Hey there! My name is Taia, and I am truly, madly, deeply in love with all things beauty. Growing up, I always had a passion for “transforming” people. By nine years old I was making patterns with notebook paper and taping my designs to my little sisters, cousin, and sometimes my little brother. To make my looks appear more glamorous, I would use actual paint brushes, lime juice, and ginger to make their faces glow (Ah, pre-highlight days). I almost killed my brother by doing this… That kid ruined all my possible makeup entrepreneur opportunities with his allergies. By fifth grade, I was designing costumes for all my friends and planning all our performance looks—we made a “living” off being the three stages of Hannah Montana (don’t ask).

At nineteen, I’ve finally channeled my passions into something more productive. Signing on to CollegeFashionista as a Style Guru has been such an eye opener for me, and it’s barely even started. Scoping out the most stylish Fashionistas/os I can find is such a thrill. I love being able to compliment someone on their look and really get out of my shell and network. Since starting this internship, I’ve also felt more motivated to put effort into my looks no matter where I’m going and not worrying about what people will think of me, which has always been a huge obstacle for me.

My style icons are Barbie Ferreira, Jordyn Woods, Gigi Hadid, Ashley Graham, Selena Gomez, and Baddie Winkle—of course. I love how these women dress with a purpose bigger than what society wants for them. My goal is to one day be as independent and confident in myself as these women are. I usually have no idea where I’m going with my looks until I’m halfway out the door, late for wherever I’m trying to go. I’m still trying to find my signature style, but for now it’s a place between free-spirit, grunge, and struggling college student.

Speaking of my style, for this look, I channeled my “it’s hot and I’m poor” side. I paired a v-neck bodysuit, with a pair of distressed boyfriend jeans. To accessorize minimally, I carried my character mini backpack. I also threw on my slightly battered Adidas Superstars. The star of this outfit, though, was my highlight. All the praise goes to my champagne pop poured crème highlighter. I actually wore this for my birthday brunch when it was over 90 degrees out. I love this outfit because it’s extremely comfortable, and I tend to get a few compliments on at least one part of it.

I’m SO excited to be a part of CollegeFashionista this semester. Stay glamorous and BeYOUtiful!