Ana De Jesus
We take some time to ask some Qs and connect with some of our brand new peeps that have joined the Impulse family.
We welcome award winning fashion and lifestyle blogger Ana to Impulse...
Ana De Jesus
Tell me a little about yourself?
Gosh, I don't even know where to start. My biography is somewhat of a difficult tale to write and my ascension into this world hasn’t always been an easy path to tread. Yet despite the difficult trials and tribulations that I have faced along the way there has been positivity, magical unicorns and happy sprinkles that allow me to see the world through the rose tinted glasses that I currently covet. I triumphed hardships to forge my own destiny and written in the stars was a career as a writer, who would be free to remain in the fantasy world that had previously languished in her own head. Writing would take my breath away and from the moment I could hold a pen I was using words to make sense of the world. I was never an orator but I was born to be a writer, it allowed me to overcome being abandoned by my parents, it helped me cope with being abused by my stepmother and it made me stand up to the bullies who dripped their poisoned bullets into my ears. But I don't want to start this interview on a sad note; despite the obstacles that I have overcome they have turned me into a warrior who likes to believe that 'everything happens for a reason' and my past is as much a part of me as the future is my destiny.
So who am I? Good question; My name is Ana and I was born to parents from Madeira, a stunning Portuguese island with beautiful basalt beaches, tropical gardens, fresh and seasonal food and natural vistas that are like hidden gems in a colourless world. I have three different families and was raised in Foster Care from the age of 10, which I lived in until I went to University aged 17.
I was an introvert growing up but going to stage school where I sang, acted, and danced helped me develop self confidence and became a therapeutic outlet for me to harness my feelings in a creative self space that would allow me to heal. But it was writing that shapes who I am as a person today. As a speaker I am clumsy, stumbling over my words , but as a writer we are eloquent playing around with words like they are part of a lyrical maze that runs through our mind with abandon. So naturally after my degree in English Literature, English Language and Education and Social Sciences, which I graduated from in 2015, it seemed only natural that I should foray into a writer's world as a Journalist. But being a journalist didn't make me happy, so last year I quit my blog to go blogging full time and while it has had its ups and downs, I don't regret my decision one bit. I like that I am able to make my own decisions, I like that no one is telling me what to do and most of all I love the opportunities it has given me and the people I am able to connect with along the way. One day I might be covering a fashion show and the next day I can be reviewing a restaurant, so when it comes to how you want to represent yourself as a content creator, there really is no limitations.
While I originally started my blog to document my 'fashion adventures' I realised that there were so many interests and hobbies that I had in my personal life that I was determined to expand my niche and re branded myself as Lifestyle blogger who speaks candidly on her experiences with mental health, abuse, bullying, dating and relationships, alongside interests like food and drink, hotels, travel and events. I also run a social media group for Bloggers on Facebook called 'Bloggers United' which has over 21,000 bloggers, where I help them get more traffic, more engagement and a connection with other content creators and co-founded an events company with my friend and fellow blogger Giulia Smith (a very talented blogger, freelancer and academic), where we focus on helping micro-influencers get more opportunities and to meet other like minded individuals.
A typical day for me would usually involve some basic coding, editing and writing articles, photo curation and photo editing, social media work, networking, events, meetings and admin work but like I said each day as a blogger differs.
"One thing I will say for sure though is that there is far more to blogging than people realise and for anyone who thinks 'blogging is easy work' get back to me when you have realised that you have to take your own photos, write articles, learn how to code, how to market and promote yourself, pitch brands, be on the move and many more skills that becoming a blogger teaches you to harness."
But on a lighthearted note, you want to know what really makes me happy? As someone who does not like to sit still, I always like to keep myself busy so my hobbies include dancing, eating (I am always eating, it's something that my followers on Instagram always joke about), seeing friends, attending events, writing, reading, watching Netflix, listening to music, going to the movies and of course I love to explore new places, whether that be through a Harry Potter themed afternoon tea or swimming at a secluded beach, there is no such thing as a dull day in my book. After all life is too short to not make the most of what our world has to offer. Oh and I adore animals, I want to have 5 pugs and 5 cats, so as you can see I am an animal lover, which actually made me decide to become a vegetarian, so it has been a long time since I have had meat.
"I am also a cruelty free blogger so I don't wear any animal materials or use products that test on animals, because I don't want to be the cause of an animal's suffering, it just does not sit right with me."
And this transcends into my personal style; as I mentioned my 'style' is vegan so I don't wear leather, fur, suede, wool or silk and wear faux materials instead, so retailers like Pretty Little Thing and Chi Chi London, which I count among my favourite stores, are very respectful as they do not use any animal materials whatsoever.
If I was to describe my personal style it would be 70's floral bohemianism meets 60's mod culture, with a hint of the 90's grunge culture, as these are all fashion eras which embrace colour and created trends that are intrinsic to how I dress. For example my 'day wear uniform' would typically involve fishnet tights, a sixties a-line mini skirt, crop top or bodysuit, trench coat or faux fur coat with a floppy 70's hat and sunglasses, whereas my formal wear is usually centred around floral midi or mini dresses, with ruffle and flamenco detail, often worn with flower crowns, heeled sandals and statement tassel earrings. Oh and considering I characterise myself as a part time mermaid and a unicorn at weekends it goes without saying that I am somewhat of a maven of colour!
How do you currently shop?
I normally shop online as I find it so much easier and a lot less stressful than elbowing my way through shoppers who give me 'walkers rage'. Don't know what this is? Well it's like when a driver gets annoyed at other drivers who are too slow on the roads, thus when people are browsing through shops or shopping centres for some reason no-one seems to be in as much as a hurry as me and are always walking at a snails pace, which is very annoying.
Whereas if I shop online A. I don't have to queue for hours just for a pair of socks, B. I can find what I want at a click of a button and C, if I wanted to order a pair of shoes from the comfort of my bedroom, while I stuff my face with food and binge watch Rick and Morty or Ru Paul's Drag Race, I can quite happily do so if I wish. And best of all stores like Asos have Next Day Delivery, meaning that if I needed something for a surprise event or birthday party I can just type in what I am looking for without having to lose my sanity in the process.
That being said I will occasionally shop in store but I do prefer online shopping, even when you can order something like a jumpsuit online which looks incredible on the model but on you makes you look like a shapeless sack which is never a good look. While I tend to shop through the stores online directly (frequent brands include Pretty Little Thing, LOTD and Quiz),
I have used apps in the past to help me find what I am looking for.
What are your thoughts about pineapple on pizza?
Anyone who says that they don't like pineapple deserves to be locked up in a prison made especially for crimes against the 'Pineapple Kingdom', because pineapples are so freaking delicious. To me my idea of a perfect pizza usually involves pineapple in some shape or form, with olives, peppers, buffalo cheese, goats cheese and a tomato base.
"Oh and a stuffed cheese crust and a much needed needed glass of Vino is of course a classic pairing."
So in answer to my thoughts about pineapple on Pizza it's delicious and anyone who says otherwise will be taken off my Christmas list. I actually have no idea what people have against pineapple on pizza's, its like the whole Bounty controversy all over again!
How would you describe your dream lifestyle?
I would always rather be happy than have lots of money, because to me your mental health matters more than having 'the biggest bank balance', which as a millennial seems to be a shared desire.
This is why I would quite happily say that I am living my dream lifestyle, because while I have struggled financially, I like being able to work for myself and having the creative control to shape my destiny. I like that one day I can be eating Indian food in London and the next day I can be on a panel with industry insiders, giving a talk to 300 other people, because my job helps me challenge my own personal boundaries and teaches me to live in the moment, rather than worry about what tomorrow would bring.
When I made that change to quit my job, when I moved to London for the first time, when I started my blog, that is when I started my dream lifestyle and through hard work and determination, I have turned something that I love into my dream lifestyle. Naturally it would be nice to be able to travel more, and be able to afford more things, but at the moment I am happy with a simple lifestyle that is full of meaning, full of colour and never ever gets boring.
Would you rather look after 1 horse sized duck OR 100 duck sized horses?
Well as someone who is known to be somewhat of a crazy animal lady, why have one of something when you can have 100? Plus horses are super cute anyway (although I do prefer cats and dogs, I want to have a house filled with them!) so imagine them being the same size as cute little ducks? Unless by some strange phenomenon these ducks are as big as Godzilla, in which case no thank you.
"Still if anyone is looking for a home to house 100 random duck sized horses then just call me the Horse Whisperer because there is plenty of room in my house (and heart) for some furry friends."
The only thing is I might forget the names of all my mini horse friends, so maybe I need to move to a bigger house in order to accommodate them all. Aha!
Can you recommend who we interview next?
You should interview my friend Marie from @whatcorrinedid as not only is she a talented blogger and content creator, but she is also a social media manager at a start up brand called Adexe Watches.
She is a very creative individual with a great eye for colour and design, and despite being known as a content creator, her hidden talents include baking delicious cakes (don't ask me to cook as I am terrible, I am better at eating as opposed to cooking) and being able to execute excellent product photo shots. In fact Marie has actually taken some photos for me and we even had a magical holiday to Tuscany in Italy, where we spent a week stuffing our faces with delicious food, drinking as much as possible and lying in wait for a hidden glimpse of sunshine. Turns out it rains in Italy too, who would have known?
So yes interview Marie, I am not just saying that because I am her friend either, I think that she has a wonderful blog where she writes on topics like body positivity, a beautifully curated Instagram feed and of course is a wonderful person inside and out.
This was a wild ride Ana.
Your story is incredible and the effort you put into your day to day life truly sets the bar high for all bloggers and influencers out there. You have an un-healthy love for pineapple (be careful!) - however your energy and optimism is infectious, and I cannot wait to have you trying Impulse and maybe becoming an Impulse Ambassador in the future!
For those interested, we are running this brand new interview series to get to know as many as our sign ups as possible. If you'd also like the chance to take part, showcase your personality, and forever get a pretty spot on the blog, drop me an email - firstname.lastname@example.org - and we'll get it done.