Shaina’s lifestyle change amid pandemic inspires business

Shaina Magdayao said that the “new normal” setup in showbiz work has forced her to adjust her lifestyle.

With more restrictions in bubble filming, the FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano actress said she had to make some changes in her life, including the things that she uses.

She said she had to stash away designer bags and went for customized ones that were more about function than form and more importantly, useful and practical in this time of pandemic.

This eventually gave the self-confessed OC (obsessive-compulsive) the idea to partner with her high school friend and makeup artist Niki Medina and start a bag business selling “pandemic-ready” canvas bags that are “locally sourced, locally made and locally designed.” They named the brand Organized Chicas (@organizedchicas on Instagram).

“(Work) has become the medium of how I got the idea. Personally, I had to adjust my lifestyle because of the pandemic and the designer bags that I (used to) use before I don’t use them anymore, I don’t even need them anymore. You want something that you can disinfect right away. If you’re talking about canvas, you can wash it right away. Because of my job and the need five months ago, it developed into a brand,” she said in a recent virtual interview.

Shaina said Organized Chicas is also a reflection of who she is, as she likes everything to be neat, tidy and fuss-free. Bags as well as bag organizers are priced P1,200 and below. Details that make these products “specific for the pandemic” include outside pockets measured to fit face shields, among others.

“God has been so generous that in the middle of the pandemic, we were able to come up with a business,” she said. “It feels effortless because this is what we love doing, sharing our hobby and the things that we’re using.”

As for her biggest lesson in the last five months as an entrepreneur, it’s that “you have to be hands-on, you can’t be dependent on other people, because at the end of the day, your brand is you.”

She added, “I didn’t promote this when we launched last Feb. 14. I didn’t even post this on my Instagram page because it’s like a hobby lang and we didn’t see this coming, that it becomes an official brand.”

The brand is now going beyond bags and expanding to include clothing and home items. She’s also partnering with professional organizer Neat Obsessions.

“From a bag line, we’re now like a lifestyle brand. Everything is made up of canvas and linen, and who knows, we can also carry cotton in the future. This wasn’t the plan, of course, but since people kept on asking what I’m wearing all the time, I thought of just making our own line… I’m not trendy. I like going against trends. I go for classic but quality pieces.”

Besides Organized Chicas, she’s also part of her three other sisters’ salon business. “Showbiz won’t be forever although it feels forever for me. Hindi laging hectic, in a role, (so) you have to make sure you are wise with your investments and so far I’ve been making the right decisions.”

On the personal front, Shaina couldn’t escape playful questions if her love life is as neat and fuss-free as her bag line. The 31-year-old quipped, “Next question please! Sana kasing dali lang siya ng bag, madali lang magpagawa ng partner. But hindi siya ganun kadali. Sana ganun ka dali i-design ang partner na maging perfect fit for you, (who meets) all your requirements. But it’s not as simple.”

Love life aside, Shaina looks happy and content because it appears that she also makes a conscious effort to imbibe positivity and put order into her life.

She shared with The STAR her morning ritual on starting her day on a good note. “Our lives don’t have a routine, to be very blunt about it. We used to be, or until now, always on call. So my routine changes depending on whether I have work or not. But one thing is consistent, my morning meditation. It’s a 15-minute audio meditation that I listen to every morning to start my day right. And that meditation ends with a prayer.”

Another is at least 30 minutes away from her phone the moment she wakes up.

“I try to not hold my phone for 30 minutes upon waking up just to gather my thoughts and really re-center. It’s nice! Ilang books na yung nababasa ko na you should put down your phone for an hour at least upon waking up. If you read the Bible, you read the Bible. If you read a book, then read a book.”

Shaina continued, “(Every morning) pinapangunahan ko na, nagpapasalamat na ako na the day ahead will be great. I always claim, ‘Thank You for the blessings, for another day, for a good day.’ I already thank na even before the day starts. Dapat una palang nagpapasalamat ka na, kini-claim mo na.

“So those are my non-negotiables, the prayer time and the 15-minute meditation. It works for me, I don’t know if it works for other people, but you try to find time, I guess, if it’s important to you. You will really make time for things that matter.”

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