Last week, I had the great opportunity to attend the Free the Sea Movement sponsored by Reef Philippines in partnership with WWF Philippines. Reef and WWF put together a great event that featured some of my favorite things in one place: a coastal cleaup, surfing, and good music.
To join the event, I needed to purchase anything from Reef (whether at a Reef of G-Force store) and text my name and receipt number to the Reef coordinator. In return, Reef would take care of everything else related to the event: transportation, accommodations at Little Surfmaid Resort, meals, and the surf clinic. Needless to say, it was a fantastic deal. Plus, coastal cleanup! There were only 50 slots so as soon as my friends confirmed that they were game to go, I went over to Trinoma to buy some Reef goodies. In fairness, their flip-flops are super comfy and soft. Much easier on the feet than Havaianas.
The year 2014 was a particularly big year for me – even bigger than 2013 and so big that I barely got to write about it! The irony pains me because I absolutely love writing but writing for fun (AKA this blog) takes up time and effort that I could be using to write for my job. Anyway, this just means that I need better time management skills.
What went down in 2014:
I learned how to surf! Well, maybe learned is too strong a word. Maybe tried out is more appropriate. Haha. My friends and I went to San Juan, La Union and I climbed onto a surfboard for the first time. I finally caught my first wave by the morning of the second day and limited my falls by the morning of the third. Thank you so much Lea and team for your energy and patience! This 2015 means more regular trips to legitimately learn how to surf.
I stumbled upon the O’Neill Superkini when I was browsing through the main R.O.X. branch in Bonifacio High Street. I knew I wanted a new swimsuit – just “wanted” because my trusty Speedo suit was still in excellent shape and didn’t need replacing – but didn’t have anything in particular in mind. There I was, walking among the racks of suits and idly pulling out the ones that caught my eye when I spotted a small sign in the O’Neill section that just said “Introducing the Superkini”. Okay, catchy name that one. Checked out the information tag. Non-slip Nanofront fabric that develops 200% more grip between your skin and the suit when wet compared to ordinary Lycra? Sold! Well, not quite that fast. I Googled and looked it up (never heard of it before!) and boom! I wanted the Superkini. I wanted it so much that I ended up getting two of them – black and striped one from the O’Neill online shop (it was on sale and my balikbayan aunt and uncle brought it home for me) and the teal one from R.O.X.
The verdict after more than a year of swimming, snorkeling, diving, and surfing? The O’Neill Superkini is officially the Islander Girl’s best friend.
Okay, so I only had my first-ever surfing lessons last weekend in La Union (which deserves its own blog post!) but I did swim and snorkel regularly in El Nido and El Nido’s waves can get a bit rough at times. I’ve also been the unfortunate victim of a bikini top that slid up when I jumped in the water. I tested the Superkini by doing what their models did – I jumped in and the suit stayed put! Huzzah! I’ve also tested it by swimming straight into incoming waves and feeling them crash over me. The Superkini felt so comfortable and so lightweight – like a second skin even – that during its first field test, my frantic brain insisted that I peek every five minutes to check if the suit was still there. Ironic that a suit that was designed to give me piece of mind made me even more anxious because it worked too well 😛 Luckily, my brain quieted down after the first few field tests as the suit proved itself. I also wore it when I went surfing but can’t say how it fared because I covered it with a rash guard to protect against myself against scratches.
The only downside I can think of is the price. It’s definitely more expensive compared to other bikinis, as it’s easily about twice what a non-branded bikini would cost. I had no guilty feelings about the black suit because I got it during the O’Neill clearance sale. In comparison, I turned away when the ROX cashier swiped my credit card to pay for the teal suit. I kept telling myself that these will be my bikinis for at least the next three years. Based on the minimal wear and tear even after sitting on a banca, there’s a good chance that this will be true.
The verdict? The O’Neill Superkini is my favorite bikini and it’s absolutely worth the price I paid for it. I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to switch to a different one. Incidentally, the black design is part of the 2012 collection (hence why it was on sale) so I’m not sure if it’s still available. Call me picky, but I didn’t like the 2013 prints. The 2014 print is a nice combination of purple and pink and looks cute.