Project Vanity 10th Anniversary Recap: Through the lens of a first-time attendee

I started reading Project Vanity roughly two years ago. At the time, I wasn't an active subscriber - I would only drop by the site every so often but what really hooked me in was the Project Vanity Facebook page and community.  The community posts were interesting and engaging, and I enjoyed Liz's GRWM vids. Occasionally, I would open the links to articles shared from the PV website, but it was only a year or so ago that I found myself opening it habitually.

Since I became more active, I often thought about how nice it would be to be a part of something like PV. The chance came when I applied to be an intern last February to help prepare for their biggest event of the year: the 10th anniversary party! With just two weeks to organize everything, it was an amazing whirlwind of activity. Getting to witness and be part of making it happen was already a huge deal, but this was also my first time to attend a PV event so it felt doubly exciting! I came away from that experience humbled and with an even better appreciation for what PV is all about.

Up until March 10, the PV community had been a mostly abstract concept to me. I thought it was just a space on the internet where we could talk about our shared interests. Being with 300 fellow PV readers made me realize that we're more than just a collected bunch of beauty lovers; Project Vanity is a community of men and women who empower and support each other. This year’s theme seemed like the perfect description for those who have made this group their own. Tenacious - meaning to persist; to exist with determination. We're so much more than just a beauty website!

Endless Activities

This year’s anniversary was held at Shangri-la Plaza, which was transformed into a pink paradise as both booths and attendees were dressed up in our signature color. Our host for the day is a special throwback; Karrots Nazareno was actually the very first host of the very first PV Anniversary Event in 2013! As always, she did such a great job with her wit and light banter! 

We wanted people to have fun and also get to know each other, so we kicked things off with some Human Bingo. It was nice to see attendees talking to each other and mingling with the PV team. It’s easy enough to do it on our page, so it must have been awesome to get to do it in person! Of course, we gave away awesome prizes to the lucky guests who were the first to fill up their cards.

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Now what PV anniversary would be complete without cute photo booths? Guests posed in front of the adorable “Pink Room”, where every single detail was in Project Vanity pink - including the plant! The monochromatic backdrop was perfect for posting selfies and groufies on IG. Others found their Prince Charming in social media sensation Kuya Omurice, who helped them fit glass slippers at the Baby Foot booth before taking home the best-selling foot mask to try at home. It was also fun watching guests get extra creative as they glammed up for their Spin Cam 360 videos - the revolving camera made it easy to catch everyone's best angles. Winners for the best photos and best pink outfit took home special lootbags provided by Estée Lauder and Kanebo. We also had a cotton candy machine provide sweet treats for all to enjoy between talks and photo sessions!

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Anniversary Kits

Celebrating 10 years of beauty, passion, confidence, and fun wouldn’t be complete without an amazing present from the PV team and our partners so each guest took home a carefully curated kit of some of our beauty must-haves! The kits came with the tickets to the event, which retailed for P1,250 each. It gave attendees full access to activity area, talks, coupons from In Her Element and Baby Foot, and the kits themselves which each contained up to P5,000 worth of products!

The kits were made possible through the generosity of our partners and sponsors: Browhaus, Beauty Bar, BYS, Colourette, Ellana Cosmetics, Flormar, Happy Skin, Inglot, Jordana, Origins, Pink Sugar, Strip Manila, The Skincare Curator, Wet ‘n Wild, and Zenutrients!

I could see how excited a lot of you were to have them, too, since I saw posts on the kits immediately after the event! As if this kit needed more proof attesting to how awesome it is, my mom, who missed the event because of a prior commitment, immediately eyed it when I got home from the event and asked to see its contents. It was pretty hard to say no after some choice words from her:

Wow, ang ganda naman…”

“I love you, ‘nak.”

“Basta, pag may ayaw ka, bigay mo na lang kay mama, hehe.”

I did not go to sleep that night with a complete kit, in case you guys were wondering.

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Amazing Talks

Here at PV, we’re all about spreading the positive vibes! Coffee queen Ros Juan of CommunePH kicked off the afternoon with a powerful speech on getting over social media envy. Though it’s not bad to aspire for greater and better things, social media shouldn’t be a reason for us to lose ourselves and our cool, because at the end of the day, #YouDoYou!

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The talks didn’t stop there as we next got to hear from the great minds and people behind some of your favorite powerhouse brands like Theresa Carbonel-Buenaflor from Ellana Cosmetics, Laveen Mirpuri of Pink Sugar, and Andrea Amado of Tony Moly PH! From building their brands and businesses through hard work and passion, to the value of self care for confidence, these industry movers showed us that chasing your dreams and vision is always possible if you put in the effort and stick to your priorities!

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Hanging out with the PV Girls

If there’s anything that I can relate to with other readers who attended the anniversary, it was probably the palpable energy and excitement that they had when the PV team came up the stage for a casual panel! As an intern for Project Vanity, I've had the chance to get to know these women as fun, fearless, and fabulous in their own way, so chatting them up at the panel was a chance that many guests didn’t pass up.

Throughout the day, the PV team was actively chatting up the community and working hard to make the event a success! Even now, seeing them for our weekly meetings, I appreciate how genuine the girls of the team are with their readers. It’s one thing to be watching their videos, reading their articles, or even engaging them in a discussion in the comments section, but to actually talk to them and hang out with them is a pleasant experience of realizing that they’re a lot like you!

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10 and Tenacious was a day of many firsts for me. My first official event on the job. My first PV anniversary. I sincerely hope that both are the first of many more. But more than anything, our 10th anniversary was the first time I actually got to look upon, meet, and celebrate with such a beautiful, amazing, and positive online community that you and I are both a part of. Know that the PV team put their heart into making our 10th anniversary as amazing as it was for no one else but you guys! Regardless of whether or not you were there last March 10, I hope to see you next year for our 11th anniversary! But for now, stay tenacious, always.

All photos courtesy of Yaracel Macalindong.