Fact: We spent the better half of an afternoon manually modifying the “i”s in “Jessica” to “e”s. Now, we’re usually impervious to the dubious “charms” of uncommon configurations for common names, but Jesseca Liu gets a big pass in our beauty books.
For starters, she’s an indelible part of our childhood. We remember staring, slack-jawed and incredulous, at her nubile bikini-clad form cavorting alongside fellow ingenue Felicia Chin in the Singapore smallscreen milestone The Champion (this was way back in the early Noughties, when local idol dramas still meant something to us – but that’s catty talk for another time).
In any case, Jesseca went from Most Popular Newcomer champ in 2005’s Star Awards to signing on with Taiwanese independent label HIM International in 2010 – pretty neat for a lanky lass from Langkawi.
The Malaysian-born maiden’s latest feather in her Philip Treacy cap? Being the face of the rather excellent Estetica, a homegrown spa group that’s fast gaining a rep for offering some of the fanciest facials in town (the Signature Facial, for one, is a massage masterclass sans pareil, with the entire shindig involving a gobsmacking 32 steps; count ‘em!).
Fans, listen up. We hear that there’s more than a fighting chance of bumping into the prima donna being primed for a pat-down at any of the nine Estetica cabins in town; she’s a bona fide patron, apparently.
So yes, Jesseca puts her money where her mouth is, and her incredibly incandescent mien is most definitely proof of purchase! Secret to her stellar skin aside, here are some other rather revealing bits and bobs about the woman of the hour:
1. She’s our rival for the love of our imaginary boyfriend. Well, sort of. Jesseca goes for gold when prompted to pick a Best Skin champ among the stable of studs she’s worked with: “Elvin Ng appears onscreen with minimal makeup, yet he looks fantastic!”
Girlfriend, we love you and all, but it’s probably for the best if you back away from our man – especially if you also dig guys doused in Kenzo Parfums!
Jesseca says she’s olfactorily orientated towards citrusy scents for men (she says her go-to smell is a unisex offering from Kenzo, but declines to pinpoint the precise perfume).
Aside: That Kenzo nugget has got to be the most amusing thing ever, given that our beloved editor has on occasion bemoaned in jest our personal predilection for Kenzo paraphernalia!
But a shirtless Elvin Ng in no-makeup makeup, spritzing himself with a Kenzo flanker? Now we’re talking.
2. She’s hankering after Jeon Ji-hyun’s mythical YSL lippie. Our heads are spinning from the life-imitating-art awesomeness of it all.
Could it really be sheer serendipity that on the very day we reported on the baffling beauty fad surrounding Jeon Ji-hyun and her lips, Jesseca also professed being partial to the very same product?
In Jesseca’s own words: “I really like this lipstick that Korean actress Jeon Ji-hyun used in the popular drama My Love from the Star; it’s pink with a slight orange tint.”
Colour us impressed, Miss Jeon, you’re a true K-Drama A-lister riding the crest of the Korean Wave. YSL – or any other makeup giant, for that matter – would do well to court you to be their next cosmetics face!
3. Surprise! She admits to wanting to go under the knife. To be clear, we’re not talking about a full-on boob job here. We’re being rather mischievous here: Jesseca does not have any immediate plans for invasive aesthetic procedures. She does cop to mulling over the idea of orthodontic surgery, though:“I have a missing tooth on my lower jaw, so I’ll probably be keen to straighten my teeth and get a dental implant to fill up the hole.”
So no, this “Jesseca Rabbit” isn’t fond of her bunny teeth. As for the immense societal pressure placed on women to look good, Jesseca exhorts us girls to fight the good fight: “I think confidence is the main issue here. To work hard for better skin or a better body requires a lot of determination, so seek professional guidance if you need to.”
Obligatory sponsor’s shout-out: Estetica is all the help you need!
4. This is the only beauty rule you must follow. Remember that nineties smash hit by Baz Luhrmann that opened with this unforgettable line: “If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it”? Amen to that.
When prompted to divulge the best beauty secret she’s gleaned over her years in showbiz, Jesseca says sunscreen is the basic building block of any sound grooming regime: “I cannot do without my favourite Sunshield SPF 50 from Estetica.”
Having had the chance to swatch said hero product, we must say we’re inclined to believe her: The souffle-light tinted cream glides on sheer for a most gorgeous finish, and is absolutely divine as a makeup base.
Obligatory sponsor’s shoutout, part deux: Check it out at your nearest Estetica salon!
5. Mama Liu, be proud of your daughter. Asking interviewees for their most treasured beauty-related memory has become a stock question of sorts; we find that the answers we receive are often as revealing as the most illuminating of highlighting pens.
Not to get too punny about things, but we’ll let Jesseca’s poignant anecdote serve as the “setting powder” for this story: “My favourite recollection revolves around the time spent with my mother when I was younger. Before she became a full time beautician, she was juggling between running a café and learning the beauty ropes.
“That period was very tough. As a daughter, the only thing I could do was to volunteer myself as a ‘guinea pig’ for her facial practices. Looking back, this memory is bittersweet and I’m glad she managed to pull through.” Good on you, Madam Liu, and good on you, Jesseca Liu!