Mar 31, 2010

My Sunshine

I just wanted to share a picture I snapped of my dog the other day. She's so adorable to me... and even as she prepares to turn 7yo this June I still consider her to be my eternal puppy. I rescued her when she was only a few weeks old and she's gotten better with age. Here's to my fabulous, soon to be senior dog!! I love you Jazzy :)

Product Review: Sephora Collection Smoothing Primer

During my last trip to Sephora I was given the Sephora Collection Smoothing Primer as a gift with purchase. I was a bit naive to what exactly a primer was so the sales associate told me that it was great to use as a base for oily skin. Not only would it help to set the makeup, but it would create a smoother foundation for makeup application and help you to keep your "face" longer. I don't have oily skin and actually prefer a dewy look, but my mother is the complete opposite. I know that she has issues with her makeup starting to run a bit due to the oil from her pores throughout the day so I wanted to use her as my guinea pig. She's swears by powder and never heard of primer before so I knew this product would either sink or sail in a major way.

Well, the verdict is in and my mother LOVED the product!!!!! I was acting like a semi Nazi making sure she didn't apply any moisturizer to her face prior to the primer because I didn't want to taint the process or the possible results. Within minutes of applying the primer and then her foundation the results were quite obvious. She commented that her skin felt silky and smooth and it actually looked more even with a nice matte finish. After working a 12 hr day my mom also raved that she didn't have to do any touch-ups (she's usually doing a few throughout the day) and her oil control was near non-existent.

From reading some of the reviews on the Sephora site I know many have compared this product to a primer that Smashbox puts out, but much more affordable. The Sephora Collection Smoothing Primers sells for $18 and a little does go a long way.

Do any of you guys have experience using primers? Which brands do you like?

** Sorry guys I didn't take pics. I wish I could get a before one but my mom is so hooked on this stuff I doubt I'll ever see her "before" face again **

Mar 30, 2010

N♥tural Hair: Fun with Clip Ins

I know the natural community is pretty divided in terms of those that like to straighten and those that are against using heat, etc. I'm not that militant or hard core about it. I like to straighten my hair when I get bored with the curls. I like curls when I get bored with the straight look. I have a whole rant on this but I'll save it for another time lol...

Since getting my Brazilian Blowout I've been having fun playing around with different looks but I was still on the fence about getting a sew-in. After talking to two of my girlfriends that adore their clip ins I decided to try something new and I couldn't be happier with the results.

Deciding to get the clip ins was a little nerve wrecking only because it's scary venturing out from your comfort zone and trying something new. The biggest thing pulling me towards getting the clip ins was the fact that I workout about 4 times a week and like, or better yet need to be able to wash my hair. Plus, I've never kept a weave in my hair for over a month. The clip ins were hands down a better investment.

I went to Sunny's Beauty Supply and looked at the Lord & Cliff 7pc Clip In Extensions. They run a little light in their colors so my usual 2 hair matched with their 1B. The clip ins come in 14 in and 18 in length and a "smooth & silky" texture.... basically your flat ironed hair. They were sold out of the 14 in length in my color so I, being the impatient person I am, bought the 18 in knowing good and well it was too long for my liking.

I was excited to get home and actually try out my clip ins. The sales associate in the store had given me a brief rundown on how to use the clip ins which was good, but I still wanted more help. The packaging doesn't break it down too much... and really, there isn't much to it but I found a few YouTube videos to be really helpful (they're below).

The 18 in was ridiculous long for me. I don't like long hair like that. I really wish they sold it in 10 in but you know, nobody would buy that but me lol... So, I got my scissors out and started chopping each track down to my desired length. I want to add that each track is a different length (trackwise, not actual hair length) and they're pretty logical to figure out so you can determine what style you want your hair to be (or feel free to leave it as is). Anyways, you get 7 pcs and that's more than enough to do a full head. I've found that I like wearing between 3 to 4 of the clips. The clip ins are 100% human hair and will last anywhere between 9-12 months. Prices range from $80 - $120.

Before - I wanted to add some length (about collarbone) and fullness

After - I only added about 3-4 inches of length but tons of thickness

My verdict: I'd recommend clip ins to anyone that desires more length or fullness to their hair. They're an affordable, smarter alternative to a traditional sew-in weave and still allow you to rock your curls when you like. Something that's really cool is that they offer custom clip ins so if you'd like to find some curly, wavy or other texture of hair and have it made into clip ins you can! Click here to learn more about that option. I'd love to find a kinky/curly texture that matches my twist-out or wash n go's so I could get some more fullness with my curls!

Has anyone else had an experience (good or bad) using clip ins?

These are the actual clips that I bought:

This was another great video showing how to put them in:

Mar 29, 2010

Phoenix Fashion Week: Fashion Fwd 2010

Last Thursday Phoenix Fashion Week hosted Fashion Fwd, a fashion show bringing together fashion insiders, buyers and designers in Arizona. This was one of the many events Phoenix Fashion Week is hosting as they lead up to their major fashion week, 9/30 - 10/2. Held at the luxurious W Hotel in Scottsdale, Banana Moon Swimwear, Donni Charm and Stop Staring were among the featured designers at the show. It seemed like all of the beautiful folks were out and about to enjoy the drinks, fashions and atmosphere. I planned on filming more than I did, but you know... I started running my mouth with my girlfriend and that was the end of that endeavor lol. The little I did film is below.

Phoenix Fashion Week is still fairly new to me, but it does remind me of the Gen Art show I covered last year.

Reality Check: Paranormal Court

"When people really come to a place where they know that a soul has truly left the body, and still exists and is communicating, it will change all sorrow into tremendous hope. It doesn't exist in my imagination. It isn't wishful thinking - - it is real... and that's a wonderful gift to give somebody." - Robert Hansen

Let me start off by saying that I am a believer in the spirit world. I believe in ghosts, energy, people passing on and crossing over... all that stuff. I'm also a fan of dramatic reality tv shows so you can imagine my excitement when TLC premiered "Paranormal Court" on Saturday night. It's like the Ghost Whisperer on crack!!! Truly my dream TV show.

The hour-long show follows psychic medium Robert Hansen as he helps families solve disputes via speaking to their loved ones that have crossed over. Despite having "court" in the show name, please don't get the visual of "People's Court" in your mind. The families meet with Hansen in his home and he has no prior knowledge of their cases. The first episode featured 3 cases and I must say their stories all tugged at my heart strings. I think I've found the perfect "ghost" show that I can watch without getting beyond paranoid (I wish I could still watch Psychic Kids but I was getting a little bugged out lol...)

Whether you believe in this stuff or not, this show is really entertaining. It airs Saturday nights on TLC so if you find yourself in on a Saturday night and looking for something new to watch, this should be on your radar.

Mar 28, 2010

Pigeon Love

This may be too much for some folks but anyone that knows me personally can attest to the fact that I'm one of THEE most random folks out there. The other day I was glancing out my window and saw 2 pigeons getting it on. Yes people, I witnessed a pigeon quickie!!! The nerve of these rat birds to engage in a nooner right outside my window... ICK! So, what did I do? I grabbed my camera and started recording. The video is short but I posted it to my youtube. I thought it was funny... some on Twitter called me weird lol... but after taking a look on youtube there's a bunch of people out there that have posted pigeons "sex tapes" so to say. I guess animal porn is a big thing lol...

What do you guys think?

Mar 23, 2010

Reality Check: Kendra

Sunday night the new season of Kendra premiered on E! Everyone knows Kendra as part of the original Girl's Next Door Trio (including Bridget and Holly) and watched her for numerous seasons during her stay at the Playboy Mansion. In season 2 of her show, the cameras continue to follow Kendra and her husband (NFL baller Hank Baskett) as they enjoy the birth of their son and life as newlyweds.

The first 2 episodes showed Kendra and Hank's search for a babysitter and quest to reignite their romantic flame with a date night. Another topic that was tackled was Kendra's insecurity with her post baby body. Running with a crew of playboy bunnies wasn't an issue for Kendra's size 23 pre baby body... but she found herself struggling to feel sexy and confident when 3 of her friends came into town to visit.

What I really liked about this storyline was how reassuring and loving Hank was. Never once did he make Kendra feel bad about her body (which some men can do) and I loved that. He was the constant supportive, loving, doting husband. Pregnancy is a beautiful thing but it can wreak havoc on the female body. I think it's definitely a sacrifice to carry your baby and risk having all the "battle wounds" to prove it. Kendra wasn't scared to show her stretch marks or stomach that was leftover after having the baby and I found it refreshing. I mean, she JUST HAD A BABY!!! It took 9 months to put the weight on and it doesn't come off over night.

In the media we are always bombarded with ways to "lose the baby weight" in like a month and the pressure women can face is ridiculous. You want to get your body back in shape, not only for yourself, but you want your spouse to find you attractive again. Not that they don't (many men LOVE the pregnancy body) but as a woman you want to feel, as Kendra said, like you'd wanna "fuck yourself" lol... and it's true.

My question is for mothers out there, how did you handle (or how are you handling) your pregnancy body? What role did your spouse play in helping you thru the experience?

Mar 22, 2010

Natural Hair Meet-Up in Arizona

I'm on a quest to have a natural hair meet-up in Arizona. I've been fortunate enough to attend one while in Chicago, as well as having a number of natural friends... but in Arizona it feels like the black folks are so spread out! I need to think of ways to bring everyone together.

Any suggestions on how to get this done?

Weekend Meltdown

I used to be hooked on vaseline until one day I saw the light... and that light came in the form of Carol's Daughter Body Jelly. This jelly has single handedly replaced vaseline as my go-to moisturizer and I'm obsessed with it. While 1 jar can last for quite some time, I found myself running low and in need of restocking my supply. Since I'm in AZ again I had to do a search to see how many locations carried Carol's Daughter products (clearly AZ isn't catered to Black anything)... well, imagine my genuine shock and sadness to find that only 2 locations in the ENTIRE STATE sold Carol's Daugther (both Sephora stores) and 1 was in Tucson. My heart sank as I realized that only 1 freaking store in the Phoenix area had my precious jelly. I had never been to the mall where the the Sephora store was located because it was in BFE so I looked up the directions and headed...

Fast forward a while later and I had gotten lost (dumb directions) and had to have my husband look up online how to get there...once I actually found the store I wandered around looking for the CD products... and then there it was! Like the clouds parted and light shined down from heaven, I saw all the CD products sitting there. I scanned the shelves for my dear body jelly but could only find the tester. I started to panic. I found a sales associate and asked about the rest of their inventory. She told me, with a smile, that they were all sold out but suggested adding my name to the waiting list. Waiting list? I had to catch myself before I spazzed out... I drove around for 30 mins in the blaring sun to find something that wasn't even in stock!! *le sigh*

Once I got home I checked online only to see that they were sold out not only on but the Carol's Daughter website too! Talk about being devastated... I was entering a full blown breakdown. I guess it should've made me feel better to know I couldn't get it anywhere, but somewhere in my mind I blamed the wackness of AZ for this debacle. This would have NEVER happened @ any of the Chicago locations... Anyways, I currently hate AZ and the fact that I'm being reduced to buying my favorite products online. I'm on 2 "waiting lists" and you best believe that as soon as I get notified that my dream product is in I'm stocking up on it.

*** Update: I found a closer Sephora location that carries Carol's Daughter products, however they didn't have any of the body products - - just hair stuff... and the search continues***

Mar 19, 2010

Product Junkie: What's in my Shower

I've been trying to tame my product junkie ways... but as of right now these are my favorite conditioners (and 1 shampoo) to use on my hair. It's a bit much, but I love ALL of these products.

(Left to Right)

1. Organic Root Stimulator Replenishing Conditioner - A favorite of mine when I was relaxed and works well now that I'm natural. I use this for deep conditioning. It leaves my hair feeling so moisturized.

2. Herbal Essence Hello Hydration - I jumped on the HE bandwagon a bit late but this stuff is pretty amazing. I love the smell and it has quickly replaced Suave Naturals Topical Coconut as my favorite co-wash conditioner.

3. Twisted Sista De-Frizz Conditioner - I stumbled upon this little gem while in TJ Maxx. I was unfamiliar with the Twisted Sista line but it cost under $5 so I gave it try. Plus I liked the packaging and I couldn't resist the curly haired black girl on the front. I was shocked at how well this worked and that I hadn't heard of it sooner... but I guess that's due to the product being based out of the UK. The conditioner is uber rich and feels amazing on my hair. I can feel my curls popping the moment I put it on, no joke! I bought a bunch of this stuff from TJ Maxx in case they didn't get more in... but if you get an opportunity to find this stuff by you then I think you should give it a try.

4. Moroccan Oil Moisture Repair Shampoo (Suflate-Phosphate and Paraben Free) - I've been using the Moroccan Oil Oil Treatment, but I hadn't tried their shampoo. Now that I have my Brazilian Blowout I had to use a shampoo that was sulphate free. I actually have been pleased with this product. I still prefer co-washing to shampooing, but I do use this about once a week.

5. Garnier Fructis 3 min Undo Dryness Reversal Treatment - This is my MUST HAVE product. It contains Olive Oil, Avocado Oil, Shea Oil and Apricot Seeds. This is a dream mixture. It's so rich and thick. It really does feel like heave as it coats my hair. It's funny how 3 mins with this on in the shower can work wonders. I usually put it on my hair and cover with a plastic cap while I shower and shave. It's hard to describe how rich my hair feels after using this. EVERYONE needs this.

6. DevaCurl One Condition - This was on clearance at Target for under $10 so I had to pick some up. I've heard nice things about the DevaCurl line of products and I liked it. I wouldn't call it my must have item as I wouldn't pay full price for this, but it does its job.

7. Suave Naturals Tropical Coconut Conditioner - This was my all-time favorite co-wash conditioner while I transitioned. After my big chop it was still good but I think HE Hello Hydration works better for me. I think Suave puts out pretty good products and they're SO affordable. It's nice.

Mar 18, 2010

My Brazilian Blowout Experience on Natural, African-American hair

** 5/3/11 - - I just wanted to write an update that OSHA released reports stating that although the Brazilian Blowout line was marketed as being "formaldehyde free" they did find trace amounts of formaldehyde being released in the air at salons they tested. The amount of formaldehyde was below their "action level" and therefore didn't require salons to stop administering the treatment. I did want to update my blog with this information to make sure everyone had all the information when deciding if this treatment was for them. I standby my postings from last year that I had a great experience with the Brazilian Blowout and did not experience any damage with my hair, nor did I have issues with fumes, smells, or the air quality. Again, please make sure that you do your research and arm yourself with as much information as possible when deciding if this treatment is right for  you **

I started transitioning in May 09 and did my big chop last month. I had straightened my hair occasionally during my transition and it was always fairly easy. Boy oh boy was it a completely different story after the big chop!!! It was such a task to blow dry and flat iron my hair, just to have it only last a day or 2 at the most... I had no other option but to wear it curly. After much research I decided to get the Brazilian Blowout! Last week I went to the Apricot Lounge Salon in Scottsdale, AZ and was helped by salon co-owner Kimberly Allison. Kim (as she's referred to by her clients) actually has been styling a friend of mine's hair for a while now and came highly recommended. I had a consultation a few weeks before my appt and then I was set to get it done. The process took about 90 mins and was rather easy. During this time I was able to pick Kim's brain while she worked on my hair and am eager to share the results and information I learned with all of my blog readers.

Here are the basics:

The Brazilian Blowout is not a straightening system, but a smoothing system. The hair is coated with a protective layer that seals the cuticle. This results in smoother, softer, easier to manage frizz-free hair. I like to stress that this product (unlike some other Keratin treatments out there) does not contain Formaldehyde or any other harsh chemicals that break the bonds of the hair nor is there a wait time. So, once you get the treatment done you can literally go swimming, workout, put your hair into a ponytail, whatever you'd like to do. Also, since the bonds of the hair are not broken, there is no line of demarcation as your hair grows out. In fact, the treatment wears away at about the same rate as your hair growth.

For black hair the results last anywhere from 4-5 months. On Caucasian hair results last about 12 weeks. The reason for this is because the treatment coats your hair, the more you wash it, the quicker it wears away... but minimum results are 12 weeks. For Black hair the results are better and more dramatic on natural hair. On relaxed hair, since the hair has already been compromised the results are not as dramatic... but the treatment does still provide protection to relaxed hair (more so as a conditioning treatment). Sometimes relaxers can leave your hair feeling dry and rough, this treatment helps to fight that. I'd also like to stress that you can color and relax your hair while using the Brazilian Blowout treatment... However, it is recommended that you get your relaxer or color 2 weeks before the treatment for best results.

The Process:
The process only takes 90 minutes and includes the following - -

1. Clarifying Shampoo to prep hair for the application of the Brazilian Blowout treatment

2. The Brazilian Blowout treatment is applied

3. Hair is blown out

4. Hair is flat ironed to seal in treatment (heat used is like 400 degrees. It didn't bother me and I didn't find it to be that extreme... but I did used to have an unhealthy obsession with my flat iron lol)

5. Ends are trimmed

6. 7 min rinse is done to remove any buildup of the BBO treatment

7. 8 min under the dryer - Masque is applied to hair and a heat cap is used to penetrate the hair

8. Anti-Frizz Serum is applied

9. Round brush is used to blow dry hair

10. Styling is finished

After Care:
Caring for your Brazilian Blowout is not difficult but you must use a sulfate free shampoo (I'm using the Moroccan Oil line) and it's recommended to use the Brazilian Blowout Anti-Frizz serum, which can be used daily. There is no wait period with this product so immediately after you leave the salon you can really do whatever you'd like.

My Experience:

I absolutely LOVED my Brazilian Blowout and plan on getting this done again in the future. I was shocked at how amazingly soft my hair was afterwards. It felt softer, lighter and the shine was out of this world. There was no annoying/strong product smell and the process was pretty easy. I was in and out in 90 mins. I definitely did my research before getting it done and would highly recommend this treatment to other women, both natural and relaxed. Please keep in mind that while this will not permanently change your curl pattern, it will temporarily be loosened!! If you do not want to see a change in your curl pattern then this is not the treatment for you!!! I would actually recommend this treatment as a great option for those that like the option of styling their hair both curly and straight. I have many friends that have been natural for years but never wear their hair in its curly state. This is made for you!! It will give you the freedom to not be intimidated by your curl pattern while making it easier for you to style your own hair. From what I've experienced this past week styling is much easier... but still required. Yes, a wash and go is now a realistic option for me, but this treatment isn't like a free pass into the world of not caring for your hair. You'll still have to DO your hair, it's just easier. I wouldn't recommend this to people that are transitioning because you'll still have to deal with the 2 different textures. I think you should go thru your transition process and then this would be a great option.

Where to get it done:
The best way to guarantee that you're getting the official Brazilian Blowout treatment is to click here and visit their site. You can do a search of salons that have undergone training and been certified to do the treatment. For all my Chicago friends click here for Chicago locations. Like I said before, I visited Kimberly Allison at the Apricot Lounge Salon in Scottsdale, AZ. If you're in the AZ area or will be anytime soon, I'd highly recommend her. She's not only an amazing stylist, but she's personable and full of information. You can also contact her to schedule a consultation (which I did) and she can discuss with you in person what options you have.

I'd like to add that this treatment isn't cheap. It ranges in cost from $250 - $500. I paid $325 for my treatment, which is what Allison charges (includes trim). I can't count how much $ I've blown on hair products/treatments/relaxers/weaves... all that stuff over the years and honestly, nothing compares to this!!! It sounds corny, but this treatment allows you to have the freedom to easily manage your hair while still maintaining its health. This treatment doesn't equal straight hair, nor does it mean you're going to be using tons of heat everyday. You can continue to style your hair however you'd like. I know some have been put off by the cost, but I look at this as an investment in yourself... and with the summer quickly approaching this is the perfect styling option. You can feel free to hop in the pool, head to the beach.. just live life and not be ruled by whatever your hair is doing that day.

Morning of my blowout...

Washed and ready for the treatment

After the treatment...

Soft, shiny, smooth and frizz free!!

Inside of my Dr.'s office. The lighting was bad but my shine was ridiculous

My hair was so soft and light. It's hard to describe how light my hair felt.
3 days later after a crazy workout I washed my hair. Fresh out the shower my curls were popping!! No product was on my hair...

I decided to try a perm rod set. My curls were much easier to manage while doing the set.

and I used my soft bonnet that I bought from sally's!! I love this thing. It only took 15 mins to dry my perm rods.
The results of my set... my hair was still super soft and easy to manage.

Mar 17, 2010

Reality Check: The Price of Beauty

Monday night was the premiere episode of Jessica Simpson's "The Price of Beauty" on VH1. I've been a fan of Jessica since her newlywed days and always loved her bubbly and often ditsy personality. Equipped with best friends CaCee Cobb and hairstylist Ken Paves, Jessica first heads to Thailand in search of what the 'price of beauty is'.

In Bangkok Simpson and friends enjoy a Thai massage, time with Buddhist monks and meet with Sonia (host of Thailand's Next Top Model and their official beauty ambassador). She takes them for a tour around a popular market where they meet with Panya, a woman whose skin was destroyed by bleaching cream. In Bangkok lighter is better and many women go to extreme lengths to bleach their skin.

After their adventures in Bangkok, they headed to Chiang Rai Provence to visit the Karen Hill tribe. Known for the gold rings they wear around their neck, the Karen (pronounced kah-rin) Hill tribe believe an elongated neck is a sign of beauty and wealth, and will attract a better husband. The rings can weigh up to 20 lbs and the women never take them off. The rings did look very beautiful but there was something a little creepy about them having such elongated necks. I mean, I don't think I could wear that for the rest of my life.
Now, I don't think the show is that bad or corny... but I really don't see this being a "must see" thing. There are entirely TOO many things to watch on a Monday night (Gossip Girl, Kelly on Earth, Secret Diary of a Call Girl, etc) so this may be something to catch on a rerun.

Mar 16, 2010

Reality Check: Model City

I'm always on the hunt for new reality shows and I'm glad to report that I found one worth watching. Model City chronicles the ups and downs of 6 male models at Red Model Management. It's refreshing to see the fashion industry thru the eyes of a male model (especially black male models) and unlike other shows out there these guys are legitimate models booking major gigs. The show airs on Centric TV (owned by BET) Thursday nights. If you're like me and had no clue what Centric TV was, click here to find out if you get it in your area.

My favorite model is Ibrahim (pictured left, center). Not only is he a vet in the game, but he has a gracious, humble nature about him that I like. My other standout is Salieu (pictured left) who is a newbie but quickly learning the ropes.

I've been anti-BET for quite some time but it's nice to see them stepping up their game. This show is entertaining and the quality is nice. I've had issues with other BET reality shows being slightly bootleg with their production quality, but this is definitely doing big things.

The season premiered Feb. 18th so I'm definitely late. Has anyone been watching?

Mar 12, 2010

Living in the moment...

I was having a conversation with my mother the other day about what kind of car she wanted to buy once she completed her PhD next year. She said a Rolls Royce. I laughed... not because this was a stretch for her (she had a Rolls Royce when I was younger) but because this was my mom giving me one of her classic moments. She is the epitome of luxurious and bourgeoisie... yet down to earth and warm. It's a crazy mix... but she likes $ and she loves nice things. I told her that I thought getting a Rolls Royce was ridiculous and a waste of money. She then began to tell me how she was in the last hoorah of her life (she turns 56 this year) and while I had a lifetime ahead of me, in 20 yrs she'd be 100 (gross exaggeration) and she didn't have time to be frugal... but instead wanted to spend her time living! She said that people always try to hold back in life and wait for tomorrow to enjoy certain things but today is here so why not live. Now, this was a convincing argument but I still think a Rolls Royce is a ridiculous splurge. I joked that my step dad better be driving her around so she doesn't get jacked... lol

This did, however, make me think back to an episode of Oprah where she spoke about using the nice bath stuff she had bought and not waiting for another day. Kinda like how some folks used to buy nice furniture yet keep the plastic on. Like, why are you trying to preserve this stuff? I mean, for what? To enjoy it when? There's a fine line between living and splurging... being cheap and being smart with your money. Where do you stand?

I've worked fulltime since I was 19... and real jobs with real hours and been responsible for real bills. It's hard to be ridiculous when you know better at an early age. I used to dream about being hood rich but knew that shit was for the birds... yet, I still watched some folks around me live that life and wondered how they could do it in such a carefree way! I'm sorry but it rubs me the wrong way to forgo paying bills to buy this or that. It pains me to pay something the day it's due or late... I like to pay my bills early. I mean, you know in advance not just the day it's due.... I'm on a tangent... lol... but I do sometimes struggle with deciding between a purchase that's treating myself for working hard... or being ridiculous and getting caught up in the hype. How do you guys differentiate between living in the moment and enjoying life and being irresponsible? I'm curious... especially balancing all of that in this tough economic time.

Ranting & Raving

I have so many random things running thru my mind right now... thought I'd use my blog to share :)

1. When people wear red lipstick they need to be sure to keep it off of their teeth. Red stuff on your teeth isn't a good look.

2. Is there a way to make the bike seat in my spin class comfy? It pains my butt to touch it... but maybe that's their way of making sure I stay up. Hmmmmm....

3. It's so much more enjoyable watching YouTube hair tutorials when the people are attractive. I have a few hair crushes. Here's my latest! Those curls are divine.

4. I haven't done laundry since January... and no, I haven't run out of clean clothes! lol... but yeah, I need to really get my stuff together.

5. Joe's Jeans are my new favorite thing. I love the feel of the denim and I love that they make them in petite lengths.

6. People that walk around with chipped, cracked and peeling nail polish like shits not a problem irk me. It's one of my pet peeves.

7. I used to always dream about working at MAC but I was there the other day and wasn't really excited about it anymore. Maybe it was the lady that helped me, but it saddened me that I wasn't as thrilled about it any more.

8. Income Property on HGTV is one of my favorite shows... and The Locator tugs at my heart like Ghost Whisperer does.

9. I'd love to go on Amazing Race with my husband... and kinda random, this casting guy asked us TWICE to tryout. Was it a sign?? lol... who knows... I hope I didn't miss my calling to be on a reality tv show.

10. I love leggings and will continue to wear them as pants... I will, however, make sure I'm not giving anyone camel toe and wear shirts that are long enough.

11. I used my Carol's Daughter "Body Jelly" to give my dog a paw massage lol... she loved it and unlike the vaseline, she didn't try to lick it while I did it.

12. I'm obsessed with planes! I could seriously watch jets take off all day and all night. There's something about them that intrigues me and that I find beautiful.

13. Every night I fall asleep watching CNN. I'm a night owl and it's the only channel that doesn't cop out and turn into Paid Programming after 1a.

14. My husband and I have the same birthday, same year... and so does Khloe Kardashian lol... gotta love those June babies. Not everyone can handle a cancer but I think we're amazing people :)

15. I have a soft spot in my heart for Sunkist fruit snacks but replaced them with these trail mix packets I got from Walgreens. So far so good!

16. Every morning around 6a my dog crawls into my bed and we're both knocked out for a while... it's kinda funny. Like clock work she strolls in here, hops in the bed, and passes out! lol

17. I watch The Tudors and I still don't understand "High Treason". King Henry VIII was a real wocka flocka

18. I still have no idea what a "Wocka Flocka Flama" is... nobody has told me yet. Maybe that's a good sign that none of my friends know...

19. If I had 3 wishes I'd use one of them on having perfect eyebrows!! To be able to give up my eyebrow pencil would be a dream lol...

20. I'm going to be a god mother to 3 wonderful kids this year! I'm kinda excitement... the joys of children w/o the stretch marks or sleepless nights :) lol...

Mar 11, 2010

Reality Check: ANTM

So, I'm sitting here watching yet another season of ANTM. *sigh* I know, I know... While I think Tyra is extremely corny (though I respect her business hustle) this show has pretty much been like a broken record since season 3. I don't care what anyone says, Season 3 cannot be topped!!! Eva the Diva, Yaya, Tocarra... they were all my favs... nobody can touch Eva tho... but I digress....

So, when I was setting up my dvr to record all my favorite shows I pressed the info button and saw that tonight's premiere episode featured the makeovers, my favorite thing!!! I love seeing the transformations (and who breaks down)...

The episode was pretty much more of the same but I can say that my standout favorite is Naduah. She's striking...

My dvr somehow stopped recording the remainder of the episode so I have no clue how things ended... but this season should be decent enough. I can't say I'll watch the episodes when they air... but I'll probably record them. Who else watched?

Get that mascara off your eyes...

Mascara is one of my makeup must-haves but taking it off can sometimes be a nightmare. I quickly learned that it's best to use an eye makeup remover and not try to just wash it off. With a little trial and error I discovered that my favorite eye makeup remover was Neutrogena's Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover. This stuff works magic and ALWAYS get rid of even my most stubborn water proof mascara... all the while protecting my eyelashes.

When I was out of town last month I found myself unable to fly with my favorite bottle of stuff, so I bought the Neutrogena Ultra-Soft Eye Makeup Remover Pads and the Neutrogena Make-Up Remover Cleansing Towelettes. Here's my review:

1) Neutrogena Ultra-Soft Eye Makeup Remover Pads

What they claim: Removes every trace of makeup, even waterproof mascara. No oily residue. Safe for sensitive eyes and contact lens users. Ophthalmologist tested.

My thoughts: These pads are nice for removing eye makeup, but they didn't work well on my waterproof mascara. For regular mascara they did a decent job, but you had to let the pad sit on the eyelashes a bit to soften the mascara. I think these are nice to take with you when you travel because unlike the the regular bottle of eye makeup remover, you don't have to worry about finding a cotton ball to use it.

Final Verdict: I'd recommend this product for traveling but not as your everyday use, staple product.

2)Neutrogena Make-up Remover Cleansing Towelettes

What they claim: Ultra soft clothes gently dissolve all traces of make-up, ever waterproof mascara.

My thoughts: These pads are my least favorite. I use them when I'm too tired to wash my face, but I don't think they work well removing mascara. I won't be buying these again once they run out... and honestly, I use them more often to wipe my dogs butt (yes, literally wipe her butt once she's done using the bathroom... lol). On a more constructive note, they do remove face makeup well (eye makeup aside) but I don't like the way it leaves my face feeling. Like there's a slight film over it. I always follow up using these wipe by cleansing my face with astringent. I guess all the work I do using these wipes I could probably just wash my face... but it's a lot easier to do this when you're tired.

Final Verdict: If all you need is a wipe to remove makeup I'd recommend stocking up on some baby wipes.

3) Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover

What it claims: Effective and gently removes even waterproof mascara with no oily residue.

My thoughts: This is my absolute FAVORITE product to remove eye makeup... even my toughest waterproof mascara. This is like the thing I must have in my bathroom at all times. After shaking the bottle to mix the ingredients, you only need to take a cotton ball and saturate the eye area... then feel free to wipe away. Yes, it's really that easy... and yes, it really does work that well. This is the best thing out there, in my opinion.

Final Verdict: Everyone should try this product. I once tried saving a few bucks and bought the Target/Walmart version and it didn't compare. It's under $7 for the 5.5 oz bottle and should last about 2 months... depending on how often you wear eye makeup... but I love this stuff!!!

Mar 10, 2010

Birds of a feather...

As the saying goes, "birds of a feather flock together" and I'm quickly realizing that my friends and I have our own sense of time. I don't know if it's because we're black or if nothing is really that serious... but our punctuality is damn near non-existent and we always seem to be 30 mins late. It's still at the point where I find it funny... but when it comes to punctuality in the workplace what does everyone think? I know that we're supposed to be anal about time and be early.. and even when you're on time you're technically still late... but when I worked in an office I was usually 15 mins late... all the time... and not because I didn't care about my job... I was (and still am) on top of my job. My quality of work and work ethic are amazing... but I'm not the clock in, clock out type... now that I work from home it's amazing! I swear, I'm a million times more efficient and productive w/o the office politics.

So, my question to everyone is who else suffers from being stuck on cp time? Any cures? lol...

* Even in this economic shit hole of a time, I have numerous friends that are constantly late to work... and I know it's not because they're worthless, they're actually kinda on top of their shit... but you know, the tardy monster is always rearing its ugly head lol *

Mar 9, 2010

Where to go for Brazilian Blowouts in Scottsdale/Phoenix Arizona

** Click here for post and pics of my 1st Brazilian Blowout at Apricot Lounge Salon **

** Click here for post and pics of my 2nd Brazilian Blowout at Apricot Lounge Salon **

After transitioning for 9 months (with the hopes of going a full year) I ended up doing a spur of the moment big chop with my husband in the bathroom last month. It was quite liberating and slightly scary to have my husband cut off my straight ends, but I loved the end result.

With a few trips planned for the next couple of months, I was debating between a sew-in or the Brazilian Blow Out. I’ve been hearing lots of women raving about their results from the Brazilian Blow Out treatment and couldn't help but become curious to learn more.

My girlfriend recommended her amazing stylist and owner of the Apricot Lounge Salon, Kimberly Allison, to me… and after a consultation I’ve decided to give it a try! I’m excited to not only have the process done, but be able to pick Kimberly’s brain as she’s worked with celebs like Keyshia Cole. My appt is for Thursday so I'm looking forward to being able to share my results with everyone!!

Below are a few before and after photos of Brazilian Blow Outs that Kimberly has done already. For more info visit their site or facebook page.

Apricot Lounge Salon 
7329 E Stetson Drive, 

Suite 24

Scottsdale, Arizona 85251

Phone: 480-947-3833 - tell them Ishea sent you!  

All photos belong to Apricot Lounge Salon

Curly hair before

Shiny, frizz free hair after... and her curl pattern isn't lost.

Natural Hair Before

After the treatment, the curl pattern is loosened for 10-12 weeks, but not permanently lost (like with a relaxer or texturizer... you'll get your curls back)

Hair can be blown out with just a round brush. No flat iron was used to style her hair. Hair is left shinier and healthier.

Relaxed hair before the Brazilian Blow Out

After - So much shine



Mar 5, 2010

Reality Check

To say that I've been slacking on my blogging would be a gross understatement. I don't know why but I guess I've just been consumed in my life... but I'm always able to make time for my favorite reality shows. Last night was the finale of Real Housewives of Orange County. Here are my random thoughts...

1) Lynne and her husband need to get their parenting skills in order. Why are your teenage kids showing up to an event, with grown people, wasted off their asses? This is ridiculous... and is it just me or does Lynne constantly speak as if she's just popped 1 too many pills! Seriously... she's either in her own world or she's popping something extra. I could forgive the slurred words when she just had her face done... but it should be under control. Actually, I think she's still using something from that prescription. I mean, her life totally fell apart and her husband acts delusional and she's trying to be bff's with her daughters... *le sigh* That whole situation is out of control.

2) Gretchen and Slade... where to begin. Well, Slade has been running thru housewives but I hope what he and Gretchen have is genuine but I can't help but notice how Gretchen still rocks the engagement ring she got from Jeff. I'm not sure what the proper engagement ring etiquette is - - but I totally get wearing your ring while you're mourning the loss of your fiance after he passes... but when you're 8 months into your new relationship and seriously throwing around marriage?? I don't know... but I'd say take the ring off.

3) Tamra - Poor Tamra. Her husband is a control freak and poor Simon... his wife signed up for a reality show and a few years into it flipped the script on him. One thing I've learned is to keep your relationship between the two of you and not drag any and everyone with a willing ear into it. If you need to vent, do it with someone that is neutral and not biased. They're in the process of going thru their divorce now so maybe more will come out during the reunion show next week.

4) Alexis - I don't get Alexis. I don't really enjoy her story line and think she's getting thrown into the mix too late in the game. She's the new kid on the block and she comes into the show a few season down the road, toting her bibles and her boobs... and all her housekeepers. She's semi wack to me.

5) Vicki - I love Vicki. With all her "woo hoo's" and talk about work. I love that her marriage is back on track... that she has 2 well adjusted kids. I just like that she's on top of her shit. She's a solid person on my list and her vow renewal in Turks and Caicos was gorgeous.

So, who else was watching?
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