I know that I am not the only one that is struggling with getting into the holiday spirit. I’ve seen so many Christmas lights since Halloween, but I guess I haven’t felt the vibes of the Christmas angel. One thing that I know for sure is 2017 moved faster than Usain Bolt. I swear I was just watching the 2017 count down in New York City, like it was yesterday. I am quickly realizing that as I get older, time seems to move faster. I love Christmas time because my birthday is 2 days before Christmas. For me, that means double presents and since my parents are divorced, their partners always tend to slide in an extra gift for me. This year I will be turning 23 years old on the 23rd of December. This year is my golden year, so I know I am supposed to shine everyday of 2018. I have so much to be excited about this holiday season but I guess I need some more help. My Mom used to do these 4 things to jumpstart the holidays so I think I need to start them up again:
1) LISTEN TO THE JACKSON 5 CHRISTMAS ALBUM
My favorite thing to do is listen to Christmas music, even when it’s not Christmas. There is nothing like hearing little Michael Jackson sing ” Santa Clause is coming to town”. His voice was so perfect and infectious that the holiday bug has to bite you when you listen to this album.
2) EAT PANETTONE: THE ITALIAN CHRISTMAS CAKE
I’ve always loved Panettone Christmas cake ever since I was a little girl. I love bread and I love raisins, so to have a cake that kills two birds with one stone is a great feeling. The texture is fluffy and easy to pull apart. The smell is sweet, zesty and fruity. Lastly, it can be purchased in your local grocery in a red box or SOMETIMES it is sold in Staples.
3) MAKE A GINGERBREAD HOUSE
Gingerbread cookies and houses are always a classic. If you’ve got some little ones in your household or family, it’s time to pull out the frosting and cookie cutters. When I used to make gingerbread houses with my mother, she always told me the importance of having and owning your own home. I feel like building a gingerbread house is a great way for children to learn about what they might want in their own home one day. Once you’re done and the children have gone to bed, you can eat it and throw it back with some spiked eggnog or rum punch.
4) DRINK JAMAICAN SORREL
Being a Jamerican, I’ve always celebrated my holidays with a glass of sorrel. It is a hibiscus drink that tastes great with white Jamaican rum. It has a sweet and savory taste that is divine. If you’re looking for a holiday drink that isn’t eggnog or a mixed cocktail, I suggest trying out some sorrel.
Earlier this year, I made a BIG change in my life, I went VEGETARIAN! I come from a big Jamaican family and it was hard for me to give up jerk chicken, oxtail, and chicken foot soup ( I know it sounds weird but it’s sooo yummy!). A majority of people usually transition into being vegetarian by gradually eliminating red meat, chicken and fish, but my journey was quite different. I have been allergic to seafood for a majority of my life so that was easy but eliminating meats was a whole other story.
In March, I traveled to Dakar, Senegal, which was an incredible experience (CLICK HERE to watch my vlog). A majority of the food I ate was meat and during my two week stay, my body was not responding well to it at all. Don’t get me wrong, it tasted wonderful but I rather have a clean and clear digestive system. After longs nights of sitting on the toilet, I decided it was time to change the way I eat. Since June 2017, I have not had one slab of meat and it’s been one of the greatest decision I’ve made.
I like to call myself a vegetarian with vegan tendencies. I say that because I only drink almond or cashew milk and I don’t eat eggs. Sometimes I have my dairy days by releasing my stress with a big bowl of ice cream, but I try to be a good girl. One thing I do use that is 100% vegan is my Natural Finish Foundation from CoverFX. I guess since I was changing what goes into my body, I wanted to change what goes on it as well. First, I fell in love with the packaging. It’s large enough to last me a long time but it’s small enough for me to carry on the airplane. Second, the foundation keep my skin hydrated. I’ve tried a lot of foundations in the past and they dried out my skin. Lastly, it is a FULL coverage foundation. I know a lot of companies say full coverage and they’re not, but CoverFX did not lead me a stray. The foundation doesn’t just help cover my blemishes, but it heals them. If you’re looking for a change in your makeup, I suggest taking the first step with CoverFX.
MY SHADE: G90
CLICK HERE to shop CoverFX online. Products can also be purchased in your local Sephora.
One thing that I truly love about myself is my hair. I feel like the hair that I have is like having a super power. Since it is so versatile, I can literally transform who I am. One minute I can have bone straight hair like Cher in her prime or I can become Diana Ross with my wild curly afro. As a young women, I believe that women and girls have the ability to change their look as much as possible. I remember seeing a meme on Instagram of a guy telling his girlfriend “we need to see other people” and she changes into multiple wigs (see meme below, IT HAD ME HOLLERING!).
I genuinely love being able to switch my hair but wearing it curly and big is definitely my favorite style. When I was in Morocco, I didn’t see a lot of women with curly hair, especially hair like mine. Since my hair made such a statement, vendors at the market would yell out “Shakira!, Shakira!” since my hair is curly and I guess that’s the only celebrity reference they associate curly hair with. Obviously, the Latina pop sensation and I look nothing a like, so I know it had to be the hair. Growing up, my mom always recited two really cool quotes about having big hair, “the bigger the hair, the closer to God” and “the bigger the hair, the more they stare”. My mom was absolutely right, I sure did get a lot of stares. Being a woman of color with a lot of hair, many individuals ask to touch it and the answer will always be NO! My hair is not a creature and neither am I. There are so many dynamics in regards to hair and what it means to a woman, but for me it means a lot. I make sure that I treat, clean, and nourish my hair using Form Beauty because it’s important that anyone with hair knows how to take care of it.
My favorite product that I have been using recently is the Multitask 3-in-1 Leave-In Lotion. I use it on my hair almost everyday because it’s great for layering, moisturizing, and styling. Whether I want to wear my hair slicked back in a puffy bun or out in a fro, this leave-in-lotion keeps my hair hydrated. I truly detest when I put leave-in products in my hair and they are too heavy or too creamy. This product is also great for braids as well. If you wear box braids, cornrows, or any other protective style, it’s important that you give your scalp and hair moisture. Why I love this product is because it’s easy and simple. All I really have to do is spray, style and go. It cuts down the time when doing my hair and it keep my hair smelling fresh. I couldn’t ask for a more fun and easy hair care product.
12 fl oz. – $32.00
Photographed by Thaïs Martin
Spring has sprung and summer is around the corner. This means that hair gets lighter, skin gets darker, and denim gets distressed. If your summer denim wardrobe doesn’t have any rips, tears, or bleach, it’s time for you to start shopping the Mahjing Wong Denimu Season 1 collection. If you don’t know already, Mahjing Wong was on Project Runway 15 and ripped his way into being a finalist. Wong is known for his innovative use of denim. This denim doyen knows how to mix and match different denim tones, but he also creates his own denim colors. As the saying goes “if they don’t have it, create it” (I think I made that up, LOL), and that is exactly what Wong does. The best thing about his garments are the construction. Wong knows how to construct denim to a tee. No matter if he is creating a skirt, dress, or trouser, he can make denim look sexy on any silhouette.
Make sure to shop the Denimu Season 1 collection at http://www.mahjingwong.com/category/denimu-season-1
Instagram : @mahjingwong
Photographed by Rai Smalls
Lashes and Eyebrows done by May at Luxurious Lashes in New York.
Follow on Instagram @luxuriouslashesli
Finding the proper person to install your lash extensions and do your eyebrows can be very challenging. When women get their eyebrows and lashes done, it must be PERFECT! There is no room for error and for someone like me who is very particular about the thickness of my eyebrows, I don’t let any random person lay their hands on me. I moved to New York in October and I haven’t found the right person to shape up my eyebrows and install perfect lashes, until NOW! Last week I had the pleasure of taking the train to West Hempstead, Long Island (30 mins from NYC), and getting my lashes and eyebrows done by the one and only May, owner of Luxurious Lashes.
When I arrived in West Hempstead, May was so kind enough to pick me up from the train station (it was a SUPER snowy day) to escort me to her salon. I truly was shocked and thankful at her kind gesture. I was greeted into the salon by one of her assistants, who took my coat and gave me the most delicious cup of tea ever! May made sure that I was comfortable and relaxed because getting your lashes done is very tedious and time consuming. May made sure she informed me about having lash extensions, prior to the installation, which I really appreciated. She gave me 3 tips to know when having individual lashes:
3 TIPS TO KNOW WHEN HAVING INDIVIDUAL LASHES:
- Make sure that your aesthetician knows how to apply the style of lashes that will enhance your eye shape.
- When you wear eye makeup with your lashes, make sure that you remove the makeup with a WATER BASE makeup remover
- Make sure to brush your lashes everyday with a spoolie brush so they don’t get tangled. (May will give you a free spoolie brush after your appointment)
Example of a spoolie brush:
After an hour and half, my lashes were done and they looked FLAWLESS! I was almost in tears because May really knew how to create a lash structure that enhanced my eye shape. I was truly over joyed and I felt beautiful. The best thing about May and Luxurious Lashes is that she and her team know how to make you feel comfortable and treat you feel like a QUEEN. May is a licensed aesthetician, so she was able to wax my eyebrows as well. She cleaned up my eyebrows so that they stayed thick and didn’t look sparse. If you want more than your lashes and eyebrows done, Luxurious Lashes is the perfect place because they also do nails, micro blading, waxing, spray tanning, and makeup. Luxurious Lashes is your ONE STOP SHOP! You can get everything done at one place and still save time.
Make sure to follow May’s business Instagram @LuxuriousLashesli
Here are my results that I was VERY satisfied with