All the Spring Must-Have Beauty Buys in the 2019 VIB Sale!

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Ready for some serious shopping? The Spring Sephora VIB sale kicks off this week and I am so excited! Sephora discounts are few and far between, so this is when I stock up on my favorite products, try new goodies that are hitting the shelves, and get ready to step up my beauty game for the new season. 

There are 2 tiers to the sale; VIB Rouge Members save 20% on their purchases between 4/26-5/1 and VIB Members save 15% between 5/2-5/6. It’s not a huge percentage off but considering the fact that Sephora pretty much never discounts store-wide now is the time to shop and save. 

Here are some of the goods I’ll be adding to cart this VIB sale!

Sephora VIB Sale Shopping Guide

Must-Try Face Makeup for the Perfect Summer Skin

This season’s skin is all about a natural glow! I’ll be trying the new Fenty Beauty Bronzers for sure, since pretty much everything else in the product line is incredible. Plus I’ve had the Becca Shimmering Skin Highlighter on my list for a while, so will get one or 2 of these, plus this brand new Nars liquid highlighter for when I want an all-over glow! And when we inch closer to summer I’ll be trading my usual foundation for a lighter weight tinted moisturizer. 

Bold, Colorful Makeup for Fun Trendy Spring Looks

One of my most-used palettes last season was the Too Faced Natural Love palette, so I’m excited to test the newest version, Too Faced Natural Lust! I’m also obsessed with the new ABH Riviera palette and will be finishing all my summer looks with either a pop color eye or bold lip.

Body Care Products for a Head to Toe Glow

Since warm weather means exposing more skin, don’t forget about the rest of your body! The Fenty Beauty Body Lava is back in some hot new shades, and I’ll be updating my anti-cellulite routine with some new firming creams and masks. Plus a body scrub is an essential for the season, and I’ll be going for one like this Laura Mercier, that is super gently and luxurious. 

Skin-Care Essentials for Glowing Skin All Spring Summer

And don’t forget the skin care essentials! I live for these Sephora Collection sleeping masks and eye masks so will be stocking up on both! And I desperately need to replace my Clarisonic brush heads so will buy a few of those, or maybe this set of head to toe body buffers! And of course, makeup remover wipes because you can never have enough of those! 

Let me know what you are adding to cart and what beauty trends you are most excited about! 

4 Ways to Get Summer Ready from Head to Toe!

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We’re basically 6 weeks away from summer! Everyone talks about getting your body in shape for summer, and for some people that means losing weight and getting more fit. But you also can’t neglect just taking better care of your skin since so much of it is on display! Whatever you are doing in terms of diet and exercise is one thing, but in this post I’m going to share a few of my tips for getting your skin ready to glow all season long. Stay tuned for some of my favorite products to use for each summer skin situation. 

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Getting Rid of Cellulite

Cellulite is pretty common and if you want to embrace it and rock your dimples, more power to you! However I have never been a fan of mine so have a pretty regular cellulite prevention routine that keeps the dimples away. I use a skin-smoothing and firming cream twice daily, and every few weeks incorporate an intensive firming mask on my butt and thighs. Most treatments take 4 to 6 weeks to show results, so get started now and you will be ready by Memorial Day

 

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Preventing Body Acne and Breakouts

All the extra sweat and sun can sometimes lead to more body breakouts. Keep things clear by adding a body wash and lotion that have exfoliating acids in them. I love the Paula’s Choice Skin Revealing Body Lotion and Weightless Body Treatment. They feature BHA and AHA that gently exfoliate and help remove the appearance of bumps and redness. They also make a great Acne Body Spray that you can spritz on anywhere for added body acne prevention

 

Sunscreen That Works for Darker Skin Tones

Sunscreen is an essential, but a lot of them leave a weird grey cast on skin, especially when you have a darker skin tone. I just started trying Black Girl Sunscreen, a natural, vegan sunscreen that goes on sheer without the yucky white residue. I’m also a big fan of Supergoop products, especially their mousse formula! 

 

Keeping Your Feet Sandal Ready

I usually do an intense foot peel to shed off all the winter skin and get my feet ready for sandal season. Baby Foot is my favorite but be warned – it’s not pretty! It takes about a week and a half to fully process and your feet will be pretty gross until the shedding is complete. But it’s worth it for how soft and amazing your feet are afterward.  I do these pretty much 2 to 3 times a year. But if you want to try one, definitely start it now! You will need to keep your feet covered the whole time it’s processing, so do it while you can still wear socks and booties!

 

Let me know what you guys are most excited about for summer and how you are getting ready! 

head to toe beauty tips for summer

 

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3 Spring Beauty Trends To Try Now

Pink makeup trends for spring
glam makeup trends for spring
makeup trends to try for Spring

It’s almost the first day of Spring!

Even though I haven’t done much shopping, I’m thinking more about freshening up my makeup routine for the new season. I’ll be playing with more color, soft neutrals with a romantic touch, and going with more natural glam looks for every day. Here are a few trends I’m working into my beauty rotation

Natural Eyelashes

I loooove falsh eyelashes and my favorite pairs are on the dramatic side. However I’ve been toning them down lately and wearing them less. I still get a flirty feminine look from layering on mascara carefully, scraping off excess product along the tube before each coat so it doesn’t clump. But it is kind of refreshing playing with a more natural, fresh faced look.

Monochromatic Makeup

Monochromtic dressing has been a fashion staple for awhile, so why not copy the same trend in your makeup. I love layering varying shades of soft pink between eyes, cheeks, and lips. Pop in some gold or champagne highlighter to round out the look and add a soft glow.

Neon Lips

I love rocking bold color, but the hues that I’m getting excited about our over the top. Keep them matte since a neon gloss will start to look costumey. And keep the application perfectly precise! The last thing you want is neon smeared all over your face. Use a brush to keep the edges clean and use concealor and powder to set the area around your lips and keep the color in place.

What are you most excited about for Spring? Let me know what trends you’ll be rocking!

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Getting Ready for Spring: 3 Must Try Hair Styles with SheaMoisture!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #FindYourShea #CollectiveBias

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I’m so ready to freshen up my look for Spring! Winter will hopefully be over in a few short weeks, but I’m relishing the opportunity to escape for a bit and enjoy some fun in the sun. I’ve been hanging out in LA a bit, enjoying the sunshine and getting inspired for when the good weather finally hits NYC.

I don’t know about you, but my hair has really taken a beating this winter. It gets super dry and frizzy, and extra breakage prone! I’ve been saving my strands with a combination of protective styling and products that bring the moisture. One of my go to brands is SheaMoisture. I love that the products have natural, yet effective ingredients, smell incredible, and they have a variety of product lines depending on your hair’s needs. Plus they avoid using harmful ingredients like sulfates, parabens, paraffin, formaldehyde, and petroleum. I like to balance taking care of and protecting my hair with having fun with it, so wanted to share a few fun low-maintenance looks that I’m loving for the season!

Interested in trying out the SheaMoisture hair products? Hover over the photo to click through and shop!

It’s easiest to get these looks on stretched or fully straight hair so prepping properly with the SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Collection is the first step. Here are the styles I’ve been playing with, let me know your fave!
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Messy Pigtails

This youthful style is chic again! Braids have a carefree, bohemian vibe this look is perfect for channeling that spirit. It’s also great for when your straight or stretched hair is a few days old and starting to frizz. Just be sure to keep them a little loose and messy, not too neat and perfect. And add a little headband or scarf to jazz it up

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Beach Babe Waves

No other style is more iconic for summer! It has an easy breezy vibe and holds up well to wind and humidity. Just braid dry straight hair in medium sized sections, let them set overnight, then unbraid and fluff in the morning.

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Sleek Bun

Sometimes it’s just too hot to deal with hair, so slick it back for a chic easy look. A middle part is most flattering for the shape of my face, but you can also play with a side part or even pulling it all straight back. Finish the look with a few hair clips or a pair of statement earrings!

Before you start any style, make sure your hair is clean, detangled, conditioned and moisturized! I start my hair routine with the SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Shampoo. This product is made with certified Organic Shea Butter, Manuka Honey, Mafura and Baobab Oils to cleanse your hair while also infusing your hair with moisture and shine-enhancing nutrients. I then detangle in the shower with the SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Conditioner. This natural hair conditioner instantly softens and detangles, nourishing and conditioning dry, brittle hair to restore manageability. It also features antioxidant-rich Fig to help boost hydration while protecting distressed hair from environmental influences. After a few minutes with this, dry, damaged and rough hair will be left soft, shiny and easy to style! I also do a deep conditioning mask every time I wash for extra hydration, especially before I heat style. The SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Hair Masque gives your hair the royal treatment. This hair moisturizer intensely conditions while infusing hair with a powerful dose of moisture and nutrients like Manuka Honey. Certified organic Shea Butter, Mafura and Baobab Oils restore and lock in moisture, smoothing and fortifying follicles for stronger, healthier frizz-free hair.

After wash day is complete, you are ready to style! 

Shea Moisture at Walmart


Check out SheaMoisture products at your local Walmart. They’ve got everything you need to hydrate & replenish dry, damaged hair whether your hair texture is curly, coily, or kinky. Plus you just can’t beat the super affordable price. Let me know what you think and any of your favorite Spring hairstyles I should try! 

Spring Hairstyles Guide Natural Hair

Curing the Winter Blues with Biore & John Frieda!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #BioreFreeYourPores #RAWellnessBeauty #ForHairThatDemandsAttention #CollectiveBias

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I know I’m not the only one who is completely over winter! It’s been pretty freezing the past few weeks in NY and the weather is really putting a damper on my social life. I’ve been trying to make the most of spending more time indoors waiting until winter passes, so that means lots of Netflix and Hulu, a few new good reads, and of course, my at home beauty treatments. Relaxation time is so important, especially after the hectic holiday season. After all of those weeks taking care of everyone else, it’s time to turn your focus back to yourself. If you want to indulge in a little self-care when it’s too cold to be out doing anything else, here is my routine for a quick and easy cozy spa night at home.

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I start by cleansing my skin and doing a treatment mask. Biore® Charcoal Cleansing Micellar Water is a great way to take off makeup and deep cleanse your skin before you apply the mask. It’s an all-in-one cleanser and makeup remover, so there is no need for rinsing or rubbing. It removes even heavy make-up while refreshing and balancing your pores, and the charcoal formula is great for oily skin.
Biore Charcoal Mask
Once all my makeup is removed, I apply the Biore® Charcoal Self Heating One Minute Mask. A thermal mask is perfect for a night where you need to warm up and melt away your stress. It’s infused with natural charcoal, and opens pores and draws out dirt, then finishes with a cooling sensation for tingly-smooth skin in just one minute. I follow with my favorite moisturizer and eye cream, and then move onto hair!
John Freida Frizz Ease Serum
My curls can get insanely dry and frizzy, so keeping them strong and hydrated is essential. I’ve been loving the John Frieda® Frizz Ease® Extra Strength 6 Effects™+ Serum. This tiny bottle packs a powerhouse serum that eliminates frizz, prevents damage from heat styling, repels humidity, smooths strands, hydrates parched hair, and tames flyaways. I like to add a few drops to my hair after washing and deep conditioning to create a foundation for frizz free styling all week. You can also use a small amount of product on the ends of dry hair to refresh your look and help smooth away any frizz.

Now just grab a cozy knit throw blanket and turn on a movie for the perfect way to end a night of pampering. After nights like these I feel completely rejuvenated.

At Home Spa Tips
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If you are looking for the place to stock up on beauty and wellness items that are affordable and easy to find, check out your local Rite Aid. They make it easy to make smart choices while shopping so you can look great, feel great, and save! Make sure you try the above products or anything from Bior®e or John Frieda® with the discounts below! 

  • Starting 1/27 and 2/10, save 25% off any one Biore® item

  • Starting 2/10, look for BOGO 50% on John Frieda® products

  • From 1/27-3/2, save up to $11 with coupons via printed brochure in select stores and Load2Card coupons on riteaid.com


Let me know how you guys are surviving the rest of winter!

Budget Beauty Products

Get Ready with Me: Glam Valentine's Day Looks with Upbra!

Glam Night in for Valentine's Day

Valentine’s Day is just 2 weeks away! Hope you guys have your outfits ready to go. Today I’m giving you a little preview into how I get ready for a romantic night out, in collaboration with Upbra!

Upbra is my go to bra when I need to take my look up a notch! This bad boy gives you cleavage that is not for the faint of heart. It’s made in America and features  Upbra ActiveLift® technology and cleavage control straps that move your breasts up and center for maximum cleavage.  Pull the loops all the way out for the most high impact loop. Don’t worry about it getting uncomfortable, this bra is seriously surprisingly comfy!

If you want to keep some attention on your face, balance out the major babe look with glamourous makeup and hair! For this look I went with big voluminous curls and soft romantic makeup. Think a shimmery eyes with a touch of smoke, berry lips, and plenty of highlighter. And definitely don’t forget the lashes! 

I’m planning to wear a strapless dress, so going with the Upbra Strapless Bra in red. It’s just as supportive as the T-Shirt version I also have. It also features super cute heart shaped mini grips to keep your cleavage in place all night long.

Getting Ready with Upbra
Glam Beauty Look
Upbra Product Review
Upbra Product Detail Review

If you are still struggling to figure out what to wear, check out my tips in this post! Whatever you decide, be sure to make the first layer of your look the Upbra! Also, be sure check out their swim collection if you are in the market for a new bikini for summer

Valentines Day Glam Night In

New Year New Look: My New Healthy Hair Routine for 2019

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #HaircareWithIntegrity #CollectiveBias

South Beach Miami Beaches
Summer in Mami South Beach
Summer Style in Miami

How is the first week of 2019 treating you? Hopefully you are recovered from plenty of time spent ringing in the New Year, and are ready to start the new year with a bang! This time of year is great for reflecting on all the changes the previous year, diving into your goals, and trying something new. I’m not particularly one for New Years Resolutions, but I did set one that I’m going to try to keep – take better care of my hair! It may sound shallow compared to people that are setting career, fitness and other big life goals. But self-care is important, and it goes for both the inside and out. I have to admit that I was not the best to my hair in 2018!

I experimented with color and a chemical treatment, and did way more straightening than I used to. By the end of the year my strands were, dry, frizzy, full of breakage and desperately needing some TLC. I decided that I’m going to dedicate the first half of 2019 to restoring the health and strength of my hair. Part of that journey means lots of protective styling to give my hair the break it needs. Protective styling breaks are essential for naturally kinky textures since our hair tends to be drier, more coarse and prone to damage from frequent manipulation. So you will see me wearing lots more protective styles like braids and wigs, which still allow for flexibility and fun with your hair, but they keep your natural hair safe from damage causing elements. I also found some new star products that so far have been a hero for my hair! 

Hover over the image below to start shopping the products!

Biotera Natural Origin Collection features seven color-safe products that gently restore beauty and radiance, delivering the honest-to-goodness healthy hair you need to achieve salon perfection. The products feature up to 97% naturally derived ingredients, offering a high quality alternative to some premium products for a fraction of the cost. 

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I’ve been using the NURTURE Conditioner and Masque, which is perfect for dry hair. It’s enriched with nourishing Coconut Oil and Honey and smells just delicious! I alternate the NURTURE line with the RESTORE strengthening line, which repairs damaged hair. It’s enriched with nutrient-rich Goji Berry and Chia Extract, and all their products are free from silicones, sulfates, parabens and dyes. They also use biodegradable formulas and 100% recyclable packaging, so you can care for your hair and the Earth at the same time. Here’s a quick tutorial on my new healthy hair routine and how I’m saving my strands without compromising my style! 

Sunday’s are wash day so I start by gently detangling my hair using the Biotera Nuture Conditioner. I separate my curls into small sections and using just a little bit of my homemade spritz (aloe vera juice & rosewater) and a lot of the conditioner, I gently finger detangle each section. I do not use a comb or any styling tools, just my fingers and a lot of patience. Then I pop on a plastic cap and let that sit for a bit, mostly just to give my arms a break! Then shampoo and follow with a deep conditioning mask. I alternate between the Nuture and Restore Masques to balance moisturization and strengthening. As far as styling, I’m keeping that super simple! My hair hangs out in braids or twists and during the week I play with fun hair accessories, headwraps, or wigs so I always look cute and stylish. The routine is easy, simple, and keeping my hair healthy. 

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When shopping for my hair/ beauty essentials, like my Biotera products or fun hair accessories to style with, Sally Beauty is the place to start. Look for Biotera next time you are there, and learn more about the brand and product line on their site!

Let me know what your 2019 resolutions are, for beauty, hair, health or whatever! 

Secret Weapons for Healthy Hair

3 Must Try Beauty Trends for New Years Eve

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How is everyone recovering from Christmas? Hopefully you unwrapped lots of amazing presents and had a blast celebrating with friends and family. And now that Christmas is over, its time to focus on getting ready for New Years! I feel like everyone has mixed feelings about New Years Eve - whether it’s worth celebrating or just a waste of energy, if you should go out or do a low key house party, etc. Personally I’m down for either a glam night out or staying in with friends watching the ball drop, just depends on what the squad and bae want to do.

This year I will be doing something pretty exciting, and have the perfect look all picked out! I just need to figure out how to beat the face! Since New Year’s is a holiday where you can really go all out with your look, here are some beauty trends I’ve been thinking about trying for the last party of 2018.

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Glitter Lips Beauty Trend

Glittery eyes have been over and done! Even though they are still beautiful, the newest way to wear glitter is on the lips! Give your pout some bling with a kit from Stay Golden, the brand behind the glittery lips blowing up your Instagram feed! It may not be the best look for a dinner party, but judging from reviews you can make it through a night of drinking without losing your shine.

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Colorful Graphic Winged Eyeliner

Winged eyeliner is such a classic look, so put a fun spin on it! Get dramatic with the length and width of your line, add a splash of color, or even play with contrasting colors to add depth and dimension. Granted, I have NEVER been able to master a good cat eye, but practice makes perfect. You can also work with stencils or tools like the Beauty Blender Liner Designer, and use concealer to clean up and even out your lines.

Rainbow Unicorn Highlighter

Colorful Highlighter

I first tried purple highlighter at Afropunk and I am sold! The look was fresh and unique, but not as scary and Halloween ish as it sounds. I’ve used a pale shimmer from Anastasia Beverly Hills and am currently loving the Fenty Beauty Killawatt Foil Freestyle Highlighter in all colors but especially Mimosa Sunrise/Sangria Sunset.

Let me know what look you end up trying for New Years! And shop the story below!



Must Try Beauty Trends

Keeping that Glow! Get Unready with Me and Aveeno MaxGlow!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #MaxYourGlow #CollectiveBias

Miceller Water Cleansing Routine

Hope you all are ready for Christmas! I’m sure you will be spending the next few days grabbing last minute gifts, finishing decorating and wrapping everything, and if you are hosting,  prepping for the big party. Crazy stressful right? It’s so hard to juggle everything this time of year, stay balanced, and not lose your mind in the process. Plus the holiday season also demands that you always look glam and put together, which just adds another level of pressure! As much as I enjoy hair, makeup, and fun outfits, sometimes you just NEED a bare face and sweat pants. One way I stay sane and squeeze in self-care is to find an off night, or even an early evening, where I stay home and show my skin some extra TLC. Here are a few steps I take to get unready and pamper myself during the stressful holiday season. 

Skin Care Routine with Miceller Water

Hover over the image above for product information and to purcahase at CVS

Aveeno Positively Radiant Beauty Products

The first thing to go is whatever sparkly, tight, layered thing I had on, kick off the heels and cozy up in a warm, fluffy bathrobe. Sometimes I’ll treat my hair to an overnight oil treatment for extra moisture, sleeping with it covered by a plastic cap and satin bonnet.

Then it’s time to get all the holiday makeup off! I’ve been using the Aveeno Positively Radiant Micellar Gel Cleanser. I love micellar cleansers as a first step in my getting unready routine, since they gently remove makeup without stripping the skin. Aveeno’s Positively Radiant Micellar Gel Cleanser is formulated with a moisture-rich soy and kiwi complex and it  helps skin feel hydrated, soft, and enhances your skin’s natural radiance. More than just a cleansing and moisturizing routine The AVEENO® POSITIVELY RADIANT® Collection is designed to enhance your natural radiance and give you a lit-from-within glow. Each soy enriched product targets tone and texture.

I also love using face masks, and do one at least once or twice a week. When you don’t have time to put one on then sit and wait, sleeping masks are perfect. Who wouldn’t want to put one on before bed and wake up glowing?

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Aveeno’s Maxglow No Mess Sleep Mask is a new one I’ve been testing out. This nighttime face mask helps even skin tone and texture for soft, luminous skin when you wake. Plus the tube includes a paddle applicator so that your hands stay clean for an easy, mess-free application. Then just rinse off in the morning for radiant, glowing skin. Don’t worry about it making a mess when you sleep, the mask will stay on your face and not end up all over your pillows. After I apply it, I like to tuck myself in, turn that phone on silent and spend some time reading or just reflecting on my day.  I think it’s important to unplug and not spend the last moments of your day staring at a phone screen.

 Since this time of year doesn’t allow much time for personal shopping, the most convenient beauty destination to pick up these products is your local CVS. CVS is actually one of the largest beauty retailers in the United States, so it makes staying on top of your beauty needs easier than ever. Make sure you check out the AVEENO® POSITIVELY RADIANT® Collection  if you want to enhance your natural radiance and give you a lit-from-within glow.  

And since saving money around the holidays is essential, make sure you take advantage of the Buy One Get 50% off Select Aveeno at CVS until 12/30. Wishing you all a happy, glowing holiday! 
Holiday Season Beauty and Skin Care Guide


#ManiMonday! Nailing it with CND™ VINYLUX™

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias #CNDVINYLUXatRA

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Who is ready for Monday? I love to spend my Sunday relaxing, planning out my outfits for the week, and doing some at home beauty treatments. One of my favorite self-care Sunday treatments is an at home manicure. When my nails aren’t done I feel like the rest of my life just isn’t together. Dramatic, I know, but I can’t help it! You can’t be a boss babe with a chipped mani. I discovered CND™ VINYLUX™ Long Wear Polish at my local Rite-Aid and it’s become my secret weapon for the perfect mani that lasts all week. It’s a super easy and convenient 2-step application.

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Just apply two thin coats of the all-in-one base and color CND™ VINYLUX™ Long Wear Polish, then one coat of CND™ VINYLUX™ Long Wear Top Coat for a gel-like finish. No base coat necessary! And in about 8 minutes your nails are perfectly dry with a shiny, high-gloss finish. It really gives you a gel-like look that you can remove just as easily a traditional nail polish. Plus it’s the first-ever, long-wear polish infused with Vitamin E, Keratin & Jojoba oil to keep your nails nourished and healthy.

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This week I’m rocking Wildfire and Butterfly Queen, a bold red and glittery fuchsia that make the perfect combo. Next week who knows! If you aren’t a pro at nail art or complicated designs, an accent nail is the perfect way to spice it up.

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I love buying nail polish at Rite Aid because the Nail Bar has the best selection of colors and polishes, and they always have amazing deals. Be on the lookout for CND™ VINYLUX™ Long Wear Polishes NEW to Rite Aid stores. These polishes can be found in the Nail Bar or Wall Display with a brand new look!"And for a limited time only, visit your local Rite Aid store and buy 2 CND™ VINYLUX™ products to receive $4 Bonus Cash at Rite Aid. Valid 10/28/18-12/1/18 in-store only.

Let me now what colors you test out and how much you love it!

The Perfect NYC Staycation at Nomo Soho

Images by Wini Lao

Images by Wini Lao

Sometimes you just need to escape from it all! When life gets way too crazy and you find yourself getting overwhelmed, the perfect way to check out and relax is to take a little staycation. We can’t always jet off to exotic destinations unless you just happen to have major bank and unlimited time off, so a staycation is the next best thing. You can find a deal at a great hotel in your city to hideaway for a few days and get some much needed peace and quiet.  

Nomo Soho Staycation
Staycation at Nomo Soho
Nomo Soho Staycation Destination
DIY Skin Care Treatments

Nomo Soho is one of my favorites. It has everything you need for the perfect solo staycation – beautiful modern décor, a stellar restaurant and bar, comfortable, luxurious linens, plenty of cute nooks for photo opps, and heavenly plush bathrobes you can cozy up in! If you are feeling a little social the bar and lobby lounge are always great to hang out in. Or you can just lock your door and indulge in some of your favorite beauty treatments while ordering room service. Just be sure to get a room with a view, because the city skyline is not to be missed. 

If you are looking for great last minute deals I love Hotel Tonight and TravelZoo. And old fashioned, I know, but sometimes just calling the hotel reception can get you a major discount or unpublished rate. They may have a ton of rooms open last minute that they would love to fill. I’ve done this several times, for last minute trips and ones being planned weeks in advance, and have gotten up to 25% off the published rate, just by asking! 

NYC Hotel Guide

Seasonal-Skincare Remix - Taking Your Skincare Routine from Summer to Fall!

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #BTSWithPinkGrapefruit #CollectiveBias

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Well Labor Day has passed and summer is pretty much over! Even though we've got a few more weeks of warm weather, the summer vibe is over and it's time to start seriously thinking about Fall. I still haven't done much Fall shopping, but have been thinking about transitioning my skin care routine to get ready for the new season. I don't know about you guys, but my high-summer products can be pretty intense - deep cleansers, exfoliators and toners to keep pores clear. 

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But as temps and humidity settle down for Fall, I start going easier on my skin. My skin is on the oily, acne-prone side so I always have to keep that in mind when trying new products. One of my long-term go-to products is the NEUTROGENA® Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Gel cleanser. Did you guys know that NEUTROGENA® is the #1 Dermatologist recommended Acne Brand? This cleanser smells amazing, cleanses thoroughly but doesn't leave my skin feeling harsh or stripped. Since cleansing is the base of any skincare routine, it's important to use one that can clean but keep your skin balanced! With Grapefruit Extract + Vitamin C, it clears breakouts and even the marks they leave behind, basically washing away the sins of your summer! 

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I also tend to go lighter on my foundation in the summer. However come Fall, I go back wearing a little bit more for the grown-up, put together vibe the new season calls for.   Double cleansing becomes an essential for the new season. I start with the NEUTROGENA® Cleansing Wipes, Pink Grapefruit, then go in with the cleanser. The wipes sweep away pore-clogging dirt and oil in one simple step, leaving skin clean with no greasy residue.  

As things cool off in late Fall/early Winter, make sure you are using a moisturizer that is more hydrating, and throw in a weekly sheet masks for good measure! 

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If you want to explore the entire NEUTROGENA® Pink Grapefruit Line, check it out here! There is also an Ibotta offer on NEUTROGENA® Acne products at CVS that will let you earn up to $2.00 cash back while supplies last.And the week of 9/9, You can buy 1 NEUTROGENA® Pink Grapefruit product at CVS and get 1 50% off!

I love shopping at CVS for most of my household needs, and their beauty department is seriously stepping it up! You can find classics like the NEUTROGENA® product line, and an impressive selection of color cosmetics, nail polish and nail art, hair care, and false eyelashes. Make sure you check it out, and let me know what you think of the NEUTROGENA® Pink Grapefruit Line! 

My Fall VIB Sale Shopping List

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Sephora just announced their Fall VIB sale and I am so ready! As you guys know, Sephora sales are few and far between so they are a great time to stock up on your beauty faves and try some new things while they are discounted. Check out my shopping list below! 

Must-Haves

I'm stocking up on old favorites and trying out some new goodies. The Nars team sent me the new Orgasm Illuminating Powder and I'll definitely be buying a new jar while it's on sale! Plus I'm almost out of the Radiant Creamy concealer that is one of my go-tos so will definitely get one. And since my skin has been behaving so much better these days, I want to try a lighter, tinted moisturizer instead of my usual full-coverage liquid foundation. I may also throw in some of these cheap travel masks from Sephora collection, and test out the new gummy version of my go-to hair vitamins from Hum! 

Palettes

I've been stalking the ABH Norvina palette since it dropped so may finally pick it up! I'm also loving face/cheek palettes from Nars and ABH, and this lip palette that is full of more colors than I'd know what to do with! 

Sets

Gift sets are always a great deal, whether or not you actually gift them or keep them! Tatcha never disappoints, and these Stila liquid eyeshadows are incredible! You guys also know I love the Brazilian Bum Bum cream to keep the dimples away! Plus I just started using Beauty Blenders, and this set that combines some new and old faves is right up my alley! And can't forget some new Fall friendly lip colors and my go-to fragrance layering kit. 

Let me know if you guys try any of these or what else you add to cart! 

5 Skin Care Essentials I Can't Live Without

Skin Care Beauty Secrets

This summer has been a hot one! We've had several heat waves and the humidity feels like it's at an all time high. I try to make small tweaks to my beauty routine every season, based on the changes in temperature and what's going on in my life at the time. Since my summers tend to be super busy and full of weekend trips, I try to give my skin a little extra TLC! Here are some new products my skin has been loving. 

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Tula Beauty Probiotic Skin Care Line

Tula  is a skincare brand that combines probiotics with other skin friendly superfoods to naturally balance and boost the health of your skin.

The brand focused on using clean, clinically proven, high-quality ingredients to create cruelty free products that help women feel more confident. The brand gifted me some of their best selling products that are now available at Ulta. The Purifying Face Cleanser keeps my skin clean, refreshed, and balanced, their Eye Renewal Serum keeps puffy eyes at bay, and the Hydrating Day and Night Cream is moisturizing but not too heavy for my combination-oily skin. 

FIlorga OPTIM-EYES® Eye contour cream

This baby is an eye-cream power house, keeping wrinkles, dark circles and puffiness away. I recived this product through Octoly and have been loving the results. I especially notice a difference when I've spent long days out and about in the sun. It includes a high-tech blend of Filorga’s NCTF®, a polyrevitalization cocktail of 59 ingredients and Filorga’s own hyaluronic acid.

You can find the product here!
Luxury Spa Treatments at Home

Australian Pink Clay Mask - Urban Defence

I usually do a mask once or twice a week and a new one I've been trying is the Australian Pink Clay Mask - Urban Defence. I also recived this through Octoly, and the pretty pink hue begs to be Instagrammed! The mask is packed with unique ingredients, like  Kakadu plum – a tiny Australian fruit that holds the highest known natural source of vitamin C and helps stimulate collagen, reduce hyperpigmentation, and protect from harsh environmental aggressors. There is also vitamin E for reinforcement at blocking free radicals, age-fighting vitamin A, and old man weed – a traditional indigenous medicinal remedy which fights acne-causing bacteriaI. It leaves my pores looking tighter and skin feeling smooth and refreshed

Get your hands on it here! And if you are into multi-masking, check out the rest of their line!

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil

Cleansing oils are magic, even for oily skin! One of my go-to oils is by Shu Uemura. Can you believe 1 bottle sold every 7 seconds around the world! I love how it clears away makeup, oil and impurities without stripping/drying the skin.  

I love the Porefinist2 Sakura Fresh Cleansing Oil for my oily/combination skin. I also got this through Octoly and it is formulated with sakura and cinnamon bark extract to regulate oil, and keeps my pores clear and skin refreshed. 

InstaNatural Collagen Age Defense

Since beauty starts from within, vitamins and supplements are a major part of my beaut routine. I take a collagen supplement daily, and this time it's been the InstaNatural Collagen Age Defense. The formula is full of ingredients proven to improve the appearance of skin from the inside out; MicroActive® Resveratrol and BioCell Collagen® reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and dryness while increasing collagen levels in the skin. Careless® Mango and Florabella® support circulation and improve skin tone and elasticity. With consistent use expect to see healthier, smoother more radiant skin over time. 

If you are curious about trying it, check it out here!

Let me know what new products you have in your rotation, or anything you are dying to try! 

At Home Hair Care with Yeluchi by Un-Ruly!

This post is sponsored by Yeluchi by Un-Ruly. All opinions are my own

This post is sponsored by Yeluchi by Un-Ruly. All opinions are my own

This summer has been one of various hair styles for me! There has been the balayage color I did in Spring, then the Brazilian Blowout, the natural curls, and of course, various braided styles. I tend to rely on protective styles more in the winter, but braids are becoming a new go-to for summer. They are chic and stylish and let you hop out of bed with your hair done for weeks on end. What's not to love! 

I was researching hair braiders looking for a stylist and some inspiration for my next style when I found Yeluchi by Unruly.

Yeluchi is a at home hair styling service powered by Un-Ruly, the popular media hub dedicated to all things hair for Black women. They serve select areas of NYC and offer an array of services from various braided styles to weaves to blowouts. The Yeluchi team graciously comped my service for review, so check out my thoughts on the experience!

Booking

It was smooth and seamless! I already had ideas for the style I wanted and using the suggestions on their site I was easily able to select the appropriate service. You can also add links to images of what you want for reference so they know what you are looking for an can accurately match you to a stylist. I was hoping for an after work appointment but couldn't find one, so settled on a Sunday morning. I did ask my stylist if they offer evening appointments and she said they do, but they tend to fill up fast so you have to book early. For the sake of research I did some digging, randomly selecting various styles and neighborhoods and checking the calender on site through October. I found nothing later than 1pm. If you don't keep standard office hours during the week that's probably fine, but if you do, plan to keep your appointment for the weekend. 

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The Service

My stylist Roxy was prompt, friendly and professional! I had aleady prepped an area in my living room so she would have space on the table to set up, then tuned into my favorite YouTube channels while she got to work. The only issue we had was a technicality with the style I chose. The cornrows in the inspiration photo I sent were stitch cornrows, not regular ones. If you don't know the difference, here is an example of stitch vs regular! Both cute, just different details. 

They actually do not offer stitch braids, and Roxie let me know she told the company before taking the appointment but they didn't update me.  So I ended up with 6 regular cornrows that we then tied together into 1 chic bunch with gold thread. It was a little disappointing because the stitch effect was the main thing I wanted, and if they would have told me in advance they couldn't do it I would have just picked a totally different style. But I didn't have time to look for a new style in that moment, and also didn't even know if time or the amount of braiding hair I had purchased would allow. I let her practice a little just to see if she could try it, but it wasn't the exact look I had in mind. However I was still happy with the results and her technique, especially how she respected my edges! I also love that she didn't know I was blogging about the experience. Sometimes companies roll out the red carpet for bloggers and you never know if the experience you are getting is the treatment everyone gets. 

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Final Thoughts

Overall my style was cute, trendy and got me tons of compliments! She also braided carefully and attentively, checking in to make sure it wasn't too tight. You guys know it only takes 1 aggressive braider to permanently ruin your edges so I was very happy to feel like the health of my hair and scalp was priority. It's been about a week and a half since my appointment and the style still looks great. I expected to keep it for 2 to 2.5 weeks and I'm pretty much on track for that. I will probably take down the long threaded braid and wrap the cornrowed ends into a bun just to switch things up the last week. 

If you guys are curious about at home hair styling, definitely check out the services offered by Yeluchi! I'm already thinking about my next look for later in the summer!

Vacation Countdown! The Beauty Routine to Get You Ready for Any Trip!

Garnier Facial Mist

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #RAWellnessBeauty #July #CollectiveBias

Who loves summer weekends?! This season is the best season, especially when summer Fridays start and you can skip out of work early for fun with the squad! If you know you’ve got a weekend adventure coming up, here are a few steps to take the week before to make sure your skin stays glowing from head to toe!

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The first and most important step is keeping your skin clear! I wear makeup every day, and I do not skip a beat when it comes to cleansing. My first and final steps both include micellar water to make sure my makeup is thoroughly removed every day. Daylogic is Rite Aid’s Beauty Brand and their Micellar (pronounced my-sell-er) water is a combination of purified water; hydrating ingredients and low concentrations of molecules of mild surfactants that naturally group together to form microscopic spheres called micelles, which act like magnets for dirt and oil.  So it removes makeup, cleanses, and refreshes in one step! I use it with the Daylogic Premium Exfoliating Cotton Rounds to give my skin some gentle exfoliating action. The next step is to go in with my favorite face wash for an even deeper clean, especially when I’m wearing a lot of makeup. Then I give my skin a final swipe with the micellar water to make sure all the makeup and residue is clear!

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I also love giving my skin a refreshing spritz with the Garnier SkinActive Soothing Facial Mist. Just spray it on your face anytime your skins need to feel a little refreshed -  when you wake up, after a shower, right before you leave the house, or to refresh your makeup through the day! I especially love it after a long flight to refresh my skin or after gym or sauna for instant hydration.  You can even use it to moisten a blending sponge before applying foundation or concealer.

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Now onto the rest of your bod! You’ve got your skin refreshed, your bikini packed, but you cannot forget to wax!  Nad’s Body Wax Strips for Normal Skin are perfect for a quick at-home wax. Use as needed to get ready to hit the beach or pool in your favorite swimsuit. The Wax formula contains natural ingredients such as beeswax and calendula flower extracts and is suitable for all skin types. The strips are ready to use – just rub, peel & go!

Beach Essentials from Rite Aid
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If you want to add these products into your rotation, get them at Rite Aid! They’ve got a great wellness+beauty offer – get a total of up to $28 in coupons via printed brochure in select stores and Load2Card coupons on riteaid.com

Now all you need are a few extra cute outfits!

How to Be Your Own #HairGoals with Prose Customized Hair Care

Summer Little Black Dress and Bamboo Bag

Let's be real - we are all on the quest to have the best hair possible. However you define your best hair is up to you - whether that be short and straight, long and bouncy or kinky curly. Great hair starts with health and I've been through HUNDREDS of products looking for the ones that would keep my curls hydrated, shiny and strong enough to resist breakage and maintain length.

I discovered Prose through Octoly, an influencer network and I was immediately intrigued. A fully customized hair care line based on your lifestyle and hair goals? Sign me up! I did their assessment online which asked a series of questions about my styling process, environmental conditions, and hair and scalp characteristics. 

My products arrived a week or 2 later with a detailed guide to the ingredients chosen and why they would be good for my hair. Some of the key ingredients were argan and jojoba oils for moisture, hyaluronic acid and collagen to repair and restore, and oat lipids and sunflower seed extract for color protection. My instructions are to shampoo and condition 2x a week, use the mask once a week, and 2x a month leave the mask on overnight for some ultimate hair rehab. 

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I noticed a difference right away and my hair has been getting even better with continued use. I mean take a look at these curls! 

Summer Style Little Black Dress

The shampoo cleansed without leaving my hair feeling stripped, and the conditioner and mask are rich, creamy and super hydrating. In short, it works wonders for my hair because it's made for my hair.

If you are interested in trying Prose check them out! And the only thing I can ask from the Prose team is to pretty please add in styling products! 

Beauty Secrets to Know: How to Get Rid of that Pesky Cellulite!

Beach Body Beauty Tips

Let's talk about cellulite! You guys know I love blogging about all things beauty, and taking care of those pesky dimples is an important part of my routine. Cellulite can affect anyone no matter how thin you are. It's not about how much you weigh, but is really caused by fat deposits pushing through the connective tissue in the skin. It can happen anywhere on your body but is most common in the thighs and butt. And while we are living in a day and age of body positivity and accepting your flaws, I'm still of the school of thought that if you really don't like something about yourself you have every right to try to fix it.  And while I applaud the women who embrace their cellulite, this is a beauty blog, and I'm still very dedicated to my routine that keeps it away. So if you want to learn my tips for how to get rid of yours, keep reading! 

How to Get Rid of Cellulite

1. Prevention is Key

As with anything skin care related, prevention is the first and most important step of treatment. I have been using anti-cellulite products since college, really before I had much of anything to worry about. And as I've gotten older and my body has changed, I firmly believe the routine I've stuck to consistently over the years has helped prevent my cellulite from really developing. If you already have some don't worry too much! You can definitely reduce it's appearance significantly even if you don't get rid of it completely. 

2. Layer on the products

My holy grail system has been Bliss Fab Girl Slim and Fab Girl Sleep.  They recently rebranded slightly, but it seems the products are the same ones I've used and loved. I've used that duo day and night for years and it has definitely made a difference in keeping my skin smooth and dimple free. If you are just starting out they will take a few weeks before you see a difference, but consistency is key if you are going to see results. They also make a tummy toning gel called Fab Girl Six Pack which I have used off and on, mostly just because I like the tingly feeling when you put it on.  And when I need an extra smoothing, firming boost, I use the Body Shop Moroccan Rhassoul Body Clay Mask. It's a firming mask that tightens and tones for extra smooth skin. I've found the best way to apply it is to smooth on a thick layer, then wrap your butt and thighs up in Saran Wrap, then hang out looking ridiculous for 20-30 minutes while it does it's thing. Yes, it sounds silly, but hey it's totally worth it!

3. Get a temporary glow

If you are looking for a quick fix before a vacation, the best thing you can use is the Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum Cream. It smells incredible and will temporarily tighten skin, plus it leaves a very subtle shimmer that will give your bod a natural looking glow. I keep a mini version in my beach bag at all times! And tools like dry-body brushes and suction devices can give you some temporary relief!

4. Take it Up a Notch

If you've got deep set cellulite and are really desperate to get rid of it, you may want to look into some non-invasive treatments to get rid of it. Lasers can work wonders on pretty much any beauty concern, and there are also newly FDA approved treatments like Cellfina. Do your research and ask a cosmetic dermatologist to weight in on any procedure you are considering. 

Let me know in the comments what you'll be trying!

 

 

The Glow-Up: Keeping Your Skin Glowing with L'Oreal RevitaLift®

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #ad #RAWellnessBeauty #RiteAid #CollectiveBias

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #ad #RAWellnessBeauty #RiteAid #CollectiveBias

Who else can’t wait for the weekend!? I’ve had an insane couple of weeks and just got back from an amazing weekend in Bermuda, and I’m heading off again for another trip this weekend. My hectic schedule and frequent travel can take a toll on my skin, so I look to products that keep me looking as radiant as possible. Since I have no time for a big spa day, here is how I pamper my skin when it needs some TLC on the fly!

Glycolic Acid Cleanser

The first step is to get all the makeup off so your skin can really breathe and your products can work their magic. I then go in with the L'Oreal RevitaLift® Brightening Daily Scrub Cleanser. It has gentle micro-pearls and Glycolic Acid which exfoliate dullness and impurities to improve skin tone, texture and clarity, revealing visibly brighter, more radiant skin. Skin is optimally prepared to absorb Bright Reveal treatments and moisturizers, which brings me to the next step!

Revitalift Daily Moisturizer for Bright Skin

I follow that treatment with the RevitaLift® Bright Reveal Brightening Day Moisturizer. It contains broad spectrum SPF 30 with a combination of Glycolic Acid, Vitamin C, and Pro-Retinol to reveal brighter skin, help correct uneven skin tone, and reduce the appearance of wrinkles in just 1 week. It visibly brightens, hydrates, and leaves skin feeling softer and appear smoother.

Daily Facial Peel Pads

I also like to occasionally pop in the RevitaLift® Bright Reveal Peel Pads, a dermatologist inspired anti-wrinkle plus brightening treatment. This daily peel pad resurfaces dull, uneven tone and rough texture to reveal fresh looking skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles over time. I’ve never used them back to back with the scrub just because my skin can be a little sensitive at times, but I like to work those into rotation every so often for a quick refresh.

And there you have it - 3 easy steps to glowing skin!

f you want to learn more about the L'Oreal RevitaLift® line, check it out here! And if you are ready to give it a try, my favorite place to get it is Rite-Aid. They have an amazing beauty section, and their Wellness + Beauty program is the best.

Loreal Products on Sale at RiteAid

After all, when it comes to wellness and beauty, everything is connected. When you eat well, you feel well. When you look great, you feel great. Rite Aid is ready cheer you on in your wellness journey, with new themes every month and personalized solutions to help you on your wellness and beauty journey. And since I love savings as much as the next girl does, I never miss their in-store offers. From May 1 - June 2, find up to $12 in coupon in store at Rite Aid.

Give it a go and let me know what you think in the comments!

Sephora VIB Sale Shopping Haul!

Sephora VIB Sale Shopping Haul

It's one of my favorite events of the year - the Sephora VIB sale!! While I'm a frequent Sephora shopper, I do my big shopping sprees around the sale since, especially for my bigger ticket purchases. If you are VIB Rouge, get your shopping on with a 15% discount now through the 16th. And the VIB sale continues for the non-Rouge babes next week. I love the sale not only because that 15% seems small but really adds up, it gives me a chance to stock up on old favorites and try fun new launches. 

Check out some of the items I'm adding to cart, including that coveted Fenty Beauty Body Lava, and the brand new Tarte Mermaid Makeup Brushes!

If you aren't Rouge yet but are wondering if it's worth the it, the answer in short is YES! Not only do you get early access to the sale and deeper discounts, there is a laundry list of perks, from pre-releases to free in-store makeovers anytime you want! Check out Sephora.com for the full list and how to qualify!