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My Good Day Face: Jessica Chia, Investment Banker

A request from Vogue’s Anna Wintour led one editor from magazines to mergers. But when she needs to overhaul her mood and fast, she returns to her beauty roots.

“My Good Day Face” is a Mental series about the feel-good beauty products people use to boost their moods. 

Beauty and banking may not immediately give off the “we go together” vibes of a blush-bronzer duo. But for Jessica Chia, they make the perfect pair.

The former Allure beauty editor decided to get an MBA after Anna Wintour, Vogue editor-in-chief and artistic director for Condé Nast (Allure’s parent company), asked her to consult with an executive at a high-profile private equity firm. She was shifting from the fashion sector to beauty, and needed advice.

“Over the course of our phone calls, I realized there was a bit of a disconnect between the level of beauty knowledge that the person who was actually going to make a multi-million dollar decision regarding a beauty brand and I, a longtime beauty editor, had,” Chia says. “The only way to close the gap, in my mind, was to get a finance degree and bring my beauty knowledge into finance.”

Now a graduate of the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business, Chia’s an investment banker who deals in sell-side mergers and acquisitions. As she explains it, “If you’re a founder who wants to sell their beauty—or fashion, or lifestyle—brand, I’ll be the one who writes your marketing materials and works on your financial model to get you the best valuation possible.” Creativity, meet analytics.

Chia applies that same type of balance to her personal pursuit of wellness. “I feel that beauty invites us to be gentle in our pursuit of health. You want to eat clean, but you need healthy fats and protein in your diet to have shiny hair and strong nails,” she says. “It might seem tempting to squeeze in a late-night workout, but you’d probably look and feel better the next morning if you just slept. That’s just my perspective–but I feel like my vanity helps balance any temptation to extremism with regard to health fads, new dietary trends, etc.”

Since Chia’s schedule these days isn’t exactly light and airy, her beauty routine must comply. “My entire makeup routine is focused around making me look and feel less tired, because very often I am working late nights and have to turn around and put myself together for early morning meetings,” she explains. “My cheat code for feeling great is hydrated skin, clear eyes, and loads of rose-hued makeup. Think of an oil painting–that’s usually the way they show youth and health!”

Antioxidant Serum + Hydrating Cream

Sand & Sky Tasmanian Spring Water, $49.90

“For hydrated skin, I’ll layer an antioxidant serum underneath the Sand & Sky Tasmanian Spring Water cream. It feels bouncy and makes your skin look like it’s just had an ice cold glass of water.”

Eye Drops

Bausch + Lomb Lumify Redness Reliever Eye Drops, $20.67

“I’ll place a couple of eyedrops in each eye so they’re clear and bright instead of bloodshot and bleary. I like Lumify best; it works instantly and the effects last for hours.”

Peach Cream Blush

Patrick Ta Major Headlines – Double-take Crème & Powder Blush in Do We Know Her?, $34

“After I put on a little bit of foundation to even my skintone and hide any undereye circles, I bring my skin to life with a gorgeous peachy cream blush. Lately I’ve been wearing Patrick Ta’s Major Headlines – Double-take Crème & Powder Blush in Do We Know Her? I’ll use a big, fluffy, wide brush to sweep it onto my cheekbones and nose, and I also put a bit up near my hairline, so it looks like I got a little color outside. My face instantly looks brighter and it makes me feel cheerier, too.”

Lifting Mascara

Benefit BADgal BANG! Volumizing Mascara, $27

“I like to finish with a lifting mascara like Benefit’s Bad Gal Bang—it substitutes regular powder for an ultra-light one originally invented for NASA. It lifts my lashes and makes me look and feel more awake.”

BONUS! Her Shower Routine

Face Cleanser

Intelligent Elixirs Rose Foaming Cream Cleanser, $19

A really luxurious shower can change your entire mood in under 10 minutes. It’s this amazing, really accessible moment of renewal. Maybe it’s because you have to kind of close your eyes or can’t have your phone with you in the shower, but I feel like it’s when I notice the textures and scents of my products the most. Lately I’ve been using the Intelligent Elixirs Rose Foaming Cream Cleanser, which feels like a really plush, cushy cream and smells like a fresh rose, not a fake one.” 

Exfoliating Facial

Yerba Mate Resurfacing Energy Facial, $54

“Once a week, I follow with the Youth to the People Yerba Mate Resurfacing Energy Facial to get rid any dullness and leave my skin glowing. Then I’ll finish with a full-body scrub or oil and I just feel like a brand new person. No matter how hectic my day was, I feel like I’m back in the driver’s seat a little bit because I have the agency to help myself feel better.”

Follow Jessica Chia on Instagram at @jess_chia.

MENTAL NOTE: Oh hi there. Like we said above,My Good Day Face” is a Mental series about the makeup and skin products people use to boost their moods. Yes, there are conflicting studies on whether makeup is good or bad psychologically, whether it can soothe or inflame anxiety and depression. If beauty causes you angst or feels like a form of pressure, step away! We love a beautiful bare face. But if applying moisturizer and lipstick helps your mental state by giving you a routine to follow, acting as meditation, inspiring creativity, or simply expressing your inner human, then: By. All. Means. 

All products featured on Mental have been selected independently and editorially. When you buy from our links, we may earn a commission.

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