Vern Enciso has been a top influencer since 2010. In this exclusive interview, she opens up about what it really takes to have maintain excellence over the years.
It’s 2010. It was the time of cafe flat lays, mermaid curls, and pink-hued photo content. Instagram was just a startup with only months of running experience. Online users were only starting to discover the app after moving on from Tumblr. The word influencer was a fairly new concept that wasn’t fully understood yet. In each of the social media platforms, there were mostly just users who liked sharing personal content on their pages. One of the first few content creators who gained recognition in social media were Vern and Verniece Enciso—two sisters who are often mistaken to be twins.
In a span of 11 years, they were able to cement their place in the industry through their positive and aesthetically pleasing content. Now, the elder among the sisters, Vern, is moving on to the next chapter of her life.
Earlier this year, she married the love of her life, Ben Lim. After which, she moved half way across to the country to Cebu to live with her husband. On top of those and her continuing dominance in the social media sphere, she opened up her own cafe called, Drip and Draft.
With all the changes going on in Vern’s life, we can’t help but wonder how she does she do it all? In this exclusive interview with Vern, we find out how she navigates through life as a modern woman.
MEGAStyle: You’ve gone through numerous milestones during the pandemic. Was it hard adapting through all of them during these troubling times? Why?
Vern Enciso-Lim: Definitely. I think the hardest part about it was adjusting to so many things at once. When I first flew to Cebu last March 2020 in the hopes of escaping COVID in Manila only to fail to fly out and [get] locked down here, I never expected to stay for as long as I did. Adjusting to the pandemic, the work from home situation, being away from my own family, living with my in-laws, and being with my then-boyfriend, now husband 24/7 after being on a long distance relationship for almost 7 years was a lot to take.
MS: Is your life how you expected it to be 10 years ago?
VEL: So different, yet so much better. For readers who have been with me since A Shoe Tale, (they) know that I’ve always believed that things meant for you will never be late. If something doesn’t work out, It’s because you’re meant to walk through a path needed to get to where you need to be. Whatever is happening to me now is something I manifested 10 years ago, but it’s crazy how it’s even better than what I ever imagined.
For anyone reading this, do yourself a favor and write down your dreams and wants. Dream big, it’s free. Manifest and pray for it. Make sure not to step on anyone as you work towards it and I swear, it will happen. Even a million times better.
MS: If you could describe Vern Enciso now in a sentence, how would you describe yourself?
VEL: Finally confident and contented in her own skin. Having been in the industry since 2010 has definitely affected me, mentally and emotionally. Social media used to be kinder and less competitive. But, now with everyone fighting for a spot, as it’s always a race with numbers. Sometimes, without even knowing it, you tend to try to be someone you’re not just to get a place.
After moving to Cebu and marrying my husband who accepts and encourages me to be myself and who helped me take the pressure I put on myself off, that was the first step to find confidence. I honestly had to relearn who I really was last year. I had to dig deep into that pile of expectations and many changes I have made to fit in and find out who I really was. What made me, me without all the glitz and glamour. After through that very hard time, that’s when I started the series Wife Life Diaries and showed [everyone] who I really was. [I] shared my little happy life here in Cebu.
Even if it (Wife Life Diaries) doesn’t garner the attention a lot of other content creators or vloggers may get, the family I have met and created online through that series made me fall back in love with what I’ve been doing for almost 12 years all over again.
MS: How have things changed in your career now that you’re a married woman?
VEL: I definitely felt the change with the brands who inquire and are interested to work with me. I also noticed that not a lot of brands get my sister and I together anymore. As opposed to when I was still living in Manila and single, we were practically get 1, take 1.
Though with all the changes that have been slowly happening and knowing that I may be in brand marketing limbo because I don’t necessarily belong in the group where teens or yuppies can relate to nor in the mom category, I still feel very lucky to be working with brands I personally love. Again, I would always go back to what I said at the start, what’s meant for me, will never be late.
MS: Did your online audience change as you evolved under the public eye?
VEL: Definitely. When my sister and I concentrated on Instagram and rarely shared our personality on YouTube, our online family would always just comment on very superficial things like our clothes, physical attributes, material things we share online and the like. However, once we opened up and especially when I started my Wife Life Diaries series, I would get more engaging and personal messages shared by people from all age groups and walks of life.
It warms my heart to know that I’m not alone when it comes to the difficulties I face with adjusting to married life, moving to a new city, and trying to prepare for my future. I’m happy to know that me and my readers are growing up together.
MS: Were there any obstacles or hardships that you had to go through?
VEL: Definitely, looking past the numbers. I’m sure I’m not alone with this as any other content creator would’ve felt this at least once in their career. Numbers sometimes get to you. It’s easy to get hurt because you pour your sweat, hard work, and tears into creating content for your audience and you see numbers you were hoping not to see.
However, after reading life stories of some of the most successful people in the world, it’s not even being about an overnight success. It’s about how you can consistently stay in the industry. Anyone and everyone and I literally mean anyone can be an overnight sensation online nowadays, however it’s how you can still be visible, get work, and do what you love 10 or 20 years down the line. It’s how I can bow out gracefully, if life calls for it, that’s what’s important.
MS: What are the small joys that you now experience in your day to day life as a married woman?
VEL: Definitely, marrying and living with my best friend. Some say we may just be in the honeymoon stage. But, after being apart for so long and living in different cities, it’s nice to go through life and be assured that I have made the right decision and that our hard work to make our LDR relationship work was worth it.
MS: What are you most looking forward to as you continue this new path you’re taking on?
VEL: A family! I never thought I would ever be the type to have that as my number one thing to look forward to, as I thought my type A and career-driven personality would have a million things on her to do list. But, that’s really what we’re looking forward to. That and maybe one more dog.
MS: What’s your advice to career women who are looking to start their own families?
VEL: If it feels right, do it. Don’t do it just because you feel like you’re running out of time, you’re pressured by family and friends or you feel like it’s just the next step to do. Do it because you’re 101% sure. It’s not easy and it’s another full time job. But once you’re fully committed and ready for the plunge, you’ll wake up everyday with a big smile on your face.