Saturday, August 19, 2017

How to Dress Comfy Without looking like you've given up

Every few days, a friend of mine invites to meet her at a fancy social club located in the heart of downtown.  It's a posh professional lounge with beautiful city views.  I've become somewhat masterful at turning down her generous request.  The thought of having to break out my business casual attire from my past life sends shivers down my spine.

 I've become fully immersed in a world of wearing casual, comfy clothing.  The thing with casual attire is there's a thin line between looking cute & comfy or looking like you've totally given up on life.  I have to admit that I've been guilty of crossing that line.  There have been times where I've silently prayed asking that I don't run into anyone I know while running errands.  That's not the way to live.

If I'm going to be a lifelong comfy dresser, I might as well learn to do it right.   There are certain rules that one must abide by that allow us to sport casual clothing while still looking like we care about ourselves.  Let's discuss.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Hydrogenated Fats, Bad. Hydrogenated Water, Good? You'll never want to drink plain water again

Years back, I figured out that the common beauty secret of most A list celebrities is the copious amount of water they consume on a daily basis. Since then, I've been obsessed with increasing my water intake as much as possible.

This habit has served me well over the years.  And whenever I slack on my water intake, I truly notice a difference.  I'm also very aware that not all water is created equal.   At the bottom of the totem pole is plain ol' tap water.  But if you really want to nourish your body, you can opt for mineral water or maybe throw in a few lemon slices.   Or perhaps you might want to try switching out your plastic water bottle for a copper vessel.   I thought I had discovered all the ways to make your water a bit healthier.  Turns out that I knew nothing.  Because there's a water that so healthy that it's been shown to produce documented health benefits.

This might be the ultimate health and beauty water on the market.
Monday, August 14, 2017

Master the Process of Altering Your Future It's much easier than you think.

Near the end of last year, I set a somewhat lofty profit goal for my business.  It was a number I wanted to reach since I first launch because, to me, it was a huge milestone.  About six months into the year, I realized that I was on track to actually reach this goal.

At first, I was super excited.   But after a few weeks,  a new feeling started to settle in.  With half the year ahead of me, I felt obligated to rewrite my goal.  If I kept the profit number the same, I would probably start to get comfortable.  And comfortable is never a good thing.  Although I had a good chance of reaching my numbers, I didn't want to just sit back and rely on my default future to manifest.

Friday, August 11, 2017

I did a Week Long Lemon Water Experiment And the Benefits were Amazing!

At the start of the week, I woke up with a strange, yet familiar feeling.  I could tell immediately that  I was experiencing one of my worst nightmares.  As I ran my fingers over my face, I could sense a possible breakout lying deep beneath the surface.  I get breakouts from time to time. It happens.  But this wasn't any type of breakout. It was the kind that could potentially evolve into a cystic eruption.

I knew this because I could actually feel it turning into a painful lesion even though it wasn't yet visible.  Since I experienced this many times before, I knew exactly what to do.  Before a breakout has the chance to rear its ugly head, I rely on one remedy that seems to work for me every single time.
Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Everyone's Obsessed with this Super Effective Body Exfoliator I've been waiting for this for so long

 I will never stop talking about ways to enhance the skin on our body.  Our goal is and will always be, to promote soft, smooth, even toned skin all over.

Which is why I'm so excited to share today's find with you.  I believe it will work wonders to help us create a flawless body.  If you're a regular reader, you probably have heard of this product before.  But today I'm gonna introduce you to a better version of it.
Monday, August 7, 2017

How to Get Your Life Together While Sitting In Front of the TV Turn your Lazy Days into Super Productive Ones

When I first bought my home, one of the major decisions I made was to not order cable TV.  I chose this path for several reasons.  First, most success gurus issued stern warnings of the productivity killing effects of watching tv.  Basically, television shows are a major distraction and, if you're an ambitious person with clear goals, you should stay as far away from them as possible.

This advice worked for me.  I spent hours on the computer focused on my future empire.  But, over time, a bunch of websites started popping up that allowed me to "watch tv" without the need for cable.  Slowly, but surely, my productivity began to slide.  I needed a way to find a balance between watching my favorite reality shows and continuing my personal growth journey.

Now that we're headed into fall viewing season, I want to be even more intentional. So I've figured out a way to enjoy the shows I love and still get things done.
Friday, August 4, 2017

The Supplement That Fights Your Acne Scars from the Inside Out

Yesterday, I happened to jump on an Instagram live session hosted by Sophia Roe.  She's full of knowledge related to natural health so I figured I'd join in to learn something new.  During her chat, Sophia said something that immediately caught my attention.
via Sophia's Instagram
First off, let me just say that the woman has amazing skin.  But according to her, it wasn't always that way.  Sophia claims to have suffered from acne and hyperpigmentation but has since found a supplement that has kept her acne scars in check.
Tuesday, August 1, 2017

The Clever Hack I discovered that recreates the Perfect Dewy Cheek

The other day I visited Glossier's website to repurchase a lost item and try something new.  On the one hand, I was bummed that I couldn't find my tube of balm dotcom, but on the plus side, it gave me the opportunity to try a product that I've had my eye on for quite a while.

After adding cloud paint to my cart, I was feeling really good about myself.  I was super hopeful about the potential of using a cream blush for the first time ever.   Blush has been one of my biggest challenges since forever.  It never looks good on me.  And the powdery finish is too reminiscent of the 80s for my taste.  As someone with big cheeks, putting brightly hued powder only accentuates them so I stay away. But, I still wanted to experience the look of blush....just in a modern way.
@diarrhaxo wearing Cloud Paint in Haze.
Instead of looking like I have clown cheeks, I want to replicate the look of flushed, healthy skin.  Cloud paint seemed like the answer.
Saturday, July 29, 2017

Is Copper Water your next hair, skin and nail supplement?

The other day, I was perusing through Amazon in search of some cute copper mugs to enjoy one of my favorite new beverage, the Moscow mule.  Little did I know that I would come across an ancient Indian method that would help me create my own health & beauty water at home.

Prior to this, I was watching a Youtube video on how to cut flowers fresher longer.  One tip was to add a penny to the water.  If I remember correctly, adding a penny allowed her lilies to stand up in the vase longer and not fold over.  Back then, I didn't look further into why the penny worked, I just made a mental note for the next time I bought fresh lilies.

The reason why pennies help the flowers to last longer is because of copper was slowly releasing it's goodness into the water.  Copper water is so powerful that it impacts the life cycle of these precious plants.  Next, I learned that we can make our own copper drinking water.  And, that copper water directly benefits our skin and hair.
Friday, July 28, 2017

5 Beauty Items that I Now Keep In My Fridge

A couple of weeks ago, my ancient AC unit finally gave up.  The worst thing that could happen was being without AC in the middle of July.  Part of me contemplated enduring a hot summer without the modern necessity of cool air, but then I thought of how the sweltering temperatures would affect my beauty & nutritional items.

Needless to say, I gladly made the hefty investment so I could survive the summer while preserving my favorite products.  I thought I was doing my part.  But then I came to realize that some serious beauty enthusiasts have really taken their beauty regimens seriously.  Believe it or not, some even go as far as to procure mini-fridges to keep their valuable beauty stash at optimal temperatures.

I'm not gonna lie, I contemplated getting a mini beauty fridge but the lack of space prevented me from moving forward.  If I ever get my dream house and huge bathroom, I'll definitely revisit this concept.  The very least I could do is ensure that I store my current products in the right place.  Part of this weekend's agenda includes tossing out old bottles of condiments so I can make room for my most beloved beauty favorites.
Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Brazilian Beauty Secrets || Can Adding Vitamin A to Shampoo Boost Your Hair Growth?

The other day I picked up a bottle of vitamin D capsules at a local grocery super store.  For a couple of years, I've talked about the benefits of ensuring that we have enough vitamin D in our diet.  Because of our melanin, most of us might actually be vitamin D deficient.  For the past couple days, I've noticed a renewed sense of well-being. Not sure if it has to do with the vitamin D intake or if it's a residual effect of having just returned from a much-needed vacation.  Since incorporating B vitamin shots and, now vitamin D, I'm starting to feel like my old self again.

A few years ago, I took a bunch of vitamins every day and it really made a difference.  Since then, I've fallen off the wagon. But as I get older, I realize that my body isn't as efficient as it used to be.  Plus I'm not eating as great as I should.  It's time to take my nutrition seriously again. So I started to browse around Amazon for other vitamins that I could incorporate into my daily life.  While there, I somehow stumbled on vitamin A.  Whenever I research a product on Amazon, I always go to the reviews and do a quick search for the word "hair" or "skin."  I do this to discover products that positively impact our hair & skin.  That's how I stumbled upon hyaluronic acid.

When I did my customary search under vitamin A supplements, I uncovered a little-known hair growth secret that Brazillian women swear by.
Monday, July 24, 2017

Monday Motivation \\ How to Inspire Yourself Every Day when You First Wake Up

Over the weekend, I checked out some house/apartment tour videos on Youtube.  One video, in particular, featured a loft style apartment with a modern aesthetic and killer views.  I loved the minimalist decor and monochromatic design.   Everything about his apartment was intentional and perfect.

There was one moment in the video that caused me to pause and reflect.  As he showed us his bedroom, the points the camera out towards the amazing city view.  He then informs us that when laying down on his bed, he has a clear view of the city skyline.  This, he says, was one of his biggest life goals (to wake up every morning to amazing views).  What he said next is what inspired me to write this post.

This exclusive city view, according to the blogger is, "what motivates me to get up in the morning and to do the most."
Saturday, July 22, 2017

Let's Discuss Your Plan for Flexible Passive Income

I'd like to bring up a topic that has been an interest of mine for many years.  Early on in my financial journey, I stumbled on an audio book that forever changed my viewpoint on the most effective way to earn money.  That book was called Multiple Streams of Income by Robert Allen.  In the book, Robert encouraged us to diversify our income sources.  I loved the premise of the book and contemplated someday putting his ideas into practice.

As time when on, my career began to take off and I relied solely on a paycheck.  But that wasn't a bad thing because the money came every two weeks.  But as I moved up the ladder, I noticed a flaw in this system.  One article I read even called a job a risky way to make money.  In my mind, I'm like "how can that be?"  The money is always there on payday.  What could go wrong?

But over the course of my career, I fired a countless number of people.  Most of them came to work that day not expecting their income to suddenly stop.  Sure, you can get another job, but who knows how long that'll take or if your earning will be similar to what you had before.  Basically, your livelihood is in the hands of strangers.  That is completely risky if you ask me.  One day, I was at a seminar and the speaker said something I'll never forget.  While speaking on one topic, he suddenly proclaimed to the audience "I don't work for a paycheck, I live my life and I earn money while doing so."  That's all I ever wanted.  Since then, I've wanted to live up to this mantra.

This past week, I spent some time in the wonderful country of Belize.  I rented a luxury villa and relaxed as I experienced all the amenities the island has to offer.  As I ate fresh seafood at restaurants on the beach, the only thought that constantly went through my mind is "how do I make this last forever?"
Thursday, July 20, 2017

[MUST TRY] Your DIY Post Shower Hair Oil for Sleek, Shiny Moisturized Hair

I've been known to randomly poke around Amazon in search of unknown beauty products that could potentially change my life.  This morning, I stumbled on a wonderful little gem and I couldn't be any happier.

The actual product itself is manufactured by a well known Japanese beauty brand.  In fact, they are the makers of one of the most popular cult facial cleansing oils on the market.  It just so happened that they also carry a line of "after shower hair products."  These items are specifically made for application post shower.

We already know the value of adding product to damp skin post shower.  Applying an oil/lotion to wet skin enhances our skin's moisture retention levels in a wonderful way. Why not apply this same principle to our hair routine?  Thanks to the inspiration I received from DHC, I may have found a way to replicate the perfect DIY after shower hair oil recipe.
Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Palmer's May Have Created the Perfect Summer Glowing Skin Product

Years ago, I met a gorgeous flight attendant who let me in on the secret to her glowing skin.  During our convo, she made certain that I was aware of oil gel.  Unlike lotions, oil gels have the ability to hydrate and nourish the skin for long periods of time.  Plus, they leave a layer of shine on the skin which gives it a nice glow.

As soon as I got the chance, I purchased my first bottle of oil gel and I've been hooked ever since.  They basically save my skin in the winter.  Now that summer is here, I'm eager to integrate these gel based oils into my daily routine.  Although I like the ones I currently have, I still kept my eyes and ears open for a better version for summer.   I'm happy to report that my wish has been granted because I may have stumbled on the perfect drug store oil gel for summer.
Thursday, July 13, 2017

First Impressions // Did a water softener make a difference to my hair + skin?

A few weeks ago, I allowed my mind to wander in the shower as I typically do.  Out of no where, I said in an audible voice "I need a whole house water softener."  A water softener is something I've wanted for many years.  Hard water has been the bane of my existence for as long as I can remember.  It coats my shower doors and dishes with a thin layer of mineral deposits.  But, worst of all, is how it affects my hair and skin.

Within days of me making that random comment in the shower, I received an unsolicited sales call.  The people on the other line wanted to schedule a time for me to have my water tested in exchange for a $25.00 gift card.  I happily obliged.  Soon, a slick talking salesman was at my home hoping to convince me of the benefits of having a whole house softener.  Most of the his sales pitch consisted mainly of information that I was well aware of.  But I wasn't completely sold until he gave a demonstration that changed everything.
Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Let's Discuss the Waist Length Hair Retention Secrets of the Women of Chad

One of the most important aspects of a successful hair journey is our ability to retain length.  Even if you aren't trying to have hip length hair, retention serves as an indicator of how solid our hair routines are.  If we're constantly loosing length, there's a problem somewhere.   Either we need to improve our products or our practices.

If you still haven't quite yet grasped the proper techniques to help you retain length, you've come to the right place.  Because today, I'm featuring a video that details the regimen of women who have truly mastered the art of length retention.
Sunday, July 9, 2017

4 Ways That Summer is Ruining Your Beauty (and how to stop it).

Summer is in full swing.  I'm sure we're all enjoying the longer days and the warm sunshine.  While you're enjoying fun filled days outdoors, I want to you keep a little something in mind.  Summer, may be one of the most damaging seasons when it comes to our beauty routines.

Let me explain.  Winters may seem like a harsh season when it comes to our skin, hair & health (and it is).  But we are well aware of the issues that arise from cold weather.  The side effect of dry air is pretty obvious. So we minimize the risk by amping up our moisture routines.

Summer is a bit trickier because the dangers aren't quite as obvious.  I believe that summer has the potential to accelerate aging and other beauty related concerns.  Worse yet, we might not even be aware of what's happening.   Let's discuss the potential downside of summer and how we can avoid it.
Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Study Claims that Fewer Trips to the Gym Still Produces Similar Results.

I'm about 12 lbs down from my heaviest weight.  At my height, 12 lbs makes all the difference in the world.  I attribute the weight loss to a change in my eating habits.  While I appreciate being a bit slimmer, I'd prefer to have a bit more muscle tone.  I take full responsibility because I barely visit the gym.  The thought of driving to the gym 3-4 times a week for workout sessions seems so laborious. So I avoid it altogether.

All hope is not lost.  Because I've recently discovered that going to the gym 3 times a week may not be necessary to build muscle.
Monday, July 3, 2017

How I built a Six Figure Business without working with Mentor

When I decided to leave corporate America, I set an intention to link up with a mentor that would help guide me through the process.  I envisioned meeting a successful woman who ran a highly profitable business.  She would give me all the advice, motivation and inspiration necessary to carry me through every phase of my business.  I told all of my friends about how badly I wanted a mentor. I wrote it down as a goal.  At networking events, I made my intentions known.  But, in the end, I never found that mentor I was looking for.

Even without the mentor, I still was able to launch a relatively successful business.   Someone once asked me the question of how to find a mentor.  Since I was never able to find one myself, I couldn't really respond.  But after reflecting I realized that we can still gleam the valuable advice from successful people and apply it to your situation to create massive results.
Saturday, July 1, 2017

Try This // The Lash Trick That Instantly Creates Bolder Lashes

I'm on a constant quest for new, innovative ways to enhance my non-existent lashes.  For someone who has tiny lashes, like me, every bit of advice helps.

Today, hubby and I stopped by a popular taco restaurant for lunch.  While waiting for our chips and salsa to arrive, he leans over and tells me that my lashes are getting longer.  Truth is, my lashes are the same pathetic length they've always been.  The only difference is a new lash application technique that changed everything.
Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Lily Ghalichi reveals her favorite Drug Store Beauty Must Haves

I've followed Lily Ghalichi's journey for many years.  Before she became a reality tv star, Lily was a lawyer turned entrepreneur who launched a successful swimwear line.  Back in the day, Lily had a simple blog where she'd post honest articles detailing what she currently loved along with interesting moments in her life.  I'm not ashamed to admit that I stalked Lily's blog on a regular basis.

But as her business grew (along with her celebrity status) Lily could no longer keep up with her blog. I was bummed but I still followed her career from a far.  Then I learned that Lily relaunched her YouTube channel.  She promises that her videos would be reminiscent of her old blog.  Meaning, she would only talk about things she genuinely loves.  Lily even stated that product she features will be 100% bought by her and that her channel would NOT be monetized.  I fee like I have the old Lily back!!!

When she published a video of her favorite drug store products, I rushed over 'cause I knew that Lily was about to reveal her real secrets.  As a financially successful business woman, Lily has access to pretty much any beauty product her heart desires.  So when she promised to reveal her favorite drug store brands, I was all ears.  Let's discuss the notable products from her list of faves.
Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Finally found The Glam Glow Dupe that I've been looking for.

Years ago, I stumbled on a cult mask that made me fall instantly in love.  This mask was touted as a facial in a bottle by those who had the pleasure of trying it.  I adored this product because the mask seemed to handle multiple skin issues at once.

It exfoliated, absorbed oil, and even had ingredients that faded acne scars.  My only issue with it was the price.  For such a small amount, it required a pretty substantial investment.  Since then, I've kept my eyes and ears open for a suitable dupe.

I've tried a few but no other mask really seemed like a true replacement for GlamGlow until now.
Monday, June 26, 2017

This is The Most Powerful Technique for Beating Procrastination.

On Father's Day, I paid my dad a visit.  During my visit, I shared some ideas on how he could make improvements to his store.  As we discussed possible scenarios, I noticed a blank expression on his face.  Eventually, he informed me that he'd been having difficulty executing the things that he needed to do because of a lack of focus.

I knew exactly where he was coming from because I constantly battle with procrastination.  Having been on a personal development journey for years, I've learned countless strategies for overcoming procrastination and getting things done.

But only one method has truly worked.  This technique not only helps you overcome procrastination, it transforms you into a superhuman capable of accomplishing almost anything.
Thursday, June 22, 2017

Summer Lookbook // The Flirty Dress.

I'm way overdue for a wardrobe update.  Summer's here and it's getting unbearably hot.  The hotter it gets, the less I focus on looking cute.  Comfort seems to trump style whenever temperatures rise.   I've been in search of a happy middle ground between style & comfort and I've finally found it.
The flirty summer dress is the answer that I've been looking for.  They're are so easy and laid back.  You can dress down the look with a pair of white sneakers and a crossbody bag.  What I love most about this type of dress is the flirty length combined with the cute sleeves that balance the look.
Want a more polished look that can transition from day to night?  Opt for a dress with full-length sleeves.  
I'm on a mission to acquire several of these dresses that I can live in for the duration of summer. They're feminine, care-free, and save a ton time when getting ready in morning.  In my opinion, you can't go wrong with acquiring a few flirty dresses as your perfect summer essential.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Bedtime Beauty | Try this before bed to wake up to glowy skin.

I'm in the process of overhauling my entire night time routine.  If I were perfectly honest, I really don't have much of a routine in place.  That's a huge mistake because evenings are the perfect opportunity to really focus on our self-care rituals.

So much goes on while we sleep that anything we do prior to bed seems to amplify our results.  We already know to remove our makeup and that sort of stuff.  But I recently learned of another beauty ritual that we should all consider doing at night.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Tired of the Same Results? It's Time to Up-Level

Lately been playing around with the idea of how to "up-level" my current results.  The urban dictionary defines up-leveling as to "transform or grow in an area that was previously stagnant."  Stagnancy is something I try to avoid because, in reality, nothing really remains stagnant.  As far as I'm concerned, standing still is the equivalent of declining.

For this reason, we must always be moving forward.  Yes, we should always be appreciative of our current blessings but, at the same time, we should move our eyes to the horizon towards our next goal.  Working towards our next goal sounds easy to do.  But no one talks about what to do once you hit your invisible ceiling.

What is the invisible ceiling?  It's what happens when we find ourselves continuing to produce the same results over and over again.  Maybe those results are decent, but for some reason, we can't seem to get to the next level.
Saturday, June 10, 2017

Drinking Vinegars are all the rage! Let's Make Our Own

Recently I discovered and fell in love with a new brand in the healthy juice market.  I was instantly hooked on how authentic their juices were.  The taste was reminiscent of the pricey freshly bottled options from the fancy juicers.  The minute I finished my first bottle, I wanted more.  Somehow I found myself on their site searching for nearby locations that carried their full line of options.

My attention was diverted the instant I learned that Suja offered "drinking vinegars."  I didn't know what drinking vinegars were but I knew that I wanted 'em.  After reading the product description, I learned that these juice vinegars were tonics that combine the health benefits of apple cider vinegar with probiotics for optimal gut health.

Minutes later, I sourced a nearby location that sold these vinegars. Within an hour, I had my first taste.  It was pretty good.....but, in all honesty, I wanted more.
Friday, June 9, 2017

Rave // This Nutrient Rich Oil Has Taken Over My Life

Ok, guys, I have to introduce you to my newest love.  I've been on a buying spree lately and have stumbled on a few gems.  This most recent find has to be one of my absolute favorites.  The inspiration for this purchase came after stumbling on my other favorite product Etude House's Moistfull Collagen.

In their product description, they boasted of having superior moisturizing powers thanks to the help of a special ingredient.  That ingredient is an oil from a tree native to Africa. Thanks to this oil, Etude House was able to formulate one the most moisturizing facial products ever.

 I needed to get my hands on the source.  Instead of acting on my intentions right away, I let a few days pass.  As the days passed, I noticed something interesting.  People I followed online shared images of their favorite products.  Baobab oil seemed to a common ingredient in their faves as well.
via @bu.ke_products
Without thinking twice, I purchased a small bottle of baobab oil and crossed my fingers hoping that I made the right decision.
Thursday, June 8, 2017

[Updated] Simone's Summer Skin Care Favorites (w/video)

I'm back with another Instagram Beauty Routine reveal.  This one's special because it's more of an update.  You may remember when I once featured Simone a.ka. @cocoaflowerr's favorite skin products.

I'm pretty sure the girl is inundated with comments and requests to share the items responsible for her amazing skin.  Luckily for us, she's pretty accommodating.  Just recently, she posted a few snaps with her current line up.  The first thing I noticed is that a lot has changed since her last reveal.  Perhaps she's switched up her routine to stay flawless for summer?

Let's check out these quick vids as Simone pays homage to the products her skin loves.
Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Game Changer? Take This Facial Product with You Into the Shower for Ultra Moisturized Skin.

Showers are an integral part of our beauty rituals. Not just from the hygiene aspect but also the numerous activities that you can layer into your shower routine.  We've talked about "in shower beauty tips" before.  I thought I had it all covered.  But I recently picked up another idea from a Korean beauty expert.  This one is so simple, that I wondered why I hadn't thought of it before.
Monday, June 5, 2017

The Process // How to Make Your Dream Life a Reality

I've worked long and hard on the art of goal setting & achievement.  The longer I've focused on manifesting my goals, the better I've become at it.  One thing I've realized from experience is that certain goals seemed easier to reach than others.  The ones that have taken me the longest (or that I haven't yet achieved) have eluded me because of how I perceive them.

Some of my intentions are viewed achievable and while others seem completely separate from my reality.   We are either working on our goals or fantasizing about them.  The goals that we're working on tend to eventually show up in our lives.  The fantasies, on the other hand, remain stuck in their imaginary never land.

Once I figured out the difference, I changed my entire goal achievement approach.  Instead of continuing to indulge in my fantasies, I contemplated how to draw those desires nearer to me.
Friday, June 2, 2017

Lori Harvey Reveals Her Favorite Skin Care Must Haves. Let's Discuss.

Model, socialite, and fashionista, Lori Harvey, is quickly building her personal brand.  If you don't quite recognize the name, you may know Lori as the daughter of tv & radio personality Steve Harvey.  Lori lives an interesting life which is part of the reason why I followed her on Instagram in the first place.  Immediately after following, I mumbled a silent prayer hoping that one day, she would reveal her favorite skin care products.  And that I would be there if that day ever came.

By chance, I just happened to log into Snapchat on the very day that Lori decided to bless us with a series of images detailing all of her product faves.   Let's take a look.
Thursday, June 1, 2017

Forget the Spa. Here's How to Give Yourself an At Home Back Facial

Whenever I review the menu of services offered at a spa, my interest is always peaked by treatments that involve scrubbing/exfoliating the back. I've wanted to experience a back facial forever but my other skin issues have always taken priority.

But as summer draws nearer, I've realized that I can't neglect this important aspect of my self-care routine. Our back and shoulders will be exposed more now than ever. Last night I attempted my very first at home back facial and I have to admit, it was a huge success. I even received a compliment on the softness of my skin this morning so my efforts didn't go unnoticed.

I'll break down exactly what I did plus how you can execute your own variation of the back facial at home.
Tuesday, May 30, 2017

[Try This] The Multi-Step Cleansing Method that Completely Clears Out Your Pores

Years ago, I had a horrific acne problem.  Luckily the breakouts have diminished over time.  But one lingering concern still persists.  Although my skin might appear clear, I'm still plagued with an issue that impacts my skin almost as much as a breakout.

My pores tend to get really congested.  Although my skin may look ok from afar, congested skin is lackluster and doesn't appear smooth.  Let's be real, blocked pores are ticking time bombs that can easily develop into breakouts at any given moment.  

I've implemented a few strategies to counteract that problem.  That's why I'm so addicted to my Clarisonic.  My skin needs the deep scrubbing action.  Although the Clarisonic does a decent job, it does not compare to my ultrasonic skin scrubber.  That thing really performs when it comes to removing gunk from my pores.  

Before the skin scrubber came into my life, I used a manual technique that was excellent at clearing out my pores.  The other day, I learned of another method that somewhat mirrored mine.   This technique is so effective that people are actually boasting about seeing their blackheads removed right before their very eyes.
Thursday, May 25, 2017

No lotion needed? The Supplement That Hydrates & Plumps Your Skin From the Inside Out

I've been an avid consumer of collagen supplements for years.  When I learned about how rapidly collagen levels decline starting at the age of 21, I immediately added it to my routine.  Collagen supplements have really served me well.  Within the first 30 days of regular consumption I noticed a difference.

Since then, I've graduated from collagen supplements to introducing collagen peptides into the mix. Because collagen peptides have a low molecular structure, I figured that perhaps my body would better absorb it for even more benefits.  Although I'm not 100% sure, I feel as if taking collagen has helped speed up the results of my multiple micro needling treatments.

Things are going well. But then I wondered if there was anything I could do to make it even better.  Synergistically, I needed to pair my collagen with another supplement to maximize benefits.
Tuesday, May 23, 2017

RAVE | Etude House's Moistfull Collagen Emulsion

After reading the findings from a NASA skin study on how to minimize the damaging effects of space travel, I decided to recommit myself to the practice of keeping my skin as hydrated as possible at all times.

In the study, researchers applied an emulsion to protect the skin from dryness related concerns.  I wasn't exactly sure what constitutes an emulsion so I skipped over to Amazon and did a quick search to find a few examples.

One of the first results was a product with over 100 reviews and nearly a 5-star rating.  I immediately wanted to know more.  What was this product and why did so many people like it?

Etude's Moistufull Collagen Emulsion is a Korean beauty product.  As you may already know, Asian women are obsessed with having moist, plump skin. Hence why there are so many layers in their beauty routine.  After skimming over a few of the reviews, I immediately purchased.

Here's short product description:

The small particles of the super collagen water and Baobab water in the Moistfull Collagen Emulsion, endlessly provide moisture and leave your skin feeling bouncy like jelly. Moistfull Collagen Emulsion has a light but firm texture that adheres moisture and nutrients to the skin.

What really sold me was the addition of a fruit extract from the African Baobab tree.  If you weren't aware, Baobab trees are known for their unusual lifespan.  Some living for over 800 years.  They survive in harsh deserts thanks to their ability to maintain hydration by storing tens of thousands of gallons of water in their trunk.  It makes sense to add this extract to skin hydration products.  Best of all, it's the 4th ingredient on the list which makes me happy.  They also included Baobab seed oil in the emulsion as well.

What makes me even happier is that collagen is the 2nd ingredient.  I know there's some debate out there as to whether topical collagen is effective for penetrating the skin but, in my experience, collagen based products tend to hold in moisture just a bit longer than their counterparts.

When I purchased Moistfull Collagen, I also decided to grab one of these mini skin moisture readers. Days later, my goodies arrived.  Immediately, I rubbed a little Moistfull Collagen in between my hands to get a feel for the consistency.  It looks and feels like a very lightweight lotion.  But when applied, it melts like water bringing a rush of hydration to the skin.  The moment I applied it, I knew that I found my newest favorite product.

Ladies, this is the perfect summer moisturizer.  It's lightweight and melts completely into the skin. There's no trace of greasiness left behind.  This is the perfect layering product.  You can use it under a sunscreen by day or layer it under a thicker cream and/or oil at night.

Sometimes, I'll randomly pull out my skin moisture meter and quickly do a reading on my face.  Whenever the numbers aren't favorable, I'll quickly apply a thin layer of Moistfull and suddenly my skin is ultra-hydrated again.  Best of all, this product is pretty affordable considering how well it works and how much product you get per bottle.  I highly recommend this Moistfull if you are looking for intense moisture in a weightless product.  Next on my purchase list is their Moistfull Collagen cream.  Can't wait to try it.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

NASA has a SkinCare Division. They Confirmed this is the Key to Healthy Skin

I'm grateful for all the contributions that NASA has made to the health & beauty industry.  Some notable examples that come to mind include vibration plates and mini trampolines.  Both help rebuild bone and muscle mass because space exploration really does a number on the body.  Once astronauts return home, their bodies are ravaged by the effects of their zero gravity environment. That's when their scientists get to work on discovering ways to rehabilitate and prevent long term damage.

Obviously,  preventing the negative physical effects to the body is a top priority. Which is why rebounding and vibration plates were discovered so long ago.  But recently, NASA has also come to realize another huge issue that needs to be addressed.  Not only were there astronauts dealing with bone and muscle loss, they realized that an antigravity environment also accelerates skin aging.
Tuesday, May 16, 2017

DIY // How to transform your water into an Anti-Aging Beauty Tonic

It's no secret that I have a mild obsession with consuming nutrition in liquid form.  The possibility of enjoying a higher absorption rate as the nutrients bypass the digestion process excites me so much.  Last year I discovered the wonders of adding chlorophyll drops to my water. Since then, I've never stopped contemplating the idea of amassing an arsenal of powerful boosters to I can add to my water anytime.

Monday, May 15, 2017

How Being a Future Focused Individual will Transform Your Life

One of the most positive traits I have that's allowed me to create ideal outcomes is my ability to focus on the future.  I took a personality assessment once which identified one of my strengths as "futuristic."   Here's the synopsis of someone who's strength is futuristic:

The future fascinates you. As if it were projected on the wall, you see in detail what the future might hold, and this detailed picture keeps pulling you forward, into tomorrow. While the exact content of the picture will depend on your other strengths and interests, it will always be inspirational to you. You are a dreamer who sees visions of what could be and who cherishes those visions. When the present proves too frustrating and the people around you too pragmatic, you conjure up your visions of the future and they energize you. 

Friday, May 12, 2017

Currently Loving.

It's time for another quick roundup of recent beauty purchases that I'm currently loving.

NARS concealer
I'm losing count of the number of concealers I currently own.  I have a couple from MAC, some from Makeup Forever. I even have a few shades from the cult drugstore brand L.A. Girl.  Not to mention my all time favorite concealer, Kevyn Aucoin.  I had no business buying another one.  But time and time again, I kept hearing about NARS' concealer and how it was an absolute must have.  So I grabbed one.  Best decision I've made in a while.  I love this concealer for several reasons.  First, I like the packaging.  I don't have to get any product on my fingers thanks to the handy application brush.  Secondly, the packaging makes it extremely portable so I just throw it in my purse without having to worry about any mishaps.  But what makes me love this product more than anything is its formula.  NARS creamy concealer is a perfect consistency.  It offers the perfect amount of coverage. It blends perfectly into my skin with no creasing.   I love NARS creamy concealer so much.
Wednesday, May 10, 2017

How Enjoying Red Wine Can Promote Healthy Hair

For the past several months, I've really neglected my self-care routines.  I haven't been eating all that healthy, my sleep has been sporadic and I haven't placed my well-being as a high priority.  Since it's a new month, I thought now would be a great time to get back on track.

On a whim, I went online and purchased a round of cryotherapy sessions which happened to be on sale.  Once that was done, I started looking around for IV Drip centers nearby.  Once I learned that we could feed our bodies a cocktail of nutrients that nourish from the inside out,  I wanted in.

A friend happened to text me the other day that she scheduled an acupuncture treatment nearby.  I immediately told her that I was thinking of trying cosmetic acupuncture and maybe we could go together.  We agreed and I proceed to locate the info for the alternative health office.  But once I got on their website, I was immediately distracted by the fact that they also offered IV therapy.

Minutes later, I was on the line with a rep. But instead of asking about acupuncture, I inquired about the IV.  "Do you guys offer any beauty cocktails that benefit the hair, skin and nails?"  After a moment of silence, the woman on the other line asked me to hold on while she asked around for more info.

After, what seemed liked forever, she finally returned with some good news.  "We offer a resveratrol drip which has beauty benefits."  I thanked her for her response and politely ended the call.  My first thought was "resveratrol? Isn't that the stuff in red wine? How is that gonna benefit the hair and skin?"
Monday, May 8, 2017

Is it Possible to Maintain Muscle Without Stepping Foot In the Gym?

In the movie, The Secret, there's a scene where the Law of Attraction experts discuss the power of the mind and visualization in the reality creation process.  They discussed how athletes visualized themselves performing at a high level on the field of play.  As they created mental pictures in their minds, their muscles would signal as if the activity were actually happening.

Soon they realized that visualizing the successful execution of game moves in their minds brought nearly as powerful benefits as hours of real practice.  This is why visualization is so well-regarded  when it comes to the manifestation process.  We see it in our minds, and it feels so real.  Our belief skyrockets but, more importantly, our bodies really respond.

Today I learned that this physical response might actually help you in your fitness journey.  Let me explain.
Friday, May 5, 2017

Stop Choosing to Live In the Same Situation. Change it.

I had multiple conversations recently that inspired this post.  In both cases, the women wanted to transition from working full time to running a successful business.  In both cases, the women were holding on to their jobs a bit too long.   This was my opinion.  I based the opinion on personal experience.

Prior to taking the big leap, I lived with a high level of anxiety and stress on a daily basis.  I hated my situation and I couldn't keep it up much longer.  But I did.  I kept it up for months and made plans to keep going for another year even though each day felt worse than the last.

Nothing was going to change because I was too afraid.  But then I asked myself a powerful question that changed everything.
Wednesday, May 3, 2017

If You're Not Masking Like This Victoria's Secret Model, You Aren't Doing It Right

I'm sure all of us have this one thing in common.  You probably own several types of face masks. Threre's one that dries out your excessively oily skin. You have a hydrating mask to eradicate flaky skin.  There's the firming one that helps plump and tone.  Let's not forget the brightening mask to help fade away your scars. Whatever issue arises, you've got the perfect mask for it.

You've purchased all those masks for a reason. Chances are, your skin has multiple issues.  But your mask probably addresses only one.  What's a girl to do?

The answer to all of our worries is multimasking
@iammariaborges wearing L'Oreal Fask Masks

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Gabrielle Union is Summer Goals. Let's Discuss

You may have seen a video floating around of Gabrielle Union, sitting poolside looking like an image of perfection.  When I envision the vibe I want to have this summer, this is what I picture in my mind.

Skin looking so flawless that it outshines the swimsuit.
Body, toned.
Hair blowing in the wind.
Face reflecting the light that hits it.

I keep watching the video over and over again.  My favorite part of the whole thing is her incredible confidence. She knows she's flawless.  This level of perfection did not happen on its own.  Gabby appears effortless, but we know that she maintains certain habits & rituals to enhance her results.

Let's discuss.
Thursday, April 27, 2017

Foundation Drops | A Dream Come True if You're #TeamNoMakeup

When I began my skin care journey, I've set one clear goal.  To have skin so flawless that foundation wouldn't be necessary.  I want skin that looks just as good bare as when it's camouflaged with high-end foundation.

Every day, I get one step closer.  I'm still not there yet so foundation is still a critical part of my life. I I'd like to wean myself off having to rely on a full face of foundation in order to look presentable. Seems like I may have found a product that aligns with my dream of having skin that looks incredibly natural and flawless.

While at The Makeup Show, I stopped by NYX's booth to see what all commotion was about.  The small crowd almost prevented me from taking a closer look.  But I decided that it was worth the trouble if it meant finding that one item that would change everything.