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Hi, I'm Crystal. I'm an independent journalist based in Seoul and Hong Kong. I write about the fashion industry, pop culture and social issues - often in an interconnected way. My writing has appeared in Quartz, Women's Wear Daily, South China Morning Post, Monocle, and other publications. 

I grew up in Canada and studied political science at the University of British Columbia, in beautiful, lush - though oftentimes rainy, Vancouver. I got my first gig as a reporter at the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong, before I landed a job in television, producing a weekly current affairs show on the Asia Television channel (R.I.P). I covered everything from the city's unique and ultimately unsafe one-woman-brothel prostitution laws, to the undeniable issue of Hong Kong's immense wealth gap (The Gini coefficient hit a record high of 0.539 in 2016).  

I've also worked in print glossies as an editor at Hong Kong Tatler, a high society magazine where I covered what goes on in lives of the city's tycoons. It was an eye-opening experience. 

I am fascinated by social movements and lifestyle trends, especially when looking at the sociological and historical reasons behind them, plus the related economic implications. Read about the time I investigated the Japanese colonial history behind the South Korean "ajumma" perm; or check out my coverage on Seoul Fashion Week and the new K-punk aesthetic.

As for non-journalism stuff: I create content for brands, sites and campaigns when there's no conflict of interest with my reporting work. I'm also an advisor for the Fashion Culture Design Unconference held annually in NYC and Beijing. 

For interesting tidbits and written/visual ruminations on life in Asia, check out my blog.

Hit me up :) 
hi@crystal-tai.com

 


(Photo by Simpson Kim)