My Current Beauty Favorites

I get a lot of questions regarding the specific makeup that I use on a daily basis, as well as makeup that I use when I wear a complete face. Because of that, I’ll share my beauty favorites with you. I purchased all of these items with all of my own savings (lol) and am just sharing with you in case you want to purchase these brands, but do not want to spend your hard earned money on it without completing research first.


 

Magnolia Makeup:

You guys already know how much I adore Magnolia Makeup. I love the Ultra Matte Lipsticks and am starting a little collection here. These are my go to lipsticks. Any recent photo that you’ve seen on me on Instagram most likely has me in a Magnolia Makeup Ultra Matte Lipstick. (Did I tell you they have samples for sale on the website as well?)

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I also love Plantain Powder and Soul Glo metallic bronze illuminating powder. I use Plantain for my highlight…I actually use it for ‘baking’. It works better (to me) than Ben Nye Banana powder and I adore it. Every Magnolia Makeup product that I have is very long lasting…very high quality…and very loved (by me of course).

 


 

Lancome:

You guys know I adore Lancome. I have a whole lot of Lancome products that I’ve collected. My two favorites are the La Base Pore Eraser and the Teint Idole Ulta 24H Makeup in 550 Suede (c). The Pore Eraser makes an awesome primer for my nose area—where I have pore issues—and it keeps my foundation smooth and beautiful. The Teint Idole Ultra 24H Makeup is also awesome. It is very long lasting—last me a complete 9 hour work day. I only see bouts of oil around my nose around the 6th or 7th hour of wear.

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L.A. Girl:

I love the L.A. Girl PRO.conceal HD concealer in Orange Corrector GC990. I have raccoon eyes and hypepigmentation on the sides of my face. I conceal these areas prior to putting my foundation on and it makes a beautiful full coverage finish. Because of that, I do not have to use a lot of foundation but still have a full coverage look. (Post of why I color correct…Click Here)

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Tarte:

My new mascara love is the lights, camera, LASHES 4-in-1 mascara from Tarte. It is vegan and does not irritate my sensitive eyes. I”ve been having lots of issues wearing mascara recently because my eyes are sensitive. Ever since I’ve found this, I’ve been able to tolerate wearing mascara.

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Oval Makeup Brush:

Oh, this helps so much with blending out my contour. I love it. This also helps me with highlighting and blending out my Soul Glo and Plantain Powder from Magnolia. It’s very easy to use. It cuts my blending time in half. It’s soft…I love it. I have not replaced all of my makeup brushes. But of those specific uses, this brush is BOMB.

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Benefit:

Benefit POREfessional Super Mattifying Gel. I love it. I am a primer girl, so I have a lot. The two that I use the most are by Benefit and Lancome. This does what it says…and since I have oily skin, a mattifying primer is perfect for me. I get long mattifying power with this primer and it helps my foundation stay on for long…long wear.

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All Other Honorable Mentions:

These items are just awesome but I have not been obsessing about them like the others.
Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Gel
TooFaced Hangover Primer
Marc Jacobs Eye Liner
Milk Makeup Gel Brow Pencil

 

 

Until Next Time,

 

 

What I’m Currently Listening To:

 

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…so…you’re wondering why I chopped my hair off?

I’ve received a lot of questions regarding my choice of cutting my hair.  I’ve been natural for six years now and I guess everyone was accustomed to seeing me with long hair.  Truth is, I was never satisfied with it.  Of course, I was excited to see my hair gain lengths that I haven’t seen in years, but, I always felt like a short haired girl.  Being honest with you guys, that was the real reason I wore a short haired wig on the weekends.

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                A lot of you guys will never understand why I love short hair.  It seems as if these days, we are chasing the long hair dream: let’s go natural to see how long our hair can grow; let’s aspire to have as much hair as possible; let’s get a long and flowing sew in because it makes us feel feminine.  I guess, as always, I feel opposite than everyone else.  We each have the one thing that makes us feel good about ourselves and for me; it was my hair being short.  I’m not saying anything about my longer haired girls…I was doing that for over 4 years.  I just became tired of it.  I didn’t like the maintenance.  I didn’t feel like it was my style.

                There were also other things that happened to me during the years that were symbolic of cutting my hair.  Cutting my hair was symbolic of letting go of things that I had to let go of that kept me in the same place that I’ve been for so long.  After I decided to let go, good things began to happen to me.  I was admitted into LSU’s Master of Library and Information Science program, my professional pursuits are coming toward fruition, I was able to purchase a new car and begin work on my home, I finally began my plant-based diet and am able to get my blood glucose numbers within control.  I had to let go of a lot of thoughts and feelings that held me back in the past.  My hair was one of the things that were holding me back symbolically.  If anyone knows what I mean, then you know why I did it.  I feel like Kimba…I feel free.  I feel like I can conquer anything.

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                Cutting my hair also forced me to look at myself and know that I am beautiful.  I did not have long hair to hide behind.  You can actually see my face.  I feel more confident now…and since I’ve cut my hair, I get compliments every day about how I look.  LOL.  You guys know that I do not fish for compliments, but now that I am getting them more than I was before, I have confirmation that this was a good choice.

                At the end of the day, I don’t care about the negative comments that I receive about cutting all of my hair off.  I know that I have to live with myself and I have to do things that make me happy.  I think that we get so caught up with trying to impress other people; we forget that we need to take care of our mental selves.  If you are happy with who you are and how you do things and if it is a legitimate form of doing things, then you need to do what makes you happy despite  what the masses think.  Embarking on your natural hair journey should not be a race to obtain the longest hair; it should be a choice that you make because you are satisfied with your natural beauty.  Naturals should not try to conform other naturals to our ideals of beauty…that is hypocritical to the very reason we started on this journey.  We should embrace every natural and not be swift to negativity because one person does not think the way that we do.  In short, that’s how you turn people off and create a negative experience for the one person who needed the positivity the most.

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                I’ll just be frank with everyone.  I’ll preface by saying I love you guys…but I love my hair the way it is, and negative comments about my flat top fade or shaved head will not do anything to change my mind about my hair.  I’m happy now and that’s all that matters.  When you keep digging into others for something that they are doing, you need to reflect internally to see why you have this problem.  Usually, it’s something that’s within you that you are not satisfied with.  If that is the case, strive for satisfaction for self and you will see that is the key to happiness.

Until Next Time,

What I’m Currently Listening To

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things…(Summer Edition)

Last week while I was at work, a new natural asked me about this blog.  She wanted to know if I ever posted favorites and wanted to know what my favorite items were for hair and beauty.  I’ve only done it once because my favorites are usually very consistent.  I thought about her request though, and realized that I have been using a lot of new items that I love.  I thought I would sit here tonight and share some of my summer favorites with you guys and get some of your opinions on these items as well.


 

Hair:

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You already know a lot of my hair favorites.  I love the conditioning creme from Renpure Organics and have been a die hard fan of it since I first purchased it.  It has simplified my whole wash/conditioning routine and added with a little Apple Cider Vinegar (which is a favorite that is not pictured), my hair thrives on wash day.  I never have issues with excessive shed, breakage or detangling.  This product is a keeper.

Castor Oil is also one of my all time favorite hair products.  My hair adores it and eats it up wet or dry.  Since the use of my Castor Oil and Vatika Oil tag team, my hair has become thicker and fuller and more manageable.  A little of this product goes a long way.  Of course, I am out of Vatika Oil, which is another favorite…that’s why it is not pictured.

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All of my favorites in my hair at the same time…also wearing a few of my makeup favorites with Ruby Woo by Mac on my lips.

Can you tell I love the Leave In Conditioner from Mixed Chicks?  I do.  It smells awesome and works beautifully in my hair.   My curls are moisturized and pop when I use this leave in.  I had to get the sample size because I used up my other bottle…I will be heading to Target later this week though!

…and last but not least, I love spritzing some rose water and glycerin in my hair when it’s extra dry.  The smell is very pretty and the glycerin and rose water mix keeps my hair and skin so moisturized.


Beauty:

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I was turned on to Lancome a few years ago by one of my good friends Amy.  She swore by their products and when I visited a Sephora in Paris, I left with a bag full of Lancome sample goodies.  Since then, I fell in love with their beauty, fragrance and skin care products.  My current favorite from Lancome is the Dual Finish in Suede 555 (C).  The lighting in my house made it look warm, but because of my neck area, cooler color foundations/powders work well with my complexion.  Since it’s hot and humid in Louisiana, I wear this when I want little coverage or when I want to make my foundation matte…which is my other favorite item: the Teint Idole Ultra 24H in Suede 555 (C).  This foundation is all that and then some.  I cannot in express to you how much I love the finish of this foundation on my skin and how it looks so natural and beautiful and matte and lasts throughout my entire workday.  These two items will be my staple from now on.  LOL.  They just look soo good on me.  LOL.

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My face using the Dual Finish in Suede 555 (C) and matte lip stick from Kat Von D with a little highlight around my Cupids Bow.

I’m trying not to make this post solely about Lancome, but their products have been some of my favorites for a long time.  I picked up the Youthful Radiance Advanced Genifique Regimen Set which includes the Advanced GÉNIFIQUE Youth Activating Concentrate, the GÉNIFIQUE EYE Youth Activating Eye Concentrate, and the CRÈME RADIANCE Clarifying Cream-to-Foam Cleanser.  The CRÈME Radiance works so well and removing dirt and oil from my skin.  I love it sooo much and use it in the morning and evenings when I am removing my make up.  I also noticed that the dark puffiness under my eyes is starting to slowly fade away after using the GÉNIFIQUE EYE Youth Activating Eye Concentrate.  I love them all.  My skin is soo even and looks awesome.  When I leave the house without makeup on, I don’t feel the need to have any because I feel like my skin looks good.  I’ve even gotten complements about my natural skin from plenty of people after using these products.  They are very much my favorites and will stay in my bag indefinitely.  LOL.

becca…and of course, I cannot live without my Becca Beach Tints.  I got a few of them for my birthday and Christmas last year and they have been a die-hard staple in my makeup routine.  I love the subtle flush of color that they give to my lips and cheeks on days where I want a more natural look.  I pair this with a light application of the Dual Finish from Lancome, a not so light application of the Definicils Mascara and a thin stroke of black eyeliner and I have the perfect soft and natural look.


Other Beauty Faves:

IMG_1365If any of you follow me on Instagram or Facebook…or even Twitter for that matter, you know that I hand make my own soaps.  I know exactly what my skin needs so I usually make formulations to combat some of the skin problems that I’ve consistently suffered from.  I also love making my own soaps because it gives me a creative outlet to make something that I can share with others, sell, or gift.  I love this particular bar that I created because it has Golden Seal, Chai, honey, Patchouli, Rose Water and Glycerin…and of course Shea Butter.  These are all of my favorite things wrapped in one bar…and it feels so decadent when I use it.

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Ok…so I said that I wouldn’t make this post all about Lancome, but my two all time favorite fragrances are from this company.  I love the fresh scent of Miracle.  This has quickly become one of my all time favorite fragrances.  When I wear this or La Nuit Tresor, my other favorite fragrance from Lancome, I get tons of complements.  I think I love La Nuit Tresor so much because of the Patchouli.  LOL.

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…and last but not least…I won this Naked Manicure Professional Set from Zoya on Twitter a few weeks ago, and since then, I’ve fallen in love.  My nails are in such an awesome condition after using this set and I can verify the claims that this product “…provides intense therapeutic, long term benefits for stronger, healthier nails.” I love the Naked colors and the color correction that they provide.  The colors last a full week without chipping and you cannot even tell because they are truly ‘Naked’.  I’ve been looking for a more natural looking manicure for my nails for times when I do not feel like the bright reds, blues or greens that I sometimes tend to rock.  I’ve been embracing a more natural look lately and this set came right on time!


I hope that you enjoyed my favorites.  I know that I enjoy them everyday.  LOL.  I am a beauty junkie and collected tons of cosmetics, skin care items and hair care products.  These are the ones that I consistently go to and they give me a feeling of satisfaction when I spend my money on them and use them…LOL…so naturally, I had to crown them as my Summer favorites!  ♥

Until Next Time…

What I’m Currently Listening to…


…and

So, I Just Realized…My Protective Style Wasn’t so … Protective

                I needed to do something with my hair quickly because I work out more than 4 times a week. I was sweating up a storm, going home and co-washing and making my hair thin and brittle. I had no idea that my hair didn’t like sweat and then conditioner until I got into the habit of making that a routine…sweat…then conditioner…and then sweat again…then conditioner. I had enough. I was tired, doing too much between work, UrbanistaNoir and working out. I had to do something. I engaged Chawana and told her I wanted to get the crochet braids protective style in my hair. I would wear my hair in this style for about two months and not have to worry.

                Well, I did. LOL. (And first of all, the hair that I picked was horrible. It was dry and very tangled. I guess I will review the hair in a later post because despite how horrible it was at first, it ended up looking great and being eventually manageable.) So Chawana and I got together on a Saturday and installed the crochet braids. Everything was fine until we started trying to untangle that braid hair. It was so dry and kinky. After installation, my scalp would itch and I was in a conundrum. Should I just pat my head until the itchy feeling goes away, or should I throw away hours of time spent installing this style and remove the hair? I decided to go against my better judgment and continue with wearing the style, hoping that my scalp would stop itching. It did…but I continued working out and sweating every day and I had no idea that my hair was suffering in the protective style.

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                About a month in a half later, my hair looked like it was growing out of the style, the braids pushing my hair forward and making it more difficult to wear. I finally sat down on a Friday evening and removed the hair. Once I went through the task of removing all of the hair and my shed hair, I noticed that my hair was brittle and soft. I put a protein treatment in, then a deep conditioning treatment. My hair was still soft, dry and brittle. So now, here I am with brittle hair and I am contemplating a big chop. I think I would love a short haircut…but I don’t know. Summer is coming and I know that short hair would be a nice choice. I also don’t want to throw away a lot of hair growth that I’ve accomplished.

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                At the end, I need to realize that hair is just that… It won’t make me or break me…but the decision is still looming in my head. LOL.

                I did learn my lesson though, my hair likes protective styles, but ones that can be manipulated or taken down when they need to be. I am good with twists and roll tuck and pin styles, braid ups and corn rolls.

Will do the crochet braids style again? I have no idea, but at the present time…I have to say… NO.

                I’ll let you guys know what I decide to do with my hair.

Until Next Time

What I’m Currently Listening To:

Natural Hair: Versitility of Natural Hair

I just wanted to confirm and share with you guys how versatile natural hair is. I guess we already know this is a fact, especially if you spent some time natural.

But, Saturday, I decided to follow-up on that post that I made regarding black historical heroines and their hairstyles posted. Here is a link to that blog post

I decided to go with the Angela Davis look for that day.
Sunday was wash day, so I washed and deep conditioned my hair. I also roller set my hair with magnetic rollers and air-dried until this morning…which is Monday.

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My ‘Angela Davis’ style.

I set my hair with the medium and X-Large sized magnetic rollers.  I also used end papers and a small amount of setting lotion.  I provided a lot of tension when setting my hair, making sure that I was pulling tightly, but not too tight.  I didn’t use any heat and allowed my hair to dry all day Sunday and Monday.

My roller set.

My roller set.

Within two few days, I was able to rock some really cool styles that I love. I love the roller set because it gives me a different curl definition, I didn’t use any heat, and I have stretched hair which helps me to avoid tangles.

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In other news, this experience, and the experience of my curlfriend Chawana, makes me want to go out and purchase Curlformers.

Have you guys used any curlformers? What do you think of them? I know that one of my favorite YouTube vloggers Naptural85  uses them a lot and she has awesome hair.

I think I may just do it… If I do, I will let you know.

Until next time,

What I’m currently listening to: