I've started a few sentences, erased them all. I guess what I really want to say is that I'm speechless. I knew this feature was coming (I got interviewed after all!) but it's so surreal to finally see it in print. I, along with fellow beauty bloggers Shen and Martha, were featured in Mega's February 2013 issue.
Love this cover btw! This is illustrated by the same people who draws the Archie comics. Are you excited for the MAC Archie's Girls collection?
My face right now: ^_^ Thanks so much to Max Ignacio for the write-up! Sara Garces, girl, I adore you for taking the scans even though you're busy. Click after the jump to see the full transcript of the interview (if you're interested teehee).
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MEGA Beauty Feature / Interview Questions
How old are you?
24 years old
Where did you take your education?
Graduated BA Political Science from the University of the Philippines Manila
Do you have another occupation aside from being a blogger? If yes, can you explain your situation as a makeup blogger on the side? (How do you balance your time? Etc.)
A lot of people think that I blog full time because I do it more than ten times a week! But no, it’s not my bread and butter. I’m a Brand Consultant for several retail brands. I handle their PR, social media marketing, and events. It can get very hectic at times (like now I’m working on one retail event and another media event for next week!) but it’s all just a matter of smart scheduling.
I wake up at 6am every morning, blog for three or four hours (including post-processing of photos) to come up with two posts, and then spend the rest of the day on my marketing work. If I’m going to an event during the day, I make sure to finish most of my work the day before.
Seriously, waking up super early is super useful. You do more things in less time.
How long have you been blogging about makeup?
It’s been four years, starting March 2008.
Why do you love makeup so much?
To be clear, I don’t love makeup per se - I love what it can do and how fun it is to use and collect. :) I was never the pretty girl growing up. I was dark, awkward, and curly. When I discovered makeup in college, it’s like a whole new world opened up to me! I learned so many useful techniques to enhance what I have and hide what I don’t like.
The use of makeup is transformative, and it can change lives. At least, it changed mine. I now have a more colorful life - literally and figuratively - because of it.
Why did you decide to start blogging about it?
I was still in college. I was just starting to discover makeup and I loved to write, too, so blogging about cosmetics was a natural progression for me. I devoured tutorials and videos online. I thought, hey, I want to share my techniques and reviews too! I want to share what I learned. Thus Project Vanity was born.
How does it feel to know you have one of the country’s top makeup blogs?
Oh wow. First of all I’m grateful to everyone who reads my site - not to be cheesy or anything but I won’t be anywhere without my loyal readers. They’ve always supported me, some for years now! They motivate me and help me come up with exciting topics everyday.
I’m happy that people trust my reviews and follow my tutorials. It’s a different kind of high.
How did you find out/ what was your experience like when you realized you were getting massive reception for your blog?
Some of the girls approach me in the mall or in restaurants just to say hi and to thank me for helping them out. Of course I feel giddy when they do! It feels great to know that people recognize me for my work!
When did you truly know that people were paying attention to your blog? What was the turning point of your blogging career?
The turning point...a couple of years ago I had the chance to be the digital endorser of this new beauty product. I was literally the first consumer to try it in the Philippines, and since then this product has had a quiet cult following (it’s fantastic and I’m not just being biased). It’s always sold out! That was my first campaign - the first company that truly trusted my blog.
As a digital endorser I was interviewed on the radio and had a massive contest for my readers. I will always remember that experience!
I also had the chance to be part of a university tour with Bianca Valerio and give a beauty /career talk to the students. More recently I was approached by the top telecommunications company in the country to be one of their Digital Ambassadors. I’m honored, to say the least.
Do you have a specialty/ favorite topic you love blogging about?
I love doing step-by-step photo tutorials. Like how to do a quick office look, a five-minute smoky eye, and the no makeup makeup for example. I know there are videos out there but people seem to be interested in photos with detailed products and information.
I love lipsticks. I have maybe 150 in my collection at the moment! So I always feature lipsticks and interesting topics related to that. I’m also into perfecting skin. I have a lot of blemishes so I’ve tried to master the art of flawless skin through makeup. So yeah, I love talking about concealer, foundations, and powders.
What perks do you get from your job?
Freebies and events are always fun. :) Like right now my desk is full to bursting of yet unreviewed makeup and skincare products! Not that I’m complaining ha. I’m always on the look out for something new and worth buying!
I also get sponsors who advertise on my website. That’s a good incentive.
What difficulties have you experienced since becoming a makeup blogger?
Does bad lighting count? :P Well the hardest part would be churning out my content, minimum of ten times a week. I try to make my blog as interesting, well-written, and exhaustive as possible. I don’t do it half-assed, but this takes a lot of time and effort to maintain.
What’s in store for you in the near future?
Do you think that the digital age is reigning over print media? Do you think that magazines and glossies are dying?
Which makeup related icons do you admire the most? Why?
Marilyn Monroe, hands down. I love how she did her makeup. You think it’s just foundation and cat eyes and red lipstick? There’s more to it than that. It’s a labor-intensive process that’s specifically tailored to look good in any camera, lighting, and angle. She knew every trick in the book! (as Lisa Eldridge would say)
I also love Bianca Valerio. I love her story about finding self-confidence and finding a career she loves. The girl also has mean makeup chops. She’s also all about products that work, not the ones that are merely expensive and for bragging purposes. She’s a huge fan of F21 eyeliner (only P150!).
Where do you think makeup artistry is headed for 2013? (in relation to the spread of makeup academies and makeup brands available locally) Do you think more bloggers will rise? Do you think more makeup artists/talents will emerge?
Five years ago the average Filipina didn’t know much more beyond lip balm and foundation. But again, because of the increasing influence of fashion and beauty blogs worldwide, they’re realizing that there’s more that they can do to enhance their natural beauty! Some girls are happy regaling their friends with their newfound skills. Others would want to write about it. Others find passion in the work and take it to the next level by studying makeup artistry.
I definitely won’t be surprised to see even more beauty bloggers and budding makeup artists next year!
Can you assess the makeup industry in the country?
I think the local makeup industry is heading for a boom in the years to come. More brands are coming in and they’re reaching out to different market segments in more creative ways. Beauty workshops, fairs, and even just counter demonstrations are more accessible. Everyone wants to be more beautiful, and now, it’s easy to know how.
Can you assess the level of makeup talent you see in the country?
Definitely world class. I’ve seen international makeup artists demonstrate here live, and their local counterparts are definitely a match for them.
Would you recommend your job to any other enthusiast? If so, what advice would you give them?
I would recommend it to anyone who is truly passionate about achieving and sharing beauty. A lot of people go into blogging because they want the freebies and the parties, but the truth is that it may take months up to a year before you even get noticed by brands and the community. You have to do it because you love it. Otherwise, your blog will wilt and you would have wasted your time. Blog about food if you’re into that. Or mobile phones.
Blog about your passion, and people will find you. :)