Meet These Hip And Happening Moms Of Instagram: Moms You'd Love To Follow
Before Jackie Go, Shari Poquiz, and Cat Arambulo-Antonio were mothers, they were women first—women who confidently fulfilled different roles from friend to entrepreneur, boss to wife, and sister to blogger.
Today, as women who have successfully conquered their individual pursuits and mastered the complexities of the digital sphere, each of them will tell you one thing with unmistakable certainty: no role in their multi-hyphenate lifestyles compares to that of being a mom.
Collectively knowing that makeup runs can be accomplished with children in tow, that mani-pedi sessions can be relaxing despite an attention-seeking toddler close by, or that this day's vlog can be enhanced—not interrupted—by kids in the background are what bring these moms together.
Jackie (a fitness enthusiast), Shari (an entrepreneur and digital production company owner), and Cat (a fashion and interior designer) have all learned that it's family first, now and always.
As Shari looks back on how they first struck up their friendship, she says, "I met Jackie first at a beauty event, and we hit it off immediately because we had the same mom woes! Cat, I met later when she approached me to ask about photography tips, apps I use, and video editing."
"On another year, Cat, Shari, and I, together with our kids, went to Singapore for a press junket," Jackie adds.
Despite everything they needed to think about as established online influencers, mommy-focused concerns were still very much on their minds. Using them to connect with other women, as they found out, was one of the best ways to make new and lasting friends. It didn't take long for this trio of power moms to realize that if they found comfort and encouragement in each other, other moms out there must need the same.
And with that, these moms set out to become bloggers with a purpose.
As Shari explains, "The best part [about blogging] is being able to connect with other moms who feel just like me—sometimes unappreciated, extremely exhausted, forgetful—and tell them they’re not alone and that they matter."
For these Hip and Happening Moms of Instagram who are queens of Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and beyond, their throne is not one anchored on personal accomplishments, but rather, one that rests on reminding all women that the ultimate role a woman can fulfill is truly worth it.—Sara de los Reyes
In celebration of Mother’s Day, Metro.Style brings you Hip and Happening Moms, a three-part feature on stylish, influential, and multi-hyphenate moms who are active on social media.
For Cat Arambulo-Antonio, an interior designer and fashion director, her blog began as the synergy of her many interests. But it quickly exceeded that. Moms who discovered the blog loved it because Cat was so genuine and easy to relate to. In contrast to a lot of online content, Cat strives to be real in her blog, presenting life without sugarcoating it. (For her, this is one of the best ways to fight mental health problems caused by social media pressure.) This realness is probably what makes Cat so down-to-earth and easy to befriend.
Of course, Cat’s philosophy of being real doesn’t just apply online—she also applies this approach in parenting her three kids. She exposes her children to the real world by encouraging them to be responsible, strive diligently to succeed, and own up to their mistakes. At home, she’s got toy boxes and book stands in different parts of the room, allowing the youngest child to keep up after herself. She’s helped by an extra-supportive husband, who also takes care of their children whenever she’s away (which could be several times a month). At the end of the day, despite Cat’s busy schedule, this energetic mom still believes life is all about family.
Meanwhile, as a businesswoman, Cat has sacrificed a lot of time in developing Catastrophe, a chic lifestyle line specializing in stylish office materials that underscore fashion and fun. But somehow, she manages to do so much more—the socialite has collaborated with fashion label Mosaic and shoe company Dr. Kong, among others. She even judges in The Apartment, the first interior design reality show in Asia. But among all these interests, family and business still take priority. Cat concludes, “Mothers need self-love because you can’t give what you don’t have. This means that you have to love yourself, care for yourself, and make time for yourself. That’s when you become the best mother you can be.” —Joshua Young
Describe your style.
Despite my colorful personality, my daily wardrobe is black and white—I only wear those colors because they’re classics, and they’re really easy to style. With black and white pieces, I don’t even have to spend too much time thinking of what to wear!
What is your style mantra?
I like to accessorize with big statement pieces—I like chunky jewelry!
On Cat: white long vest, Zara; cowl neck top, Harlan and Holden; white pants, Cat’s own; earrings, Rory and Sloan; white high neck top, Cat’s own; belted skirt, Zara; earrings, Rory and Sloan; and shoes, Cat’s own
“I was one of the first girls in my circle to get married and have kids,” shares motherhood, fitness, and lifestyle blogger Jackie Go. That early start made Jackie the go-to mom for pregnancy-related matters, so she shared her insights on Facebook. When friends suggested she start her own blog, Jackie wavered. But she loved writing, had a supportive husband, and found a perfect blog title from a friend in advertising. So in 2010, “Go Jackie Go” was born, a perfect platform to share motherhood experiences. Jackie relates, “Books can help you with the basics, but the experience is really different, and moms need encouragement.”
As a mom, Jackie takes things one day at a time. Though her organized nature loved precise schedules, Jackie shares that when she had her second child, she learned to let go. She shares, “Don’t get frustrated when you aren’t able to do everything in your checklist—there’s always tomorrow. With this mindset, I am less stressed and enjoy more.”
For Jackie, exercise is also to enjoy the day. Though she had asthma as a child, she only realized at age 29 that she was young but not healthy. The fitness enthusiast advocates for moms to have a healthy lifestyle, stay happy, avoid mom guilt, and do self-care. For Jackie, self-care, or finding something that makes you feel better, is essential to better motherhood.
Jackie also shares that being a “hip and happening” mom not only means navigating the world of technology with your children, but also passing on the values you learned from your parents, like grit, resilience, and independence. “Kids will know what it’s like to be broken hearted and to fail, but it will bring out the best in them.”—Joshua Young
Describe your style.
My style is a mix of feminine and experimental. I’m in that phase of my life where I’m still not closing doors on trends. I make sure I incorporate classics with pieces that are trendy and unique.
What is your style mantra?
If I’m going to buy something, I make sure I can wear it more than 10 times. I look for pieces that would last—and since I have a daughter, I want pieces that I could pass on to her, like a nice pair of jeans, for example. It may be a little more expensive, but I know that I can wear it for years and pass it on to her. I think when you’re a mom, your mindset becomes like that.
On Jackie: polka dot shorts and inner top, Stradivarius; oversized coat, Zara; earrings, Rory and Sloan; and shoes, Jackie’s own
Shari Poquiz’s foray into blogging paralleled her journey to motherhood. After getting pregnant and quitting corporate life, Shari found herself with extra time and decided to blog about her passion: makeup and beauty. Her blog quickly became a boon to her financially, allowing her to support her kids and even save for the future. Little did Shari know that her blog would help her in different businesses in the future!
From her savings, Shari and her sister established Rory and Sloan, a brand catering to empowered, confident women, beginning with accessories like statement earrings. “Don’t be afraid of who you are; don’t be afraid to use your voice,” she asserts.
In the meantime, Shari gives voice to other small start-ups, leading her own digital creatives company to develop content and manage social media accounts. Once again, her blogging experience worked to her advantage, as she applies what she learned and did as a blogger in digital marketing. But with two kids and two businesses, Shari refutes the idea that it’s possible to "balance" everything. Instead, time passes in seasons for her—seasons where she prioritizes family, and seasons where work takes more effort—either way, caring and providing for the kids remain top priority. Still, Shari reminds herself to take time off to refuel and recharge. She concludes, “A great mom gives time for herself and doesn’t forget to love herself first, because that’s where it all comes from.”—Joshua Young
Describe your style.
Laid-back chic. Before, I used to follow trends, but now I think my style has matured. I only get classics that I can use all the time.
I used to wonder why people buy the same shirt in different colors, but now I understand why. If I find a piece that fits me right and I can wear it a lot of times, I’ll buy it in all colors! I no longer think whether it looks trendy, or if people will like it, or if it will look good on Instagram. As long as I’m comfy, and I can run around and take care of my kids, then that’s my style.
What is your style mantra?
Before buying anything, I ask myself: can I style this piece in five different ways? And can I still wear this five years from now?
On Shari: pantsuit set, Bershka; inner top, Topshop; earrings, Rory and Sloan; and shoes, Shari’s own
As a tribute to these wonder moms, here's a gallery of their photos with their kids:
Photos from @catarambulo @gojackiego @themistymom
Produced by Hershey Neri, Kate Paras-Santiago, and Grace Libero-Cruz
Photographs by Ria Regino
Styling by Gelie Manansala
Makeup by Christine Laviñac using NARS (Shari) and Tin Albano using NARS (Jackie)
Hairstyling by Mong Amado (Shari) and Eddiemar Cabiltes (Jackie)
Special thanks to Kayla Venzon of Work/With Co-Working Space
Catering by Feta Mediterranean
Shot on location at Work/With at The Penthouse, Cocolight Building, 11th Avenue, 39th Street, Bonifacio Global City