FOR decades, women would look up to other women, those with principles who fought against oppression and suppression, inequality and injustice. Today, women, especially the millennials, hold in high regard, women by virtue of their authenticity or knowledge in a particular area who are open to share about their experiences. From day-to-day issues to advice and views concerning fashion, food, health, sports, hobbies, travel, parenting, what’s trending, etc., technology has paved the way for women like Ainaa Nabilaa and Shaine Wong to reach and engage with a wider than usual audience.
HER! Inquires with these ladies on their call to “influence”.
Ainaa’s Instagram page is teeming with makeup tips and tutorials shared via photos and videos. She shares applications and techniques, info on cosmetic products, her suggestions and views. The 24-year old professional makeup artist is passionate about what she does and says that she simply fell in love with the art of make-up and shared what she “knew. Today, she has some 165,577 followers.
“At first, I just did things that I loved, which is mainly to do make-up. I did not expect to become a social media influencer,” Ainaa confesses.
Her passion and her love of making women beautiful and sharing her expert views and comments soon found her becoming an “influencer”.
“I focus on beauty and the latest make-up trends on social media. Why? Because I want to help women build and gain confidence in themselves. I believe that it is ‘okay’ if we want to try something new, especially using makeup and enhancing one’s natural beauty,” Ainaa shares.
Her target audience are females across all age groups. “Being confident and beautiful has nothing to do with ages,” she says. Of course, most of her followers are female due to the nature of the content, but she does have male followers too, which she has no qualms about. “Men, especially Metrosexual men, appreciate and do use make-up too nowadays,” she informs.
According to Ainaa’s followers, she is simple in her approach, sincere and direct, even to the extent of being social media present with NO makeup. However, her bridal make-up posts receive lots of “loves” (and “likes”). She believes in using soft and natural colours to bring out the natural beauty of brides on their wedding day.
A mother’s love
Beautiful and fashionable is Shaine Wong, a model mom with two adorable children - Jacob and Sophie. We all know that parenting is not be easy but Shaine makes it look so simple and fun especially with her cutest moments posts with her children. Shaine’s Instagram account is said to be so addictive that once you look, you’ll be hooked.
For the 33-year-old mum, it all started with her posting her son Jacob’s OOTD (which stands for Outfit Of The Day).
“When he was born, I posted a lot of his photos on Instagram. It was really to share Jacob’s daily photos with my family and friends,” said Shane, who started her Instagram account in 2013. Her following then grew in numbers as Shaine began to capture many funny moments of her children. Her Instagram content focuses on parenting tips, lifestyle and beauty. Her followers are mostly female and mummies.
“My focus on the platform is definitely parenting. I want to share tips and knowledge with all the mummies out there, especially the young mums. What I enjoy most is that I can share ‘creative parenting tips’ like how to have fun being a parent, all while constantly finding new approached to guide my own children,” Shaine shares.
Is it good for women?
“In my opinion, through social media engagement, women can increase their brand awareness and have a wider reach than their usual customers. It is also cost effective compared to conventional marketing. Besides, it’s also the fastest and easiest medium to communicate and engage with other women.
“Each individual, women and men, have their own strengths but I believe that women can explore their potential to the maximum, in various market segments, from beauty and health care to even sports.”
Shaine concurs. She believes social media is a powerful tool that’s helpful to women. “But one must be genuine and knowledgeable to be able to influence in an area. And as long as good and positive vibes are shared.
Social media opens up our eyes. We feel more connected to each other, especially, for these new mums on my account. It is like a platform to seek help or even just to find someone to talk to ... information and experience sharing,” Shaine adds.
In the name of sharing, they both agree that some tend to lose their privacy in the process. Is it worth it, especially when something considered private is in the open?
As for Ainaa, even though she only shares about her personal life which is related to her work, she says, “I cannot prevent people from judging and having their own opinion.”
Shaine on the other hand, who posts photographs of her children’s daily life says, “I don’t mind sharing my life with the public on social media because they would want to be part of Jacob and Sophie’s growth anyway. To me, that is good - when you show more, people understand you better.”
She also adds, “I haven’t encountered any negativity in sharing my life with the public ... I am not as famous as Kim Kardashian,” Shaine states and laughs.
On the downside of being an influencer, Shaine says: “To be honest, you don’t have a private life anymore. Anything you do will be seen and become a topic of discussion. For example, if I look as though I have a bloated stomach, I will begin getting messages congratulating me, Shaine quips.
Do you get paid?
A resounding “Yes!” from Ainaa. “I do get paid through brand campaigns,” she admits. She also earns as a bridal and events makeup artist. Shaine reveals that she is paid by some brands, not all, and some pay more while others pay less. “However, it must match my profile and be suitable, only then will I consider collaborating with a brand,” she says.
The ladies also state that it is not all smooth and easy as an influencer as a lot has to be sacrificed in terms of sharing one’s private life, spending money and putting in time and effort to create an Insta account that is popular with the crowd and attract a following.
This writer thinks Ainaa and Shaine are more than just famous on social media. She believes that the “numbers” state that they will continue to have an influence on society, considering their knowledge, resourcefulness, unique talent and creativity, and most of all, their passion. As influencers, this writer hopes these ladies will inspire others to become “icons in their own right”.