How did The Beauty Edit start and what made you choose Instagram as its main platform?
Beauty is very visual, and so I felt Instagram was the perfect platform to initially launch it. I also felt that it was on Instagram that there was a real gap that can be filled when it comes to beauty content. It's scale is smaller but I knew I could ensure top quality and bring great ideas to life, and make a huge enough impact at least to the kind of readers I wanted to reach.
What will you never compromise on?
Quality. Integrity. And The Beauty Edit’s audience. As a content creator whose roots are in publishing, I’ve learned to keep in mind the difference between goals and outcomes. I subscribe to the idea that having more followers is the outcome of a goal. As an editor and writer, my job is to serve readers first. Simply put, my goal is to give my audience content that will be beneficial for them. I believe that genuine followers and true engagement are the outcome of good content.
When you already have so many products, do you still seek for more?
It takes months, years, or even an entire lifetime to build a solid skincare regimen. For the most part, it is a test of patience. Sometimes, it could involve breakouts, rashes, or allergic reactions before one finds her perfect match. But it is also the most gratifying. When a dark spot is lightened by vitamin C, a wrinkle is diminished by retinol, or glowing skin is achieved by glycolic acid, a fundamental pleasure of the human body is fulfilled. Thus the relentless effort of every beauty brand and our never-ending quest to find the next breakthrough in wrinkle creams, brightening serums, smoothening oils, or fat-busting, skin-plumping products.
It’s not so much about the fear of getting old, rather, the desire to extend the joys of our youth. The Beauty Edit, however, does not encourage spending beyond your means or hoarding more than what you can try. Please know that part of the editor's job is to review, test, and study products, thus the huge beauty collections. Editors are also your eyes and ears out there, and so they essentially need to be ahead and aware of what's new, good, and worth your attention, which gives them a first stab at new launches and arrivals. At the end of the day, the best "edit" is your "edit," a tight but hardworking set of skincare and makeup that work for you with room for new things every now and then. Here is where we can also help.
What is your work background and how did you become a beauty editor?
I'm a lifestyle journalist and editor. I think it is because of this background that I am able to write about many topics including beauty and my boss considered me, then a features editor, for the beauty post, for which I am eternally grateful.
My career in publishing started at Sense&Style magazine under Manila Bulletin, where I worked for 5 years and trained under one of the best but toughest EICs a writer could ever experience. It was beautiful and intense and life-changing—it was baptism of conflagration and it was an experience that definitely made me into a better writer, editor, manager, and person ultimately. Here was where my foundation in writing and publishing was built.
After taking a quick hiatus, I moved to Summit Media in 2011 as assistant features editor of Town&Country Philippines—the local edition of a beautiful, unpretentious, tasteful, and fun 174-year-old(!) print title owned by Hearst Magazines based in New York. Here, I was promoted 6 times and held different positions including the beauty editor post. Mid-2019, I left Summit as Town&Country's managing editor after 8 splendid years of working at my dream title and publishing house. Here was where my expertise in digital publishing, content creation, and management was honed, and for which I will always be grateful to Summit Media.
As an editor and writer, I’ve long indulged (sometimes to the point of agony) in the process of telling a story and the creation of visually appealing concepts. I moved from fashion to features to beauty in a glossy to being on top of it all in an entirely new medium, digital. There used to be nothing like the printed page and all its glossy glory to validate a job well done, at least for many of us who started in publishing over a decade ago. But then I’ve also come to understand how our work—our stories, our editorial decisions, our vision—fits into a much larger social, cultural, and historical narrative, which essentially compels us as editors and writers to be where our audience is: online. And so here we are.