Metro At 30: Joey Mead-King On What She Truly Lives For
She's the host of Metro Channel's "Women of Style," an up-and-coming author whose book will be released soon, and a passionate individual who wants to create a community with "a happy female energy"
Joey Mead-King dances without music. It’s a spellbinding sight: she makes the moves up as she goes, a dozen pair of eyes on her, and not once does she stop to ask what they think. This is the energy that’s easiest to take away from her—she’s got a coolness to her, an air of calmness and serenity that’s absolutely enviable. She glides through the ballroom amongst a flurry of people and equipment, and when she talks to someone, she looks at them straight in the eye, her big brown eyes both warm and bewitching. “I hate small talk,” she’ll tell you. “I need to connect to someone. When I talk to someone, I need to look at you.”
And she does. There’s a gleam in her eyes when she speaks of her past Metro shoots, of her living out her formative years in the 90s, of her wanting to create a community that’s brimming with happy female energy.
As Metro celebrates its 30th year, so does Joey, and she plans to commemorate it with a book. “2019 marks my 30th year in the industry,” she tells Metro.Style. “I began modeling when I was 15, and this year, I turn 45. I’d like to mark this year in print because print is old school, and so am I,” she smiles.
“I’m from the nineties!”
“That was an eclectic time,” she recalls, describing the decade to be “alternative,” “raw,” and “spicy,” and it was in this environment that a young Joey Mead emerged in the world of modeling. She thinks back to her first Metro shoot and all the apprehensions that came with being a young model. “At that time I still had a lot of fear as a young woman, so it was quite nerve-wracking to do that shoot. There was still that wanting-to-please personality,” she admits. Since then, her evolution has been well-documented—after five covers with Metro and a bevy of other magazines both here and abroad, she’s definitely made her mark. “As I evolved, I really just called my own shots as a woman. I’m no longer fearful to say what I want.”
“While I was modeling as a young woman,” Joey tells Metro.Style, “Rejection was hard.” She had gone through her early years as a model without a structured family environment; her support system turned out to be friends, which until today she’s warmly and ultimately grateful for. “As a young model, when you weren’t getting the job, you’re not able to pay your rent, these struggling times were a really big hit on my self-esteem. But as the years went by,” Joey says, “There was something about rejection that made me feel whole. I was able to look at it as an opportunity to grow from it. I no longer looked at it as, ‘Sayang, I really needed that job.’ I look at it as, ‘It’s their client’s loss for not booking an amazing talent as me. I’ll get the next one.’ These were the challenging times of just growing in your art form and not being side-swept by the noise of it.”
As I evolved, I really just called my own shots as a woman. I’m no longer fearful to say what I want
This attitude and spunk is what got Joey to where she is now—a successful career woman, television personality, and model—and it’s what got her to stringing together words, thoughts, and ideas in one book, set to be released this December.
Writing the book, for Joey, is a way to heal herself. She talks of past wounds that she now carry as scars, as medals of having survived the toughest of times. “I wrote a diary in 1988,” she shares. “I stopped in 2014—the digital age.” She has sixteen years’ worth of material to comb through, and with each page she turns, a piece of her is remedied, in a way.
She thinks of what to tell her past self, the Joey that has endured so much and has come out of trials and tribulations renewed and strengthened. “I would talk to Joey and I’d give her a really big hug. I’d kiss her on the forehead, tell her, ‘You are loved, I love you, I need you to love yourself. Good things will happen. I need you to connect to you. You need to find yourself,’” Joey says, each word in that final sentence punctuated by a pause—something she’s got a lot of. One thing is for sure: Joey takes her time and lives so presently in the moment that her pauses and intakes of breath hold so much in them.
'You are loved, I love you, I need you to love yourself. Good things will happen. I need you to connect to you. You need to find yourself'—Joey on what she'd tell her past self
Joey shares that in recent years, she’s experienced a rebirth, an awakening that continues up to today. “It’s really about being fluid,” Joey says. “There are many that want to capitalize on career. There are others that want to do best for their families. I’m on this path where I want to be the best version of me. I look at things so differently now than I did when I was a 20-year-old. I want to create a community where we’re all connected by communication, and open dialogue where there’s no judgment, where there’s a happy female energy where everyone can feel safe to talk.”
She continues, “Social media can be social good but sometimes it can be too overwhelming for the psyche, where people can end up comparing and feeling bad. Depression is on a high. Where I’m at in life could be quite useful for others—a reminder for them to wake up in the morning, don’t turn on the phone, be present, meditate for 10-15 minutes, get yourself realigned, do affirmations, and then continue with the day presently.”
I want to create a community where we’re all connected by communication, and open dialogue where there’s no judgment, where there’s a happy female energy where everyone can feel safe to talk
Behind her, alongside her, and around her are a group of strong, empowered woman who she admires and is lucky enough to call friends. She begins with her wife, Angelina King. “She has great patience that I always try to learn from,” Joey says. “She’s a very fluid individual. She doesn’t let things affect her deeply and she has this fluid personality that I’d like to imitate.” Joey names more of her friends—people she knows in real life, people whose laughter constantly rings in her ears, people whose energy constantly vibes with hers. “It’s risky with idolization,” she admits. “I don’t idolize because it makes me feel like I can’t be like you. I don’t like that mentality.”
In her thirty years in the business, Joey has learned things that she holds onto tightly until now. “You really value your personal space,” Joey says. “You don’t think of yourself as a public figure. Go along your day as normal, be kind to people around you, say no when you don’t feel comfortable and don’t feel ashamed about it. Live your life but still be personable. Be your authentic self.”
And so Joey’s on it—she has an upcoming book and a capsule collection of everyday wear, she’s hosting Metro Channel’s Women of Style, and she’s doing meaningful collaborations, left and right. Where does she see herself in the near future?
Be kind to people around you, say no when you don’t feel comfortable and don’t feel ashamed about it. Live your life but still be personable. Be your authentic self
“Well,” she starts, a mischievous glint in her eyes. “I’m thinking my next book will be about how to take care of your cats and how to feed your cats with homegrown food. Cats and gardening,” she jests. Joey is an advocate of animal rights, sharing her home with both cats and dogs. She even shares that she cannot write her book at home—cats would be walking on her laptop and her Retriever would be jumping all over the place. “I really do wish very much for something that is very simple and just connected to nature,” she says more seriously.
“I came back from Los Angeles a week ago and everyday I would just take a walk in the suburbs. There’s something really beautiful and nourishing about Los Angeles sunshine. I can walk down these neighborhoods and just admire these houses and I touch trees and…” she pauses, taking a breath. “I live for this.”
There’s no doubt: Joey, soft-spoken yet full of such palpable, scintillating energy, has reached a moment of true awakening, and for this, we can’t wait for what else she has to create and, most of all, accomplish.
I really do wish very much for something that is very simple and just connected to nature
Produced by Kat Cruz-Villanueva, Ceia Ylagan, and Judy Arias
Photography by Dookie Ducay
Video by Chapters by Mayad
Art direction by Raff Colmenar
Sittings editors: Geolette Esguerra, Grace Libero-Cruz, and Kate Paras-Santiago
Production design by Kathy Sy King of Event Styles
Makeup by Diwata Timbol
Hairstyling by Ghil Sayo
Styling by Danae Dipon
Shot on location at City of Dreams Manila
Special thanks to C&L Decor, Shop Rent Gala, 4th Wall, and 18th Floristry; Charisse Chuidian and Romina Gervacio of City of Dreams Manila