Media, Darling: Wing Sze Tang

Wing
Sze Tang is the beauty and health editor at FLARE,
and has been working in magazines for more than nine years. She started out as
a grammar cop (a.k.a. copy editor) and still cares about the smallest
details. Back in her freelance writing days, she contributed to Fashion, Elle Canada, Best Health,
Travel + Leisure and Marketing Magazine. She appreciates when
people pronounce her first name correctly (hint: the Sze sounds like
See, but calling her just Wing is
perfectly cool, too).


Photo credit: Adam Moco


Did you always want to be in the media? If
not, what other careers were on the horizon?

Looking back, I can see I was always
heading in this direction. Words make sense to me (numbers do not!). I studied
English at the University of Toronto, and all my “grown-up” jobs have been in
publishing.



Where would you like to be five years from
now?
My heart is in journalism. But I have a lot
of disparate interests and ideas, so who knows what the future will bring.
Any advice for people getting started in
your industry?
Don’t assume that being passionate is
enough to set you apart. While it’s essential, know that everyone else
clamouring to work in this business feels the same way. Work harder than them.
If you feel insecure about your experience or skills (we all do sometimes), don’t
let that hold you back; use it to drive your ambition to get better. If you
want to write, read 
 everything. Figure out what makes great writing great. And
then write. Learn from your editor.
What are your favourite media outlets, not
including your own? (i.e.: what do you read/listen/watch?)
I look at the usual suspects in the
fashion/beauty and health beats, since of course I keep tabs on my competitors.
Beyond that, my reading list is eclectic – everything from Toronto Life, Wired
and Gawker to The New York Times, Outside and The Atlantic. I also love the
serendipity of finding a great story via the smart people I follow on Twitter.
I have terrible taste in TV.
Best interview you’ve ever had?
Hard to choose. Since I cover beauty and
health, I get to talk to lots of different people  movie stars and scientists,
makeup artists and MDs, athletes and business execs. The variety keeps my job
interesting. I love interviews that feel like natural conversations, not
interrogations. And I love getting answers I didn’t expect and learning things
I didn’t know.
Worst?
Any interview where I’m allotted a few
minutes. Or where the interviewee delivers coached or rehearsed lines.
Best advice you’ve ever been given?
If you want something, ask for it.
What rule(s) do you live your life by?
Don’t let fear rule your life.
Try, try again.
Be curious. Be skeptical.
What’s the most important tip you can give
PR pros?
1. Know who covers what. It’s not a secret
(see: the masthead). If you email your pitch to everyone on staff when I’m the
one who handles the section, I’ll assume you don’t read the magazine. Sometimes
we get packages addressed to people who haven’t worked here in YEARS.

2. Save trees. Keep press releases short
and sweet. Some of the ones I get rival book manuscripts. But deliver the
relevant details (e.g. specifically what’s innovative/new), not fluff or
over-the-top claims. If your pitch has a whiff of B.S., I’ll doubt if I can
trust any of it (or you).

3. Be honest and transparent. If you can’t
reveal the information because you don’t know it, or you’ve given another
publication the exclusive, I’ll understand. But I’d rather hear no than wonder
why I’m getting the silent treatment as my deadline looms.
Best experience you’ve had with a PR pro?
We love to hear about #wins.
Once, an expert source flaked out right
before my deadline and decided he was too swamped to do an interview. Without
missing a beat—in fact, within half an hour—the PR reached out to two different
sources to see if she could secure an equally appropriate alternative for me. I
interviewed one of them later that afternoon. The PR deftly turned a
near-disaster into a win, and I couldn’t have solved the problem faster myself.
I hate? 
Going to sleep. Writing the first
paragraph. Dealing with people who are bitchy for no reason.
I love? 
Sleeping. Traveling. Eating.
Reaching the finish line. Collecting lipsticks and skin-care potions. Escaping
to the movies. Hanging out with my dude and my dog.
Reading? 
I’m slowly making my way through
my Instapaper archive of long-form nonfiction articles. I wish I had time to
read more books for fun.
Best place on earth? 
Depending on my mood:
home, or far away.
Dinner guest? 
Happiness is good food with a
great friend.
Hero? 
My mom, who raised my sister and me
almost single-handedly. We’re very different people, but she taught me that it’s
possible to defy the odds through hard work and sheer will.
Favourite app (or whatever you are
downloading these days)? 
I’m a news junkie, so Twitter is the most addictive. I
tweet sparingly but listen all the time. (Say hi: @wingszetang.)
Pool or ocean?
I can’t swim, though it’s a
life goal to learn. Till then, you’ll find me on the beach under an umbrella, dodging
the sun.
Voicemail or email? 
Email! Fastest for
everyone. I do answer my phone, but don’t call to read me the press release.

Fashion-able: Everyday Red Lips

Sexy red lips are essential to a glam evening look, but they can also be fresh and wearable for everyday. It’s all in the application and the attitude. Today we’re sharing our secrets for a casual red lip.
When you’re wearing red lips during the day, you need to get the application right. There’s nothing worse than an impromptu meeting when you’re wearing a bold lipstick and haven’t done a post-latte mirror check. Follow these steps and you’ll know your lipstick looks fabulous.
Tools Needed:
Lip scrub or exfoliator
Red lip liner
Red lipstick
Lip brush
Tissue
Step 1: Prep Your Lips
Red lipstick can highlight dry or flaky patches on lips, so start with a smooth canvas. Prep your lips by applying a lip scrub or exfoliator. If you’re in a pinch, wet a clean toothbrush and gently scrub.
Step 2: Line Your Lips
The key to preventing a bold lip from bleeding is a good lip liner. Take your time with this step, carefully tracing the cupid’s bow and the rest of the lips. Next, fill in the rest of your lips to prevent the dreaded “ring around the mouth.”

Step 3: Apply Lipstick with a Lip Brush
Using a lip brush, paint your lips with your favourite shade of red. Rub the lipstick into your lips, really working it in. This is key to long-lasting colour.
Step 4: Blot
Fold a tissue in half and blot your lips.
Step 5: Reapply
It seems wasteful since you just removed some lipstick, but trust us. Using the brush or freehand from the tube, apply a second coat.
Step 6: Teeth Check
Have you read the ‘90s beauty tome, Cindy Crawford’s Basic Face? Cindy says it best: “To avoid getting lipstick on teeth, stick forefinger in mouth. Close lips around it and pull finger out. Any excess lipstick will be instantly removed.” It’s not pretty, but if it works for a supermodel it works for us.

Step 7: Smile, gorgeous!
Smile, knowing that your lips look great. Red lips exude confidence.
Emma Watson’s fresh and informal red lip. Image source.
For daytime, it’s important to keep these tips in mind:
Keep the rest of your makeup simple. You’re already rocking a bold lip, so stay away from smoky eyes, false lashes, or anything that will over-sex this look. Stick with natural foundation and a few coats of mascara for a polished face.
Have a compact mirror at hand. If you’ve followed our tips, your lip should require minimal maintenance but it doesn’t hurt to do a quick lip check throughout the day.
Be courteous. Just because you’re wearing red lipstick doesn’t mean your colleagues or friends want to. Cheek kisses are a definite no-no. Be extra careful washing your coffee mugs or water glasses. 

Above all, enjoy it. A red lip brightens your face, whitens your teeth and is a classic look that is always in style.

Do you wear red lips at the office or to the grocery store? Tweet us your signature shade or a pic of your red lips @rockitpromo.

Fashion-able: Blast from the past: the ’90’s just exploded in our blog.

Everyone can think of a beauty trend that you ABSOLUTELY used to love, and cannot imagine wearing now. 

Here are a few that we busted a gut over the other day, on the fourth floor (hey, it was Friday before the long weekend!).
Brown lipstick. Remember the shade of lipstick that was somewhere in between a brown and a terracotta? We do – we used to LOVE Cover Girl’s French Toast lipstick. Michelle was inspired day-in and out by Clueless, and got the idea to wear brown lipstick from Cher.
“I don’t know why I thought brown lipstick looked good on me, with fair skin and blonde hair. I can still tell when I see people wearing it now. Ew.”

White eyeliner
. Why did people wear white eyeliner?! If you have dark eyes and hair, it looks like Halloween. It’s one thing to dot it on the inside corners of your eyes to brighten them up, but quite another to thickly line your entire eye with it.
Christina used to love to wear white eyeliner and she says “I thought I was so stylin’ in grade eight with my oversized plaid shirts, Doc Martens and acid-washed jeans.”
Dark lipliner. Again, why? Not even Sandy can pull it off. 
Lisa used to rock dark lip liner. She refuses to talk about why she did that. 
Hair mascara. Abby: “I used to LOVE glittery blue and green hair mascara. I worked at a drug store in high school, so was always layering the testers on my pixie cut. With blonde hair, a little hair mascara goes a long way… wish I’d realized that at the time.”
Coloured mascara. Several of us admit to having worn multiple colours of mascara, at the same time. Most popular colours? Blue, green and purple. Alana used to love purple Kaboodles mascara. “My friend, no joke, just bought purple mascara. I was like, ‘Why…do you think you need to buy that now?'”
 Blue mascara – yikes!
Glitter. We all used to layer masses of glitter on our eyelids, cheekbones, use glittery body lotion… it’s like we thought we were Tinkerbell. 
What “pretty” make-up did you wear that you shudder to think about now? Tweet it at us: @rockitpromo. Better yet, share a photo!