Maggie Zhou wearing Ultra Violette Skinscreen with a yellow top and yellow bucket hat.

Future Proof Your Day w/ Maggie Zhou

If you haven't heard of Maggie or seen her on the side of your Melbourne tram, I'm equally saddened and thrilled I get to be the one to introduce your new style/career/general crush.

Meet Maggie. She's a writer and producer at refinery29au, a podcast host on the Culture Club Pod, and a slow fashion advocate.


So, what’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?
Honestly? I grumble a bit, and reach for my phone. I try not to check socials first thing, but I usually do. But one thing that truly gets me out of bed is listening to any sleep talking recordings of myself from the night! Truly a strange habit of mine — but I use the app called Sleep Cycle and it’s a fun little morning treat to see what gems I’ve said (or yelled!) during the night.



What are you reading at the moment?
It’s full fantasy mode for me at the moment. I think we could all do with a bit (or a lot) of escapism during the pandemic so I’ve been picking up a lot of magic-centred novels — think Harry Potter comfort reading. I just finished reading one called A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik, and now I’m reading Carry On by Rainbow Rowell. Nothing highbrow from me at all, just some teens in a witchy school. Fun!



How much time do you spend on skincare and what does your AM skincare routine look like?
I probably spend a good 10 minutes for both my AM and PM skincare routine — more if we are masking it up. I really enjoy doing my skincare routine, and was a ritual that helped ground my days all throughout last year and has continued to be something I really cherish. My current AM skincare is pretty simple as I’m getting used to the whole full-time work shebang and don’t have a lot of time in the mornings (yes, even when we’re working from home).

During colder months, I forgo cleanser and splash water on my face, then work in some toner (I like Good Molecules’ watermelon glow toner). Next, I’ll use either a Vitamin C serum or Youth To The People’s caffeine energy serum. I’ll reach for something hydrating, like Sand & Sky’s splash serum or NIOD’s modulating glucosides. Moisturiser goes on, then I try to wait about five minutes before putting on sunscreen! Obviously the most important part of my routine and it always leaves me feeling ‘finished.’ Especially as I’m not wearing makeup in lockdown, slapping on Lean Screen or Supreme Screen has my skin feeling more even.



How do you remember to reapply your SPF throughout the day?
I’m going to admit I’m pretty terrible at this! I know it’s super important to reapply through the day but it tends to slip my mind — you can slap me on the wrist for this. A way I want to help remind myself is to line it up with lunch, so whenever I’m making lunch for the day, I know I also have to go and reapply my sunscreen.



Any great SPF hacks?
Two things — make SPF something you enjoy putting on. Make it a nice step in your skincare routine where you’re taking time for yourself and exercising care through application. It doesn’t have to be a chore!

And the other bit of advice is if you’re not layering your SPF, then you have to start now. The recommended amount of sunscreen to wear to receive optimal coverage may sound like a lot, but if you are applying layers of it at a time and ensuring each layer is being fully absorbed, it won’t seem as much.



From the side of trams, to YouTube preroll ads and all over the gram, you’re absolutely killing it! Any career tips that you feel really set you up for success?
Oh, stop it! I’m blushing. Being on social media, and in the media in general, is always unpredictable; there isn’t one way in or one special secret ingredient that will make you successful. I just think putting yourself out there doing things you enjoy is one of the hardest steps. Beginning something is always so daunting, but once you get over that fear and accept that you will fall on your ass a few times, it’s not so bad.

I’ve been on Instagram for about a decade now! So it’s not always going to be that overnight-sensation narrative you see all over social media. I really do think that if someone loves something that they’re good at, and keeps at it consistently, they’ll eventually reap the rewards.


How would you describe your feelings about Ultra Violette in 3 words?
My major crush.


Always read the label. Follow the directions for use. Avoid prolonged high-risk sun exposure. Wear a hat, protective clothing and sunglasses when exposed to the sun. Re-apply frequently.

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