Anthropologie goes A+!

So if you’ve been following me and my fashion for a while, you’ll not be surprised that I was totally geeked out upon learning  that my beloved Anthropologie was planning to launch a plus size division. It claimed to garner the same high-quality boho-chic trends that I’d come to love and wear – that is, as long as the material had enough lycra for these hips. And in most cases in the past, it did not. But over the years, there were still a few pieces I’d been able to slide my way into, and I’m happy to say those are still in rotation. However, knowing that the store I’d frequent if only for the sale racks (because the way my account is set up) would soon be carrying plus made my already anxious budget scream a little bit louder. Sorry, not sorry. Momma’s going shopping. Continue reading “Anthropologie goes A+!”

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I Like My Soaps Creamed

One of my favorite things to do after I get home from a long day of work is to hop in a hot, preferably-candle-lit shower. Unfortunately I don’t always have time for the candles, but the hot part is a must. The other must, of late, has been my specialty soap and body scrub from Amber of Creamed Soaps.

Now let me preface this by saying I have been known to be a bit of a soap snob… yes that is a real thing. Back when I was living in DC, you could find me early morning on any given Saturday or Sunday before or after my volunteer work at the soap man’s stand at Eastern Market. I’d be the one in worn Uggs and a printed headwrap, pressing my nose into the bins, searching for the perfect peppermint and sandalwood blend, with or without the little scrubby beads. I knew my soaps – not the technical terms – but the ones I liked. Regular store-brand soap, I kept in the pantry just in case guest popped over and needed a bar or heaven forbid, I ran out of my special blends. But as for me and my household, we shall use specialty soap… handcrafted with aromatherapy and misshapen edges. Continue reading “I Like My Soaps Creamed”

The Makeup Show Makeup Shop NYC

Makeup, beauty brands, hair care, sample sale prices, and education. For what more can you ask? A makeup lovers dream, the Makeup Show announced earlier this year that they would be having a pop-up event, the Makeup Shop NYC, December 15th and 16th. Even though I attended the regularly scheduled Makeup Show back in August,  exclusively held for artists and industry professionals required to show credentials for entry, the Makeup Shop NYC was open to the public and included access to over 40 brands boasting special deals and discounts, along with demos and education. It was a great way to spend a few hours on a Saturday afternoon. Continue reading “The Makeup Show Makeup Shop NYC”

Bathroom Beauty Finds – Drugstore Edition

So two of the most frequently asked questions I receive are what do I put in my hair and what do I put on my face? Good questions, fam! I’m all about that fresh, dewy, skin and hair can literally be the difference between a good day and a bad. Yes, it’s that serious lol. So today I’m sharing some of my current beauty finds, right off of my bathroom shelves! The best part? The ones I’m including in this post can all be found in your local drugstore.

So let’s do hair first because it’s quick and easy. I usually wear my hair curly – though every now and then you’ll catch me in a cute blowout. But since I try to stay in the gym often, and the way my workouts are set up… there is no way in the world I’m leaving with straight hair. Enter good ol’ faithful Eco Styler styling gel. I know, I know… with so many amazing brands with shea and jojoba and honey and unicorn dust and here I am rocking with Eco Styler. Sorry, it works! I have other brands that I play with here and there, and I’ll share those in another post, but for the daily grind and casual glam that is me? It’s Eco. And to get a little fancy, I do like the one with the red top – it contains Argon oil and holds my curls nice and defined.

Get it from your local CVS or order online now from Amazon!

Now for this face! I have to tell you, I am still searching for the best routine for me. I’ve tried several different things and faces are funny – one thing can work for a while and then all of a sudden it’s wrap. Faces are finicky. When I travel, my face acts brand new. When the seasons change, it doesn’t even know me. Like, I’m still working it out. But for all intents and purposes, I’m going to share some of the items I am using now and I’ll keep you posted on futures purchases. Ok, here’s my top three:

  1. Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water
    This is my best friend, especially on nights I really don’t feel like going through an entire routine but I absolutely refuse to sleep in my makeup. Please, please, please don’t sleep in your makeup lovelees – no matter how cute that glitter eye looked on the dance floor. Live to see another blemish-free day. Clean your skin! I like to use this with round cotton pads and it removes all of my makeup, including mascara and red lips! I keep this on hand and definitely recommend it.
  2. Valjean Labs Facial Serum, Glow, Vitamin C + Magnesium
    So this was a chance buy – I’m not going to lie. But sometimes trial and error really comes thru! I have fallen in love with facial serums and I had been using a sample of a more expensive brand that I loved, but couldn’t afford to purchase. So I happened upon this one and actually really like it, I’m not going to lie – I felt like a serum should be a tad bit thicker, but I do like how it feels on my face. Even though I’m still on my first bottle, I like it enough to finish and then reassess. I’m including it because of the Vitamin C and Magnesium boost, and according to Amazon, I’m not the only one who thinks this is a great buy! If you do decide to try it, let me know what you think 🙂
  3. L’Oréal Paris Skincare Pure-Clay Face Mask with Charcoal
    I love a good mask! Nothing like getting out the shower and slathering on a good mud mask while you sit back and chill and drink a nice glass of wine ice water. No judgement. But for real, masks are great! It’s so nice to relax while the impurities are just drawn right on out your skin! I think I’m going to do one when I finish writing this post 🙂 I’ve tried several good masks over my lifetime, but this post is dedicated to what I am using now. So in my bathroom now is the L’oreal mask and I’ve grown quite attached. Not only does it smell good and leave my face feeling lovely, it’s at a great price point so it doesn’t hurt my wallet. They have several different versions of this depending on your personal skin needs and goals, so read thru the descriptions and use what’s best for you. The charcoal is great for absorbing impurities and the eucalyptus acts as a great exfoliant for removing dead skin cells. Happy masking!

What are some of your current bathroom beauty finds? Do share! I’m always on the lookout for the best items for my skin and hair. Are you a producer or vendor of something you’d like me to try and review? Shoot me a message! Who knows, maybe one of your items will pop up on one of my upcoming posts!

xoxo,
La

PS – Because I use Amazon so much (I’ve got that Prime baby!), I’ve become an Amazon Influencer! So even though I am not being sponsored by the brands I’ve included, because I have personally purchased these and added them to my Influencer list, I may receive compensation from any purchases using the the links provided. Just want to give full disclosure!! Enjoy your shopping, lovelees!

Who is your stylist? 5 quick fashion tips

“Who is your stylist?” Four little words I always love to hear. Whether it’s out on the streets, or in my inbox – I love when another feels comfortable enough to say “hey girl, hey! You look cute!” Thank you, boooo, I do try! And guess what? I’ll usually tell you where I got it from… usually.

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Ok no for real, I’ll tell ya! In fact, I promise I’ll do better adding some of my favorite finds and retailers to the blog, especially those who cater to my curvy ladies. But today I’ll quickly share a few of my tips to keep my closet on the ready. Ready? Bet…

1.Catch the sale.

So even though I was the lamest of the lames this Black Friday and bought nothing, and I do mean nothing (a girl was on a mission), I usually LOVE a good sale. Especially when I know what I am looking for. There were so many great deals I saw this year, and I did my due diligence in forwarding on an email or two when it came thru the inbox. Sales are awesome because money is funny and who doesn’t love a good deal? If I can get something for 30%, 40%, even 50% off – I am totally down for the cause. Of course, the item needs to be something you 1) actually can use in my wardrobe and 2) actually can afford. If neither of the two apply, skip it girl. There will be others…

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2. Keep the receipt.

So, I am that girl who at any random moment has a few items in the closet with tags still attached. What?? Fight me. See #1. It was probably on sale and my wardrobe could use it. Perhaps I just didn’t have the event yet. Maybe it was the last ribbed sweated in my size and I couldn’t leave it in good conscience. Who knows? The point is, at some point and time I grabbed it and when I get the call to make that last minute grand opening, ya girl has a gown just waiting in the wings. Buuuttt in the event that call never comes, or my workouts are on point and I just dropped a size, I have no problem making a return. Oh I keeps the receipts! Look… sometimes it just doesn’t work out and we can’t go together. So, no bad feelings. It’s me, not you. But you can’t stay. It’s been real.

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3. Reuse and re-purpose.

I am not a celebrity. And more importantly, my account is not a celebrity. So if you like those denim jeans you saw me in last week, that’s great! You’ll probably see me in in them again next week. Oh I will re-use an item in a minute. Clean it, iron it, put it back in the closet! I know we live in the world of Instagram and TMZ, where everything is photographed and posted for the world to see, but let’s be realistic. I live in New York and my closet is like 5 inches long. We must do repeats. And don’t be afraid to re-purpose as well! That cute dress hanging in the pic doubles as my headwrap on a chilly day. If it works, it works!

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4. Splurge on the classics.

Trends come and go, but classics last forever! Keep that in mind when you’re deciding how much to spend on that glittery leopard sweatshirt. Just saying – consider the staying power and what it’s worth to you. I rather spend on a few good pencil skirts and blazers if I know I’ll be rocking them for quite some time. Not that I won’t rock cute a fashion nova set if it’s in budget, but I’ll save the splurge for items that can take me into next year.

5. Mix and match.

Black on black on blaackk. Yes, I like black too. But don’t be afraid to step out there. Polka dots. Stripes. Prints. Colors. Once you allow yourself the freedom to be creative, your current wardrobe may expand before your eyes. Mix and match the separates you have. Tie everything today with a sweater or a scarf. Think layers. Nothing dresses up and old item like a new one! So take a chance and mix it up. You’ll be surprised how cute it could be.

6. Shoes matter.

Please, please, please don’t ruin a great outfit with a bad shoe. I know, shoes can be expensive but they don’t have to be. That’s why you should refer to #1 and #4. A few good pairs of pumps can go with almost anything! Heels not your things? No problem, get some great flats that are comfortable and stylish. And try them on first – not all sizes are created equal. C’mon Cinderalla… don’t forget your slipper 🙂

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What are some of your favorite fashion tips? Do share! I’ll be adding more ideas to the blog and who knows – I may just include one of your suggestions (with credit, of course!) Do share!

xoxo,
La

What I Wore: Black Pencil skirt and Yellow Pumps

What’s better than a little black dress? Black separates! Especially when you want to have a little more control over specialty sizing (read: your waist to hips ration is off the chain). That’s what I wore to a special assembly event at Stanley Theater in New Jersey this past weekend. It was pretty chilly, but didn’t warrant boots and I still wanted to be modest and cute. I highlighted the all-black attire with yellow suede wooden-heeled pumps and blue fringed earrings with yellow and highlights.

Details on where to purchase these or similar items below. Continue reading “What I Wore: Black Pencil skirt and Yellow Pumps”

Scale Wars… Issa Journey.

So I have been on a mission. This mission has been started and stopped many times before (like for years… don’t judge me) but this time, I feel like I’ve actually gotten my mind and body on the same page. Like, they’re friends now. And if you’ve been on this mission before, you probably know exactly what I am talking about. Continue reading “Scale Wars… Issa Journey.”

Been a minute…..

… yea, I know. But see, what had happened was….

LIFE! haha

Life has had me crazy busy. Good! But, crazy. I have been busy in my ministry, planning an upcoming trip to Greece (yaaasss!! y’all know I love to travel), writing like crazy to finish up a piece for an upcoming spoken word show in Philly, spending some necessary quality time with family and friends, and I’ve simplified and downsized. Sold most of my earthly belongings (read: furniture, clothes, bags, shoes, you know – the good stuff lol) and moved from my oh-so-cute apartment to a cute little bedroom in a girlfriend’s town home. So it’s three of us chicas, living it up Living Single style and I’m actually quite happy. I still have far too many boxes and bags to unpack, but I’ve put together my new bed and my dressers have arrived. I know what you’re thinking – she sold all of her furniture and then bought new stuff for her room? Well, originally my plans were different but things changed so you roll with the punches, right? So, like I said… my new dressers have arrived and now to empty these bags and boxes and set up my new spot. Aside from being tired, I’m pretty excited.

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But what I was writing about was to tell you how my workouts are going! Well… pretty darn good. Not excellent – meaning I still could be better with my consistency. But, I’m down 11 lbs and my strength and stamina is on the rise. I’m adding my video from this mornings’ session below – today was a fight. But the “never miss a Monday” mantra is one I like to follow so to the gym I went…

 

I’ve promised to do better with my blog in the past… and failed. But… here I am, like my workouts, trying to be more consistent. I shan’t give up. (I’m surprise shan’t is a word – I wasn’t sure). But aannyyyhooo…. hope everyone has an amazing Monday! I’m trying my best to do the same 🙂

 

xoxo,
La.

workout (clothes) all day

photogrid_1457019479400.jpgI promise you I awoke with the best of intentions. And yes, I know it’s Monday. What’s the cardinal rule? Never miss a Monday. Never. So even though I went to bed with a slight headache already fully aware I’d want to sleep past the third alarm, I knew come morning I would throw on my workout clothes and be prepared to sweat at some point during the day. I mean look at the photos… I’ve been doing pretty well. Kind of. But here it is almost 9:30 pm and I am still in these blasted workout clothes… sans sweat.

Fail.

Now why am I confessing my workout (or lack thereof) sins on the worldwide net? Accountability. A girl has goals, and missing today does not get me any closer to that for which I am striving. And, ok… if I’m going to be totally honest, my eating wasn’t on point either. I mean some of it was. I just cooked and polished off this grilled skinless chicken breast and roasted brussel sprouts and it was delicious! But the leftover mini-cupcakes and cookies from Sunday’s cook-off, also delicious, were on the menu as well and for that I pat this belly in shame.

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Oh the struggle for the thicky with goals. But I digress…

In a few days, I travel for a friends wedding and cannot guarantee I will be on my A-game. A long-time girlfriend I haven’t seen in years is hosting me for the week and she already informed me plans have been set and the wine has been bought. So rather than beat myself up on what’s looking to be an amazing trip, I have devised a game plan for once I return. Total beast mode. Nutrition. Training. Sweat. Because while I love being a full-figured cutie, health over beauty so I will tame these curves and lift those weights. It’s all set and I am looking forward to it. Truthfully.

But til then, I hang my head in sugar-coated shame and apologize to the www for missing this Monday. I’ll do better tomorrow. Promise.

xoxo,
La

Beach Bum

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So I’m under my cabana at St. Pete Beach, Florida soaking up the last few rays of sunshine  before I have to leave for the airport. I’ve been wanting to make time to set up this blog for the past two weeks – and I choose the last 10 minutes before I have to leave to actually create it. Figures.

I’ll write more about my trip and why I’ve (re)started a blog and how awesome it feels to finally have a new place to write (and publish) the randomness going on in my head at all times. But for now… let me just leave a peace of the beach here, while I bundle my things and make haste for that airport. If I miss my flight, I’ll have a lot more to write about than planned…

xoxo,
la.