ratatouille the musical

Surprise, TikTok Made A Ratatouille Musical And It’s Heading To Broadway—For One Night Only

The rat’s out of the bag.

What was a silly, snappy, specific expelling of pent up creative energy on TikTok, Ratatouille The Musical is now cooking up to be a delectable and dazzling show on the Great White Way.


Despite being preceded by a less than appealing reputation, we have long had a fascination for rodents in animation. The world’s most famous mouse aside (that’s Mickey to you), there’s Basil Rathbone and Mister Flanigan in The Great Mouse Detective, Bernard and Bianca in The Rescuers, Fivel in An American Tail, Master Splinter in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Jerry in well, Tom and Jerry that have all entertained and even educated us in our childhood. Here, the usual unsightly and unsanitary are dialed down, and for most, cleaned up and made cute and charming. (The villains remain reviled.) This curious captivation for our little furry friends continues to this generation with the enduring popularity of the award-winning 2007 Disney and Pixar animated film, Ratatouille.

Cutting down the chase that is almost always usual to stories involving rats, mice, and the like, Ratatouille has long captured the hearts of kids and adults alike with this equally thrilling and touching film that heroes the wisdom that your dreams are valid, no matter who or what you are. Smart, sophisticated, and soulful, Ratatouille is an adventure through the sticky sewers, winding streets and busy kitchens of Paris, France that will make you want to eat more, feel more, and yes, do more than what you have been otherwise led to believe.

Somewhere on TikTok, perhaps taken by the dynamic duo of Remy and Linguini, someone was inspired to do more with the mounting hopelessness amid the pandemic. With most of life as we knew it coming to a screeching halt, including that of high-risk non-essential industries such as Broadway, there was a lot of restless artistic energy that was cooped up. An insane case of creative cabin fever compelled many theater kids and generally an out-of-work Broadway to come up with ways to expel the brimming excess of their talent online. There were the usual virtual readings, Zoom benefit concerts, and social media outbursts, but nothing was a smashing hit than TikTok where little did we know, a phenomenon was about to be born in the form of an homage to Remy.

“Remy, the Ratatouillethe rat of all my dreams/ I praise you, oh Ratatouillemay the world remember your name,” sang TikTok user, @e_jaccs (Emily Jacobson) on August 10. What was supposed to be a one-off bit, just as she has been hilariously posting in isolation, took on a life of it’s own until #RatatouilleTheMusical slowly became a TikTok trend, one that has been viewed a whopping 31.88 million times as of this writing, Soon, her snippet of a song got the rousing Broadway reprise treatment from @danieljmertzlufft, which continued to practically score itself with a moving you-can-do-it ballad by @rjthecomposer, a snazzy number for Remy’s well-meaning but close-minded father by @fettuccinefettuqueen, a tantalizing tango duet by @aaaacaia and @blakeyrousey for the no-nonsense Colette and the earnest Linguini for that precisely-choreographed single spotlight moment. It wasn’t just a string songs that lend itself to the infamous big Broadway belts, because the riotous revolution on TikTok sprang forth a lot of ideas that included a detailed maquette of a set by @shoeboxmusicals, costume design by @brandon.hardy.art that plays on the element of puppetry that Linguini and Remy have taken to, pan-tastic choreography by @tristanmichaelmcintyre, and even a playbill and lead image created by @siswij, the self-assigned marketing department for what was then the fictional Ratatouille The Musical.


#Duet with @fettuccinefettuqueen Thank you for the amazing song! Here’s the scene to match! #ratatouillethemusical #stagemodel #theater #setdesign

♬ original sound – Chris Routh

While some trends just quietly exit to stage left in the virtual stage of social media, the bits and pieces that came together in Ratatouille The Musical caught the eye of the Broadway production company, Seaview Productions, which is responsible for Slave Play (the most Tony Award-nominated play in Broadway history) and the Jake Gyllenhaal-starrer, Sea Wall/A Life. “We’re kicking off 2021 with Ratatouille: The TikTok Musical!” it announced on Twitter. Details of the delectable dish once served only on social media are scant, but what we do know is that it will be set to the stage for a one night only concert, and then it will be available to stream for 72 hours after. Done in partnership with TikTok creators, as well as of beloved Broadway actors, this production will benefit The Actors Fund, a non-profit organization that supports creatives in the entertainment and performing industry.

A source of great relief for the artists and audience alike, Ratatouille The Musical is guaranteed to be fun and fantastic as its silly, snappy, and specific origins. This time, however, it is being charged with the big and bouncy high-octane energy that is so rightfully deserves. In the theater, as with any creative endeavor, it takes a village to make things happen, and TikTok did exactly that, cooking up a show that will make Chef Gusteau proud. “Anyone can cook,” he was known to say after all. And if Remy the rat can dish it out in the finer fare of France, and TikTok can create a show on social media, then anything is possible, really. All it takes is a dream, a sense of daring, and of course, a drive to get things going on, and eventually, save for a few detours, you’ll get to that moment of pure chef’s kiss.

Access to Ratatouille: The TikTok Musical will be available exclusively through TodayTix on January 1, 2021 at 7:00 PM ET. With tickets ranging from $5 to $50, depending on location, the show will be available for streaming 72 after. For more information and how you can help, visit their official website.

Where To Shop Locally For Tie-Dye Like Rue from Euphoria

Who else is having Euphoria withdrawals? ?

Since Euphoria’s debut in 2019, the impact of the show hasn’t stopped until this day. Just look at the countless beauty filters, bomb Euphoria-inspired ‘Grams, and Tiktok challenges that we’ve seen this year.

The Gen Z-centered show brought back a lot of trends and captured the youth not only because of the relatable portrayal of mental health and everyone’s unspoken daily struggles, but also because of its compelling cinematography and astounding story-telling. And of course, the clothes and makeup were cool, too. Rue Bennett, the lead character of the show, portrayed by Miss Zendaya, was known for her boyish style and no-fuss choices. She was often spotted in her maroon hoodie, button downs, Chuck Taylors and tie-dye—a trend most people are still surprisingly 50-50 about. Euphoria’s costume designer, Heidi Bivens, actually explained in an interview that the costume team made sure to “over-dye or customize them to better align them with the character’s style.” Perhaps that’s why we always see Rue in psychedelic prints.

Whether you love it or hate it, here are 5 of the best online stores where you can cop tie-dye pieces for you or your Euphoria-obsessed friend.

Related: Welcome to the Diamond District: Our Favorite Disco Diva Style Trends of 2020 That Served


Cebu-based brand Tie Diet is one of the first online shops that dyes reworked or thrifted pieces and they constantly collaborate with up and coming local designers and brands. They have denim jackets, cargo pants, bucket hats, and bags.


A cult-favorite, TOQA.Tv stands out not only because of their sport-resort pieces, but each of their lookbooks and campaigns all capture the envious island life that the Philippines is known for.


Plant-dyeing is a tradition most Filipinos have forgotten, but not Himaya PH. They also use local weaves, all handmade and upcycled. Himaya was also recently part of the Festival of Extraordinary Textiles Exhibition 2020 in France.


Dress 2 Kill’s tie-dye lava coords are pretty much head-turners, and they’re giving off island gal vibes. If Ariel was an edgy mermaid, she’d easily rock these everyday.


If you love their resort pieces, you’ll love the people who create these garments even more. Sigla is a sustainable and ethically-sourced brand that are mostly made by seamstresses from the community of Gawad Kalinga, Bulacan. All of their garments are traditionally hand-dyed and repurposed clothes, too!

How Is The Simbang Gabi Tradition Holding Up In The Pandemic?

The Simbang Gabi tradition is alive and well, at least virtually for now.

While protocols and distance have to be still observed and maintained, this writer introspects on the virtual aspect of the mass, especially during Simbang Gabi.


Parols, Jose Mari Chan memes, and Christmas songs blasting in the malls in September aside, Simbang Gabi may be the most evocative, lauded, and beloved element of the Filipino Christmas. We all know its beginnings as the special novena mass to prepare for Christmas, specially scheduled before dawn so that the farmers could attend before heading to the fields to work. But in the modern age, for Catholics, it’s practically a Christmas party, a way to celebrate and commemorate the season (and a nice talking point at the water cooler during holiday parties—“Nag-Simbang Gabi ka na ba?”). Despite busy holiday schedules, many strive to finish all nine masses as it’s folk (but still widely held) belief that one will be granted a wish for completing the novena. Mass goers rub the sleep out of their eyes as they walk into the Church, looking forward to basking in the grand décor, listening to choirs sing their best carols, and enjoying a piping hot serving of bibingka and puto bumbong after. It’s even become a not-so-secret tactic for young suitors to take their intended jowas to Simbang Gabi, often to subtly show off their faithful Catholicism and commitment, as well as to extend their sweet time together during the jam-packed season.

But, as with everything else, this changed because of COVID-19.

I’ve been celebrating Simbang Gabi for many years, and for the first time, gone are the décor, the guest choirs sneaking a caroling session before the Final Blessing to ask for donations, the Simbang Ga-Babes excitedly reaching for their date’s hand during Our Father, and the bibingka stands. All that remains is my Parish Priest on Facebook Live, just as he has been in all Sundays since March 2020. All that remains is the actual but virtual celebration of the Holy Eucharist.

As of the time of this writing, I’ve finished five masses. It’s become a bit easier to go to Simbang Gabi because it’s virtual. Pre-COVID-19, the holidays always meant endless parties, reunions, and last-minute shopping errands (remember the bygone days when malls would extend their hours to midnight in the weeks leading to Christmas?), so finishing the nine masses was always a bit of a challenge. One usually had to schedule a mixture of morning and anticipated masses in the evenings to ensure the completion of all masses; now, it’s a matter of opening a tab on Google Chrome exactly when the mass is schedule to begin. No rushing, driving through Christmas traffic, fighting over parking, or squeezing your way through a sea of mass goers to try and find a seat. The hassle and stress are gone.

At the same time, “going” to virtual Simbang Gabi has lost a bit of its luster and appeal because you’re seated in your own home. As all aspects of your life have bled into each other in this confined space during the world’s longest quarantine, no experience is left distinct or special. How can you cherish and relish this Christmas tradition when you’re in the same place where you eat, work, sleep, and pretty much do everything else? I haven’t mentioned how easy it is to get distracted by notifications on your computer, or your Dad popping in to ask how to log in to Zoom yet again. Some people may wonder if there’s any point to watching Simbang Gabi virtually.

But after finishing more than half of the novena, I’m still incredibly thankful for this local tradition, and even more thankful that the Parishes all over the country have found their ways to continue masses with a safe number of people socially distanced from each other inside (and outside) the Churches, while providing live streaming options for those who prefer to stay safe at home. I love the carbs, carols, and all the other Christmas details that make Simbang Gabi, but the Misa de Gallo is a nine-day spiritual preparation for the day Jesus Christ was born. In mass, we hear about the history that led to the birth of Christ, as well as reflect on its impact and significance to the people back then and to us now. While I’d still enjoy going to a mass physically, a virtual mass allows me to focus on the Gospel and my own reflection for Christmas. (Just need to make the effort to block out Viber notifications or my Mom crowing over her K-Dramas in the other room, but if we can do it for Zoom calls with clients, we can do it for the Holy Mass.)

Most of all, Simbang Gabi is a celebration of Filipino tradition and faith. It may be very different from the original dawn masses that farmers used to attend, but the fact that we continue to do something that started in the 1660s is absolutely mind-blowing. These days, we don’t blink when beauty companies delist a shade of eyeshadow or when Apple comes out with an iPhone every year, but we’ve been able to keep Simbang Gabi alive through centuries. During Martial Law, the dawn masses had to be canceled because of the curfew, so the Church rescheduled them to evenings, giving birth to the term “Simbang Gabi.” (Fun fact: traditionally, dawn masses are called Misa de Gallo, and you technically can’t call those masses Simbang Gabi. In the same way, evening masses can’t be called Misa de Gallo. Another name for them would be Misa de Aguinaldo.) Even Filipino communities who find themselves living in other countries have devised ways to celebrate Simbang Gabi, so COVID-19 shouldn’t stop us, either. When we go to Simbang Gabi, we keep the fire of our faith and history going.

The fact that, despite a global pandemic, we can still celebrate Simbang Gabi, is a privilege. It’s up to our generation to make the most out of this enduring Christmas gift and make sure we can also pass it on to future Filipinos. So this year, my presence may be virtual, but my faith and intentions are not. There may not be bibingka or caroling, but this Simbang Ga-babe is keeping Simbang Gabi alive this year.

The Chronic Last Minute Christmas Shopper’s Guide To Surviving The Holiday Rush

Rush, rush, I can feel it, I can feel you all through me.

Thrill and panic aside, there are tried-and-tested ways to get through the last minute shopping list without sacrificing holiday cheer.


For the record, one that is a solid first after so long, let it be known that by some odd stroke of efficiency, I have managed to already complete my Christmas shopping sometime last week. Now, it might not seem much, but if you know my perpetually procrastinating self, I enjoy beating the buzzer on the 23rd of December. Sometimes I like to push my known limits and do some last, last minute on the eve of Christmas, because you never what wrappings and trimmings you’ll need to spruce up the presents you specially picked out for friends and family, and well, to score more holiday deals. So, imagine my surprise upon realizing that all was well taken care of earlier than usual, and in record time, no less.

You see, I actually do prefer shopping later than most. It’s not ideal, what with the throng of people packed in the mall, the snaking lines at the counters, and the year-end exhaustion weighing down on you at every turn of the store, but just like any adrenaline junkie, there’s a thrill that comes with panic, which is all the more heightened by the surfacing holiday cheer. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 1996 Christmas adventure, Jingle All The Way, might have something to do with this fascination for the last minute, because while I don’t necessarily forget, I have to get the most perfect gift for people near and dear to me each and every time.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: With all the surplus of time and the abundance of online alternatives to shop in the middle of the pandemic, how come I am still pushing my last minute luck? Well, simply put, nothing quite beats the racing rush of the holidays in the commercial context. Besides, with windows of opportunity to shop in-store with utmost care, there’s just more assurance and certainty to picking things up in real life as compared to straining one’s eyes through pages and pages of options in e-commerce sites. The only surprise I like is giving it to people, and not necessarily on myself when things don’t exactly match up from the designated dot com.

So, as someone who claims honor and pride in last minute shopping, it felt fitting to share the years of knowledge and experience that have served me well over the years. I know I’m not alone when it comes up to taunting the frame of time. And if anyone finds themselves stumped, frustrated or overwhelmed, trust me, there are ways to get things done efficiently to the most optimal of results. Think of it as a method to the madness.

You don’t have to subscribe to it all the time, but it’s nice to have it as an added skill set, just in case:

Make A List, Check It Twice

Since you’re already pushing it in terms of the limits of time and the magnitude of people, write down a list of people who you want to give gifts to, as well as of a number of things you’d think they would potentially like after attacking the wrapping paper on Christmas day. It’s also helpful for a last minute shopper to follow a reverse order from important to very, very, very important.

Map Out Where You Want And Have To Go

This is more mental, but it’ll help you a great deal if basing off your prepared list, you know where to head to from store to store. At this point, we assume you fairly know you’re way around the mall so it wouldn’t be that much of a challenge. Oh, and make sure you enter necessary spots with focus and purpose.

Keep Everything In Close Proximity

A pro tip: If you can shop in one place, it would best for you. I personally enjoy shopping last minute in department stores because more often than not, they have it all for you. There will be a lot who have the same strategy, so be sure to clip those elbows and maneuver the multiple floors like a boss. If you can’t find everything you want, you can check out nearby stores that won’t see you running from one end to the other.

Set A Budget

It is self-explanatory, yes, but it needs reiterating, especially when shopping last minute. Again, it is easy to get caught up with warm fuzzies of Christmas, or that’s just your body overheating from all the walking, but setting a budget that’s just right per person will help you in the decision making process between this or that. This also means being on the lookout for discounts and deals scattered all over the stores. Remember, it doesn’t have to ring in a lot of cash; it just has to be essential or special.

Remember, Food Is Always A Good Idea

When fresh out of ideas and before it gets frustrating, your list of last minute gifting list will benefit from food. Who doesn’t like to eat, especially during the holidays? You can also even get a little creative and curate themed baskets, bundles, and bags of goodies that will surely be a hit during the exchange of gifts.

Think Small And Smart

Forget what they say that bigger is better, because that person has probably never heard of the wonders of a gift card. By picking up these smart presents at the last minute counter, you not only save time, effort, and wrapping paper, you also know that they will be able to get what they really with the amount you’ve given. Now, if you want to really get actual gifts, make a beeline for the accessories or jewelry section, because those are clustered in a quiet corner and are a guaranteed charmer on Christmas day. With less to carry, you can better navigate the crowded spaces better.

Save The Self Love For Later

Yes, you will get distracted by many, many, many things you will want for yourself, but a little exercise of patience will do you well. One, you never know what you’re going to get for Christmas, and two, prices post-holidays are guaranteed to get a significant shaving of price. It is infinitely more gratifying to get something after a considerable amount of tine, especially when it’s a gift from you to you. Besides, you will want to get the job done and go through everyone else on the list first before picking up some things for yourself.

If time isn’t quite on your side on the last minute adventure, you can always try Christmas Eve. Sure, operating hours are tighter, but there are less likely people out on this day, so gift shopping will be fairly easier. There’s less spending guilt and remorse on this day, too. It is the night before Christmas after all, and not a creature will be stirring. Well, except maybe you. You were good and played nice, right?

police violence

No, This Isn’t An Isolated Case Of Police Violence—It Just Happened To Be Filmed

Stop the killings now.

Ahead of the claim of strict discipline, an officer sparks outrage of police violence and brutality after gunning down an unarmed mother and son.


Murder, bloody murder.

For most of us wired on social media, the soul-stirring shock of what quickly became a sensitive and highly graphic viral video was an anger-consuming and blood-boiling start to the week of Christmas. But for the families involved, especially of the fallen victims of a clear display of trigger-happy power trip, the horror began in the afternoon of Sunday in Paniqui, Tarlac with a petty altercation about the use of a boga (improvised bamboo or PVC cannon). All caught on video, the timeline followed an emotional stand-off between an off-duty officer of the force, police corporal Jonel Nuezca, and Frank Gregorio, who was later joined by his mother, Sonya Gregorio, to intervene a threat of arrest, before it erupted into a heated altercation that revealed what seemed to be a deep-rooted dispute about a property right-of-way.

The tussle escalated into a verbal word war that eventually focused on Sonya Gregorio and the policeman’s daughter. “My father is a policeman,” she growled at the woman many years her senior. “I don’t care,” Gregorio snapped back in the same truncated trail as that of the 2NE1 hit song. “Putangina, gusto mo tapusin kita ngayon ah?” the gun-wielding cop barked, before acting on the ultimate act of police violence, shooting the Gregorios at close range, not once, but twice as their bodies hit the ground.

Burning through the timelines of social media, this blatant display of police brutality and clear disregard of the law naturally sparked a forest fire of disgust, disbelief,and distrust. Fueled by an outrage of anger, calls to #StopTheKillings quickly magnified, as well as of other similar dissident manifestations such as ACAB (All Cops Are Bastards), Defund The Police, and Pulis Ang Terorista (Police Are Terrorists). It also rightfully compelled Instagram watch accounts holding the government and all its agencies liable in the digital space. Appropriately denouncing the eventual statement of DILG Secretary Eduardo Ano that claimed, “This is an unfortunate but isolated incident. While there are unfortunate incidents like this, the vast majority of our PNP personnel perform their sworn duties everyday with honor and integrity to protect and serve the people. The sin of Nuezca is not the sin of the entire Philippine National Police.”

“It is unacceptable when they are the ones being at the forefront of perpetuating such human rights violations. This incident reechoes our call to the government urging for the conduct of widespread investigations on every allegation of arbitrary killing,” said Commission on Human Rights Spokesperson, Jacqueline Ann de Guia in a statement on the continued display of police violence. In fact, this year alone, we’ve seen police violence, abuse, and human rights violations in the cases such as, but not limited to that of Cpl. Winston Ragos being shot at checkpoint in broad daylight, the baseless arrests of Piston 6, Marikina 10, and Pride 20 among others, dispersal of San Roque residents, the harassing of Reina Nasino and the hijacking of her Baby River’s funeral, and the maltreatment and illegal arrests done by Kawit police chief and cohorts. Obviously and respectfully, this isn’t an isolated case, because the police force under this government has had a long and lingering history with a vengeful vendetta against anyone who would stand in their way, the most prominent being the 2017 case of 17-year old Kian Delos Santos who was mercilessly slain by the now convicted police officers. Compounded by an overarching impunity from the head of state and a license to kill, these weapon-toting, power-hungry, and blood-thirsty hounds have been playing god, lording over innocent lives as if they were arbiters of the law. Come to think of it, the gun they ore brazenly carry on and off duty doesn’t actually make them powerful. If anything, it illustrates what kind of cowardice they harbor behind their badge and beneath their uniform, truly indicative of the decay and degradation of humanity they reflect.

The Palace has since distanced themselves from Jonel Nuezca, who eventually surrendered to the authorities and was charged with double murder. It was also revealed that the police officer has had six cases over the last decade of service for grave misconduct, serious neglect of duty, refusal to undergo a drug test, an administrative case, and suspension, as well as of two homicide cases charged in 2019, which were dismissed due to an alleged lack of substantial evidence. “Iimbestigahan, kakasuhan at lilitisin po natin ang pulis na iyan. No ifs, no buts,” said Presidential Spokesperson, Harry Roque. “Magkakaroon po ng katarungan dahil kitang kita naman po natin ang ebidensya ng pangyayari. Hindi po iyan  po-protektahan ng Presidente. Kinokondena po natin iyan.

The strongman culture anchored on hate and fear has to stop. How many more lives have to be caught in the crossfire as collateral damage before this inhumanity is put to an end? All attention is zeroed in on seeking justice for Frank and Sonya Gregorio, as well as of amplifying calls to stop the killings, but what if it wasn’t caught on video? Will we be as consumed by rage and fury as we are now? Responding to the pervading issue of racism in 2016, Will Smith said that it isn’t getting worse, “It’s just being filmed.” True enough, years later, when the Black Lives Matter movement took on a life of its own following the senseless and brutal murder of George Floyd that was recorded, it lit a fire under the ass of America amid the pandemic and woke them to their senses. Now, will this be the same case here? Well, we are always hopeful.

Taking into account a riddle of fatigue on various fronts, understandable emotions and reactions to the murder of the Gregorios, and the slow and selective state of justice to the fortunate few, there have been no major motions to stand up beyond the confines of social media just yet. The police violence and brutality have been condemned, yes, but perhaps not enough to equal the force of power that the ruling segments of society hold as currency to their misgivings. So, the question here is, with a firm anger in place, will the rest of the country just continue to watch and let this be another forgotten statistic written in stone or is this the time accountability, safety, and justice is finally demanded from those sworn to serve and protect the constitution and the Filipino people?

You decide.

Guess What? You Get To Live Out Your Moonchild Fantasy With This Limited-Edition NIKI Collab

She's over the moon, and so will you be.

In a unique coming together, the Indonesian powerhouse strikes an out-of-this-world collaboration with the GUESS Originals x NIKI Moonchild limited-edition collection.


There is nothing quite like the ritual of listening in the wee hours of the morning. With your body sprawled like the Vitruvian Man on the crinkle of your bedsheets, your eyes wander the pitch of black, the steady rhythm of the heart rising at every blink as your ears search for even the faintest of sounds to offset the spell of anxiety, stress, and all sorts of emotions that are attempting to take over your entire being at an ideal state of rest. Finally, in a last-ditch attempt to rein this solitary situation in, you decide to give this internal struggle a fair fight by plugging in your trusty earphones and pressing play on whatever music fits your mood. Like some stroke of magic, the dread and distress starts to lift as the notes string together to form a melody and the lyrics begin to articulate what was inexplicable to begin with.

Here lies the magic of music, which digs deeper at every orchestration, ultimately striking a connection between artist and listener. A universal way to communicate personal feelings, music conveys emotions, thoughts, and feelings into a particular sound that just gets you. In this narrative of songs, you find a comforting and compelling kinship that somehow just makes everything at the very least okay. Leaning into this unique sense of lyricism, Indonesian singer and songwriter NIKI weaves her story and her journey to music, which charms and captivates, much like the figure of the moon that she is perpetually inspired by.

Whether you listen to her music at random or you really get into it through the singularly focused telling of her latest release, Moonchild, there is always a feeling of calm she emanates. Powered by some sort of lunar gravitational force, she has since charted a steady pace in the orbit of her career, which has seen her open for Taylor Swift in concert and be signed into the fold of 88rising, the creative incubator that stands as the revolutionary cultural link bridging the diverse and dynamic sound of the East to the bigger platform across the pond to the West. And now, as a testament to the impression of the album, which strings music, art, and culture, NIKI strikes another pinch-me-is-this-real milestone with an out-of-this-world partnership with the classic brand, GUESS.

The Moonchild Phase

In the 9-piece collaboration with GUESS Originals, NIKI is in disbelief that all this is happening. A full circle moment for the artist, one that has seen the singer playing dress-up in her mom’s GUESS shoes and handbags when she was a little girl. “To have my own GUESS Originals x NIKI ‘Moonchild’ collection is like a fever dream!” expresses NIKI.

Recently launched online and in-stores, the GUESS Originals x NIKI Moonchild collection traverses an otherworldly space with its decidedly easy and comfort-driven street-ready realization. A clear contrast, the wistful musicality that is definitive of her, the singer is offering a selection of oversized monochromatic streetwear paired with skin-hugging biker shorts that underscores a point of comfort, which makes you want to settle into it as Moonchild plays on a loop.

But more than the domination of street-ready imprints such as purple and black separates, hoodies and shirts with lunar-themed insignia, a top and biker shorts in a dazzling constellation print, and a must-have baseball cap, the collection is proof of the impact that Niki has, a female Asian artist taking command of the music scene with her multi-disciplinary approach and thought to the craft. The collection also exemplifies a meaningful coming together of aesthetics, aspiration, and artistry.

“NIKI is a young and energetic artist from the 88rising team that we have been excited to work with over the past three years,” details Director of Brand Partnerships, Nicolai Marciano. “Even before the album was complete, Sean of 88rising and everyone else was very confident in NIKI as an artist. The first time NIKI had an in-store appearance for us, her presence created pandemonium with fans. Once there was more music, I was able to check it out at the studio and she immediately impressed me with her sound and vision to market the album. To see it come full circle through our partnership is really meaningful for both brands.”

Guess What

Just like the wickedly delightful exposition of Moonchild, which is a story meant to be listened to from start to finish in its foretold phases, this coming together of NIKI and GUESS Originals seems to have been fated by the universe. “To see an album that I worked on for two years take on a new life in fashion is a dream come true,” she says, overcome with excitement. Having an artist-led merchandise is one thing, but for it to have the stamp of a heritage brand such as GUESS just launches it to a whole new level.

So, what better way to revisit her realm of fantasy than to slip into the selections from the GUESS Originals x NIKI Moonchild limited-edition collection, and press play. Notice how things just feel different, lighter even. NIKI gets you, she really does.

You can now own a piece of the #GUESSOriginals x NIKI ‘Moonchild’ limited-edition collection, which is available on the GUESS website now and in-store on December 19.

Make It Merry And Bright: This Is How You Can Share Cheer And Love For The Golden Gays This Christmas

A little goes a long way for our dear lolas.

With passion projects that give back to the ones that have sacrificed so much for the rest of us queer folk, it’s time to bestow the gift of magic and joy to the Golden Gays of Manila


We are incredibly lucky.

With safe spaces to dance in, tucked out corners to flirt at, (pre-pandemic that is), and families (both chosen and by blood) to come home to, there are infinitely more opportunities for you to live a life that is truly yours. There is no more hiding, no more shadowing, and no more denying who you really are. This is a privilege given to us by the pioneers before us who had more courage to hit significant strides just so we can fully express ourselves in the way Madonna wants us to. But as with privilege, we are so focused on the now and pigeonholed into the future that we fail to take into account how we even got to this point in the first place. In order to move forward, one must learn to at least peer over the shoulder and nod with a smile.

We are here today because of the steadfast, sparkling, and spirited souls that came before us, including the lolas from the Home of the Golden Gays. But just like with anything that dazzles, it comes with it a story the challenges to dull its shine. However, despite the name, the only truth left standing is that they are golden. A far cry from the early establishment of the non-profit organization in the mid-1970s, by LGBTQIA+ rights activist and columnist Justo Justo, his passing has prompted the forced closing of the care facility. Without families or proper income, the original members have since rented space in Pasay city to call “home,” where the lolas have to resort to sleeping in rotation or worse, seek slumber outside. 

The punishing pandemic hasn’t made it any easier, because with the enforcement of lockdowns, with the Philippines having the longest one with strained results, the elderly members of the Golden Gays have been severely affected. With movements limited to what is ideally essential, the Golden Gays have been challenged in terms of livelihood. With a fraction of their typical earnings, the lolas have been surviving on the kindness of generosity from the LGBTQIA+ NGOs and community in general.

But you know what, they still smile; they put on a show; they do reach out when and where they can. Every chance they get, especially with the help of initiatives such as the Golden Christmas For The Golden Gays Christmas Project by Philippine Anti-Discrimination Alliance of Youth Leaders, (PANTAY) they are continu to tell their story for us, the relatively and full on young’uns where the love, compassion, and most importantly, solidarity is bursting at the seams. Perhaps that’s truly the most important thing to learn from them, that despite what holds you back, just counter it with undeterred passion and love. You can never, ever go wrong with something so earnest and pure.

With the undertaking by PANTAY, it is more than just a one-time effort to provide relief. Instead, the Golden Christmas For The Golden Gays Christmas Project intends to support the lolas through the pandemic through donation drives and sustainable livelihood program. In their social media posts, they write, “This project also aims to provide short-to-medium-term support to the Golden Gays of Manila through a series of campaigns and capacity building workshops.” They don’t ask for much, really. On their wishlist, which is perhaps a world of difference from our own, the lolas are looking for groceries, rice, fish canned goods, oatmeal, electric fan, multivitamins, and single bed rolls.

To further highlight and raise funds for this most worthy cause, Gerard Gotladera has repurposed his Instagram magazine and book sale (@gerardgotladera), this time for the benefit of the Golden Gays. An overwhelmingly successful social media passion project to raise funds for victims and displaced families of the recent onslaught of the typhoons, this third iteration, which is set to go live on December 18 at 6:00 P, will feature an astounding curation of prized books and items of interest by Pauline Juan and Chere Gioskos. “As a gay man myself, the fear of growing old alone, being abandoned, and not ending up with anyone is a horror that looms over me. Sometimes it’s there, sometimes it’s not. For some of us, it’s an imagined fear, a distant possibility. But for our lolas who are part of this group, it’s a fact. While they do have each other, financially they have so little to get them by,” he details on Instagram. “I am hoping you’d turn out just as enthusiastic and willing to help this Christmas cause. I want to give this gift to our lolas from Golden Gays, who could use a little magic and joy this season.”

Even if it is in the distant chasm of your heart, you can surely spare and give the lolas a space to call home. A little goes a long way (the helping never stops, people) and with everything that we’ve been accorded, it is but right to extend all the help possible to the Golden Gays, because without them having to brave the challenges and face the debilitating fears of their past, and to still blaze trails for us, they deserve all the love they have given and sacrificed, especially now that they face the twilight of their years.

Remember, while we can count on considerable strokes of luck despite the circumstances, others aren’t as fortunate. In the true spirit of the holidays and of the community that endures, it is time to make their days be merry and bright—from Christmas and beyond.

How else can you help? For monetary, in-kind, and livelihood needs of the lolas, access for donations can be done through BPI (Vince Renzo M Liban, 1999 178746), Gcash (Estevez Evangelista, 09175311295), Landbank (Vince Renzo M Liban, 0707 1702 47), PayMaya (Joel Chester Pagulayan, 09173012229), and PayPal (Estevez Evangelista, paypal.me/evangelistaem).

Holiday Nail Art Ideas And Where To Get Them

You're never fully-dressed without a good set of claws.

‘Tis the season to get festive and be a little extra with your glam. Time to treat yourself with some pampering, starting with your nails. These holiday nail art ideas are all the rage right now, so if you want to stay on trend this season, then take a look at the list ahead.


This textured nail trend is at the top of my list just because it’s easy on the eyes and so satisfying to look at. This is for the ones who love a little shimmer without the hassle of glitter—velvet nails are the way to go.


Whether you want a mistletoe, a wreath, or some sparkle on your tips, this simple but artistic nail art will suit any look you’re going for this Christmas. It’s french tips, but make it ~Christmas.~


If you really want to capture the Christmas spirit, you can’t go wrong with these classic nail art designs.


Start the new year right by choosing the 2021 Pantone colors of the year as your nail color. Ultimate Gray and Illuminating Yellow are the colors to herald the new year.


Once you’ve discovered which nail art design you want to get for the holidays, it’s time to decide where to get them.

RELATED: Make A List And Check It Twice, Because These Online Shopping Spaces Lets You Play Santa In Just A Few Taps

Her Tribe Nails

If you want 100% hand painted, custom press-on nails, then Her Tribe Nails is the right shop for you. Get it at any length you want and whatever design you choose, their press-on nails come with a nail kit that includes a nail buffer, nail glue and adhesive tabs, alcohol pads, cuticle stick and, and an instruction card so you can DIY your nails safely at home.

Elinails MNL

This is the perfect shop for the ones who like intricate nail art designs and extra sharp claws. Elinails Mnl can do custom press-on nails, including the velvet nail art trend right now.


Extraordinail branches are open for your nail care needs, and rest-assured that they’re practicing strict safety guidelines for social distancing. Show them the design you want to achieve and let them do their magic. For the ones that want their nails to last weeks, try their flexigel nails for a long-lasting nail art. And if you want press-on nails, they also offer hassle-free couture press-on nails.

Nail Tropics

Do your nail beds need some serious R&R? Take a trip down Nail Tropics and let them take care of your nails. While you’re at it, show them your desired nail art design and let them do the rest.

Hello Eloise

Get curated nails in just 15 minutes with Hello Eloise‘s nail wraps. These are sticker nail sets that you can stick and file to your nail beds. It’s super easy to apply and it can achieve that professional finish.

Make A List And Check It Twice, Because These Online Shopping Spaces Lets You Play Santa In Just A Few Taps

You still have time, friends.

Still clueless on the gift-giving front? Let Rudolph and the gang of reindeers lead you to these online shopping sites that will definitely make things a bit merrier this Christmas.


It seems that no matter what happens, including a sense of reality being challenged, shifted, and redefined by the pandemic, some things will just never change. Sure, the world is generally more cautious and conscious about health and hygiene, but there still are those hardheaded lot who presumably do not want to wrap their heads around the gravity of the continuing crisis at hand. While they still are slow in coming to terms with the severity of the surging situation, many practices have since taken quite well to the necessary rigors such as dining in restaurants and shopping among others. In fact, over the course of quarantine and its many mind-boggling iterations, e-commerce and online shopping has become somewhat of a national pastime, with people resorting to it for essentials and an anchor of sanity.

This seemingly mundane offshoot of commercialism has been the most pronounced this holiday season, with people resorting to the convenience and safety of the digital counterpart to sort through their Christmas lists. With strict measures and guidelines in place, online shopping has been the norm, and the virtual spaces that have emerged are stepping up their services to better to adapt and attend to the needs of the market. From on call personal shoppers to revamped websites, online shopping is simply put, made much better—and easier.

With a little over a week left to go before Christmas, we’ve rounded several standout sites to hop on for that last-minute scramble for Christmas gifts. After all, no matter what the situation may be, there is always a reason to celebrate the holidays, especially now more than ever. So, what are you waiting for, indulge yourself in a bit more of online shopping for your loved ones, because everyone deserves every bit of happiness and cheer, and yes, that includes yourself, too.

The SM Store Call To Deliver

Not only do they have everything for you, they are committed to doing as much as they can for you, too. Offering one less thing to worry about in a truly stressful time of our lives, The SM Store is taking care of your gift giving with its successful Call To Deliver service. An answer to service the needs of its shoppers, the SM Store Call To Deliver provision has since graduated from being limited to specific branches only to now being available nationwide. Procuring essentials and now gifts has become easier through the hotline number #143SM (#14376). The end-to-end effort underscores safety, certainty, and effortlessness as you can do everything in three simple steps.

First, you contact The SM Store Call To Deliver at #14376. Next, you will be asked to provide necessary details for transaction (including modes of payment, which includes credit and gift cards). You will then be matched with a personal shopper who will work with you to go through your Christmas list. You can access their catalogue for items or send a message for availability of items in your preferred branch. Based on experience, sharing photos of items from the catalog was a big help, but if something wasn’t there, they will work hard to find the best alternative for your liking. Finally, you can arrange for the delivery of your gifts to your loved ones, which comes at an affordable P200 delivery fee (for inter-island deliveries, standard courier rates will apply). However, if you want to play Santa yourself, you can have it sent to your address in bulk or do a curbside pick-up at your convenience.


Bridging the gap between the traditional shopping system of its portfolio of brands and the unique user experience online, the SSI group, the country’s largest specialty retailer in the Philippines is connecting to a digital audience of over 1.7 million with the introduction of trunc.ph. A one-stop e-commerce shop, the conduit for online shopping houses the most coveted brands such as Burberry, Ferragamo, Jimmy Choo, Tory Burch, Michael Kors, Kate Spade, MUJI, Lush, Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein Jeans, Lacoste, Gucci, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Alexander McQueen, and Loewe under four accessible categories. A first-of-its kind retail innovation, Trunc.ph gives your usual online shopping premium access to the best of the best with curated picks from fashion, beauty, and home must-haves filed under Trunc (a multi-brand marketplace for SSI’s most sought after brands), Trunc Show (a digital destination fashioned as a stand-alone boutique for premium designer brands), Powder Room By Trunc (the go-to for beauty and skincare essentials), and Trunc At Home (a dedicated landing page for the world’s top lifestyle brands).

In this expansion of its reach and service to the Filipino shopper, Trunc is a cross-section that lets you get a lot done in one go. Offering deals and deliveries in a time of heightened safety, Trunc truly has your best interests in mind.

Rustan’s Personal Shopper On Call

Starting this year, it seems that Santa is going fully digital. In keeping up with the demands of the times, as well as of its commitment to ensuring excellent shopping experience, Rustan’s is giving us the gift of ease and peace of mind through Rustan’s Personal Shopper On Call. In this extension of their topnotch customer service, navigating through the limits of this holiday season becomes more bearable with access to expert one-on-one assistance by trained personnel made convenient through its universal number (09171111952).

Aside from this, Rustan’s is also upping the ante with online shopping by launching new selections and catalogs, as well as offering exclusive deals and drops on a weekly basis at rustans.com. Here, the festive spirit continues 24/7 digitally featuring the compelling Home For Christmas Virtual Microsite, where customers are treated to holiday content, which includes, videos of perfromances, yuletide decorating tips, gift suggestions, and schedules of upcoming in-store and online activities.

With the physical errand taken care of, you can begin checking your list twice to make sure you give (and receive) sincerely heartfelt gifts this Christmas to the special people in your life, all from the safety of your home.


“Like they say, the show must go on,” says Maritess Pineda, one of the founders of ArteFino in a statement, finally introducing its entry into the realm of online shopping. “We will never waiver from our commitment to the Filipino spirit, with products that  capture the soul of the makers, and now, with e-commerce and sophisticated delivery systems, we bring their works not  only around the country, but around the world.” In a move that makes its way toward even more accessibility and inclusivity of Filipino’s best around the Philippines and the rest of the world, ArteFino goes digital with shopartefino.com.

With the pandemic stalling the highly-anticipated and wildly successful annual artisanal in-person affair, the minds behind this platform for all things crafted with pride and passion acted fast and streamlined its efforts in a purely digital platform, starting with 45 brand partners. “The idea of giving up on a physical fair was extremely difficult, but this lockdown meant for us to move away from the  usually busy mall experience as consumers focused on what we remain as our key factor–supporting local and  independent businesses/artisans,” shares co-founder, Susie Quiros. This way, it addresses the realities of the pandemic, as well as of the hyper-selective shopping attitude developed in quarantine. With this dedicated shift virtually, ArteFino is able to not only expand globally, but it can begin to attract a younger, digitally-entrenched.

“An understanding of the growing consumer concern over the environmental impact of every purchase meant that  ArteFino had to begin writing the rule book. Great focus was given to products that were essential, and supported by the  concept of a circular economy. Items that are reflective of living in the new normal,” explains Cedie Lopez-Vargas, ArteFino co-founder as it makes it full entrance in the highly competitive world of online shopping. While there is certainly a lot to appreciate and learn from its mindfully made, thoughtfully chosen access to quality, the virtual arm of ArteFino also functions as a reminder that there is a lot of good still going on—we just have to know where to click.

What If Billie Eilish Wore Local Streetwear Brands?

Crying black tears not included.

The 18-year old Grammy-winner is known for her over-the-top baggy clothes, crazy claws, and outrageous style—an anti thesis to the good-girl-gone-bad formula that record labels usually manufacture out of rising pop stars.

When Calvin Klein tapped Billie Eilish a year ago for their ad campaign, she shared her style introspection. “That’s why I wear baggy clothes. Nobody can have an opinion because they haven’t seen what’s underneath. Nobody can be like, ‘she’s slim-thick,’ ‘she’s not slim-thick,’ ‘she’s got a flat ass,’ ‘she’s got a fat ass.’ No one can say any of that because they don’t know,” Billie revealed. We stan an unbothered queen. Our year-end wish? Let women LIVE.

While we’re still daydreaming about Billie coming to Manila post-quarantine soon, we can only wish she’d be decked in local streetwear brands like when fellow musician Khalid wore DBTK during his 2018 American Teen Tour. It’s a no flex zone, but supporting local, especially now, is the way to go. Scroll down below to see all the brands we want to see in Billie’s Manila concert wardobe in the future!

Related: What If Your Favorite Popstars Wore Masks by Local Designers


Billie Eilish
Photo @billieilish, @proudrace/IG

One of the OGs of the local streetwear scene, Proud Race’s deconstructed and oversized pieces would make a good match on Billie.


Billie Eilish
Photo @billieeilish, @wedrool/IG

Vintage tees are a Billie Eilish staple. It’s a no-brainer that she would wear this collab by Wedrool and Hysteria Co.


Photo @billieeilish, @meraki.women/IG

Only good at being bad, the pop star’s often spotted in baggy button-downs like Meraki Women’s, similar to 90s hip-hop royalty, Missy Elliot.


Photo @billieeilish, @notwithstandingus/IG

Keeping it neutral, Billie also likes putting a spin on earth toned outfits, which is why this desert camo button down by local brand Notwithstandingus would look neat.


Photo @billieeilish, @sleekshycatalog/IG

When we fall asleep, where do we go? Sleek/Shy definitely knows what’s up.


Billie Eilish
Photo @billieeilish, @dontblamethekids/IG

This DBTK x Sesame Street collab is making us want to see Billie as a musical guest in the show.