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Style Sunday | Healthy Glowing Skin

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I firmly believe that the best accessory to any summer outfit is glowing skin. I have gone to great lengths to get a dewy full body glow. In high school, I used to mix kosher salt and olive oil before every school dance. As I got older and could purchase my own products I relied mostly on consumer reviews of a product. I have to admit other than the active ingredients I don’t always investigate the other chemicals in my skincare products. When Laura Roberts Jones, a consultant with Beautycounter, contacted me about the high performing, safe cosmetics, and personal care products that Beautycounter offers I was intrigued.

After learning more about Beautycounter and their mission I was sold. The beauty industry is actually an unregulated market so products that we use on our skin aren’t as heavily regulated. The products that we use on our skin can take a toll on our overall health. I even learned more information about how women of color carry a higher toxic load within their bodies and how that may be linked to the products that we use on our bodies. It made me wonder if the healthy glow I have been trying to achieve is hurting me in the long run?

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Exfoliate, Protect, and Shine

When I got the opportunity to try a few Beautycounter products for myself I didn’t want to step outside of my normal routine. My normal skincare rule of thumb is exfoliate, protect, and shine. To get the best glow you always want to exfoliate dead skin cells off of clean skin, protect your skin from sun damage, and use a good body oil for that extra shimmer.

 

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. I can honestly say that Beautycounter exceeded my expectations. I love all three of the products I tested and I plan on keeping them in my skincare regimen. The Sugar Body Scrub in Lemongrass has a strong aroma of citrus and it is made from brown sugar and essential oils. I have used a number of body scrubs by different brands where the scrub dissolve instantly once it touches damp skin this sugar scrub doesn’t melt away before you can get it on your body.

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The older I get the more I invest in a good sunscreen and I have never used a sunscreen that smelled so good.The more you protect your skin from sun exposure the more longevity your skin will have.  Usually, sunscreen smells almost like a medicinal tonic but the Protect All Over Sunscreen in SPF 30 has a terrific scent. It smells so good it will be the first sunscreen that I won’t forget to reapply.

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 My ultimate skincare goal is to get the same glow that Jennifer Lopez has on the red carpet. I just don’t understand what is it that they are putting on her? Well, I think I my wishing may have come true with Lustro Shimmer Oil. I applied it on clean skin after I moisturize and it reminds me almost of a dry oil and absorbs into your skin without getting oil stains all over your clothes. Nothing is more upsetting than feeling sexy and then finding out that you have a grease stain as you are trying to leave the house.

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The price point on all of these items are more in the Sephora range so they are more expensive than drugstore brands. I am a firm believer in you get what you pay for and the reassurance that Beautycounter provides with the list of chemicals they promise they will never user (you can see the full list here). I just love knowing that my “healthy” glow is coming from products that indeed are healthy.

For More Information about Beautycounter follow Laura Roberts Jones on Facebook

To shop and to see all of the products offered by Beautycounter click here

This post was in collaboration with Laura Roberts Jones of Beautycouter all opinions are my own.

For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

 

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Maybe I Do Care About Alicia Keys and #NoMakeup

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It was just a regular lunch hour for me endlessly caught up in what I like to call “the scroll” it’s when I just mindlessly scroll through Facebook like a zombie. I came across an article, Alicia Keys Has Started A #NoMakeup Movement, And It’s Amazing. I see a picture of Alicia she’s not wearing any makeup, and this is my immediate reaction:

“Alicia Keys with no makeup.”

“She’s still beautiful.”

“She’s pretty.”

“A pretty girl with no makeup.”

“If Alicia Key’s has come into self-acceptance, that’s awesome!”

“This is a lot of praise for a pretty girl who is a celebrity that has been photographed without wearing any makeup.”

“A celebrity who can afford to go to the dermatologist and get regular facials.”

“#NoMakeup????”

Basically, my first thought was that she looked beautiful. I hadn’t fully formed my opinion, but the disadvantage of a trending topic on social media is that people get cynical (myself included). I wasn’t going to bash Alicia Keys for her Aha moment, I just wasn’t about to give her a cookie for doing something I do all the time, show up to work with no makeup on.

Then I read the comments….

Women were not happy about #nomakeup because they said they didn’t want to stop wearing makeup. In the article. Alicia never stated that other women shouldn’t wear makeup.  She only said SHE didn’t want to cover up anymore. Her statements were about her personal journey. How did this picture of a bare faced Alicia Keys turn into a brawl?

Then I had a lightbulb moment, DUH, because women are a minority and when a minority makes it into the public eye they now represent all of us. Alicia is no longer allowed the same privilege that I take for granted of showing up to work not wearing any makeup.  Her job depends on how she looks. A perceived image can make people sensitive. I understand. I sometimes feel betrayed when an actress I thought looked perfectly fine loses weight. I feel like she’s falling into the ideals of society and leaving us regular women behind to join the stick thin Hollywood Illuminati. (If that’s even a thing)

Maybe the sea of makeup devotees felt left behind on a train they didn’t want to board because unlike Alicia; they can’t afford a dermatologist or get weekly facials. Alicia is a pretty celebrity who on the outside looking in doesn’t have much to hide. Hell, even without makeup Alicia is sitting under good lighting being photographed by a professional photographer. I thought to myself,  “Alicia just doesn’t understand our struggle our everyday woman struggle.  Kudos to you Alicia on the self-acceptance, but I won’t be throwing away any of my $60 eye shadow pallets anytime soon.”

Then I checked myself

I had just had a conversation with my best friend about how people try to pressure you into being the “old you”. When you truly experience growth you can’t go back to the “old you” and you don’t owe anyone an explanation on why you can’t live up to a past version of yourself. When things don’t change you get stale. Ready, ripe, rotten that is the process of fruit and people. Unlike fruit, we can’t force people into fermentation. (Alicia is a person, not wine! You can’t freeze her in time to make yourself more comfortable)

One woman’s journey does not represent us all and that concept needs to die. (period point blank). We can’t demand to be seen as multi-dimensional and then condemn women for evolving. In the great words of Queen Bey, Ok ladies now let’s get in formation. Form into a line where we support and applaud the change, growth, and evolution. As long as the next woman’s metamorphosis is healthy, I see no reason to take it as a personal attack on how you chose to be a woman. There is no one right of being a woman.

#NoMakeup For Real

The thought of not wearing no makeup doesn’t faze me. Ok, it does bother me I’m a confident person, but I prefer to control how people see me. I’d be a liar if I said the way I look doesn’t play into how I feel. As a matter of fact, my 7th-grade guidance counselor could expose me as the world’s biggest hypocrite.She could tell you a story of a student sent into her office crying hysterically. I mean full on tears, loud sobs from losing your breath while crying, snot, the works. You would have thought someone had died. When the student’s crying finally calmed just enough for the guidance consoler to ask what is wrong. The student shrieks, “MY HAIR IS NOT DONE!”

That crying student was me. I thought I could stay home sick (sick because my hair wasn’t done) from school. My mom didn’t care about my hair.  She made me go to school the with the world’s stingiest, harden gel filled, deconstructed french roll turned into a ponytail. My mom just dropped me off at school like she didn’t care about my feelings. (I was thirteen. I wasn’t picking up on the whole school is more important than your hair concept.) Like she couldn’t understand that a thirteen-year-old can not show up to school looking anything less than perfect. That day I learned a valuable lesson, always wash and blow dry your hair the night before or things can get ugly in the morning.

As women, some of our identity is attached to being visually appealing to the eye, as though we have nothing else to offer the world other than the way we look. Like our unpolished, bare faced selves aren’t worthy of being considered beautiful. The societal beauty standard is continually being raised and what we find visually appealing is starting to look less and less like #nomakeup. Real is becoming the new ugly.

Maybe I will send Alicia Keys a cookie because women deserve a prize for accepting their authentic selves. Maybe #NoMakeup isn’t about never wearing makeup again but about embracing our truth. Maybe it’s about finding the beauty in celebrating “I woke up like this, no for real.” Maybe it’s the strength some thirteen-year-old girl needs, so she doesn’t deep breath sob cry in her guidance counselor’s office. Maybe if we all just got into formation and stood in line with Alicia, then we could create a norm where showing up to work with no makeup on is an option for every job, even if your job is being a world renown entertainer like Alicia Keys.

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For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

 

 

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Style Sunday | Office to Cocktails

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The temperature is rising, and my girlfriends are calling and asking me to meet them for cocktails. I love an alcoholic beverage after work, but I’m not always “cocktail ready” at the office.I want to accept as many last minute invites as I can without melting down at the thought that I skipped out on applying makeup.  I wanted the best tips on getting ready in a pinch so I reached out to my girl Saadia The Makeup Artist so we could collaborate and give the best advice on how to go from office to cocktails!

Saddia’s Office to Cocktails Tips

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We have all received that call while we are at work, “Girl! Let’s go out for happy hour”.  Yes, it sounds good until you look in the mirror and see that you may need to spice up your look for the night!  I want to share a few things that I always keep in my makeup bag to transition my day look into a fierce night look!

1)      Red Lipstick

2)      Eyeliner

3)      Bronzer

Red Lipstick
I absolutely love a red lip! Anyone can wear it, and it’s classic and timeless. My favorite brand is by MAC from their retro line called, “Feel So Grand.” It has a matte finish and the pigment is super rich and requires minimal touch throughout the day!

Eyeliner
One of my signatures as a makeup artist is my winged eyeliner, also known as the “Cat eye.”  I love the style, and it’s so flattering for many eye types. Wet N Wild has a great gel liner that I use with an angled brush to get a clean, sharp line.

Bronzer
I use Covergirl Queen Natural Hue Bronzer to add a quick contour to my look.  Bronzer can add definition to your face, especially for round faces like mine, and add a warm glow to the skin.

I believe these three tips can take a day look into night time.

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Oh Wize One Office to Cocktail Tips

If you stay ready, then you don’t have to get ready. Being prepared is half of the battle, and I found all the products that will help you get fly one the go!

The Lay N Go

The Lay N Go is a washable travel cosmetics bag, and although it’s promoted for the use of travel, it’s the perfect size to fit inside a medium to a larger sized purse. I love that it opens up 20 inches wide and hidden storage within the bag. When you are done applying your makeup you just pull the drawstring to close the bag and you don’t have to worry about makeup getting on the lining of your handbag.

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What’s in my bag:

Nail Polish Removing Wipes– Chipped nail polish, no worries. One polish removing wipe is good to for all 10 fingers.

Evian Mineral Spray: An after work cocktail can turn into all night outing and getting ready on the go may mean you don’t have time to prime your skin for more makeup. I prime my face and set my makeup with this spray water. Bonus if you’re meeting for drinks at an outdoor patio bar a quick spray of Evian water will keep you cool, calm, and collected.

Mally Beauty Blush Single: In a real pinch I’ll put cream blush on my cheeks and eyes just to give myself an all over glow. I love Mally Beauty blush because it’s light and creamy and the colors are complimentary.

Netrogena Makeup Removing Wipes: This should be an essential in any purse because accidents happen sometimes you just need to press the reset button on your skin.

Queen Stay Lucious Lips color Duchess: Matte lips are all the rage but this glossy berry color won my heart is great for medium brown skin tones.

 Maybeline Fit Me Shine Free Foundation: Medium coverage foundation in a convenient stick that won’t leak all over your makeup bag. Need I say more?

Tartlette Tease Pallet: I love a good eyeshadow pallet and this Tarte palette is perfection. The colors inside are super pigmented the pallet can take you from day to night.

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Here is my before and after:

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To learn more about Saadia The Makeup Artis on social media YouTube, Facebook, Instagram.

For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Style Sunday | Skincare After 30

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You may not know this, but I am a skincare junkie. The beauty aisle in Walgreens is my wallet’s worst enemy. My routine was down to science but after 30 my skin started to change, and I had to change my regimen. It is important to notice differences in your skin as you age because you want to focus your skin’s ever-changing needs.

During my twenties, my skin was more prone to breakouts and oily and now that I am thirty I have combination skin (some parts of your face are dry or flaky while the center part of your face, nose, chin, and forehead are oily). Before I changed my routine, I was treating my skin for a breakout that wasn’t happening which was drying out my skin. I noticed my skin looked dull, and I was having issues with hyperpigmentation which left dark marks on my skin.

I am an original gangster of skin from way back ( I had Noxima on deck in ’95) I have been into skin care systems for as long as I can remember. The three steps to remember are cleanse, tone, and moisturize. You can cater all three of these steps to dry, oily or combination skin.What you chose to use for each step is based on what works best on your skin.I’m sharing my current obsessions below:

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Cleansing

I have used every variation of cleanser, foaming, exfoliating beads, and cream cleansers. My favorite cleanser delivers on its promise without all the bells and whistles. Formula 10.0.06 Best Face Forward is a gel cleanser that delivers, I would not recommend this product to anyone with dry skin. Formula 10.0.06 gets my skin super clean without stripping my skin of its natural oils

I have also added a facial brush into my cleansing routine, and I like to call it my poor woman’s Clarisonic. I apply a small amount of my cleanser and few drops of water and scrub in a circular motion with the facial brush. The brush helps the cleanser penetrate deeper into the skin, and it also exfoliates.

I never understood why your daytime skin care should differ from your nighttime routine until now. When I want to take off my makeup at the end of the night, I want it all off in one easy step. I have been using Neutrogena Cleansing Facial Oil for about three months, and I am completely addicted to washing my face with oil. Washing with oil is so gentle and is effective it even takes off my eye makeup.

I have also tried washing my face with extra virgin olive oil. It did remove all my makeup, and if I had dry skin I would continue washing my face with extra virgin olive oil, I prefer Neutrogena because it is lighter than olive oil but it’s worth giving a try, just be sure to rinse your skin thoroughly with warm water.

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Toning

I love toner even when I am strapped for cash I use Witch Hazel as an inexpensive option. I recommend using a toner if you use SPF on your skin (that should be everyone) or wear heavy makeup. Toner removes oil and traces of excess dirt that your cleanser did not remove.

I have opted out of traditional toners and started using micellar water. I’m head over heels in love with micellar water it’s so refreshing sometimes traditional toner can be abrasive.

I’ve tried two different brands Simple Cleansing Micellar Water and Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water. I used the Simple brand first and I if you don’t wear heavy makeup then you will like this product. I prefer the Granier SkinActive water because I do wear makeup and it is great for cleansing my skin on a morning when I’m running late and don’t have time to go through my whole regimen.

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Moisturising

I have no loyalty when it comes to moisturizers because I live in the Midwest so depending on the season my skin needs different things. I do look for products that promote brightening skin because of my hyperpigmentation. Right now I am using Garnier SkinActive Clearly Brighter with SPF 15. I do like it and it’s light and efficient but depending on how hot it gets this summer I may have to transition into a lighter moisturizer.

Once again my nighttime routine has changed I have read that your skin absorbs more product in your sleep than while you are awake. I love Loreal Age Perfect night cream, and I see an improvement in my skin since adding a night cream into my regimen.There can be times when the day takes a toll on my face and at the end of the night I apply my night cream, and when I wake up the next day, my skin looks refreshed.

What’s your skincare routine? Tell me what is your standby product in the comments below.

For more Oh Wize One be sure to subscribe by clicking the follow button.  You can also follow me on Facebook OhWize One, Instagram@ohwizeone, twitter@ohwize1. Remember to share the wisdom with friends!!