Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 Introspection

It's past midnight where I am (happy new year!) but not where most of you are, so I wipe a metaphorical bead of sweat off my forehead for a post written still in time. I don't have a well-edited list of favorites and hesitate to make resolutions, so some candid reflections about the past year shall do.

The best thing to happen to me in 2011 was stumbling upon direction. I've been told once: dreams are not thought out, they are found, which I never understood when I was younger. After all, at seventeen when I was told I had the world in my fingertips, the endless choice felt like I could do everything and nothing at all. What if what I studied in college had nothing to do with what I wanted to do later? I used to be afraid of going into the workforce because I saw a bleak future out of school, thinking of work as the dreary everyday slaving to pay bills. My boyfriend knew what he wanted to pursue since he was five, and while every step of the way for him was one step closer to his dream, I was the blindfolded other half groping for nothing.

If you've been with me from the start, you'll know that I interned at in summer, an experience invaluable in so many ways I can never repay my debt to the lovely team for giving me a chance when no one else did. It was because of those three months that I could conceive of beauty writing as a "real job," and found out just how much I loved doing it. It is also because of Beauty Blitz that I have the internship beyond my wildest dreams lined up for Spring 2012.

During that summer I also shed my hesitant self and started tweeting the beauty gurus I admire (and received replies!), which led me to creating Messy Wands. In September, Messy Wands was nominated for "Best Beauty Voice" at Lucky Magazine's Fashion And Beauty Bloggers (FABB) Conference Awards. A month later, I was offered the opportunity to meet Essie Weingarten. But the best thing about starting Messy Wands is getting to befriend other beauty bloggers, the high point of which was being invited to be a part of a band of bandits.

And then, there's all you lovely readers. Many a comment has made my day, and there have been a lot of days made. For all your comments and support and emails and just being so incredibly nice to me, thank you thank you thank you. I can only hope you've found Messy Wands helpful enough to repay the kindness you've shown to me.

2011 has been a fantastic year. I think it is one I'll look back upon later in life and say, "that's when I got it." For 2012 I'm going to work smarter, laugh harder, and love better.

Happy New Year to all you lovelies! May you find your dream and/or have a dream come true.


  1. Happy New Year!!! <3 <3 You're a phenomenal person and blogger and I can't wait to see what you have in store for 2012!

  2. Happy New Year! You are such an inspiration, Xiao. What a great year for you and Messy Wands. :)

    All the best for 2012!

  3. Such a nice message. So fantastic for you to come so far in your career. Much luck to you in 2012!

  4. Happy New Tear Xiao! I'm so glad I got to "meet" you through the Bandits! I love your sense of humour and your taste is impeccable. Plus I love staring at you gorgeousness! You are such an inspiration and I wish you more good fortune in 2012!

  5. BlushingNoir- Happy New Year to you too!! <3

    Arianne- My greatest wish is to have your lips :P Thank you! May you have an amazing year ahead!

    Girlie Blogger- Thank you. Best wishes to you too!

    Tracy- Happy New Year to you, Tracy! I'm super glad to have met you and the rest of the bandits too. Thank you for the kind words and I wish you the very best for 2012 :)

  6. Happy 2012 and I am so happy to have met you in the blogosphere!

  7. HAPPY NEW YEAR! I'm so glad I discovered your beautiful blog via Karla Sugar. I've enjoyed your photos/tutorials and reviews this year and hope we will be reading Messy Wands for many more years to come :) Your nomination for "Best Beauty Voice" is well deserved - you have a very unique writing style and I love reading every post. Best to you!!!

  8. Such cute cards! Any success that comes your way is well earned, Xiao, because you "pay it forward." You are professional and approachable. May 2012 be a great year for you and Messy Wands.

  9. Happy new year. Thank you for your efforts and I look forward to reading your future posts.

  10. HAPPY NEW YEAR, lovely lady!

    Here's to many more amazing opportunities in 2012! :)

  11. happy new year! i have to say that your blog has been a refreshing addition to my daily blog reads. you and charlestongirl (best things in beauty) have really been pivotal in my introduction to the world of le metier and i look forward to continuing to follow messy wands in 2012!

  12. Happy New Year my dear! I'm so happy to have met you through the bandits, and I always go to your blog when I want to ogle beautiful makeup (and your beautiful face. Not to be creepy!) This was such an inspirational post, and I can't wait to see more from you in 2012 :)

  13. Happy New Year hun! I loved reading this post and seeing how much you've achieved this year! Hope 2012 brings you more and more great things :)

  14. Jamilla- Happy 2012! Glad to have met you too :)

    Sabrina- I replied on your latest blog post. Love you!

    Leigh- Thank you, Leigh. That means a lot! It was great to have "met" you too :) Best wishes to you for 2012!

    socialitedreams- thanks!

    Cecilia- Happy New Year to you too :)

    dani- Happy New Year, beautiful! Same to you <3

    tovy- Hahaha my Le Metier is so bad but so good at the same time. If anything I should try to cover more brands in 2012. Thank you for following and I wish you all the best for 2012!

    Makeup Morsels- <3 <3! You're one of my precious "meets" too :) Happy New Year and the may you have the best year ahead

  15. Happy New Year to you! <3 I'm so happy to have found your blog & look forward to reading your future post! You are a lovely inspiration, xx

  16. Happy New Year! I only discovered your blog a few months ago, but now I read it regularly. I love your posts; you always look so editorial in all your photos.

    I'm glad that 2011 has treated you well, I hope 2012 is even better for you!

  17. Your blog has become a must read for me. I always trust your reviews! I can't wait to read your future posts and I hope you have an excellent 2012!

  18. You have such a great blog and an inspiration to everyone and other beauty bloggers like me :) Please check out my blog if you get the chance


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