A Seeker's Spin: Lia Andrea Ramos

by Nasia Cammayo Reyes August 01, 2023

A Seeker's Spin: Lia Andrea Ramos

Entrepreneur, Glamourbox Inc. co-founder, and Miss Universe Philippines board member, Lia Andrea Ramos, takes the Varadero playsuit to a beach getaway. 

From the beauty pageant arena to the beauty space, Lia Andrea Ramos has found her calling. If her name and face rings a bell, then it’s because Lia was our Binibining Pilipinas Universe 2006! She represented the country in the Miss Universe 2006 pageant and was awarded ‘Miss Photogenic’. Six years later, she co-founded Glamourbox Inc., a cosmetics distributor of niche and cult-beauty brands here in the Philippines. She also came full circle as a Miss Universe Philippines board member where she supports the organization’s advocacy program and the advocacies of the reigning queens. What continues to fuel her desire to empower women? It’s definitely being a girlboss and mentor, while also fulfilling her roles as a wife and a hands-on mom to her two adorable girls.

Lia loves glamming up and it’s not just because her job requires her to. The former beauty queen and model enjoys fashion as much as applying her Pixi makeup. Which is why we are thrilled to share her resort-ready looks (in pieces from our recent collections) in her latest beach getaway with family. Ahead, get to know Lia further as she shares bits and pieces of her journey from becoming a beauty queen to the woman she is today. While you’re at it, seek major style inspiration too!

Photographer: TJ Medrana
Makeup: Gio Montomo
Hair: Nayr Shufa
 
Lia shares that Panglao, Bohol is a current travel go-to. She and her family have been going to South Palms Resort Panglao for five times already in less than two years!
 
How are you and what’s a day in your life like?
 
I am a very hands-on mom and my schedule revolves around my two young kids! I wake up at 6am and get ready to take my kids to school by 7am. While the kids are in school, I do my meetings or calls and answer my emails, then I pick them up between 11am-1pm. Afternoons are for errands and my kids' extracurricular activities, like soccer and swimming. Then at least twice a week, I squeeze in a morning workout like yoga or pilates.
 
Come evening, my family sits at the dinner table for a very long and troublesome dinner (if you have toddlers, you'll know what I mean). It’s lights off for the kids by 8pm and if my husband and I are not too tired after putting them to sleep, we will sneak in one TV show! Twice a week, we also have dinners at my in-laws' who moved from the US to be with the grandkids.
 
From time to time, I’ll have events for Miss Universe PH. I enjoy playing dress up and take a break from my mom duties! I also look forward to the immersions and activities we do with our advocacy partners like Save the Children Philippines, MindNation, and Smile Train Philippines
 
The Varadero playsuit and Turkana dress from Intricado suits this beach babe perfectly.
 
How long have you been in the beauty and fashion industry? What are your dream projects? 
 
I won the title Binibining Pilipinas Universe in 2006 and that changed the course of my career. I was in development work before that, working for an international non-profit organization. After Miss Universe 2006, I had an opportunity to model in Cape Town for about two years. I then came back to Manila and worked for a media and public relations firm for another two years. I started Glamourbox with a friend in 2012 and went back to the beauty industry in a different capacity. We started discovering beauty brands with a goal simplify beauty for Filipinas through sampling, then it eventually evolved to exclusively distributing brands here in the market.
 

I have yet to work on a dream project but it would probably have something to do with giving back and providing a means for women and children from a lower income bracket to improve their lives through education, self-improvement trainings, and livelihood programs.

Share with us three valuable lessons you’ve learned that helped in navigating your career. 

Mentorship is not easy to find but once you find people who can guide you through whatever phase you are in in your career, hold on to that and learn as much as you can from it.

Be open to opportunities that may not be initially aligned with your my career plans but may end up opening more doors for you.

Be open to changes because life will always throw us curve balls and we should be willing to adjust our plans and make the best out of what we have.

Lia lounges in the Medinine caftan.

Have you always wanted to become an entrepreneur? Who are your inspirations? 

No, it didn’t cross my mind until 2012 when I felt like I needed a career change. I wanted to build something but had no clue how to do it. Kevin, my husband, has been the strongest influence of all. My friend and co-founder, Marie Ona, and I started Glamourbox after coming across the beauty subscription box business model. We have been through a lot building and scaling this business, and I am glad to have forged a strong friendship with her along the way. We have learned a lot from entrepreneurs in our circle. Luckily, a new chapter in Glamourbox has opened and we have a new partner who is also helping take the brand to the next level both in the digital space as well as in the retail space.

Katie Beauchamp, Co-Founder of Birchbox. She revolutionised beauty through the beauty subscription service and has changed the way consumers discover new brands and beauty essentials.

Rachel Lim, Co-Founder of Love Bonito. She has made a mark by creating fashion staples for Asian women. I love how she has her own podcast, interviewing movers and shakers in different fields to inspire others.

Mikka Padua, Founder of Seek the Uniq, was an inspiration to me and I admired her creativity and boldness. She was one of the pioneers of homegrown fashion e-commerce in the Philippines and I remember exchanging stories with her on growing pains of a startup.

You once represented our country on the Miss Universe stage, and are now one of the board members of Miss Universe Philippines. Does this mean embracing the saying, “once a beauty queen, always a beauty queen”? How has this journey helped you in becoming the woman you are today? 

This saying rings very true. At one point, I tried to shy away from my beauty queen background because I was afraid people will only see that and just gloss over my skills, and not take my ideas seriously. But as I grew older, I realised that being a beauty queen can open a lot of doors which I can use to my advantage. It is up to me to prove that I am capable of other things.

Pretty in pink! This girlboss wears the fun yet feminine Galati set.

What empowers you as a woman? On the flip side, how do you think are you empowering other women? 

The ability to have choices empowers me—be it in my career, home life, or social life. To have the access to the opportunities I’ve had in my life also empowers me. This has allowed me get quality education, build my own business, start a beautiful family, and create a safe and healthy environment for my kids.

Being a female entrepreneur, I get to empower women in our company through mentorship and provide a work environment that is open, equitable, and progressive. Through MUPh, I also get to empower other women through our advocacy work and by giving back to partner communities we work with.

Skirt or separates? Lia wears the Rijeka wrap skirt (with the Borlas sandals) and Galati set.

Describe your personal style. Who are your style pegs? 

My style has definitely evolved through the years. I’d say my style is classic, feminine, and playful. I tend to gravitate to classic pieces like a little black dress but there is a part of me that also loves tropical and boho chic clothes. I’m a girly-girl so I also love flirty skirts and dresses.

I love Rebecca de Ravenel’s ultra chic island style. Her dresses and accessories are to die for. I like the way she puts colors together whether it be in her home or fashion.

Amal Clooney for her versatile yet classy style. She goes from clean cut suits to playful dresses and gorgeous gowns.

What style lessons can you impart to others, especially those who haven’t found their personal style yet? 

Wear clothes that make you feel good. When the clothes you wear help you present yourself well, it also adds to your confidence.

As you get older, you’ll understand the value of a good fit! Whatever fashion style you are drawn too, invest in pieces that fit you well so they last longer in your closet.

Get inspired by Pinterest! I draw inspiration from fashion to interior design there. It gives me ideas on styles that I can try and see if it also works for me!

On her personal style: "I’d say my style is classic, feminine, and playful. I tend to gravitate to classic pieces, but there is a part of me that also loves tropical and boho chic clothes." Lia styles the Aelia swimsuit with the Megrine pants.

Top three fashion items you can’t live without? 

A summer dress, an LBD (Little Black Dress), and a classic piece of jewelry like a gold chain necklace.

Share a fashion memory you’d never forget. 

It was three days before my wedding when I found out that my wedding reception dress won’t make it on time. I was already in Boracay then so I asked one of my closest friends, Fatima Rabago, to go to Rosa Clara in Makati to help pick a dress for me. She tried on dresses and sent me photos to choose from. Looking back, it was actually hilarious! I finally chose one and the shop altered it to my size. Fatima brought the dress to Boracay and luckily it fit like a glove! It was a stressful time, but I'm so glad Fatima was there to help me through that bind!

A summer dress is one of Lia's fashion must-haves. She is wearing the Petesti dress.

Shop all of Lia's looks here.




Nasia Cammayo Reyes
Nasia Cammayo Reyes

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