Find out what to pack and what to wear if you’re heading to Hong Kong for business this season
Professional stylist Christine Zhou is a leading personal image consultant who also provides quality Hong Kong fashion advice.
Christine’s comprehensive personal shopping, color analysis and styling consultations are held at her studio, her client’s offices or online.
As well as running professional image building workshops and working with corporate clients in the city, she also works privately with businesswomen who need an instant wardrobe detox, or to find a lasting solution to their style conundrums.
Christine is well known for her mastery at suggesting and selecting agenda-setting fashion items for any occasion.
But among her professional female clients she’s also recognized as a stylist who focuses on building confidence via fashion which supports and helps them find greater success in their careers.
‘The main goal of the whole process of image consulting is to help clients improve their self-confidence. I’m consistently looking to build confidence.’ – Christine Zhou- Personal Stylist
Here Christine tells Nativa World about her sought-after, executive services and provides useful fashion and packing tips for a business trip to Hong Kong.
Christine, how did you become a stylist?
When I worked as part-time sales consultant at Hobbs UK back in 2004, I enjoyed helping customers to find suitable items whichever occasions they needed and especially enjoyed the mix & match part. One day a ‘thank you letter’ arrived from a customer and that was one of the reasons that I started my image consulting business when I returned to Hong Kong, I continue to satisfy my clients by upgrading their look.
What services does your company provide?
I give advice on color and style to CEO’s, business owners, senior executives and professionals in order to help them look their best at all times. I also save their time and money. The most popular services I have are the Wardrobe Review and Personal Shopping services.
Women in Hong Kong have the same wardrobe problems as women throughout the world. They only wear 20% of their wardrobes. Some have a full wardrobe but still feel as if they have nothing to wear. So, I walk in tell them what suits them and what doesn’t. More importantly I give them advice on how to mix & match and create different outfits with the existing items in their wardrobes.
Hong Kong one of busiest cities in the world. People are busy with their work and families and so having an expert to shop for their wardrobes is like hiring an IT technician or and accountant here. For the 80% of my clients who don’t need to do any outfit shopping I do that for them. I deliver everything to their doorsteps which saves their time and money.
How does the color analysis work?
Color Analysis is a system of placing different colored drapes under people’s chin and comparing the reflection on their skin. Then I determine the the natural skin’s main characteristics and find the most suitable color palette. It’s an important part of what I do, but not a ‘must’. Color analysis is a process that can give clients more choices on color.
Overall though my clients come to me for different reasons. Sometimes they would like to have a more colorful wardrobe, or they’d like to know what color makes them look their best. This means that personal color analysis will be the first thing that I recommend.
The main goal of the whole process of image consulting is to help clients improve their self-confidence. If you’re confident wearing neutral colors, but you look good in bright colors, then I’d never suggest dressing in bright colors. I would then suggest you could wear a brighter lip color or a brighter colored necklace or scarf. I’m consistently looking to build confidence.
What is your main skill?
I know my clients well and understand their problems. I’m always able to solve their problems, such as finding the best color palette, how to have an efficient wardrobe and where to shop.
What’s the process when a client comes to you?
Before I start working with my clients I always ask many many questions which relate to their work, families and social activities. I find out why they came to me and what they want to achieve. Then I suggest an action plan.
How does looking stylish benefit a woman’s career?
What we wear tells others how to treat us. Looking stylish will make us women be more confident and it forms a good first impression, so that others treat us more seriously. When working in man’s world, looking stylish may not always be enough so applying color and a style strategy to the whole outer-appearance is necessary. This is also what I do for some of my clients.
What are your must-have Hong Kong fashion items?
- A statement white blouse
- Mid-level chunky heels
- A chic pantsuit
- A big patchwork wrap
- A Chanel pearl necklace
Any packing tips for a trip to Hong Kong?
- For business: Knee-high length dress/skirt with a formal jacket
- For leisure: Jeans with T-shirt/Blouse
Otherwise it’s quite hard to describe staple Hong Kong style items as this city is very international. People come here from different places and they like to follow the international fashion trends. Ladies are crazy for designer handbags here, particularly Chanel, which was a huge influence years ago, so the “Trainers” can be seen as one staple Japanese fashion item. The local Hong Kong fashion brand, Kris Jane has lovely scarves which can add a beautiful color and pattern to an outfit. Scarves are useful fashion items to make a simple outfit more interesting. They can also easily dress up a T- shirt and Jeans ensemble.
How different is the ‘business look’ in Hong Kong compared to what you may see in the United States and also Europe?
There isn’t a huge difference because of all the international companies in Hong Kong. The “business look” at local companies however tends to be more business/casual rather than formal.
What are the smartest ways to shop?
- Know your dressing style
- Know what cut/style suits your proportion and body shape
- Know which colors suit you
- Review your wardrobe before you go shopping
- Try to create a shopping list
- Try to make two big shopping trips a year
- Try not to shop for clothes during the sales as for women it’s easier to make the wrong decisions!
Which are your favorite fashion apps?
The apps on my phone are online stores as I sometimes buy clients clothing online. So I have Farfetch, Yoox, Shopbop, Net-A-Porter, Etsy and Zalora on my phone.
Christine’s Hong Kong Fashion Tips:
- Be yourself as Hong Kong is an international city
- Businesswomen in Hong Kong dress much more relaxed so suits are rarely seen
- A nice dress can be a good choice and they are easy to dress up or down
- A stylish jacket/blazer is an essential item for a business trip to Hong Kong
- And, it’s always good to check the information about the people or the company you’re going to meet and it’s better to dress appropriately for the venue and company culture.
Photography courtesy of Christine Zhou