Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Drumroll please...

I promised that I would update with a fashion icon, and I am here to do so! I was in a little bit of a rut, as I tried to think of some of the current-day Polynesians who have put a serious name to fashion, and although there are so many up-and-coming (not to mention, some that have already made their mark!) brands coming out of the Pacific, I knew that there must have been a woman who has marked the ages. So of course, I called mom. I sort of already knew who she would say before she opened her mouth...and yes, I am my mothers child, because I was so right.

Mom: "Our late Queen. Why?", she said.

Me: "Well, why did you pick her so quickly?"

Mom: "Because, she was always so elegant. So put together. With her long skirts and pretty hats...she knew how to dress well."

Me: "Okay. I knew you'd say that."

Mom: "Well then why'd you ask?"

Me: "I'm just writing something...umm...not for the newspaper or anything..just something. Wanted to know what you thought. Oh, well do you remember any famous Polynesians during your day? You know, like movie stars?"

Mom: "Hahahaha!!! No."

Me: "Okay. Something else I shouldn't have asked..thanks, love you, bye."

So there it is. The verdict is in, and with the help of my mother I will have to agree that a great icon has been our late Queen Salote Mafile'o Pilolevu Tupou III. Her sense of blending modesty with culture and trend, was something to be seen in her time. But I do have to admit, that as put-together as she was, she had a spirit about her that I understand was more calm and understanding than that of anyone of her time. As many know, the story goes, that when she was in England for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth, she refused to have the top of her carriage closed, as a way of showing the utmost respect to a person of her ranking, despite the fact that it must have wreaked havoc on her hair. That is the kind of attitude we should emulate, and they are the very values that we are lacking in our world today.

note: The picture of our late Queen above, is a most beautiful one, but is also the cover of the book "Queen Salote of Tonga" by Elizabeth Wood-Ellem. If you have not read it already, I highly suggest it.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Fashion Icons

I was checking out a poll on FabSugar about fashion icons, and the people that we look up to (I guess this mostly applied to those in America) in terms of those who have made a name or statement for themselves. People like Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, etc are often popular. This led me to wonder...who are OUR fashion icons in the world of Polynesia? Even for those who are not Polynesian, I want your feedback! Tell me the names that strike a chord with you in your own communities and cultures. I will update shortly with a couple of names that I have narrowed down.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Weekend Inspiration

"Beauty is one of the rare things that do not lead to doubt of God" -Jean Annouilh

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Sweat Appeal...

Tonight, as I sat watching a movie on my computer, I realized as I played with my semi-bangs (yes, they're pretty much over and done with, but a quick trim yesterday brought them "semi-back" to life, to help with the grow-out phase), that I had never brought to light one of my favorite products that I use just about every other day. If you're like me (well for one thing, I know all you island mamas have to reckon with this one), you sweat. Sometimes a lot. But if you're REALLY like me (we're talkin bangs and ALL), you know just how oily your forehead area can get, if not given the proper attention. Anytime you let your hair hang in your face, you're just askin' for trouble. Sure it's cute, and can cover a multitude of sins, but the oil from your hair can really do a number on your forehead by creating a nice slick of grease. In turn, that reciprocates the deal right back to your hair which starts getting piece-y and looking unwashed. And that's not even to mention the atrocities that can occur when using using product! Think about it--have you noticed that friends and not-so-great friends have been smiling at you abnormally often and for longer periods of time lately? It's not because they're thrilled by your presence. It's because your face is acting as a superb reflector, much like a mirror.

Now, what can you do about all of this? You can reach for some kleenex, and do a quick swipe every few minutes. Or even tissue paper can get the job done when you're really in a pinch. But I've found something better. Sephora's Roll-Up Blotting Papers ($6) are the answer to your every oily need. You don't want those little papers that come in the matchbook looking packages, because they're often coated in powder (which *ahem* is not your color. Don't even question me on this one. Since when was your skin tone pink? Or orange? No, not you, not you.) What you want, is something that is so simple to unroll, but has the most efficient case you've ever imagined. We're talkin, Seran Wrap type-packing for your face. Just pull out, rip off (yes, you know the motion from covering your leftovers), snap the holder shut, and blot your face dry. Mine has lasted for over a year, and quite frankly I'm exhausted of giving you reasons to get to Sephora.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Men Minding Their Mane...

As of late, I've been doing a little people-watching research on the ins and outs of men's facial hair/hairstyling. I know ladies, this doesn't directly apply to all of you (or at least I would hope not--if so, get to your threader/waxer. Immediately.), but of course if you have a lucky man by your side (or at least a brother, friend or cousin that lets you use him as your guinea pig), then it's always benefitting you in some roundabout way.

As I made my rounds around town last night, I noticed that there were an increasing number of men who had apparently been putting a lot of time and effort into their hair. While not all will agree with me on these points, I came up with a short list of pointers to touch on, when it comes to the boys coiffing their 'do.

1. Forego the below-the-lip goatee (this doesn't apply to the partial style). Unless you've been told numerous times by credible sources that this is an attractive look on you, you probably look like a Chinese goat herder.

2. Sideburns are excellent. I once had an uncle who's sideburns were the only hairs on his head which had turned white. Mixed with his greying hair, it was so distinguished looking. But don't get out of hand. You're not Elvis, and this is no place to explore the costume effect. Keep them trimmed, and remember that sometimes less is more. Oftentimes, the thinner the better. (And on that note...ladies, let's keep them under control as well, yes? I see you with your island sideburns...I'm guilty as charged, but curling them, accentuating them...not sexy.)

3. The shaggy, model-esque, emo, extra-long cut is soooo overdone. I am sick and tired of seeing my cohorts with this sort of thing..to me it screams underweight male who has spent far too much time in front of the mirror, with the intention of pretending that he did not.

4. Always make time for a trim. It's sort of funny how that works, but you leave your barber/stylist feeling as though you look like a million bucks; but then before you know it--and you just can't seem to mark the day that it happened--your hair is overgrown and unkept. Schedule regular appointments. If you have to cancel them, then you can do so. But at least you'll be on top of your game.

5. Slightly unshaven/stubble has an easy laid-back appeal. Just don't let it go overboard. An eighth of an inch is one thing--one inch is lazy.

6. Forget about dying, coloring or bleaching your hair. Especially you island brothers. Remember how that turns out? The word we're looking for here is: orange.

7. Last but not least, we shall never forget the impact of a fresh and smooth face. This is always best for a business meeting, meeting the in-laws, and anytime you want to surprise that special someone with the fact that you took a little extra time on yourself.
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