Chic Gone Digital: A Ravishing Retrospective

Maja Salvador is no stranger to reinvention and her nonchalantly stylish persona allows her to pull off each fashion adventure so well. In an exciting first, she collaborates with The styleList PH to treat us to a visual feast of her top Star Magic Ball looks reimagined for the digital space

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Maja Salvador—a name that’s a perennial mainstay on the “Best Dressed” lists of every Star Magic Ball—not because she would load up on frou-frou but because she would opt for style wildcards that forge her ahead of the fashion pack. Who can forget her 2013 Cary Santiago ball gown extravaganza, way before the Cebuano designer became the go-to of her contemporaries? She radiated quiet, magnetizing confidence with her minimalist YSL look when everybody else swathed themselves in tulle. And of course, there was her Chanel ensemble which was simply iconic.

And yes, these red carpet hits are the exact pieces reimagined for this special digital shoot. “I was super excited to see the outcome of this shoot! All three stylists really stepped up their game pero swak pa rin sa’kin yung looks. Edgy man pero sinigurado na swak sa at hindi pilit. Tatlong iba-ibang ako ang lumabas,” enthuses Maja, who can’t pick favorites among the looks styleList Inc angels Miguel Cruz, Princess Villones, and Jowi Guzman created out of her unforgettable Star Magic Ball dresses.

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This chameleon-like quality of Maja is one thing sLi head honcho Rex Atienza admires: “She’s very versatile and always willing to try new things. She’s always evolving which is very important in this industry,” he shares. Rex and Maja have a long-standing relationship anchored on mutual trust and respect for one another’s aesthetics and personality, the products of which are these (and more) notable looks in Philippine fashion history.

“For me, pinaka-memorable lahat ng Star Magic Ball yearly—pabongga ng pabongga mga naiisip nya. Pagdating sa big fashion events wala akong alam, binibigay ko sa kanya yung freedom kung anong look. Sobrang na-appreciate ko yung they would go out of the country pa para bumili ng gown. They would attend pa ng mga Fashion Week para makuha yung gusto ko,” Maja muses.

Love yourself. Kahit anong body type mo, hanapin mo lang yung pinaka-swak at ilalabas yung confidence mo. Hindi naman sinasabi na maging payat para maging sexy ka, pero importante na kahit anong body type mo confident ka. Once naging confident ka walang makaka-judge sa’yo.

Rex adds, “She’s very collaborative and fun to dress!!! Our dynamics is very chill. She knows what works with her body and you know that girls in general are really conscious, you just have to take care of that. Accentuate or play it down is the key.”

Maja’s personal style has come a long way from the totally au naturel days of her youth, an evolution she attributes to her style collaboration with Rex. “Hindi kasi parang work pag may work kami ni Rex eh every time magwo-work kami together may natututunan ako nau-update ako about fashion. Malalim din yung friendship namin may topic about family, love life, alam nya lahat. Very open sya sa opinion ko, he’ll ask ano gusto mo san ka comfy. Kahit alam nya kung ano ang trends nasa akin pa rin yung huling desisyon. He would always ask if feeling ko ako ba yung look,” Maja shares.

Maja may have started out as your quintessential teenybopper, but working with Rex and styleList Inc. has no doubt unleashed the style dynamo in her. “If you notice, Maja has three layers. As a celebrity, as a singer, and as normal person. When she’s out there doing her rounds as a guest or host or on the red carpet, she has her celebrity look. Clean and sophisticated. Very put together. And then Maja as a performer. Sexy and edgy! Her look varies depending on the need. Last is her off duty look. Very simple lady. At times you can catch her wearing sweatpants or even a sundress on some days,” says Rex.

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Taking their stylist-client relationship and friendship to the next level is this fresh take on three of Maja’s best Star Magic Ball looks especially for the digital space, exploring a medium that continues to be a thriving avenue to showcase style. “I love that fashion itself has become more accessible through the use of modern technology. Whether you talk about shows, launches, and merchandise, all of these are already within your reach, at your fingertips actually,” he adds.

“With its accessibility, you are exposed to different aesthetics and you now enjoy and accept new forms, styles, and designs which I super love! I think we are all evolving and slowly becoming more accepting. People are empowered and so I think we are in the age of disrupting the status quo.”

As Maja continues to reinvent herself in terms of acting and hosting, with upcoming projects where you will see her like you’ve never seen her before (“Hindi umaarteng Maja,” as she puts it), so will her and Rex’s fashion collaboration evolve to not just wow on the red carpet and in the digital space, but even on a more international scale what with the wide range of possibilities today’s instant connectivity offers.

“What I noticed about our DNA, is, it is very eclectic. It changes and adapts according to the need and nature. Our box is always growing and changing. We try our best to present something global at all times,” says Rex. This perfectly complements Maja’s easygoing authentic style core that flourishes as she continues to challenge herself to venture out of familiar fashion territory.

What a style match made in heaven!