Speaking to MediaSpeaking to Media: Christina Zisko, Canadian Living Magazine

Speaking to Media: Christina Zisko, Canadian Living Magazine

Next up in our Speaking to Media series is Christina Zisko, a contributor to Canadian Living Magazine. From the latest fashion trends to gift guides, Christina has become a trusted source for the everyday city girl when it comes to must-have fashion and beauty items.

We spoke to Christina about how she picks what trends to cover, the challenges of being an editor, and her advice to PR professionals looking to get their pitches noticed.

What piqued your interest in pursuing fashion journalism?

For as long as I can remember I’ve always loved writing. Whether it was writing my first (very rough) short story on the family computer or opinion pieces for the university newspaper, it’s always been something I’m passionate about. I worked at a women’s clothing boutique while I was in school and it was really rewarding to help people find pieces that truly made them feel confident in their skin, no matter their shape, size or budget. Working in fashion journalism allows me to do that on a larger scale, and it doesn’t hurt that it’s also a lot of fun.

How do you decide which trends to feature in the fast-paced fashion world? What considerations go into balancing established and emerging designers or brands in your coverage?

Sometimes it feels like there’s a new trend popping up every time you check your phone! I personally like featuring trends and garments that are accessible to the average person. That goes for sizing, price point and functionality. That’s not to say I don’t love admiring the fun and out-of-the-box looks we see on celebrities and on the runways, but when I find a trend that I think my BFF or my mom would love and wear over and over again, that’s something I want to share with my audience.

I like featuring a mix of established and emerging brands and get especially excited about small Canadian businesses. It’s great to be able to draw attention to brands that are making their fashion mark in our own backyards.  

What challenges and opportunities influence your editorial decisions as a Canadian fashion and beauty editor?

When I have the opportunity to get my hands on a beauty product or piece of clothing and test it out, it really helps to inform my editorial decisions because I’m able to put a spotlight on things I’ve tried and loved. Sometimes it can be challenging to narrow it down because there are so many exciting products on the market!



Can you share a standout moment or project that significantly shaped your approach as an editor?

This is a question that I think I’ll be able to answer a lot better in a few years! Right now, I think my approach as an editor is evolving with every new experience. I’m open to getting feedback from readers and my colleagues, seeing what works and what doesn’t, to put out the best content possible.

What makes a PR pitch stand out from the pack for you? 

When you can tell that someone’s done a bit of homework to understand your audience and pinpoint topics that are relevant to them, it’s always an attention-grabber.
I’m also a sucker for a well-organized pitch that has all the details. Like, “HERE is the fact sheet, HERE is a link to high-res imagery, HERE is the press release…” It’s just so helpful if you don’t have to go digging for information, especially when deadlines start to creep up!

I also tend to work with long lead times, so I really appreciate receiving pitches as far in advance as possible so I can plan coverage. For example, sending holiday gift guide pitches in September or October may seem super early, but that’s when I’m putting together holiday content, so for me, it’s right on time!

What is your advice for someone interested in entering this industry?

Go for it! Internships are a great way to get hands-on experience and meet people working in the field you’re looking to break into. Give 100% to every task and don’t be afraid to ask questions so you really get the most from the opportunity.


Want more of our Speaking to Media series? Check out our interview with Laura Hanrahan, Deputy Editor, STOREYS.

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