Author Archive

An Open Letter to My Hair

by marla
Tuesday, March 25th, 2014
Posted in Beauty & Trends, Pretty Girl |

Dear Hair,

I know our relationship hasn’t been perfect. Most days we’re pretty okay friends, but NGL, sometimes I hate you so much I’m just tempted to get rid of you altogether. Not entirely your fault though—I’ve inflicted so much damage on you and made so many bad decisions at your expense over the years, and I’d like to apologize. I’m sorry about that time I cut most of you off for a stiff chin-length bob that made me look like Dora the Explorer, except not as cute. I’m sorry about that time I dyed you the wrong shade of red, which turned orange after a couple of weeks. I’m sorry about all the times I’ve subjected you to the harsh sun, or soaked you in chlorine or saltwater for hours. I’m getting better at taking care of you: I’ve learned to condition every day, do a once-a-week at-home treatment, get a trim regularly, and only go to colorists I trust.

Last week you and I went on a date to Color My Hair Technical Salon. I showed them a peg of Lily Aldridge’s lovely ombre (my dream for you since foreverrr), and they went to work right away. I loved how they knew who Lily Aldridge (and even Gemma Styles!) was—no blank looks that made me feel embarrassed. They promised they’d treat you right—and they did.

photo from

At the end of the session, you were the perfect ombre with subtle highlights, blended carefully and seamlessly. You didn’t feel dry or damaged, and it didn’t look like I’d be crying over your state in a few days. They even blow-dried you into soft waves and gave me instructions on how to make sure your new color stays put. Since then we’ve been so happy together; except for the occasional maintenance trim, I can’t imagine anything I’d like to change about you at the moment.


You and I are definitely more than “pretty okay” now. :-)


Color My Hair Technical Salon is located at the 5th floor of The Atrium, SM Megamall. For inquiries, please call them at 637-0717 or 0916-6099587. You may also email them at, like their Facebook page Color My Hair, or follow them on Twitter and Instagram @cmhmanila. Bonus: Owner Ari Hortaleza is super fun to talk to about hair trends, makeup, and One Direction!


by marla
Friday, March 14th, 2014
Posted in Candy, Get Inspired, Spotlight |

Candy turns 15 this month, and every time March rolls around I often reminisce back to 1999, when I picked up that first issue with Amanda Griffin on the cover and fell totally in love with the magazine. (I’m still smitten now—obviously!)

1999 was also the year I fell in love with Popular, a TV series that ran for a mere two seasons and ended up going off the air in 2001. But even in that short span of time, this show made such a huge impact on my young self. Popular tells the story of Sam McPherson and Brooke McQueen, two girls on opposite ends of the popularity spectrum who are forced to enter each other’s worlds when their parents get married. I loved it for its snappy dialogue, cute boys (one blonde, one brunette, of course!), and fascinating plotline, but more than anything, I loved it because its characters were complex and layered enough to help me see that there are so many dimensions and aspects to popularity. The popular girl isn’t always cruel and doesn’t always wear head-to-toe pink, and the unpopular girl doesn’t always wear glasses and braces, stuttering at her shoes every time someone talks to her. At 13—the perfect age to be introduced to high school power struggles—I began to understand how people aren’t usually what they seem, and that it pays to look beyond the surface. I saw how blurring the lines between friendship and romance can either be disastrous or spectacular, how you should always choose to be kind, and how even the ones who supposedly have it all together can crumble at the slightest touch.

Even the show’s theme song, “High School Highway” by Sydney Forest, is a commentary on turbulent teen existence: To bend and not to break/ chin up, try not to quake/ I’m grinning on the outside/ but I’m a wreck internally. At some point it describes Sam as the girl “with freckles on her nose and a longing in her heart; pretending not to care is her science—no, it’s her art” and Brooke as both “the perfect size two cheerleader” and “a ravenous starving artist painting her own doubt.”

Most of the show is available for streaming online—a delightful fact I recently discovered—and I highly recommend you watch it. Don’t forget to let me know what you think!


Beauty Peg: Vanessa Hudgens

by marla
Thursday, February 13th, 2014
Posted in Pretty Girl |

A not-so-secret secret: I never really got over Vanessa Hudgens. As I reached my mid- and late- twenties, I eventually outgrew the celebrities I spent so much time and effort (and emotions. and blood and tears) fangirling over in my late teens and early twenties (not naming names but *cough*PENN BADGLEY*cough*). Vanessa, though, has always fascinated me, and continues to do so; there’s something about her flirty, California-cool, flower-crown-wearing, music-festival-hopping, high-street-shopping, hot-boyfriend-snagging vibe that I find so appealing. She’s come a long way from Gabriella Montez (hello, Spring Breakers!) but through the years her offscreen look has been consistently A+, and I have a strong feeling she’ll always be on top of her style/ hair/ face game. So in the spirit of Valentine’s Day and shameless girl crushing, this beauty collage and inspiration board is dedicated to her. My heart belongs to you, Baby V, forever and ever. <3

From top to bottom: L’Oreal Superliner Blackbuster, Benefit Gimme Brow Volumizing Micro Fiber Gel, The Body Shop Honeymania EDT, Benefit Rockateur Powder Blush, Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm

Who are YOU girl crushing on? Let us know in the comments section! :-)

[Photos from Vanessa's Instagram account and courtesy of featured brands]

Warts and All

by marla
Monday, February 3rd, 2014
Posted in Candy, Spotlight |

I woke up today to the sad, sad news of Philip Seymour Hoffman passing away. Three of my absolute favorite movies in the world (the ones I can watch over and over again, no matter how old I get) feature him in all his glorious vulnerability, and this week I want to rewatch all of them so I will always remember how my heart went out, without fail, to those lost, lonely men he portrayed so well.

Jack Goes Boating, Hoffman’s directorial debut, also features an amazing soundtrack by Grizzly Bear and Fleet Foxes. The ending—when everything comes together despite all odds pointing to everything falling apart—gets me every time. “White Winter Hymnal” sparkling throughout the trailer doesn’t hurt, either.

The Savages will break your heart, make you laugh, then break your heart all over again. Anyone who has a sibling, has struggled with having a sibling, or is currently struggling with having a sibling, needs to watch this.

Mary and Max is probably the most somber animated film I’ve ever seen—yet also the warmest, most honest, and most profound. I’m not a big movie crier, but this one had me shedding buckets. Max Horrowitz (voiced by Hoffman) basically condenses all my beliefs about friendship, acceptance, and self-love in a single paragraph:
“The reason I forgive you is because you are not perfect. You are imperfect. And so am I. All humans are imperfect. Even the man outside my apartment who litters. When I was young, I wanted to be anybody but myself. Dr. Bernard Hasselhoff said if I was on a desert island, then I would have to get used to my own company. Just me, and the coconuts. He said I would have to accept myself: my warts and all. And that we don’t get to choose our warts. They are a part of us and we have to live with them. We can, however, choose our friends. And I am glad I have chosen you.”

Rest in peace, Jack /Jon Savage/ Max. There are infinity pools and lots of great books and chocolate hotdogs waiting for you, wherever you may be.


Ringing in 2014

by marla
Tuesday, January 7th, 2014
Posted in Candy, Get Inspired |

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I know I just met you, 2014, but I love you already. Here are a few reasons I’m excited to face the next 12 months: beach trips with my best boy and our crazy bunch of friends, watching The Spectacular Now, which promises to be nothing but magical, relaxed weekends that will allow me to wear out my new studded cutoffs, meeting my baby niece this summer and eventually dressing her up like tiny trendsetter Alaia Rose, a year of yoga with Angel, finding time to sit down and read the latest book from one of my favorite authors, and fangirling at the Phoenix show (also: that shirt!).

After you’ve jotted down your resolutions, why don’t you make a list of all the things you’re looking forward to this year? And whether that list has two items or two hundred, I hope you always choose hope, happiness, and positivity. The world has so many good things in store for you this 2014—all you have to do is claim them.


photos from featured brands,,

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