Dressed in jewels by Pomellato, Jessica Jann, Nat Kwan, Cheronna Ng and Veronica Li share their take on everything from career goals to motherhood
A self-described “excited mama-to-be who loves her family, movies, skincare, acting and food”, Jessica Jann is a firm believer that women can do it all. “We’re so lucky. I think you just have to believe in yourself and do whatever you want. If you set your mind to it, you can do it,” she says. “Always stay positive and always just focus on the good because I think it’s very easy to get sucked into feeling negative or down. I try really hard to focus on the good things and just enjoy life because it goes by so quickly.”
Indeed, the first-time mum is all about embracing joy and colour. “Having a colourful life is just being able to be with people you love, find new passions and keep learning,” she says. “I’m so excited about being a mum and I’m really looking forward to that next phase in my life but I also love working as well. I’m inspired by the women who are full-time mums but also work on the side. It’s a balancing act but I really do believe we can do it all.”
Jann, who started out as a child actor in films like Lethal Weapon 4 and Easy A, currently runs an influencer marketing agency and aesthetic beauty centre on top of managing her popular Instagram account and food blog. It’s all in keeping with her belief that there’s enough room for everyone to achieve their dreams.
“I know in the past there might have been competition. I don’t feel that; I feel like it’s more just about empowering other women as well as empowering yourself,” she explains. “I just hope that by the next generation, especially when my kids are grown up, there will be an even bigger shift. I hope there’s equal pay, I hope that women realise they can do anything. They’re so strong. We got this, we can do anything!”
Teaching English, attending events, doing photo shoots, running a decorations and gift packaging business – not to mention settling into married life amidst a pandemic – Nat Kwan is one busy woman. “My life is really colourful because I do a lot of things,” she says.
It helps that Kwan shares the view that women today can have and do it all: “A lot of my friends, they’re not only mums or wives but also have their own careers. I’m trying to reach that level as well – I’m not a mum yet but I have my own career and with technology nowadays it’s more convenient for a woman to do everything at once.”
Despite having had to cancel her overseas wedding because of the pandemic, Kwan is discovering new aspects of herself through marriage. “The biggest thing I’ve learnt so far is how to compromise. I’ve also learnt that I want to do more, not just work on myself and my family,” she says. “I also want to try to do more charity work because I feel like with the situation around the world there’s a lot of people who need help – it’s not always about myself.”
In the meantime, Kwan is hoping to grow her business and grow her family through motherhood. “There are so many more opportunities in the working field and women have so many more roles than just housewives,” she says of her generation compared to those of the past. “I think women in the next generation will be even more career-oriented but at the same time strive for a work-life balance.”
As one of Hong Kong’s most prominent fashion stylists, bloggers and consultants, Veronica Li has created a life for herself that is at once boldly colourful and meticulously curated. When it comes to the former, Li chooses to focus on the positive aspects of colour to enhance her mood and well-being. And in terms of the latter, she is well on her way to realising a 15-year plan that culminates in the birth of her first child. “My plan was to date for 10 years, get married, and then be married for five years and have a child,” she says. “The due date is November 11, which is my fifth wedding anniversary.”
Pregnancy has certainly been a new journey for Li, one that has transformed not only her family but also her own sense of empowerment. “Before being pregnant I underestimated myself, thinking I can’t do this or I can’t do that,” she explains. “But I think God created us to be super strong and I think you just have to be bold to step forward and then just keep on trying and never let other people bring you down – especially if you feel that you can do something.”
While Li is looking forward to her post-pregnancy career, and perhaps even styling expecting and new mothers, the most important thing for her is to be a good role model and encourage the next generation to embrace and share their talents.
“Let people know your value,” she says. “There are times we may hold back a bit because of the previous generation’s preconceptions. But as the world changes, ways of thought change – and our thoughts determine our actions. Nowadays women have more courage to think outside the box and more confidence to speak out and let others know what we are capable of.”
Whether it’s to do with music, lifestyles or relationships, Cheronna Ng sees the world in rainbow hues. “A colourful life doesn’t segregate colours, be it people’s races or the people you love. A colourful life is full of love,” says the singer and actress. “A colourful life also needs sharing – having friends and being able to do what you love, living in the present, enjoying every moment and treasuring what you have.”
For Ng, who has embarked on a solo career after hitting it big in Cantopop group Super Girls, that includes constantly trying and learning new things while connecting with and supporting her growing number of fans. “I’m really simple. Life is short so really treasure it. Whether you’re happy or unhappy, share with people around you and with people who accept you for who you are,” she says. “Because I know that a lot of my fans are a part of the LGBTQ community, and I really hope that they can have the courage to share more and open up more about things.”
Believing that she still has “a lot of room for improvement”, Ng is nervous about going it alone after being part of a girl group but looks forward to making the most of every opportunity that comes her way – something she also wishes for generations of women to come: “To me, a successful woman is one who can live happily and enjoy her life. I really admire those who are resilient in doing what they like, without caring about what others think or changing themselves because of what others think, and I hope I can do the same.”
Photographer / Ricky Lo Assistants / Alston Chan, Kelvin Sim and Jason Li Videography / Ken Leung Stylist / Alex Loong Make-up / Little White Make-up assistant / Fngmakeup Hair / Jean.T and Sofia Tso at aTEN STUDIO