Son Sings His Heart Out For Deaf Parents Who Both Have Cancer

When asked by the judges of Superstar K6 for his reason behind auditioning, contestant Kim Jung Hoon could hardly hold back tears as he revealed a heartbreaking story about his family.

“Both of my parents are deaf,” Kim said in his pre-audition interview. He added that both of his parents lost their hearing during early childhood and currently have cancer: his mother suffering from thyroid cancer and his father from colorectal cancer.

“It felt like the world was falling apart,” he said.


Despite their disabilities, Kim’s parents came to the audition to show full support for their son.

“When we see our son, even though we can’t hear him sing, we believe that he can succeed,” Kim’s father said through sign language. His wife agreed, saying that they believe in their son whether he sings well or poorly.

Once Kim took the stage, he proved that he could sing not only beautifully but also with powerful emotion. His rendition of Lee Sun-hee’s “Fate” moved some of the judges to tears.

Watch his performance below:

–Story by Reera Yoo

This story was originally published on

Find Out Why We Love Kimiko Glenn, The “Orange is the New Black” Actress Behind Brook Soso


Orange Is the New Black, Netflix’s trailblazing prison dramedy, which just released its second season, highlights a multiethnic cast, as well a variety of gender and sexual identities. However, despite all of the diversity in season one, the only Asian inmate was Chang (played by Lori Tan Chinn), a hilarious but rarely seen older woman with a thick accent. So when Brook Soso, played by biracial Japanese American actress Kimiko Glenn, dressed in prison orange, walked wide-eyed into Litchfield Prison, she turned heads on and off screen. Because this was one of the rare occurrences where a character in a mainstream show had their Asian identity explored in a non-stereotypical way.

Glenn, an Arizona native, began doing theater when she was 10 years old. Halfway through her first year at the Boston Conservatory, she was cast in the first national tour of Spring Awakening and subsequently moved to New York to continue to pursue theater, including originating a role in Julianne Moore’s Freckleface Strawberry.

Orange Is the New Black (OITNB) creator Jenji Kohan had caught Glenn’s performance in the musical adaptation of Love’s Labour’s Lost in Shakespeare in the Park and asked Glenn to perform a Meredith Brooks sing-along as one of her contributions to her first season on the show. “Singing is one of my stronger suits, so I think maybe that’s why it was written in,” says Glenn. “It’s nice that I got to sing. But I didn’t sing in my real-person- Kimiko voice; it was in my Brook voice.”

Although a self-described TV newcomer, Glenn holds her own with veterans like Kate Mulgrew and Taylor Schilling. With perfect comic timing, Glenn performs some of the funniest lines of the season: “You seem so calm. Are you a murderer?” she inquires with earnest, child-like sincerity. Glenn describes Brook as “a chatty social activist who wants to be loved and understood.” Indeed, her character, nicknamed “babbling Brook,” is so misunderstood and grating, that you don’t know whether you want to hug her or throttle her. Nonetheless, Glenn defends Brook, saying, “She makes points in ways that annoy people, but she’s often right. The conditions in the prison are terrible, and Brook brings that to light.” And it cannot be denied that, despite Brook’s seemingly flighty nature, she stands behind her convictions, be it a hunger strike or a refusal to shower, much to her fellow inmates’ chagrin.

No one is more conflicted about Brook than the show’s lead, Piper Chapman. Initially nurturing to Brook, Piper later turns on her. “Sometimes when you see yourself in someone, who you used to be, you reject it,” theorizes Glenn. “I think that’s part of what’s going on. Also, she’s irritated by Brook because the moment she gives me a little warmth, I latch onto her and she pushes me away.”

Glenn has a lot of fondness for Brook and begrudgingly admits that she relates to her character’s neo-hippie lifestyle. Glenn once went on a silent Vipassana meditation retreat and regularly oil pulls in the morning. But unlike Brook, Glenn says she is “not nearly as aggressively vocal. I’m pretty shy at heart. Not to say that I can’t be talkative, but I err on the side of caution before speaking my mind.”

Screen Shot 2014-09-17 at 12.17.29 PM

Glenn describes the process of shooting for TV as “wildly different” from theater. “You do a scene for two hours and then you’re done with that scene. You can be on a run of a play for years and do that scene over and over. It was very strange to figure out how to memorize this, stay open, try new things, all in a few takes. It was a lot to adjust to.” But she did like one thing: “You can whisper.”

It was in the midst of binge-watching OITNB that Glenn, who is friends with Uzo Aduba (Crazy Eyes), received a casting notice. “I thought I was seeing things,” she laughs. “It was nine pages of sides, and I thought, ‘Oh god, I have to do really well, because it’s such a good show.’” The next day she auditioned, the following day she booked it, and the day after, she was on set at 6 a.m. to shoot her first sex scene ever with Natasha Lyonne.

Although comfortable with her body and the nudity required for the role, Glenn was concerned. Lyonne gave her pointers. “She told me it was technical and not sexual at all,” says Glenn. “At the end of the day, people want you to feel comfortable, do well and get out of there. She gave me some good advice.” Glenn also appreciated that “the producer, a woman, was very understanding and made it clear they wouldn’t make me do anything I’m not comfortable with. We agreed upon a mapped out scene and decided what it would be. It wasn’t as daunting or crazy as you might think.”

When she told her parents she was on the critically acclaimed and occasionally graphic show, her mother wrote on Facebook, “Kimi is doing this show. Excited but apprehensive, haha.” Glenn explains that her parents were “aware that it is a racy show. Either way, they are really proud of me.” And they have a lot to be proud of. Brook is also in season three, slated for release next summer, of the successful show, which to date has received 12 Primetime Emmy Award nominations and a Satellite Award for Best Cast in a Television Series.


The show’s unique blend of dark humor, dramatic heft, flashback structure and vivid characters sets it apart from any other show out there. Glenn remarks that the casting process for her role was ethnically unspecified. “The show’s creative team knew Brook’s characteristics, but in terms of looks, they were open. A lot of people auditioned who were all different colors, shapes and sizes, and then they landed on me.” Once Glenn was cast, Brook’s hapa identity was written into the script.

All too often, when Asians are represented in popular culture, they speak in broken English or are defined by common tropes such as geisha, ninja, opium dealer, manicurist and so on. On the other side of the spectrum, when we do see a hapa on film or TV, the actor often passes for white or their ethnic identity is never discussed. However, confusion over Brook’s Eurasian appearance is addressed in one of her first scenes. Brook is given a tribal welcome toothbrush by the overtly racist Morello, who usually reserves kindness for white inmates. “I don’t normally bend the rules like this, but you don’t look full Asian,” she says, looking Brook over.

OITNB’s openness to casting is refreshing to Glenn, who has encountered her share of difficulties and discrimination in her many years auditioning. “There were times where I was told I wasn’t cast because they wanted a blond, to put it nicely,” she says. “It was disheartening as a kid to grow up knowing that. In the real world, there is room to cast more openly, but it’s still a big issue and something that I deal with on a daily basis. This show is a great example of colorblind casting. They cast who’s best for the part. The women on the show are not the kind of people you normally see in Hollywood. I think OITNB is opening people’s minds about what they want to see.”

Catch Kimiko Glenn in season two of Orange Is the New Black on


–Story by Susan Soon He Stanton
This story was originally published in our Fall 2014 issue. Get your copy here. 


“The Real” Host Jeannie Mai Talks Divorce, Plastic Surgery, Fashion and More


Last week, we brought you our Fall 2014 feature on the beautiful and successful Jeannie Mai who is currently a host on The Real. But clearly, that wasn’t enough. You asked for it, so here it is! Check out Jeannie Mai discussing everything from gay marriage to Asians going blond.


On divorce:
“I’m a faith-driven woman, so I love that the Bible encourages one not to get divorced. But I’m a very liberal woman, too, and for me the decision has to be the best choice for both parties, especially if children are involved. It’s not a black and white situation; it’s gray all the way. You have to decide what’s best for both parties and the children as well.”


On plastic surgery, especially in Asia:
“Do you. And if you are gonna ‘do you,’ do it in Thailand because it’s cheaper and they’re awesome!”


On gay marriage:
“I have three words that will save the economy. Gay Bridal Registry.”


On Asians going blond:
“I would say do it right and not to be white, number one. Number two, learn about the importance of toner. Period. Toner is your best friend if you’re gonna go blond.”


On going too far with makeup:
“Put it this way — when you’re not feeling like you can overcome the biggest challenge you face, you haven’t gone far enough.”



On marijuana:
“Personally, I’m not a user myself. But if any addiction, whether it’s coffee, shopping or drugs, keeps you from reaching your potential in life, I don’t see a good reason to continue it.”


On 3D printers that print makeup:
“My heels are clicking for joy. We women get stuck in ruts and forget that style and makeup are excuses to transform into any unique version of ourselves. The more advanced this industry becomes, the more opportunities for women to strut forward with themselves.”


On illegal immigration:
“If the U.S. Navy didn’t help bring my parents here from Vietnam, I probably wouldn’t be in this fortunate place of being interviewed. I am thankful for the immigration opportunities, but I understand that in order to preserve the value of the U.S. and respect the needs of residents, we have to abide by regulations. I’m trying to learn more about this to understand the options, and pray for a solution that can unite nations and provide positive growth for the United States.”


On whitening skincare:
“I get that different cultures appreciate different appearances. I don’t see Americans getting judged for tanning their skin, and I don’t judge people who prefer to stay fair-skinned. At the end of the day, it depends on the individual’s perspective of herself.”


On the worst fashion trend:
“Too much boob. It’s never been hot. It’s always trashy. Keep it sexy, ladies. That’s all.”



–Story by Jeline Abutin.
This was originally published in our Fall 2014 issue. Get your copy here



Fashion Shenzhen Turns Heads At Their NYFW Debut


Debuting at any of the four major fashion capitals (Milan, Paris, New York and London) during the renowned industry fashion weeks is considered a substantial success for any designer that has been pouring their life into creating garments that will impress top-tier editors and buyers. More work than we expect goes into a rather quick ten minute show. Years of planning and learning the trend and color schematic forecasting is a daunting task in itself because no one wants to make too much of an unfavorable misstep. Then of course pushing that success into a second year with critics all around shows strength in branding and design, which is why Fashion Shenzhen has many of us talking as they continue to make waves throughout the industry.

For the Chinese labels Lizzy, Haiping Xie and Ellassay (all collectively chosen to be shown together under the name Fashion Shenzhen), hard work is beginning to pay off after years of trying to garner a larger presence within the industry and showing in London quite often before New York. While Ellassay enters its sophomore year, it still carries the excitement of a first debut. The Director of Shenzhen Garment Association, Shen Yongfang stated during her interview with CCTV News last year when Shenzhen’s designs first walked the runways of New York, “China has a unique and ancient culture, and this is a great asset. Our designers are the best, so I don’t see why we can’t make it to the world stage.” To a full house, Shenzhen delivered unforgettable designs that represented their blend of Eastern and Western influences, but each with their own artistic nature.


Haiping Xie kept to the flora and beauty of China’s rich history and culture. There was nothing subtle about Xie’s collection. Boldly printed dragon graphics were a powerful display to the flowing sea of organza and silk layers in just as powerful hues of blue and orange. While Lizzy presented sophisticated bead work in a stunning display of gowns with oceanic themes and fittingly cut in mermaid A-lines. The crystal work glistened with models’ movement and felt reminiscent to the intricacies of underwater coral colonies. Taking a step away from couture evening wear, Ellassay delivered modern dresses and trench coats that are easily wearable and fitting for our daily wardrobe. Opting for another interesting grid lined pattern once again, Ellassay’s trench coat can be used to amp up the simple elegance of the dresses shown.

With such an impressive showing in New York, these three designers help pave the way for the rest of Shenzhen’s growing design field and continue to bring the recognition that Shen Yongfang speaks of with such hopeful words. Personally, I feel they’ve already made it on the world stage and only good things will continue to come with such determination and drive to be at their best. I look forward to seeing what designers the Fashion Shenzhen group will present next season.

Screen Shot 2014-09-16 at 11.10.38 AM

Gown By Haiping Xie.   Image Courtesy Of

Screen Shot 2014-09-16 at 11.15.53 AM

Gown By Haiping Xie.  Image Courtesy Of

Screen Shot 2014-09-16 at 11.33.27 AM

Gown By Lizzy. Image Courtesy Of

Screen Shot 2014-09-16 at 11.36.58 AM

Gown By Lizzy. Image Courtesy of

Screen Shot 2014-09-16 at 11.39.59 AM

Dress By Ellasay. Image Courtesy Of

Screen Shot 2014-09-16 at 11.41.41 AM

Trench By Ellassay. Image Courtesy





Fashion Blogger Chriselle Lim’s Maternity Fashion Tips


About a month ago, fashion blogger, wardrobe stylist and editor Chriselle Lim announced her almost-five-month pregnancy on her Instagram and her blog, The Chriselle Factor. By watching her touching video (below), you get an intimate look into the rough period Lim endured last year due to her miscarriage. But the strong woman was able to get back up and share her inspiring story which has been helping many women renew their souls.

Lim is now focusing more on her health and on the special gift inside her. In fact, she has become so much more positive about life and about her pregnancy that she has decided to combine her pregnancy with something else she is passionate about: fashion. Here are several of Lim’s outfit ideas that all women going through maternity can pull off without falling behind the trend.


Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 3.12.39 PM

1. Oversized Button Down Shirt

The oversized cotton white button down (a.k.a. WBD) shirt is a classic staple item that every girl can wear around different occasions. Lim — halfway through her pregnancy — still looks chic in her oversized WBD that is paired with simple jewelry and maybe a nice pair of skinny jeans. Regardless of what she wore for her bottom, her classic WBD makes her look iconic.


Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 3.14.01 PM

2. Drape Front Dress

There’s nothing more comfortable than a laid-back loose fitting dress. During pregnancy, it’s better to wear softer, stretchy and comfortable clothes, especially since the belly is not getting any smaller than it already is. On her Instagram, Lim mixed and matched the turquoise draped dress with a darker hue of embedded gladiator sandals that even makes running errands look glamorous!




Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 3.16.41 PM
3. Crop Tops

Who says you can’t wear crop tops during pregnancy? Fashion is all about breaking norms and creating new looks. Lim shows off her black crop top paired with a stretchy high-waisted bow tie skirt that totally rocks her baby bump.


Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 3.18.53 PM
4. Shirts-Tied-Around-the-Waist

This 90s trend has been poppin’ for the past couple years and it’s no exception for those going through maternity. Lim wrapped her denim jacket slightly around her waist, right below her adorable baby bump. Not only does it bring the fashionable aspect of the outfit, but also enhance the waist to look much slimmer.



All photos courtesy of Chriselle Lim’s Instagram and blog, The Chriselle Factor. 




New York Fashion Week Recap: Zang Toi


New York Fashion Week is well underway and contributor Mariana Leung’s got the inside scoop on the shows. Here, her recap of Zang Toi’s Spring 2015.

Fashion Week favorite Zang Toi celebrated 25 years in business with his Spring 2015 collection.

While the designer has often looked to exotic global locations as his inspiration, his silver anniversary collection used America as his muse; he wanted to pay tribute to the country that embraced him. He showed day looks in his favorite color combination of black and ivory. He then used bright emerald, red and purple as a throwback to the colors from his first season.

The highlights of the Zang Toi show were the evening looks of the show. My favorites were ballgowns featuring beautiful silk print that depicted giant blooms of orchids. There were even a few styles that featured heavily beaded/jewel encrusted patterns that showed classic glamour.

Screen Shot 2014-09-12 at 4.28.01 PM

––Story and photos by Mariana Leung, publisher of

New York Fashion Week Recap: Vivienne Tam


New York Fashion Week is well underway and contributor Mariana Leung’s got the inside scoop on the shows. Here, her recap of Vivienne Tam’s Spring 2015.


Vivienne Tam is a master at mixing traditional Chinese themes and interpreting them in contemporary techniques. For spring 2015, the designer took her inspiration from the Forbidden City in China. Specifically, she referenced motifs found in historical artwork and handicrafts and executed them onto her collection in high-tech fabrics.

Landscapes and nature patterns, like waves and clouds, were printed onto handbags and blouses. Birds, flowers and trees were embroidered onto athletic fabrics like power mesh. Printed neoprene was cut and appliqued onto other fabrics in a bright modern effect.

This season also saw Vivienne Tam trying her hand at wearable tech. There were handbags that charged your phone when you put it inside. Unlike many of the clunky pieces that many tech companies produced, the accessories on the runway were so stylish, fans would be happy to buy them on design alone, and the functionality would just be a big bonus.

Screen Shot 2014-09-12 at 1.35.16 PM


––Story and photos by Mariana Leung, publisher of



Fall Television Shows With Asian American Actors


Looking for a new show to watch this fall? Want to see more Asian American faces on your screen? Well you’re in luck! Here are four of the fall television shows with Asian American actors that we’re most excited for.


Screen Shot 2014-09-12 at 11.10.52 AM
Fresh off her role as the witch Tessa in Vampire Diaries, Janina Gavankar joins the cast of the new NBC series The Mysteries of Laura, which stars Debra Messing (Will & Grace) as Laura Diamond, a NYPD homicide detective who’s juggling her professional and personal lives as a working mother of twin boys. Gavankar plays her colleague and rival Detective Meredith Bose, whom she has describes as a “buff, which is somebody who takes their job a little too seriously.” The Indian-Dutch native of Joliet, Ill., is also known for her roles as Papi in The L Word, shapeshifter Luna Garza in True Blood, Detective McKenna Hall in Arrow and Shiva in The League. Having grown up studying classical piano, percussion and voice, Gavankar is also a singer. She was once in the girl group Endera on the Cash Money label, shot a music video cover of Kanye West’s “Love Lockdown,” and most recently released her single “Waiting for Godot,” which will be part of a forthcoming EP on Randy Jackson’s label. Details: Premieres September 24.


Screen Shot 2014-09-12 at 10.55.15 AM
Inspired by a true story, Scorpion follows eccentric IT genius Walter O’Brien, played by Indian-Tunisian British actor Elyes Gabel, who leads a tactical team of brilliant, nerdy misfits, including Asian Canadian Jadyn Wong as Happy Quinn, a “mechanical prodigy.” When Homeland Security comes calling, the team must utilize every trick in their genius book to protect the country from high-tech threats. The pilot, directed by Justin Lin (Fast & Furious), is a wild ride, with the team scrambling to prevent a plane crash. Details: Premieres September 22.



Screen Shot 2014-09-12 at 10.58.12 AM
Selfie, a loose adaptation of Pygmalion and My Fair Lady, stars Karen Gillan as Eliza Dooley, a fame-obsessed social media star whose public image takes a dive after a humiliating breakup, and John Cho as Henry, a marketing guru who’s going to teach her how to re-brand herself (and hopefully become a better person in the real world). Though casting directors were originally looking for an older British actor for the romantic lead, Cho eventually won them over, and creator Emily Kapnek (Suburgatory) told reporters she was especially excited about growing the characters’ relationship after seeing the natural chemistry between her two stars. Details: Premieres September 30.


Screen Shot 2014-09-12 at 10.59.52 AM
If you’ve ever been stalked, you’re going to relate to this one. In this psychological thriller, Maggie Q is head of the Threat Assessment Unit of the LAPD. Working on cases ranging from voyeurism, cyber harassment and romantic fixation, Q’s Beth Davis is opinionated, obsessive and a workaholic — for a reason. “Anyone can be a stalker; anyone can be a victim. That’s where I come in,” she says in the pilot. When she is joined by a brash new transfer from New York, played by Dylan McDermott, who jokes that he joined the unit to meet Scarlett Johansson, Q is not pleased. In fact, there’s more to Q’s Davis than just dedication to her job — while trying to calm one victim of a stalker who has already killed, she assures him, “There is nothing that you’re feeling that I don’t know. Believe me, I know.” Details: Premieres October 1.


This story was originally published in our Fall 2014 issue. Get your copy here.






Fashion Blogger Aimee Song’s Top 5 Summer-To-Fall Looks


The glitz and glamour within the fashion industry could not exist without designer pieces, catwalk shows, editor-in-chief of Vogue Anna Wintour and of course, Aimee Song. The Los Angeles-based blogger and interior designer has taken a huge part in inspiring millions of women worldwide with her voguish, laid-back looks.

Lately, she’s been showing off some perfect outfits for the odd days in between summer and fall. If you’re struggling to find outfits to match the confusing weather, we’re here to help! Check out Amiee Song’s Top 5 Summer-To-Fall Looks below:



1) Sweater Over A Button-Down Shirt

Screen Shot 2014-09-11 at 11.38.38 AM

It’s not the first time the sweater over a button-down shirt has been the biggest way to style for fall season, but this time, Song brought a unique twist to the trend during the New York Fashion Week. Long pieces do not always work for women of different heights, but this exceptional triple-layered grey ensemble is totally on point with flawless proportions.



2) Bold Outfit + Delicate Heels

Screen Shot 2014-09-11 at 11.41.21 AM

Song’s style is all about feeling confident in her comfy looks. The monochrome wrapped outfit creates a subtle look that resembles a romper and strangely, a tuxedo. Just when the outfit was about to get too black, Song finishes her outfit with olive green strappy heels and gold details, which creates an even more unique impression.



3) Kimono-Inspired Top

Screen Shot 2014-09-11 at 11.44.24 AM

It seems as if designers are continually being inspired by Japanese culture as seen on the kimono belts by BCBG Max Azria Spring 2015 Collection during the New York Fashion Week. Song takes the cultural aesthetics into a different level by wearing a blue bow-like, kimono inspired, top with a darker shade of blue, high-waisted shorts that screams perfection.




4) Feminine Top + Slouchy Pants

Screen Shot 2014-09-11 at 11.47.37 AM

Who would have ever imaged pleat on pleat would look so formfitting? The combination of the baby blue pleated crop top and black slouchy trousers balance out the feminine sexiness and professionalism, making it easier for all the ladies who are en route to after-work drinks.



5) Basic Top + Midi Skirt

Screen Shot 2014-09-11 at 11.49.42 AM

One of the most essential basics in every girls’ wardrobe is a white T-shirt, but this basic necessity has never seemed this elegant until Song rocked it during the New York Fashion Week with a full light pink midi skirt. The combo of the shirt, designed by Aimee and her sister, Dani Song, with the fancy bottom simply makes a basic shirt not so basic after all.



All photos courtesy of 

Beautiful. Outspoken. Successful. Get To Know The “The Real” Talk Show Host JEANNIE MAI



You can tell right off the bat that Jeannie Mai is one confident woman. Though on the phone in a restroom, her voice sounds strong and opinionated. It is that same voice that has guided countless women and celebrities with their style, first as a makeup artist for M.A.C and then as a host on a variety of shows for E! and the Style Network. But beyond the voice, it’s her story — the real Jeannie Mai — that captivates this interviewer.

Born to Vietnamese and Chinese parents and raised in the Bay Area, Mai is more than proud of her NorCal roots. “The Bay Area is so vast when it comes to culture, race diversity and community,” says Mai. “The things I remember from growing up were amazing neighborhoods of different foods, the ‘hyphy’ movement of hip-hop, freestyle artists and rappers, the baddest breakdance scene ever, a digital takeover from Silicon Valley, and the most beautiful landscapes from Tahoe to Napa. I was rich without a paycheck.”

After graduating from Milpitas High School in 1997, Mai was off to work immediately, hungry for experience. “I just kind of started my career right after high school,” says Mai. “I couldn’t be held between walls, and I wanted to travel the world and be with influential people so that I could spread the message of style and personal image.”

She started her career with M.A.C Cosmetics as a trainer for three years. It was there that she found her way into celebrity styling for the likes of Alicia Keys. “I caught the eyes of a couple celebrities who started to pick me up as their makeup artist first,” says Mai. “I started traveling with these artists, and it turned out that these artists didn’t have a stylist. I found myself getting them ready face to toe!”

It was only a matter of time before Mai’s driven personality landed her in front of the camera. In addition to co-hosting the Emmy-nominated Asian American magazine-style show Stir, Mai has hosted shows like How Do I Look and Style Pop on the Style Network and various fashion segments on E!. But Mai’s newest gig has her taking a slightly different turn, as one of the co-hosts of the nationally syndicated daytime talk show The Real.

“I’m not talking about fashion or other women’s makeovers,” says Mai. “I’m getting to talk about what I’m going through.”


The Real, which airs on FOX and BET, aims to be just that — a talk show where real women share their experiences and what they’re thinking. But how is that different from other women-oriented talk shows like The View?

“There are five things that differentiate us from other shows: Loni Love, Tamera Mowry-Housley, Tamar Braxton, Adrienne Bailon and Jeannie Mai,” says Mai, speaking of the show’s hosts. “Each of those five reasons alone is every reason to watch our show. We don’t compare ourselves to other people, and I don’t recommend other women compare themselves to other people. Focus on you, focus on the finish line, and go there. That’s how our show is. We focus on ourselves and what we can bring to the show, and that includes our real lives and our real setbacks and insecurities.”

Screen Shot 2014-09-10 at 11.44.33 AM

For Mai, being a married, successful career woman brings its own set of problems. “I bring the perspective of being a woman doing great in her career in her mid-30s, married for six years and realizing that I have to make one of the biggest decisions right now about my future when it come to being a mom,” she says. “It’s the weirdest thing that I have this clock remind me every single day that I need to make a decision; it’s so unfair. To put pressure on top of that, if I ever were to say today that I don’t think I want to have children, why do I get weirdest feeling that I’d be getting judged for that?”

As for making sure her voice gets heard, Mai has to walk a fine line between listening and talking. “I’m not one to have to say a lot. For me, I want to hear where all the girls come from before I stick my neck out.” But once she does, she says, “I speak the hell up.”


The Real returns on Monday, September 15 on FOX and in national syndication (check your local listings), with a rebroadcast in prime time on cable network BET. 


Want more Jeannie Mai? Keep updated with Audrey Magazine opinions on everything from plastic surgery, gay marriage and even the worst fashion trend. Coming Soon!



This story was originally published in our Fall 2014 issue. Get your copy here.