Please introduce yourself. (Name, Age, Country, Job)
My name is Aika Yokoyama, which in Japanese means, “The Sweet Scent of Affection.” I am originally from Japan, and I’ve lived in Seattle, WA for almost 6 years now. I am 28 years old, and I work at a spa in marketing/social media/events when I am not pursuing my fashion interests.
What’s the story behind your blog?
I started my blog back in 2011, but I did not update it regularly despite my passion for fashion and my desire to chase my fashion dreams. Then I lost everything in 2013; my sponsorship, my job, my boyfriend, etc… I still remember clearly how devastated I was. I lost my appetite and struggled to find what I was truly living for. All of the things that used to be my focus were now gone! Throughout it all, fashion was always a part of me. I never lost the will to dress up. And when I dressed up, I felt relieved and happy inside. It was then that I had an epiphany: Fashion IS my life!!!! I was convinced then that this was actually the chance I had been given to take a shot and reach for my dreams and to get REALLY serious about sharing my fashion with the world… so I started blogging again. But this time, I became much more active than before. I poured my heart into those blogs. After that, everything changed. I’ve been featured on my favorite brands’ sites as well as fashion communities and have worked with a lot of brands. I am happier now than ever with my life.
What are your daily inspirations?
I find inspiration in everything around me. I always keep my eyes on international fashion and trends; I check up on both American bloggers and Japanese bloggers (brand producers) everyday, and I look at my favorite brands’ lookbooks, collections, and fashion magazines. My favorite Japanese fashion magazines are Sweet and ViVi. Also, I am really inspired by how Japanese people concern themselves with their appearance, and they care about their styling from head to toe. I also embrace that aspect of Japanese culture, and try to put a lot of effort and consideration into my fashion and style everyday, from head to toe!!!
Describe to us your daily routine, how do you start your day and finish your night?
Well, I wake up 8 a.m. and I like to start the day out with some meditation and chanting for 30 mins to build my daily motivation (I am a buddhist). I eat a light breakfast, then finalize and publish my newest post. Since English isn’t my native language, it takes me around three hours to finish. After that I share my post on major fashion community sites as well as Instagram and Facebook. Then it’s time to check my emails and select my picks for collaborations. Around 3, it’s time for lunch and a break. I love watching Japanese dramas during my lunch. Then I return to work, start my next blog post, browse other bloggers to catch up, and check on my Instagram to reply to comments. When I have meetings in the afternoon, I take care of this after I get home. I finish my day with some blogging work and then chillaxing or whatever I wanna do.
Blogging takes a lot of time and effort, how much time does it take you to organize post and photoshoots?
My current photographer/friend works on weekdays, so we set up our shooting sessions for the weekends. We always plan to shoot one to three outfits. Our shooting time is approximately between 4-5 hours depending on weather and location.
Tells us about your favorite beauty products. What do you use to keep your skin so clean and fresh?
My all-time favorite beauty products are DHC from cleansing to moisturizing. It’s very important to take care of your bare skin under your make up. I’ve been using their products for 8 years (I was introduced to it by my mom!). I really love their products so much! Here are my top favorites: Cleanse – Deep Cleansing Oil & Mild Soap with Washing Puff. Tone & Moisturise – Platinum Silver Nanocolloid Set (Mention my customer number ‘2875108’ to get 10% off ). Besides these products, I do a facial mask two times per week and apply Advanced Night Repair from Estee Lauder for extra moisturizing to maintain clean and fresh skin before I go to bed.
Who is your favorite local designer? And Why?
To be honest with you, I really am not so familiar with local designers, but I like KateSMensah & SCHAI. I saw their collections a few times already, and I am really fascinated by their amazing designs.
Why did you move to the USA? What do you like/dislike?
When I was in elementary school, we welcomed international students from a nearby US army base (the US military maintains some bases in Japan). I met one girl named Katherine and soon after we became BFF. We were always together and shared each others’ cultures. So she was a big influence that drew me to American culture. When I was in 3rd grade, I had the chance to go to America for the first time under a homestay program. Since then my dream was to be able to live and work in America pursuing my dreams. I love it so much here. I totally feel that this is where I belong in my life. In terms of dislikes, there are two things I can’t stand sometimes: poor public transportation and poor customer service.
Do you know any inspiring Korean/Japanese celebrities, models, actors, bloggers. Name them and why they are special.
I have so many Japanese fashion divas that inspire me a lot. They are special because they are huge inspirations for me to be successful like them, and they give me outfit ideas when I’m stuck and can’t figure out what to wear.
My favorites: Rinka (model), Ena Matsumoto & Naoko Kuroishi (Brand Producers), Saeko (model) & Rola (model), Kaera (singer)
Have you ever been to South Korea? If so, what did you like?
I’ve never been there, but I’d love to go!!!! It would be super cool to see what their fashion looks like and I am also gravitating towards their food!