s activewear, is this new set from VITA LA worth the Instagram hype?

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A Letter To Karl Lagerfeld

Dear Karl,

It’s been three days since you passed away and honestly, I am so speechless. Although I have never met you in person, I felt that you were meant to be in my life since I was a child.

Growing up, I saw my mother wear Chanel since I was a baby. Before my mother purchased the tweed two pieces, she started small with a gold charm bracelets and leather trimmed chain belts that bore the brand’s logo. Then, she slowly added more belts to her collection by stocking up on a rhinestone belt alongside a wide logo gold chain belt. Apart from belts, she started collecting bags of every color, texture and size. Whether it’s a matte lilac Classic, chocolate brown croc mini tote or a basic black velvet clutch with a tassel, each bag always added a touch of luxurious elegance to an outfit. After the bags and jewelry, my mom started collecting a smorgasbord of jackets, t-shirts, skirts and tops to the point where I couldn’t reach the back of her closet. Looking back at my mom, I realized that you transformed her from a meek housewife to a confident fashion queen.

Although I yearned to wear her Chanel collection, I was too young to wear it as my mom didn’t want teenage me to grow up too fast. In fact, she’d rather have me wear her unbranded hand me downs or my grandma’s homemade clothes than to touch her precious Chanel collection.

Finally, I got my chance to wear Chanel when my father bought me a quilted faux pearl strapped handbag and long pearl and resin necklace for my 20th birthday. For my 20-year-old self, I felt that I didn’t deserve to wear them. Without much understanding about the value of a Chanel accessory, I randomly looked up the infamous ankle bag on The Real Real four years ago. Then, I Googled the patent leather vanity bag. Much to my surprise, I was shocked to learn that these archive pieces ran up to a four figured price tag. I learned that regardless of design or year, every Chanel piece is a heirloom connected to a storied house with a history of making women feel confident, classy and fabulous.

Now that I’m building my design career with baby steps, it’s so hard for me to picture a world without you. (Side note: I’m crying as I type this!) While we know that no human is perfect, I am so thankful that you want to step things up by including sustainability in fashion. As someone who wants to reduce environmental waste in an era of fast fashion, you have inspired me to make fashion fun while being ethically mindful of how we make and consume things.

Last but not least, the world has lost an angel, but heaven’s gained a virtuoso.

Sincerely,

M

Feature image courtesy of Instagram @chanelofficial

@virgomood is the muse that every designer, fashion girl and stylist is secretly obsessed with

Two years ago, I was scrolling through Instagram on a cold NYC evening while taking a break from typing up an article. Constantly on a search for new inspiration, I stalked my friend’s account and stumbled upon a feed filled with photos of models strutting down a runway. As I clicked on each photo, my eyes couldn’t stay away from the caption. Rather than the familiar faces that I know of, I was shocked to learn that these stunning women were not named Naomi, Christy, Cindy, Kate or Linda. Not to forget, the designers (e.g. Todd Oldham) seemed relatively obscure to an outsider. From there, I realized that the entire feed expressed the inner emotions of a 22-year-old dental student who goes by @virgomood.

Based in Chicago, the fashionista has 324,000+ followers (myself included) who keep up with her eclectically curated photos of runway moments, red carpet arrivals, lingerie editorials and the occasional interior design shots. Thanks to its edgy, feminine and sensual feed, Virgo Mood attracts legions of followers from stylists (Mimi Cuttrell; Dani Michelle),designers (Area; Susan Alexandra), musicians (Sky Ferreira) and retailers (IRVRSBL).

We chat about the inspiration behind that iconic handle, her fascination with vintage lingerie, how Naomi Campbell sparked her obsession with all things vintage, the hardest about curating a feed and the model she’d love to style.

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The Top 10 Iconic Graphic Tees That Defined Celebrity Fashion

Slogans and logos are worth a thousand words in one shirt. As a closet essential, a graphic tee is a treasured heirloom that can’t be thrown away. Regardless of color, brand and silhouette, every girl HAS to have a graphic tee.

As a t-shirt collector, I’m a sucker for GOOD t-shirts – especially, graphic tees. Although I love plain fitted white or black tee, the one thing that I have a steady collection of is graphic shirts. Inside my collection it kinda goes like this: fitted or oversized; long or short; faded or factory fresh. Since I love being able to own a handful of graphic tees, I just can’t live without them. However, the type of graphic tees that I wish I can own are worn by celebrities.

Being a pop culture geek myself, graphic tees have always made a splash on some of the most famous photographs in the world. Given that most celebrities from the ’80s to early ’00s didn’t hire a stylist to dress them up on off-duty, I always felt that a graphic tee was the most F you way to express yourself without opening a single word from your mouth.

Here are my most favorite iconic graphic tees that I wish I owned:

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