Author Archive

What Would Rachel Green Wear?

by marla
Tuesday, May 26th, 2015
Posted in Shopping Diaries |

In an (unsuccessful) attempt to rein in my shopping impulses, I have started making a list in my head of things I really, really want, as opposed to things I only sorta-kinda want, or things I just want in the moment because I’m bored or sad or restless. On the not-so bright side, the shopping impulses are still there, and when you’ve got rent and bills to pay and lofty travel plans to save up for, that can’t be too healthy. On the genuinely bright side though, I’ve noticed a nice, steady pattern emerging in terms of my style choices, and it’s become easier to identify True Love versus Infatuation, or stuff that I can justify spending on versus stuff I’ll probably regret buying in a week or two.

The pattern is this: I’m obviously stuck in the FRIENDS era, and I never really got over my massive ’90s girl crush on Rachel Green, the adorably bratty, slightly naive, super stylish character played by Jennifer Aniston on the hit TV show. Whatever Rachel has worn, I’ll pretty much end up wearing too, and a few years back that might have seemed like a terrible idea but now that ’90s fashion is all up in our faces (and feeds) again, it actually makes sense.

So here are the things currently floating around in my wish list, vis-a-vis some Rachel Green goodness:

Dark denim dungarees and a small, structured purse in wine or marsala

turtleneck skirt
More ribbed high-neck tops (love the speckled fabric on this one!) and a smart but fun pencil skirt

bf shirt
A striped boyfriend shirt and Clinique’s Almost Lipstick in Black Honey—I’ve been hunting for this shade for days!

Don’t even get me started on her hair. Who’s your TV style peg and what’s on your (hopefully manageable) wish list?


photos from Warner Bros. and featured brands

Your Feelings Matter

by marla
Tuesday, April 14th, 2015
Posted in Candy, Get Inspired, Let's Talk |

Photo by Macy Alcaraz

Last weekend was both scary and wonderful because I got to fulfill speaker duties for an event called Woman, Create, a fun gathering that aims to empower women through creativity and self-expression. I was nervous about talking to a crowd, as I almost always am, but even more nervous because I was going to be exploring personal stuff like how I struggle with being automatically labelled a “chick lit” writer, as well as reading pieces from my personal poetry collection. I managed to do both with a minimal amount of giggling and fidgeting, managed to elicit a fair amount of reaction from the audience, and managed to learn a few things about myself as well—paring all your buzzing thoughts down to a 20-minute speech does wonders for self-discovery. And as is usually the case with things that initially scare me, it was definitely worth it.

I’m sharing with you here the poem I read to wrap up my talk. I hope you like it, and I hope you never stop reading and feeling and writing your heart out.

At some point a stranger or perhaps a friend you once
let drift away will tell you to stop caring so much,
as if caring were a disease that needs to be cured, or
a workman’s machine you can switch on and off as you
please. Don’t be so quick to agree. Say your heart has
no dial to turn from left to right; say your heart did
not come with a remote control, did not even come with
an instruction manual or the number of a helpline you
can call when it isn’t functioning the way it should.
Tell the truth: that sometimes you are nothing more
than skin and sweat and sinew, and sometimes you are
so much. Tell the other truth, the bigger one: that no
one—not with our breath and veins and the songs that
keep us up at night—was meant to temper the swirling
and shifting within, that no one was ever born to love


3 Things I Wish I’d Always Known About Beauty

by marla
Wednesday, March 18th, 2015
Posted in Candy, Pretty Girl |

One of the perks of being in your late twenties (I know that’s, like, ANCIENT to you but this is my life now, you guys) is that you finally, finally figure out what works for you and what doesn’t in terms of fashion and beauty. As my 30s draw nearer, I also come closer to finding my personal style, accepting that there are some things I just can’t and shouldn’t wear (or some things I can wear but I kinda hate, so I shouldn’t), and crafting a reliable beauty routine.

Of course, there some things I’m still learning about makeup, hair, and skincare to this day, and just this month I made three discoveries that made my life so much easier, making me wish I’d stumbled upon them years ago. But that’s okay—as with anything worth mastering, the process of learning is half the fun.


1. That the right kind of primer does wonders for a greasy face. My face has always been on the oily side, and I was never a big believer in primers because they just didn’t seem to do the trick. But recently I tried Benefit’s Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer and it totally changed the game. Now I don’t have to blot until late afternoon, and I barely need to retouch. I even use it on its own, sans foundation, on lazy days.
2. That brownish-pink is the closest morena girls can come to nude lips, without looking sick or pale or like you’re auditioning for The Walking Dead. I’ve always been a fan of deeper shades because anything light just washes me out, but the MLBB look, when tailored to my skin tone, is a refreshing, easy change. If you’re sunkissed like me, Wet n Wild’s Megalast Lipstick in Spiked with Rum is your new best friend.
3. That shampoo bars are the bomb dot com! They’re really really really fun to use (imagine rubbing a bar of soap all over your head until you form a suds party!), last longer than liquid shampoos, and cleanse your hair more thoroughly, leaving it lighter, bouncier, and healthier. This one from LUSH cheekily called Honey, I Washed My Hair has a rich toffee scent that will have you sniffing your own locks all day.

What beauty discoveries have you made recently? Let’s swap notes! ;-)


One of my favorite writers, Ramna Safeer, posted about The Nice Thoughts Challenge on her blog recently. It seems like a piece of cake at first—say 5 nice things about yourself in public—but coming up with this list was actually so much harder than I thought. I guess we tend to focus on being kind to other people and affirming their worth and value that sometimes we forget to do the same for ourselves. If you agree that this should change, then this challenge is a great start.


Here’s my list:
1. I’m a great travel buddy. I like all the researching and planning and will gladly do it for the group, but I’m also pretty spontaneous and low-maintenance. I’m a neat roommate, and I bring extra sunblock, and I won’t hog the shower.
2. I’ve been living alone for almost a decade, and I’m really proud of this fact because it means I’m independent and disciplined and in control… most of the time, at least.
3. On a good day, if you leave me alone with a cup of coffee and a cookie, I can write you a good poem in less than an hour.
4. I don’t fight dirty, and I rarely give up on people.
5. I’m becoming better at saying no when I need to, and saying yes when it counts.

I’d love to see your own list, so please please please take a few minutes to do this challenge—it’s pretty enlightening stuff. Have a good week ahead, Candy Girls!


Is It Summer Yet?

by marla
Wednesday, February 11th, 2015
Posted in Beauty & Trends, Candy, Pretty Girl, Travel |

I’ve never been a summer kind of girl. For so long, I disliked the beach, hated the hot weather, dreaded the months of April and May the most, and would choose sweaters over sundresses any time. But in the last few years, I met a bunch of people who are huge beach lovers, became really really good friends with them, and eventually realized that summer and I are actually pretty okay. Things are different now: it’s only the middle of February and I’ve already been to the beach three times this year, booked a huge out-of-the-country trip to the ocean, purchased two adorable pairs of bikinis I can’t wait to wear, and sifted through my closet and makeup kit for stuff I would definitely be able to use when the warmer days roll in. I’m actually excited, and the feeling, though unfamiliar, is definitely welcome.

928921_395504627284479_123543149_n 10948658_401154310043757_823438684_n

This longing for summer was only exacerbated by a trip to Balesin two weeks ago, when Nivea invited Erin and me to the island paradise for their #NiveaComeCloser getaway. We only stayed for three days but managed to make years’ worth of memories—it was an amazing mini-holiday filled to the brim with new friends, delicious food, clear blue waters, pristine sand, gorgeous villages, and great beauty loot. Here are my favorites among the products we got to try on the island, along with some of my classics and stand-bys for this coming summer:

blog beauty

Clockwise: (1) Nivea In-Shower Skin Conditioner, which conveniently moisturizes while you bathe; (2) Nivea Fruity Shine in watermelon, a soft-sheen lip balm that smells and tastes amazing; (3) MAC Toledo in Sin, which is admittedly not a very summery shade but is the perfect goth girl plum I’ve been looking for my whole life and never ever ever want to part from #together4ever; (4) L’Occitane Fleurs de Cerisier, a light cherry blossom scent I can’t wait to wear on a weekend lunch date; (5) NARS Porto Venere eye cream, a super flattering beige that instantly brightens my lids and even works as an undereye concealer; (6) Nivea Sun Whitening Immediate Protection Face Cream, which is neither sticky nor greasy and packed with all that SPF goodness we need; and (7) Happy Skin Eye Love View, which is the only eyebrow pencil I can deal with on days when I just can’t be bothered with #kilayproblems.

What’s going into your summer beauty kit? I’d love to know!


Get your weekly dose of Candy straight to your inbox!
Subscribe to Candy and get 15% off on your subscription!
Get Candy on your mobile devices by subscribing to the digital version monthly!
digital version

Candy Blog

Meet Your New Favorite Phone

by angel, 2015-11-17

If you're looking for a phone that has all the functions you need, looks sleek and stylish, and won't burn a hole in your wallet, check out Starmobile's latest release: the KNIGHT...



Which Scary Movie Should You Watch This Month? Goosebumps, Crimson Peak, or Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension?
About | Sitemap | Advertise | Register | Contact | Subscribe
Our Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© 2015 Summit Digital. All Rights Reserved. is property of Summit Media.