What to wear on an island vacation, according to Irene Kim

What to wear on an island vacation, according to Irene Kim

Buro exclusive

Text: Jolene Khor

Back from her trip to the Maldives with Jimmy Choo, city girl Irene Kim reveals her transformative tips to looking every bit the beach babe

Irene Kim is not your ordinary social media influencer.

For one, she shares as many photos of herself stuffing face as she does styled snaps of herself wearing her latest scores from the streets of Gangnam. And there's the black hair gone pink, then blonde, then blue, then grey, then purple, peeking up among her refined peers largely in favour of blondes and dipped ombres. Both model about town and girl next door, Irene has mastered a balance of what many shadowing her find impossible — a cheeky irreverence and veneration for the industry that has become her bread and butter.

Today, she takes time off between fashion weeks for a chat with Buro 24/7 Singapore on travel, Jimmy Choo and her shoe du jour.

Tell us about your experience at Maldives.
Maldives was always a place I wanted to visit, so it was a dream come true! Waking up to the bluest ocean I've ever seen, and then snorkeling in those blue waters was very special. Neither will I forget doing yoga on the beach at sunrise. My friends from all over the world was on the trip too and that was very exciting.

Do you have a beach essential?
I wore my Jimmy Choo sunnies a lot because they went with all my looks and of course — they were perfect for the weather.

What are the things you take with you? What are the things you leave behind? 
I'm a lot more relaxed when I'm on an island. It's just that chill vibe. No makeup for me. I want to be comfortable and look effortless at the beach, but I'll throw on a pair of statement earrings or fun sunglasses to add some flavour to my adopted simplicity.

Packing light: Possible or impossible?
Since we had a shoot at Maldives, I had two pieces of luggage with me. But most of the time, I try to cut back. For instance, I only brought a small shoulder bag and beach bag. They were enough for everything I wanted to do, from exploring the island to lazing on the white sand. I like to be low maintenance, so flats are generally my go-to. Lots of sandals and flip flops as well. I think I brought about seven pairs!

What are the three things you need if you were stuck in Maldives indefinitely?
Sunscreen, speakers and a good book.

And the three people?
My mum because I can't live without Korean food; my puppy Biggie for company; and my best friend Sunwoo, who is also my hairstylist, so he can keep my hair colourful!

Besides jet-setting off to an island getaway, what do you do to de-stress?
I make sure I eat clean, get enough sleep and exercise regularly.

Are you a beach or a city girl at heart?
I'm a total city girl who loves the beach! I love being in the water, but at the same time I can't do without facials and yoga classes!

Irene Kim's Jimmy Choo edit à la Maldives, below:

Jimmy Choo's pre-fall offerings are available in stores and online.