Monday, August 31, 2015

What I hope to experience by floating in a sensory deprivation tank.

This afternoon, on a whim, I decided to purchase a session in a sensory deprivation tank (float tank).  Actually, I grabbed a package of four 90 minute sessions.  This was literally an on the spot decision.  So why did I do it?

There's a ton of reasons why I'm interested.  But let me first start off by saying that if I had lots of disposable income, I'd fill my life with unusual experiences like float tanks, cyrotheraphy, plasma facials, and whatever else is out there that I don't yet know about.  Today I decided to follow my own advice of putting my money where my goals are.  I love experiences but I tend to spend my money on the same purchases over and over. This time I chose to break out of my pattern and try something new.

While working, I had a video playing in the background where a woman talked about the early stage of launching her business.  At one point in her rant, she mentioned the insights gained from her float tank experience.  Instantly something in my mind clicked and I immediately found a nearby location and secured an appointment.  One thing I should clarify is that I watched over a dozen deprivation tank videos about a year ago.  I was really interested at the time but failed to take any action.  Today was different.

For those of you who aren't familiar with float tanks, basically they are tanks filled with around 10 inches of water and 1000 lbs of epsom salt.  The water is heated to the same temperature as the skin and the salt causes you to float.  The end result is the removal of all senses as you float in the water.  You're in a sound proof tank, naked, in the dark, with no sensations.  The only thing you're left with are your thoughts.  It's described as one of the most relaxing experiences ever.  Some say it's like meditation on crack.  There are also a host of health benefits that one can experience such as lower cortisol levels, pain management, and improving physical performance.

Then there are beauty benefits from the medical grade epsom salt.  The salt is a natural exfoliator,  emollient, and detoxifier.  As you lay in the water, your body absorbs magnesium from the salt.  Magnesium is the second most abundant mineral in the human body (behind calcium) and helps regulate the activity of more than 325 enzymes. I've heard testimonies of how people have enjoyed highly restful sleep following float tank sessions partially due to absorption of magnesium in their system.

The real reason why said "yes" to this experience is for the meditative qualities.  I hope to engage in a powerful visualization exercise that will help me see clearly the outcomes that I wish to experience.  I also hope this will help me get into a deeper meditative state at home during my morning practice.  One huge supporter of float tanks says that it's helped increase his mental capacity and nurture his creativity.

My session is in a couple of days and I'm really excited. Basically every one who left a review on Youtube said they'd do it again. I hope my experience is just as exhilarating.  Lookout for a short review after my first experience.

Monday Motivation | Work on behalf of your future self

A while back, I brought up the concept of the future self.  In the post, Yesterday you said tomorrow, I talked about the future self as someone we whom we trusted to somehow miraculously do the things that we weren't willing to do today.  If I say to myself "next week, I'm going to the gym everyday," I'm handing off action to my future self. And time after time, our future self continues to let us down.

The problem with our logic of relying on our future self is two fold:
1. The future self we speak of resides in the short term future.  Yet we somehow believe that within a few hours, days, or weeks, we'll make vastly different decisions than we do now.
2. Delegating work to someone who doesn't want to do it now is a bad idea.
May I present to you an alternative method that might be much more effective.  Instead of relying on your future self, know that your future self is actually RELYING ON YOU.  Every time you have a goal you want to achieve, you're actually saying "in the future, I want to experience this."  You're (long-term) future self has high standards and wants so much for herself.  She's relying on you to take the steps today that give her what she wants tomorrow.

There's a price for everything.  If we want bottle of a soda, we reach into our purse and pay a dollar for it.  We should think of our intentions in the same way.  There's a cost.  Sometimes it involves money, sometimes the cost is action, often times it's a combination of the two.  We pay now so we can enjoy it later.   Our job is to work diligently to give our future self everything she wants.  If you identified goals at the start of the year that aren't yet a reality, it means that you aren't allocating enough of your resources (time & money) to achieve it.  If you truly want those things on your list, then get to work.  A portion of your daily activities should be geared towards meeting the objectives of your future self.

This weekend, I took a look around my office and had the revelation that my current environment was a representation of my past self.  There were books on the shelf that I hadn't looked at in years.  File cabinets containing reference materials from over 5 years ago.  There was nothing that signified where I want to be. This, to me meant that my future self wasn't a priority.  After I made that realization, I started to quickly plan out my next steps.  I'm trashing the file cabinet and all of its contents and will remove the old books from the shelf and decorate in a more modern way in alignment to the kind of environment that my future self will enjoy.

The reality we experience today is a bi-product of every decision we've made in the past.  Let's be grateful to our past selves for our current experiences. And, let's adjust our present actions so to make our future selves proud.








Saturday, August 29, 2015

Cleanse with this if you want clear, acne-free skin

Recently I shared an article where I highlighted the role of probiotics in cleansing products to combat acne causing bacteria on the surface of the skin.  Today, I'd like to offer up another option.  When I battled acne, one thing that never worked for me was typical acne fighting ingredients like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid.  But not a lot of other options were available.

Times have changed.  According to the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, mild acne can be treated via your cleanser.  But not just any cleanser.  In order to experience the best results, you should be on the look out for a cleanser that has glycolic acid + one with a low pH.

In their study, they recruited patients who used the cleanser exclusively, twice a day, for 6 weeks.  At the end of the 6 week trial, the "mild acne improved significantly" as judged by a doctor's assessment.
A couple of years ago, I found myself at the Nutra Bisse counter at Neiman Marcus.  This was immediately after I learned that Beyonce & Kelly Rowland both enjoyed slathering Diamond Cream on their flawless skin.  I walked away from the counter with samples of Diamond Cream and their Glyco Extreme Peel.  I had active breakouts at the time so didn't bother trying the peel for fear that it would further aggravate my skin.  I happen to stop by the counter again and let her know that I enjoyed the cream but didn't use the peel because of my breakouts.

"No," she responded "peels are good for acne."  "The acids will help remove the dead layers and clear your skin."  Wow. I had no idea. So I went home and did as I was told.  Then there's the time I visited Lady Dee for my first ever skin peel.  After hearing that flawless celebrities frequented her spa, I had to experience it for myself.  I remember taking before pics just hours prior to the peel.  My skin was troubled and had active breakouts.  Days later, when the peel came off. Absolutely clear. Not one breakout in sight.

So perhaps using an acidic cleanser is the way to go.  The abstract of the article didn't explain why the combination of glycolic acid and a low pH worked well but we can figure it out.  First off, a low pH is the ideal environment for the skin.  I suspect this helps keep unwanted bacteria from wreaking havoc.  Then we pair the low pH with  exfoliation to remove blockage & dead skin. What we're left with is clear, happy skin.  I did a quick look around the internet and Glytone Mild Gel Wash seems to formulated with 4.7% glycolic acid and has a pH of 3.8.  And the reviews are pretty stellar.    I first stumbled on this brand while researching for skin evening body products.  Since then, I've always wanted to try Glytone.  Now I have even more reason to give it a shot.    If you already have a favorite cleanser, you can try implementing a glycolic acid toner with low pH like this one from Derma Cosmetic and see if it works for you just a well.  Thanks to the commenter below for also recommending Anthony's Glycolic cleanser.


Friday, August 28, 2015

NEW IN.

A short list of some new items I'm currently loving.
I'm one of those people who will sometimes get themselves something for their birthday.  I celebrated this year by treating myself to yet another handbag.  After being captured by the beauty of this black caviar YSL clutch w/black hardware (also w/black chain - not shown), I knew I'd be taking it home.  I think I'm gonna go back into handbag retirement.  No wait,  there's only one other handbag that needs to come off my list before I put myself on lock down again.  If I reach my 4th quarter goals, I'd love to grab the larger version of the Balenciaga City Bag.   The Balenciaga City is my every day bag and I'd love to have the larger version to carry my laptop and, planner and other work related stuff when I'm on the go.  

Also pictured above is my new favorite pink lip liner. NARS' Rikugien.  It's the only pink shade that works on my two toned lips.  Plus it's a satin finish so it feels hydrating. This means that I don't have to pair it with gloss.  I received it as part of a birthday gift package at Sephora and loved it so much that I purchased a full size.  I highly recommend this shade if you want to add the perfect pink to your collection. 
Fall will soon be upon us. I absolutely hate cold weather but I'll bear it in exchange for the chance to wear cute jackets again.  There's already another "leather" jacket in my closet but it doesn't really get that cold here and I wanted a lighter weight one to wear on cool days.  I grabbed this one at Express.  If you're petite like me and have a hard time finding fitted leather jackets, I suggest you give this one a try. Oh, there's also one with quilted sleeves on sale.
I woke up one day and was like "I want some platform shoes." But not like 70's platform shoes. I wanted platform with a modern silhouette. Back when platform shoes where in style, I was a really happy girl.  Platforms give tiny gils like us some height without having to sacrifice comfort.  After putting the thought vibes out there, I walk into a boutique, find these black laser cut DVS black platforms and purchased immediately.   They're beyond comfortable and make a great statement.
I was inspired by Beyonce's make up artist who recommended eye cream as an all over moisturizer. So I picked up StiVectin-SD's Intensive Eye Concentrate for wrinkles.  I love the tube packaging.  I just squeeze a little on the back of my hand and apply on my face.  So far, I love the product. It's a nice, rich consistency which will be even more perfect as the air gets a bit dryer.  And my skin looks pretty good after only a couple days use.  Thinking about picking up another tube.
Another birthday addition.  The Louis Vuitton key pouch is probably my favorite acquisition.  Before the key pouch came into my life, I would walk around the house asking "have you seen my keys?"  'Cause I carry large bags, I'd have a hard time finding my keys at the bottom of the bag. It's been over a month and that problem no longer exists.  This accessory is super useful.  I can carry money, Iphone earbuds, and Iphone charger cable, hair pins and my I.D. with ease.   If I wanted to, I could use it as a mini makeup pouch to throw in a clutch bag.  I get so much use out this thing. Totally worth the investment.


Last year I swore off using lotions after discovering Johson's Baby Oil gel, Capriclear Coconut Oil Spray and Palmer's Coco Butter Oil.  But yesterday, someone recommended I try Aveda's Stress Fix Body Creme. Before I had a chance to decline, she placed a little in the palm of my hand.  As soon as I rubbed my hands together, I was sold. I immediately wanted a travel size to have in my handbag at all times. It's so luxurious and effective.  Not only does it hydrate extremely well, it soothes and softens.  She told me that I can also try putting some on my feet at night and covering them with socks as an overnight treatment.  Can't wait to test it out.
Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Life Elevated | Why I decided to get a cleaning lady

Clean Home Inspiration
Yesterday, I made the decision to hire a cleaning lady.  As soon as the decision was made, I took immediate action to schedule an appointment before I talked myself out of it.  The idea of hiring someone to come in on a regular basis to clean my house is something I've resisted forever. Growing up, my mom kept a spotless home.  She'd often wake up early in the morning and scrub down the house until exhaustion.  When she was done, the house was immaculate and I absolutely loved the feeling of being a clean environment.  And when I traveled weekly, I became accustomed to the neatness of a well maintained hotel room.

Since I've been on my own, I've maintained a clean environment as best as I could. But the amount of time required to keep the house to the level of cleanliness that I desire is not feasible.  Even if I had that much time on my hands, I don't want to spend it cleaning.  I'm not talking about doing the dishes, sweeping floors and making the bed.  No, I'm referring to the deep down work.  The kinda stuff that my mom would do all weekend.  I really wish that I was one of those people that enjoy getting on my hands and knees and scrubbing until everything shines...but I'm not.  But I'd love to live in a pristine environment. So what's a girl to do?

Outsource.  Yep, I'm handing the job over to the professionals.  I do feel a little a guilty that I didn't turn out like my mom. But I had to get over it.

Now I have a new expense.  My goal is to see how I can turn this new expense into income. Well, not directly.  But I'm hoping that working in a well organized and clean environment will have a direct impact on my focus.  Just recently I received an email from a coaching client of mine who shared how she found herself to be more productive in building her business when she stayed at a hotel.  Why? Because an organized space helps sparks creativity.  When our environment is dirty or cluttered, it takes up our mental energy. Remember the scene in Limitless when Eddy cleaned his entire home, the very next thing he did was sit down and write the book he'd been avoiding for months.

I suspect that I'll respond favorably as well. Whenever I clean my environment, I work at a higher level so I know that living in a professionally cleaned home will somehow influence my income.  One challenge I'm creating for myself is to calculate the cost of regular cleaning for a year and create ideas on how to generate enough income to cover the investment (including gratuity).  My intention is that this decision to hire help will actually increase my income.

We'll see what happens.  Maybe I'll change my mind and cancel after the first couple of cleanings. Maybe having a maid service will transform my life.  I just look forward to living in a spotless environment again.

Do any of you have experience with a maid service?  Please share.
Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Here's how to upgrade water in your L.O.C. moisture routine

Hopefully by now, all of you ladies are fully utilizing the L.C.O (liquid, cream, oil) method of moisturizing.  For those of you who aren't familiar with L.C.O., it's like Korean skin care layering, but for the hair.  Basically, our goal is to maximize the amount of moisture on the hair by first applying a liquid then a creamy moisturizer and wrapping it up with a lightweight oil (or liquid, oil, cream).

Sounds good, right?  But what if we could tweak the formula to make to make it even better?  The first step in the L.O.C. formula involves a liquid.  When I first introduced this method, my hair was insanely dry so water was my first choice.  I figured that my hair would just drink up the moisture in preparation for my favorite moisturizer  and oil.  Water is good but it also has its downside.  Sometimes, too much water has an opposite effect of what we want. Meaning water can open cuticle layer causing frizz and rough, unsexy hair.

The moisturizer can help remedy some of this but, too be honest, it too might have a high water content and may not be powerful enough to actually change the condition of the hair.  The solution to this is to utilize a powerful water-substitute.  Let's discuss options.

If you'd like to graduate hydrating and desire to actually condition the hair, may I suggest you try substituting water with your favorite light weight leave-in conditioner.  One option I'm loving is Phillip Kingsley's Daily Damage Defense Conditioning Spay.  It's really light.  Like water, but better.  Another benefit of Kingsley's daily defense is that it doesn't build up.  Other options I also like include Biolage's Daily Leave-in Tonic for greater conditioning or Tiger Grund's Protein Recontructor if I need to fortify my hair with a little protein.  All three are great choices and give my hair a little more support than water alone.



Lately, my hair has been pretty rebellious.   I'm enduring a long stretch and my hair was feeling rough and tangled easily.  After a little bit of thought the answer came to me in a flash "I NEED TO SEAL MY CUTICLE LAYER!"  Next I wondered if I had enough time to head to the alkaline water store to grab a bottle of acidic water.  But then I looked down and saw the coconut vinegar staring back at me.  "Of course!" Coconut vinegar is acidic and, when mixed with water, could lower the pH thereby creating sleeker strands.  After mixing some water and coconut vinegar in an aluminum sprayer, I misted my hair, layered moisturizer & Gleau Argan oil then tied a silk scarf to seal in all the goodness.  Minutes later,  I removed the scarf to reveal soft, smooth hair.  Those massive tangles melted away. Perfecto!

Other options to boost your L.C.O routines is to start of with a watery moisturizer like Kinky Curly Knot Today, then layer with a thicker moisturizer and finish off with oil.  Or use healthy hair faves  already in liquid form like aloe vera juice, which also has a low pH for sealed, happy cuticles.  I still believe that water is a powerful moisturizer so perhaps you might even considering experimenting with water--leave-in--cream--oil  (W.L.C.O) and see how your hair responds.




Monday, August 24, 2015

Monday Motivation | Use the "Micro-Method" to beat procrastination

Procrastination is something that we all deal with to some extent.  Even people with clear goals & action steps on how to achieve them still have to overcome it.  Each Sunday or Monday, I reflect on what I want to accomplish for the week ahead.  Many times I find myself carrying over some of the same "to-dos" that were on the list last week (and even the week before). That's when I've gotta to come to grips with the fact that I've been avoiding these tasks.

Sometimes I try to pump my self up to do it, or I'll even assign a day and time when I'll get it done, but it rarely seems to work.  And, the longer it stays on my list, the more I tend to procrastinate.  So I'm trying a new strategy.  Instead of re-writing the same actions over and and over again, I plan to practice acting with urgency.

I'll employ what I coined as the "micro-method" to move myself into quick action.  The micro-method looks something like this:

Unreasonable Deadlines//
One mistake I've been making is not including a deadline/due date, when I write down my goals.  Instead of saying that I'll get this thing done on Wednesday, I just write it down and hope that I somehow do it.  Using the "micro-method I basically set unreasonable deadlines to get something done.  For example, on my list of actions was to take some updated product images and format them for upload online.  Days passed and still no images.  At 4:20 pm I decided to employ the micro-method.  I had until 4:35 pm to get it done!  Yep, I had only 15 minutes to have a finished image.  Off I went to meet this ultra tight deadline.  And, to be honest, it was kinda fun...like a game.  Needless to say, I got it done.

With ultra short deadlines, we shift our mindset from making excuses to figuring out how to get it done quickly.  Time is ticking....

Take Micro Actions//
The other aspect of the micro-method for overcoming procrastination is to take micro actions.  Sometimes our minds tend to have the tendency to over exaggerate how hard it is to do something.  We  listen to the excuses and put of the action for another day.  Instead, I urge you to take a micro action.  I've been putting off meditating lately because I lied to myself  convinced myself that I just don't have enough time.

So I asked myself, do you have 1 minute to meditate?  Of course the answer is yes.  So I set my timer for a minute and meditated.  Suddenly, the activity that I had no time for was over in what seemed like record time.  Immediately, I reset the clock for 3 minutes.  Again, the minutes seemed to breeze by.  At first I "had no time" to meditate, now, I wanted to do it even longer.    The same method could be used for physical exercise or writing your book.  Writing is definitely one of those actions that seems daunting if you just sit around thinking about it.  But when you start, you find yourself in  a state a flow and want to keep going.  The hardest part is starting and the micro-method may just be the way to get started.

The absolute best part of the Micro-Method is that it's like a gateway drug to greater levels of action.  You can't have just a little.  Once you start doing what you've been putting off, you feel great and you build momentum. Soon you'll find yourself doing more and more.  It becomes addictive.  Taking the micro-action of jumping on the trampoline led to a walk at a nearby park, which lead to a early gym session this morning.  Last week, I thought I was too busy to work out.  Today, I can't wait to incorporate more physical activity into my day.

 This micro-method is really powerful.  I urge you to become a user (sorry for bad pun).
Friday, August 21, 2015

Style Inspo| What to Wear (or buy) This Weekend

Click images below to shop the look

I placed a small online order of a few clothing pieces. Two of the four items I purchased was in grey.  Why?  Because I'm realizing how easy to style the color grey is.  It's like the casual version of black.  Grey serves as the perfect back drop to your colorful accessories.  Unlike black, grey, has a casual "daytime" feel that can be dressed up with heels and a statement bag.  I'm also loving the fact that grey can easily transition from summer to fall.  
Click on images below to shop the look

It stays pretty hot most of the year where I live so I don't get the chance to really rock my outer wear like I want.  Sometimes I'll grab a lightweight jacket in the morning and have to remove by afternoon as the temperature climbs.  Let's not forget those days when it's too hot to wear a jacket but you still want to layer pieces and elevate your look.  The solution to all of our problems is in the sleeveless jacket which Laura Govan is wearing flawlessly.  Her military vest/jacket really makes the look.

Now I'm obsessed with acquiring sleeveless versions of my favorite jackets.  This may require some tailoring but I'm open to the idea of altering an old coat if necessary.   Last year, I picked a denim vest after being inspired by this look and I wore it almost daily.  Now I'm on a mission to add a few more vests to my collection.
Wearing Beautiful Flower Dress | More Ankara Dresses


The only print I'm attracted to lately has been tribal inspired looks.  If I could own an entire closet of tribal print dresses, I'd be elated.  I'm slowly making my way there since I picked up two print dresses over the summer.  They make me feel so regal whenever I wear them which is why I'm getting a few more.

If Diddy were to call you and invite you to a white party he's having this weekend, would you be ready?  No, but seriously, in every closet there should be at least one standout all white outfit.  It could be perfectly tailored white slacks or an impeccable white skirt.  Whatever you decide.  A white outfit, when done right, looks so clean, expensive, and minimal.  It also causes you to behave differently 'cause you're now tasked with the responsibility of keeping your look flawless your entire night out.
head wrap
Keeping your hair perfect in this summer heat can be darn near impossible.  Sometimes it's easier to accessorize with a gorgeous statement head wrap and keep it moving.  Head wraps are perfect for accentuating your look.  I love how she paired with a multicolored wrap with playful sunnies and cute earrings.  Last summer I  wore different head wraps for about a week and totally felt like a different person.  It saved time, protected my hair from the harmful summer sun, and garnered a few compliments in the process.  It was just the change I needed. It's definitely time to rock this again.


Thursday, August 20, 2015

First Impressions | GlamGlow Youthcleanse Exfoliating Cleanser

My ravenous shopping habits have lead me to reach the status of Sephora VIB (very important beauty insider). Every once in a while an email lands in my inbox with an exclusive offer for VIB members.  Most often, I ignore them, but this time I had to take full advantage.  They were offering various free samples with a minimum purchase.  On the list of offers was GlamGlow's Youthcleanse.
Y'all know that I'm a fan of GlamGlow.  The clearing mud has got to be one of my all time favorites.  So when I saw the opportunity to try their cleansing, exfoliating mud, I was all over it.  Luckily for me, I stumbled upon NARS satin lip pencil in Rikugien days earlier and absolutely need to add it to my beauty collection.  After adding the lip pencil, the special sharpener and a mascara to my basket, I'd reached the minimum required to get my free sample of GlamGlow.

What intrigued me about YouthCleanse is that it cleanses, exfoliates and has mask-like qualities all in one.  Sometimes one doesn't have the time to execute three separate steps in your facial regimen.  Feels good to know that one product can save a little time and change the look of your skin in one session.

Here's a little background about the product:

YOUTHCLEANSE™ is a revolutionary Mud to Foam™ daily cleanser that combines the power of mud and the performance of foam for an innovative cleansing experience. It transforms into a gentle and effective foaming lather that dissolves makeup and impurities while removing dead surface cells. 

It is formulated with Brazilian superfruits acai, guarana, and acerola to provide potent antioxidants and flaxseed and quinoa, which are rich in omegas 3, 6, and 9 for stronger, healthier-looking skin. French sea clay revitalizes skin, microalgae scrub and phytic acid extreme gently exfoliate, and TEAOXI® green tea leaf delivers EGCG super antioxidants to protect against free radicals—working with ground ginkgo biloba leaf to optimize the skin’s natural renewal process. YOUTHCLEANSE™ helps to maintain the results of your current weekly GLAMGLOW® treatments. 



This morning I had the chance to try it for myself and here are my initial thoughts.  The product itself has a thick liquid consistency.  Sorta like a lotion (but not).  The creamier consistency allows for easy application on a dry face (per instructions).  Once the product is completely applied, you then dampen your hands and rub them together, causing the product left on your hand to foam.

As you apply the YouthCleanse to your face and when you massage the product, you'll feel the tiny grains that work to exfoliate.  Although it kinda feels like a mask on the skin, the instructions state clearly that it's not meant to be used as a mask.  Meaning, it doesn't dry onto the skin and you don't have to wait forever for it to dry before removing.

After a few moments of massaging the product in, I rinsed it off pretty easily.  Immediately, I touched my skin which felt smooth and exfoliated.  Overall, I was really pleased with how YouthCleanse performed.  According to the product info, this is meant to be a daily cleanser.  In my experience, the product was a little too drying to be used daily.  I mean, it cleanses, exfoliates, and has mask-like qualities all in one.  Of course could be a little drying.  This product would have been perfect back when I traveled a lot.  Instead of having to pack a mask, exfoliating products and a cleanser, I'd grab my YouthCleanse and be set.  I also see this as a perfect product for after working out or a steam room session.  GlamGlow Youthcleanse is made for those moments you're short on time but want to do a quick exfoliation and cleanse at once. Or when you're feeling lazy and don't want to conduct a full on at home facial.

 I will definitely purchase the full size.


Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The Real Reason why Vaseline is a powerful Anti-Aging Secret

Unpetroleum | Vaseline | Aquaphor
One morning, I stood in my yard, taking in the morning sun.  My neighbor of many years happens to step out at around the same time and we great each other as normal.  This time our conversations are bit more personable than usual.  Even though we've lived next to each for years, we barely spoke.  Part of the reason was due to my constant travel and her responsibilities of a day job and helping to care for a disabled husband.  Both of us are home during the day now.  So now we chat whenever we see other.

During this morning's conversation, she discusses having been laid off from her job of 30 years.  I was taken aback by how long she'd been employed there.  Instantly my mind started to do the math.  Exactly how old was this woman? Sure her husband is an older gentleman, but I thought she married an older man when she was younger.  Her face is absolutely flawless, with zero signs of wrinkles or aging.  Her deep chocolate skin has an undeniable glow.

As our conversation comes to a close she mentions celebrating her 55th birthday. Stunned and slightly in shock, I blurt out "what do you use on your skin?"  She smiles, touches her face, and says, in her country twang, "vaseline."  "I put it on every morning and before I go to bed." "Do you do anything else?" I ask.  "Nope."
I was much more shocked than I should have been.  I mean, I'm well aware of the benefits of going to bed greasy.

But now I'm thinking, "what is it about vaseline" that makes people swear by it?  What makes it such a powerful anti-aging product?"

Truth be told, there aren't any amazing ingredients in vaseline.  It's not at all like the main ingredient Korean Essence products that have the ability to slow down time.  It has no antioxidants nor does it dissolve the top layer of skin revealing more youthful skin cells.  Vaseline only does one thing and it does it really well.  It protects.

More accurately, vaseline provides an excellent barrier on the skin.  Think about it.  After cleansing at night we add moisturizers to our skin.  Then we sleep for 8 hours while the moisture from our skin evaporates.  Vaseline creates an amazing barrier of protection on the skin sealing in moisture like none other.  Moisture is trapped, keeping the skin in its hydrated condition for hours at a time.  Can you imagine the long term effects of that?  In the words of the wise P Diddy, "it moisturizes your skin's situation and preserves its sexy."  And let's not forget about the people who boast that petroleum jelly makes their lashes feel healthier.  Again, moisture retention at work.

Never forget the power of high moisture levels.  It's what keeps our hair flexible, preventing breakage.  High amounts of moisture plumps the skin, while dehydration causes wrinkling.  Moisturized skin glows.  Dry skin is dull and rough.  We apply oil on our hair to seal in moisture, why not use the same reasoning for our skin?

I know that some of your cringe at the thought of applying petroleum jelly to your face.  "It'll break me out" is the first thought that pops into your mind.  But according to the Vaseline website, it doesn't clog pores.  Probably because petroleum jelly doesn't actually sink into the skin but remains on the top layer.  But no worries, if you'd like to experience the wonders of Vaseline without actually using petroleum jelly, try a more natural alternative like Alba's Unpetroleum.  Or perhaps you'd rather use something lighter like coconut oil.  We've seen great examples here and here of women who use coconut oil at night and enjoy flawless skin.  One last option on the list is oil cleansing, which is where you use oil on the skin as a pre-cleanse to remove dirt and oil.

Before high end skin creams, there was vaseline. And it allowed many grandmothers to age in a beautiful and natural way.  Today we have access to much more intricate formulations and I'm grateful for that. But there's no denying the wonders of plain 'ole petroleum jelly.
Monday, August 17, 2015

Monday Motivation | Have you developed your personal "feel good" routine?

Last week, I conducted an experiment.  I decided to consciously employ one aspect of the Law of Attraction that I tend to forget.  They say that in order to attract, you should first set an intention. Then you create affirmations around the intention. Next you visualize in order to raise your level of belief.  Then you move into action.  All these steps can be done simultaneously, by the way.

Sounds like a plan, right?  But tend to neglect the aspect around "feeling good."  They say that you must "feel the feelings of having obtained what you want"  to speed up the attraction process.  In my experiment, I decided to actively take actions that instantly elevate my mood.  Here's the thing, I can go from feeling amazing to feeling discouraged pretty quickly.  Our thoughts are constantly running in the background and, if we aren't careful, we allow negative thoughts, judgement, and internal criticism take us down the wrong path.

Here's the way I look at it.  Everyone of us has a cell phone.  Before bed, you probably charge your cell phone to prepare for the following day.  Throughout the day, we use the phone which drains the battery.  Even if you don't use the phone that much, the battery still goes down.  Eventually, you'll have to charge it again.  We're the same way.  We could accomplish something great and be on cloud nine. Days, weeks, or hours later, we might be right back to feeling bad again.

This is why we need to develop a "feel good routine."  Basically, this is where you (1) notice when your feel good energy is low (or not where you want it to be). And (2) you instantly take on a set of actions that transform your energy to "feel good levels."

The better I am at implementing my feel good routine, the more I attract what I desire.  My level of action is also greater when I'm operating at high levels.   Here's what I did
  • First I identify what makes me feel good.  Ideas that came to my mind included maintaining a clean and inspiring environment, listening to my favorite songs, dancing, paying attention to my physical appearance, staying hydrated, looking at inspiring images, etc.  Some of these actions have the ability to instantly change my mood.  Those are the actions I'd employ as soon as I notice my levels draining.  Fast action makes all the difference.
  • Next I determined other mood changers that would have a more long term effect.  For instance, working out may or may not instantly change my mood, but the results could sustain the feel good feelings, long term.
    RuPaul giving us an example of a powerful "feel good" action.
Then I put it into to practice. Basically, I tried to raise my mood (my vibration) as often as possible throughout the week.  The results were pretty spectacular.  This past weekend alone, I manifested several intentions that I'd had been holding on to for months.  It was fun to experience and I can't wait to try it again and again.   

Oh, one thing to be careful of, make sure your feel good actions aren't counterfeit.  Here's an example.  While at the grocery store, I picked up some blondies as a snack.  Blondies are my absolute favorite.  They tasted so good, but after the momentary taste experience was gone, I could feel my blood sugar spike and overall my energy and mood dropped.  Although it felt good on the tongue, my body did not interpret the treat as a "feel good" action. Anything that feels good for a moment, but creates negative long term results should not be a part of your routine.  

I invite you to create your own personal daily feel good routine. Something you can do right now to instantly elevate your mood. Then, while you're in a state of elevation, think and act on what you want to create.  Immerse yourself in those feelings and see what unfolds.  
Sunday, August 16, 2015

4 Ways to Create a More Abundant Environment Now.

Besides work, the place we spend most of our time is at home.  Typically, the environment at work pulls from our energy.  Therefore, our home should be a place that pours energy back to us.  We already know the power of presenting the best version of ourself on a daily basis.  But what about the power of being surrounded in a beautiful and uplifting environment at all times?

I love the feeling of walking into a luxury hotel lobby of walking down the streets of a high end community.  There's just something about those spaces that have the ability to impact us.  What if we were to take elements of that and bring it into our current space?  Could a few small simple changes cause us shift our mood and energy to new levels?

Let's find out by incorporating these "abundance elements" into our current environment.
 Bring life into your environment by adding live plants & fresh flowers.  I heard someone say that being close to nature raises our vibration.  The absolute best way to do that is spend time outside.
But it's also important to bring elements of the outside, in.

 Sure, many of us have silk plants and flowers scattered around the home, but silk plants collect dust and are an merely a replica of the real thing.  I love reading about women who purchase fresh flowers every Sunday to begin the new week.  There's something magical about identifying which flowers will bring the most beauty and elegance to your space.  Since it's Sunday, why not treat yourself to a beautiful bouquet of fresh flowers and put it in a prominent place in your home.
 Is there anything that transforms the environment more than ambiance. Candles bring a warmth to your space the really makes it feel like home.  It also mellows the environment, which is great if you want to manage your stress levels.  Couple the lighting with your favorite scents and you can alter your environment in no time.  I adore these 7 hour tea lights.  I light them at the start of my work day and place 'em in fragrance oil burner that spread my favorite scents throughout the house.  I experience a totally different day when I take the time to do this ritual vs. when I don't set the ambiance for my home. Sometimes I'll play meditation music in the background while I work.  This reminds me of being in an ultra relaxing spa. It also keeps my mind focus as if I'm operating in a meditative state. Whatever makes you feel good and about your space, do it.
One area that I need to work on is clearing of surfaces and creating space.  Clutter is the #1 ruiner of the environment.  It's like blockage that stops our flow.  Remember in Limitless, when  the lead character took the "limitless potential pill?"  The very first thing he did was clean and declutter his environment.  When you clear out your space, you allow ideas to flow.  Steve Jobs required his office space to be free of excess clutter and had everything painted white.

If you study the habits of various wealthy people, many of them maintain immaculately clean living spaces.  They seem to have an eye for detail that extends into their outward environment.  I remember attending a morning yoga session at the corporate office of my past company. The CEO happened to slip in after the session was completed and everyone was mingling.  At first he was being his social self and interacting with the cheery people in the room.  Then he caught a glimpse of the haphazardly folded yoga blankets and requested that we pay attention to how we do everything in life (including how we fold).  His attention detail created a culture that lead to the formation of a billion dollar company.  Often, in his interactions with employees, he'd discuss the cleanliness of their vehicles or talk about how important it is to organize our closets.

Cleanliness and organization are abundance habits.    Let's cultivate the habit of order.  This habit causes us to pay attention to details and raise our level of discipline.

Let's clear visible spaces (table tops/counters).  No longer will we use counter space for storage but only to display items that we'll use on a frequent basis.  Let's constantly create space by decluttering regularly. Let's allow new things to flow in & out of our lives (stop hoarding) and let's experience the feeling of abundance that one has from surrounding yourself with less.
Another feature that you'll find in most abundant environments is now everything is place with a purpose.  There seems to be such order and thought behind every piece of furniture.  And you feel amazing every time you walk into the room.  Take a look around your space. Do you have random things hanging out in random places?  Is everything that surrounds you purposeful?  If not, then it's time to release it.  Every non-useful item in your space drains you of energy.  You have no idea what to do with it, so you do nothing and hope that it blends into the background.  The problem with this logic is that it's like an open window running on your laptop. It's stealing some your power and slowing everything down.

Any time I organize a small area in the room, my eyes tend to gravitate to it whenever I enter.  It's magnetic.  And by simply taking it in, I instantly feel better.  Imagine how that would feel if I invested the time to do the entire home?  Actually, that's what I'm in the process of doing.  I hope to have a major part of the decluttering done by fall (or sooner).  Clutter represents disorder. We don't want disorder surrounding us when we're trying to create something new and powerful in our lives.  Let's make an abundant environment a priority.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Insta Beauty Secret | Giorgio Armani Luminious Silk Foundation

@elenitekeste
When this image of Giorgio Armani's Luminous Silk Foundation popped up in my Insta feed, I was memorized.  The caption read "Guess who's got a new foundation? So soo smooth."
@elenitekeste wearing Giorgio Armani foundation
Although I already have a staple foundation (Make Up Forever (MUF) HD foundation), I was still very curious and couldn't get Silk Luminous Foundation out of my head.

Some time passed and one day, after applying the HD foundation, I thought to myself. I need a foundation that does more that just cover flaws, I need something that blurs and makes my skin look smooth & glowy.

Off I went to the Neiman Marcus counter and, thankfully they offered an option in my shade.  I sampled a little on my skin and took note of how much thinner the consistency compared to MUF.  It glided on so easy and felt absolutely weightless.

A friendly sales associate stopped by to boast on the wonders of this miracle foundation and even made sure to mention that she was actually wearing it herself. After our exchange, she gave me a small sample to take home.   Before making my way back home, I stopped by a few stores in the mall.   While there, I caught a glimpse of my skin in the oversized mirror and thought "my skin looks so smooth."
@beautywithlexij wearing Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation
Giorgio Armani's foundation currently resides at the very top of my cravings list.  It's a lightweight foundation with medium coverage.  I love that it's light enough to wear everyday without feeling like you're walking around with a cake face.  In fact, it looks and feels like your skin (only better). No creasing, nothing. I adore this foundation and was ready to purchase when I heard a makeup artist say that Gucci Lustrous Glow foundation was similar Giorgio Armani but even better (it's supposed to be a bit creamier and glides on even smoother).  Gucci's foundation also has added sun protection and only costs a few dollars more.

Next on my list is to sample Gucci's product to see what's what.  Either way, I'm excited to have finally found an every day foundation that makes my skin look amazing (not just covering blemishes).  The price is on the higher end but if it gives me the outcome I'm looking for, it's worth every cent.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Five reasons to wear makeup more often than you do now.

The post I shared on 5 Reasons why we shouldn't dress bummy around the house received quite a bit of views. So I thought I'd create a supplementary post to give you something else to consider.  Today we'll discuss wearing makeup and why it might benefit you to wear it more often.

Before I start, I have to share some disclaimers.  First, I rarely wear makeup.  Although I own tons of it, the only time I'd put it on is before going to Church, a dinner out or other special events. As a child I remember watching a talk show where a woman bragged about being married for X number of years and not allowing her husband to ever see her without makeup. She wore makeup to bed and would wake up extra early to redo her entire face before he woke up in the morning.  I shook my head and swore to never be "that person." Which is why I stayed away from daily make up application.

But now, I have a new perspective on life and I realize the value of wearing make up more often.  Let's discuss.

1. You take better care of your skin.
One huge benefit of wearing skin correcting makeup is how one can minimize flaws.  Back when my skin was a certifiable mess, I'd leverage concealer to make my breakouts seem a lot less horrendous then they really were.  Whenever I had a presentation in front of a large group of people, I'd use ample amounts of MAC Studiotech to make my skin look somewhat normal.

But, ideally, everyone with troubled skin wants to have skin that looks amazing without makeup.  Honestly, I started going hard with transforming my skin only after using makeup to hide the flaws.  Thanks to the help of high coverage foundations, I saw what my skin could look like if I worked hard enough.  So I made it my mission to create skin that looked great with or without makeup. They say that if you want to create something new in your life, you have to visualize it.  When my skin was a hot mess, it was hard to visualize it as flawless.  So I'd apply my makeup, squint and viola!  I'd see what my future could look like.  I use lash serum because I love the look of long lashes that mascara gives.  I exfoliate because I like the way my skin looks without blemishes.  Wearing makeup actually causes me to work harder to improve my natural beauty.

On the flip side, makeup can also show you what's wrong with your skin. Try applying foundation to dry flaky skin and see what happens.  If your skin needs exfoliating, you'll certainly notice that when you wear makeup.  Sometimes I like to put on foundation just to see what I notice. Do my fine lines appear more obvious? Is my skin texture a bit rough? I take note of what shows up and promptly address it in my daily skin care regimen.

2. You're more likely to wear sunscreen
Whenever I rock a bare face, I rock a bare face.  Meaning, I don't do much in the area of skin protection.  I just do the bare minimum and walk out the door.  But when I wear makeup, I layer sunscreen, moisturizers, the whole nine.  Not only that, I'm more likely to put in a little extra effort by adding facial massages and facial exercise, just to make sure my face provides the perfect canvas for the final look.  If I go too long without wearing makeup, it most likely means that I'm neglecting other aspects of my facial regimen as well.
3. You get better at it the more your practice.
One reason why I don't wear makeup that often is because I'm not that good at it.  Sure, I can slather on foundation to correct flaws but beyond that, I'm just mediocre.  But, just like anything else, applying makeup is a skill.  Meaning, the more you purposefully practice certain techniques with the intention on improving, the better you'll get.  After hours of research and practice, I was finally able to create a modified winged eye that looked great on my small, hooded eyes. This could only happen with lots of experimenting.

Once upon at time, I'd practice various makeup techniques on a daily basis. I did it out of necessity because I hated the way anyone did my makeup.  After dedicating hours into practicing, I made huge strides and started receiving compliments left and right.   Deliberate practice makes perfect.

4. You tap into your feminine energy
One thing for sure, wearing makeup makes can make you feel more feminine.  It's all about enhancing your feminine features, your eyes, your lips, your skin, cheekbones.  Part of my hesitation in wearing makeup was that I didn't want to seem over done. And to be honest with you, I wasn't comfortable with enhancing my feminine energy at the time.  Now, I'm much more comfortable with myself. We'll discuss the art of femininity in future posts. But I think it's important for every woman to be just as comfortable accessing her feminine traits as she is her masculine side.  Wearing makeup is just one small act that allows you to do that.

5. You attract.
In theory, make up allows you to present the best version of yourself to the world.  When you do this, the world responds.  We've discussed the benefits of being attractive in a previous post.  The shifts in other people's behavior when you present your best self, is very real.  I can remember things like everyone wanting to make eye contact with me and linger a little in my office that one time after getting my lashes done for the first time.  At first, I didn't understand why people at work were treating me differently (in a good way), then I remembered the lashes.  I thought it was silly how something so small could impact other people's behavior.  But now, I'm intrigued by it.

It's actually proven that wearing makeup attracts others to you. Various studies have been done on the topic.  Heck, there's even one that talks about how "attractive" servers generally receive a higher tip from men and women versus the "less attractive."    Now, one can argue that being attractive is a measure of genetics.  People with perfect bone structure and symmetrical features will be attractive no matter what they do.  But there are also aspects of attractiveness that everyone can enjoy, like  glowing skin, healthy hair, etc.  Oh, and don't forget how a magnetic personality attracts others to you.

Experiment with going without makeup for a week, then try wearing it daily. You'll notice the difference, and others will too.  My theory is that people respond well to the efforts that you put towards how you look.  They appreciate it. So don't think that your efforts will be done in vain.  You don't have to go all out and wear a full face every day, just accentuate your unique positives. Perfect your signature look. Go out into the world looking your best and feel amazing.




Wednesday, August 12, 2015

"Lemme upgrade ya" | Flawless Beauty Tips from Beyonce's Make up Artist

We are well over due for another celebrity beauty secret post.  What better celebrity to learn from then the Queen B herself?  So far, we've collected a few beauty tidbits from her regimen including the importance of drinking at least a gallon of water a day, going to bed greasy, and exfoliating consistently.
Today, I offer even more details to add to our ever growing list of Beyonce's beauty rituals.  Her makeup artist, Sir John Barnett shared some really insightful beauty secrets that we assume, he's passed on to her while applying high end makeup to her flawless face.
Sir John's preference is to do a mini-facial to prepare the skin for makeup application.  He does a quick exfoliation to make sure dead skin cells don't interfere with the end result.  This technique makes total sense. Especially for a big event or any other special occasion.  If you're a loyal reader of this blog, you probably exfoliate more than most.  This keeps our skin looking its best at all times.  But I also like the idea of doing a little extra have flawless skin just prior to a night out.  Celebrities do it all the time, just before a red carpet event. Maybe we should take on that habit as well.

We recently learned that you get more bang for your buck if you exfoliate at night.  But there are times when we our skin needs a quick "pick me up."  Which is why I love Dr. Dennis Gross' Alpha Beta peels for easy, no fuss exfoliation (day or night).
Years ago, when I was scouring the internet for scraps of information on Beyonce's beauty routine.  The only thing I could find was that she indulged in facials using Nutra Bisse's Diamond infused skin cream.  She even references it in her "Upgrade Ya" song lyrics.   My first thought was on how decadent the experience sounded.  Slathering your face in diamond cream has got to be the ultimate in beauty routines.

Maybe we can't moisturize with Diamond cream (yet) but we can implement the next tip that Sir John Bennett has for us to use eye cream all over the entire face.  It kinda makes sense when we think about it.  Eye creams are usually a bit more concentrated and powerful.  Sir John also mentions that the particles of eye products are refined to easily absorb into the delicate skin around the eye area. We could expose our skin up to a whole new level of moisturization by trying this technique.  Don't just stop there, Sir  John also encourages us to apply face cream below the chin.  This means using our antioxidant rich creams on our neck, decollete, hands, elbows and even our arms and legs.  Sounds pretty opulent, but then again, we deserve to expose ourselves in this level of self-care.
Sir John also invites us to nourish ourselves from the inside out. Vitamin K, he claims "increases circulation and promotes cell turnover."  A study done on the topical effects of vitamin K demonstrated that it aided in helping to combat inflammation and even reducing under eye circles.  One website claimed that the reason why vitamin K helps with dark circles is because it helps promote blood flow to that area.  So maybe Sir John has a point.  It sounds almost like vitamin K applied topically can make you look well rested, which is a wonderful beauty secret.

"Juice lots of kale" is Sir John's recommendation.  If I may, I'll also suggest that you incorporate fermented cod liver oil into your diet.  Not only does it contain vitamin A, D, & E, which are amazing for the skin, fermented cod liver oil is also fortified with a highly absorbable form of vitamin K.  So if you've allowed your supply of fermented cod liver to run low, it's time to stock up.  If you're looking to experience the benefits of applying vitamin K topically, check out the various K-infused face creams offered online and slather it all over you body.

I don't know about you, but I'm excited about simple but possibly life changing beauty tips.  Best of all, we don't have to run out and buy a cream made with diamonds to put them into practice.  You can read Sir John's entire interview here.


Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Feature | From neck length, to set back to a glorious come back!

I was innocently scrolling through my Instagram feed one day when I stumbled upon an inspiring progress pic depicting an unfortunate setback on one side and a victorious comeback on the other.  Immediately, I reached out to her to share her story with us.  Candice, the writer at HealthyHairDiary graciously obliged.  So let's learn from her journey as she's made huge strides from her humble beginnings of neck length hair to the thick, gorgeous hair she enjoys today.

Tell us everything about your hair ?
I am not a big believer in hair typing but if I have to choose I would say 4C is the closest to my hair type. My hair is texlaxed, has high porosity and is of a high density with fine strands. It is now 3 years and 3 months since I’ve been on my hair journey and I’m currently grazing Bra Strap Length.

What's your relaxer regimen?
I self-relax and I’m currently trying short stretches (12 weeks). My relaxer of choice is the Affirm FiberGuard Conditioning Relaxer System in mild strength. When I first started my hair journey I used the no lye version but now I use the lye version.

We'd love to hear about your hair journey, when did you begin and what was your starting length?
I started my hair journey in April 2012 with neck length hair. 
Starting Length
In 2011 I dyed my hair at the salon I used to frequent, instead of getting the temporary hair colour I ask for they put a permanent hair color in my hair. Soon my hair started breaking like crazy and I had to constantly cut my hair for it look presentable. After months of frustration and trying everything I knew back then, 2012 met me with jacked up shoulder length hair so I decided to do some research on transitioning to natural which led me to blogs and forums with ladies both relaxed and natural with long healthy hair. After doing months of research I decided to do a big chop and give my telaxed hair journey a try for 2 years.

Despite having setbacks I decided to stick to relaxing
2 year + 2 months into her journey
What's your current routine? 
My hair is usually in a protective style on a daily basis, most times either in a bun or under a wig. I no longer need to moisturize and seal daily, I only do it 2-3 times per week now. At nights I cover my hair with a satin hair wrap followed by a satin bonnet and I also sleep on a satin pillow case. I shampoo and deep condition my hair weekly and I always incorporate protein, either in the form of my deep conditioner or my leave-in. I do a hard protein, Aphogee Two-Step, before every touch-up. 

If you had to attribute your current length to one or two factors, what would they be?
Consistency and Patience. You have to be consistent with your regimen to see results and hair only grows on average ½ inch per month, you won’t go from shoulder length to mid-back length in a few months so you also have to be patient.

Recently you shared a pic of how you overcame a setback.  Can you tell us the following:
Setback
When did the setback first begin? 
My last setback happened in November 2014, I went to the salon on my birthday to get my hair deep conditioned and roller set, I wanted my hair straightened without the use of direct heat which didn’t even happen. I still had to flat iron my hair because the roller set looked a hot mess.


What do you think was the root cause?
The root cause of my setback was the bad detangling technique used by the stylist. I constantly begged her to detangle each section from the ends up but she continually started from the middle ripping through my hair anyways.  

What did you do to address it? Did you change your regimen?
I didn’t do anything drastic; I just got stricter with my regimen e.g. I deep conditioned no matter how late it was (sometimes after midnight) just so that I don’t miss my weekly deep conditioning sessions and I also trimmed more often for the first few months, every two weeks or so to help get rid of those awful looking ends.

How long until you started seeing results?
Since I wanted to hold on to some of my length I chose to trim away the damage little by little instead of cutting it all at once so it took months before I started seeing results.
Glorious come back April 2015
I’m not where I want to be yet but I’m getting there.

What tips do you have for others experiencing a similar setback?
My tips would be to get rid of the damaged ends, they have to go whether we like it or not, little by little or all at once, there’s no right or wrong way when it comes to that since it’s your hair and your journey. Also be consistent with your regimen and protect your ends at all cost.

Do you ever deal with breakage?  What's your strategy?
Yes, I deal with breakage not matter how gentle I am with my hair. I don’t believe that anyone could be 100% breakage free, some breakage is inevitable and as long as my breakage is very little in comparison to my shedding I’m not concerned. 

How to you maintain such strong, healthy ends?
I maintain my ends by trimming with every touch-up.

Do you support hair growth with nutrition? If so how?
Despite my weakness for sweets I make healthy food choices most of the time, not just for my hair but for overall health. A healthy body is essential for healthy hair growth.

Do you have any additional strategies to promote growth?
I take a multi-vitamin and a B Complex when I remember but it’s not specifically for hair growth. 

Do you work out, if so, what do you do with your hair during workouts?
I am not very consistent in this aspect of my life, it has been a struggle for years, but I am a somewhat active person, I do fun things like hiking, biking, roller skating, etc. For the past three weeks I’ve been working out with a group four days a week. I use one of those days to deep condition while I work out, I simply apply my deep conditioner, two plastic conditioning caps, two stocking caps and a hat. The other days I work out or when I do fun activities my hair is in a bun or pinned up. 

If someone struggling with their hair journey comes to you for advice, what would you tell them?
I would tell them to take a good look at their regimen, make sure they are not skipping important steps or taking short cuts, alternatively they also need to make sure that they are not doing too much. I would also tell them to pay attention to the products that they are using, ingredients is important, expensive does not necessarily mean good and vice versa. Consistency is another thing I would look at.

Your three most important hair essentials that you'd need if you were trapped on a desert island:

What are your future hair goals? And what will you do to achieve them?
I am taking this hair journey one step at a time; my aim at this moment is to regain some thickness and make it to full bra-strap length by the end of this year. I intend to achieve this by being consistent with my regimen. 

Any final words of wisdom?
If I can do it so can you. Do lots of research if you’re new to starting your hair journey. Set realistic goals and don’t give up or get discouraged, nothing worth having comes easy and of course you are never alone so reach out to the other ladies. Don’t compare your journey to anyone else’s and don’t jump on every bandwagon either. Be patient, stay consistent and always remember it’s a journey not a race. 

Find Candice online and follow her hair journey: 


Instagram: @healthyhairdiary



Twitter: HealthHairDiary
 
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