Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Start living like Gabi Livin: MSU alumna, Tik Tok star talks androgynous fashion

June 10, 2022
<p>Influencer and MSU alumna Gabi Ovalles on April 28, 2022.</p>

Influencer and MSU alumna Gabi Ovalles on April 28, 2022.

Photo by Sheldon Krause | The State News

“En harmonia, para todo el mundo, de acuerdo de con la voluntad divina bajo la gracia, gracias universo que llamas oi.”

These are the words that Gabi Ovalles, Tik Tok star and recent MSU alumna, recites as she scribbles her wishes down in a notebook.

“In harmony, for all of the world, according to the will of the divine, under grace, thank you to the universe that has heard me.”

Ovalles has more than 1 million followers on Tik Tok, where she posts dance videos, reaction videos, and videos where she chats with her followers, all while cultivating a distinct, androgynous sense of style. 

“Everything that I've wished for has come true,” Ovalles said. “I wished to be Tik Tok famous, and a month later, I got my first viral video.”

“I started about a year and a half ago,” Ovalles said. “Ever since then, it’s been a great adventure.” 

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During her time as an influencer, Ovalles has had the chance to work with major brands like Paco Rabanne and Hollister. Her time with Hollister was full of free clothes and fun trips, with Hollister inviting her on an all-expenses-paid influencer retreat. 

“I was like, 'Is this what it's like to be famous? It doesn't make sense!'” Ovalles said.

Small in stature but with larger-than-life energy, Ovalles strikes a balance between grounded humility and absolute ambition; surprise at her success, and a knowledge that she was meant for this. 

Ovalles credits her success to the powers of manifestation, mindfulness, and meditation which she first learned about in her philosophy classes. Now, these things are a part of her daily ritual.

“I think that’s the key to being happy,” Ovalles said, of awareness and appreciation of the moment. 

Recently, Ovalles was signed to Next Management, a modeling and entertainment agency. She said she hopes that this will bring her even more opportunities to advance in the world of social media. 

“Eventually, I would love to be some type of, like, Noah Beck and travel and wear cute clothes,” Ovalles said. 

Ovalles’s style is Harry Styles-esque, whom she said is one of her style icons, mixed with a European boarding school flair—all colorful prep and laid-back grunge. 

“It’s not that I want to look tom-boyish,” Ovalles said. “I want to look feminine in the way that men do.”

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Ovalles achieves this sought-after aesthetic through shopping in the men’s section of the thrift store, tying bandanas around her neck, rocking a good pair of boots, and the ubiquitous, gender-neutral pearl choker. 

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Every night, Ovalles picks out an outfit for the next day, to start her morning in style.

“I feel ... confident, I feel good … whatever happens to me throughout the day, I can assure you that I will have a good outfit,” Ovalles said.

For Ovalles, fashion isn’t a gendered expression.  

“I just want people to keep asking what I am because I want to respond to them. I'm a human,” Ovalles said. “I'm not a girl, I’m not a boy. I'm not gay. I'm not a lesbian ... I'm just a human.” 

Many of Ovalles’ fans are MSU students, who recognize her as she goes about her day. While Ovalles used to frequent the caf in her PJs, she now makes sure she’s armored in a cute outfit before leaving her room.

“It’s kinda hard because I’m in my PJs eating a huge burger and people call me and they’re like, ‘Hey! Are you Gabi Livin?’” she said.

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While the recognition was exciting for Ovalles at first, she’s begun to feel the pressure. Ovalles said her wort fear is getting canceled.

In order to avoid this, Ovalles feels as though she has to monitor her behavior in case strangers take pictures of her while she’s out and about. 

While the pressures of being an influencer are abundant, Gabi Ovalles remains constant. Tattooed on her arm is a popular design with Gabi’s own personal meaning: G>^V.

Typically, this means, “God is greater than my ups or downs,” but for Ovalles, it reads, “Gabi is greater than the ups and downs.”

Now an MSU alumna, Ovalles is moving to Tampa, Florida to pursue content creation professionally. Ovalles said she's prepared for the transition into professional life and hopes others can take inspiration from her style.

“I can be a role model for them to be like ‘I can do and I can be whatever I want to be,’” Ovalles said. She encourages her followers to, “just wear something that reflects your personality, not your gender.”

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