Daily Archives: 10 December 2006

HLA tea-talk – How To Dress For Success

1 of my friend who is selling life insurance for part time invited his friends to this tea-talk organized by HLA:

Ms Wendy Lee is the founder of Chapter One Colour. She is a Style and Image Consultant that specializes in assisting both men and women to define and refine their image as well as style their wardrobe. Wendy was trained under Ann Reinten of ‘the Australian Image Company’ and Pat Vincent Scott of ‘The Colourflair Studios, UK’.


Venue : Manhattan Ballroom, Level 14, West Wing, Berjaya Times Square Hotel & Convention Centre, Kuala Lumpur.

Date : Thursday, 30th November 2006

Time : 7:00pm – 10:30pm

Dress code : Office attire

LongHairedGal and I went to BTS and window shopped around at Borders and Metrojaya. The decoration in Metro is so much cleaner, brighter, expensive than the one in Mid Valley and The Curve. :)

“There are too many Christmas trees in MV. So untidy,” LongHairedGal commented.

“They are selling the Christmas trees mar.” I kinda like the Christmas trees in MV. The ones for sale, not the deco.

“It’s like a jungle inside!”

Once we reached outside the ballrooms area, we saw lots of people in suits. All black suits, white shirts. *gulp*

Even though I was wearing a long-sleeved blouse and black pants, I felt overwhelmed, like I wasn’t as successful as these suits draped people. Some of them could’ve been our customers too when we were working at the apparel company. *shake head* Suits make the man. And my small bag. Made me look like a kid.

After walking around here, we headed to the refreshment. Friend said the refreshment would start at 6.30pm. Not leh… We were so thirsty. We saw lots of cups but no drinks. :( The buffet was not opened yet.

Friend was late too! He himself had told us to come earlier because there could be traffic jam.

After registration, they opened up the food and drinks but so many people queued up! We also got a small notebook, a pencil – handy to jot down any notes from the talk and it was also a free advertisement for HLA when we use it.

There was also a personality test which I had taken before I took the insurance test. You just need to fill up 2 columns for each row of traits – Least & Most. If you think it’s easy, it’s not. Sometimes, the meanings are very similar. It’s for the higher chains to know what they are getting and how to play around your personality :p The personality test is given to every pre-insurance agents – I had taken this before when I applied for Financial Planner with 1 of the top insurance agencies locally (not HLA).

LongHairedGal & I went for a short drink at the mall and got in when it was going to start. The opening was speeches by HLA bigshots, some really long winded talk about HLA’s history *yawn* and current departments.

The speaker, Ms Wendy Lee had a loud voice and even brighter yellow coat. She showed the slides on fashion history – I thought the slides moved a bit fast but they were interesting. What does the past fashion has to do with us now? Present!

Then she moved on to asking for volunteers to come out. Among the things she touched were:

Ying (feminine) & yang (masculine) Anyone with a fierce or squarish face is yang. Round and docile face is ying.

Styles from classic, dramatic, sexy, er.. feminine, etc.

Colours & skin tones if you want people to notice you, you have to wear a sharp tone contrast. For example, if you are fair, you should wear darker colours or pure white/light beidge.

Where the tie ends must touch the belt. Too short and it would show the big belly or you look stunted :) Too long and it’ll call more attention to your private parts. That’s ok for bedroom activities but not in the broadroom.

Read magazines about old, rich and successful people like Tatlers, Vogue and instead of CLEO. Those were her words! Heh. See how they photograph themselves, what they wear, what function they attend, etc. Learn from the rich.

Dress yourself more in neutral colours – black, beidge, white, gray – to make yourself look more successful. Or boring (me says). Wear pearls for ladies. Have a personal style.

To pleat or not? Men with big thighs should stick to pleated pants (for more room and ease of movement) but they are old-fashioned. The current trend is un-pleated pants, straight cut.

    Most of all, I think if one is confident and love self, it would be easier to appear successful. Of course, a good fashion sense helps.

    For the men, they have it easier – they just need to be neat to be presentable. I swear, some guys stand in front of the mirror for ages, adjusting their hair spikes and opening eyes wide to check open pores. They move front and back, butt out, chest out and then pose like a model :)

    After the talk, it was back to HLA people.. we filled up the form and passed it back to my friend.

    I noticed Jean looked tired and she seemed to have aged a lot. Must be stress. She was also wearing a suit – plain black blazer but striped black pants (which didn’t match) and a white shirt. She was the example of the neutral colours from head to toe.

    In the strict fashion sense, mixing a plain top/bottom with a patterned (stripe, check, printed) bottom/top is a no-no. But some people have this style called Eccentric. They love to mix-n-match the designs and the style can appear quirky. Or clash glaringly. Milla Jovovich, the spokesperson for L’Oreal and MNG, is 1 of the famous actresses/models who has quirky fashion style.

    Overall, the How To Dress For Success was interesting (I didn’t fall asleep) and informative even though LongHairedGal & I had known some of the points. We worked in apparel company that has training on Visual Merchandize and how to guide customers.

    The talk by HLA about HLA however, wasn’t interesting. It was a free talk by HLA so of course HLA must get something back (maybe we’d join to be their agents or buy their insurance policy).

    Speaking of insurance, it’s 1 of the essential things in life – no longer a luxury to have because not all of us can afford to cure or pay health care bills ourselves.

    “But I don’t even have money for myself now,” you say.
    “So how are you going to pay thousand dollars of hospital care if you can’t even fork out a hundred or so?”

    HLA Personal Insurance

    It’s not me!

    1 of the most memorable customers who had been facial-ed under my fingers were an Indian lady with her teenage daughter and son. They live in Singapore and was here on holiday.

    The lively and friendly family was the most entertaining of all customers. The siblings had tested some fragrances on the booths beside me but they didn’t buy anything and they shopped around the whole mall only to come back after they had finished their shopping.

    While the siblings select which fragrance to buy, their mother walked over and looked at our skin care range. I asked her, “Would you like to try our free facial mask?”

    She looked up from the badly cut paper advertisement, “Oh, got free?”

    “Yes. Just need about 20 minutes.”

    “Would I look black whole face ar?”

    She’s an Indian. Not the totally dark skin toned.

    “I can just apply on the nose, then you can see the difference.”


    She sat down and I explained to her as I squirted the toner onto the cotton pad, “This is the toner to clear your skin before we do the mask.”

    “Oh, I got use Lancome, we also have toner and all.”

    After that I applied the mask. As I opened the bottle, she asked, “Is this the black one? Oooh, I’m going to be scary!”

    She called out to her offsprings, “Eh, don’t look at mom. I’m going to be scary!”

    The younger boy chirped, “Cool, mom. Can I try too?”

    I smiled at him. Cute boy.

    She called out to the promoter selling the fragrance to them, “Eh, you give me LOTS of free gifts lar. We walked all the way from the other end and come back here.”

    The promoter nodded, smiling. “Sure, I’ll give you lots of free gifts.”

    “Can give shower gel, lotion, fragrance. Give us all you’ve got.”

    Whoa.. at least she was saying in a light hearted tone.

    FYI, free gifts are not compulsory when you buy packaged fragrance because there’s already a discounted item – usually a smaller size of the same fragrance for travelling, body shower gel, lotion, soap or even cosmetic.  But the free gifts do not have any price on them because by right, nobody can sell the free gift. By right. Not everyone follows the rule – there are lots of people selling samples and free gifts online. Heck, even the companies themselves sell their free gifts (bags, postcards, shower caps, stationeries, etc) in warehouse sales.

    Still, companies and promoters pitch their products with extra oomph by giving free gifts to get more sales.

    “Don’t worry, I’ll give you lots of free gifts after payment,” he assured them.

    After the siblings got the money from their mother, they came back to my counter and the promoter packed some free gifts. I peered inside. An arm’s length bag, 2-3 5ml fragrance vials (samples)!

    “Eh, give more lar..” the mother told the guy.

    I helped him and told the mother, “He’s giving a lot already. Usually they give only 1 free gift.”


    The siblings also chose the samples that they wanted. ^_^ Even the young boy, I think he is about 10-14 yo, is into fragrance!
    A call came for the daughter. “Ops, dad is here.”

    The mother said, “You. I told you not to tell him to come so early.”

    The daughter looked at me, “Everything is also me.”

    The mother looked at me, “It’s true. We want to go shopping, she go and call father to pick us up.”

    “He’s outside? They’ll ask him to turn around,” I said to the daughter. No car can stop outside the entrance for long. There is a security guard around to navigate traffic. It was raining too.

    “Go tell your father to go to Bangsar and buy food,” the mother told the daughter.

    “Go there and how long it’ll take for him to come back here? Leave  him alone har?”

    “Nevermind, I’ll wait outside. You all go with him lar. It’s all your fault.”

    “You see?” The daughter turned to me. “Everything is my fault.”

    “Yes.” The mother said firmly.


    “I love you mama,” the daughter said to the mother, patting her shoulder.

    “Oooh, yeah! I love you too.”

    “That’s the magic word,” I said to the daughter. Haha.

    “Mom you look cool!” The boy complimented the mother.

    The mother guffawed.

    “You are not supposed to laugh!” The daughter chided.

    “It’s ok, I only applied on the nose and the cheeks near the nose.”

    After the mask had dried, I peeled it off. Everyone got closer and check out the whiteheads & blackheads on the peeled mask. “OOoo.. ”

    I dabbed some lotion (moisturizer) and told them, “Done!”

    “How do you feel?”

    I could see her nose was clearer and brighter than before.

    “Great! It’s cleaner too. Thank you very much.”

    “Sure.” I told them some info promotion and the voucher that they received before they left.

    What a close happy family. How nice.

    Biological clock

    Sam asked, “A & C are married loo.. Even F is married.”

    “Yeah lo,” I answered.

    “Do you feel pressured leh.. to get married?” She glanced at me.

    I laughed dryly, “I haven’t even started dating!”

    “But don’t you feel pressured?”

    “No.. Do you?”

    “I do. So many of our friends are getting married. Just now at the wedding, I-”

    “Your boyfriend wants to get married ah?”

    “Not now lar. He’s forcing me to save money. Got to buy house, wedding dinner… but I want to have a baby before 30 years old woh..”

    “That means you must get married by 28, pregnant by 29.” I mentally calculated the years.

    “Yeah lor but it’s too soon lar! I wished time doesn’t go so fast.”

    “Huh. If you have a time limit to have baby-”

    “It’s very dangerous to have baby after 30 1 ahhhh.”

    “True also lar.. ”

    Sam growled, “Don’t know lah! You don’t feel pressured meh?”

    I raised my eyebrows, “I also don’t want to give birth.”

    “What?! You don’t want baby?”


    “But that’s the next stage! If an old couple doesn’t have children, what will happen to them? They would be bored and don’t know what to do with each other.”

    “Ha? Just because they are bored?” IMHO, if the couple is bored, they should try something new, out of routine. Having a baby will only emphasize on routine. Unless they have a maid.

    Besides, I wouldn’t want to live poorly and couldn’t provide for the baby just because one’s life must be in a stage from baby -> child -> teen (study) -> adult (work to death) -> spouse (get married) -> parent (accident or deliberate) -> grandparent (encourage the grown up child to be a parent). That’s so.. linear. Come on, be flexible.

    “Yeah lo. Must move to the next stage. More loving and understanding,” she clarified.


    “I saw and met a lot of people. I see lots of things. I last time also like you, say don’t want.”

    So, she meant I didn’t see, didn’t experience  as much as her? Rich.

    “Can have baby then get married lar.”

    “Say only easy lar you. It’s hard lar. I’m working in the business. Also must save family’s face lar. Mine leh? Can you stand people talk or not?”

    She’s actually part of the owners of a relatively new firm, dealing with “lower level guys who are chou low (impolite).” And she actually cares what other people say to her. Even those who take advantage of her. She calls it, “Part of the business. You use me. I use you.”


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