An Almost 30 Skincare Routine

When you look at yourself in the mirror and the how hard did aging hit you challenge hits you in real life…


When I was a junior in college, I read an article in Glamour Magazine that said women should start an anti aging skincare routine at the age of 23. I remember laughing when I read that and thinking, “Silly women, 23 is far too young to be thinking about aging skin”. Fast forward past the sunny summer days sans sunscreen, the years that I refused to consistently use moisturizer, and all the times I didn't wash the makeup off my face before going to sleep, and you have me, standing in front of the mirror, wondering why the hell I didn’t start at 23.

I’m not going to lie, skincare has always been an intimidating subject for me: What do I use? What’s my skin type? Will this work for black women (yes, that’s a real concern)? If you’re anything like me you thought that having GREAT skin was only for the rich or genetically privileged and avoided it altogether. But, as
I approach thirty I realize that I want my face to last just a little bit longer and I’ve really committed to taking care of my skin. Here’s what I’m doing (not that you asked):

Eating Like a Grown Up

My diet used to be so trash. Sugar? Yes, please. Dairy? Put that on everything. Is it fried? Why’d you even ask? While this may have worked out okay for me when I was 18, it’s not cutting it now. This almost thirty skin needs water and nutrients. Did I say water? Yeah, sis needs lots of it. When I’m being diligent I get about a gallon a day by drinking and I make sure to eat foods with water in them as well such cucumbers.

Slathering on the Sunscreen

The year is 2007. The place is Newark, DE. And on the Christina River, you might see a women’s rowing team cruising along in the middle of drills. In the coxswain seat? Me. Totally in the moment. Totally not wearing sunscreen. Now imagine that same girl in direct sunlight that’s also being reflected off the water, not wearing sunscreen the six days a week that she’s on the water. I was definitely one of those black people that didn't think I needed protection from UV rays and sis KEPT a tan. While I don’t necessarily see signs of that stupidity yet, I definitely know that it was dumb. Now? Sunscreen is on everyday. No exceptions.


Getting the BLT

We’re not talking about the sandwich here. The BLT refers to ingredients that brighten skin tone, lighten scarring and dark marks, and tighten and firm the skin. This has been a lifesaver when looking at ingredients in skincare products. My favorites are hyaluronic acid, Vitamin C, and retinol. After using products with these ingredients for only a couple of days, I noticed smoother and brighter skin. I try to use serums during my morning and night time routine that incorporate these ingredients. The June Jacobs Advanced Cell Repair Serum has hyaluronic acid which keeps my skin moisturized and smooth.

Wash That Makeup Off!

I already told y’all that I used to sleep in my makeup. A whole mess. Now? I don’t even wear makeup everyday and when I do, I wash it off as soon as I get home. This prevents breakouts and added bonus: my pillow cases are much cleaner.

Stop the DIY

I’m guilty: I used to put everything in my cupboard on my face. I’m talking lemons, turmeric, bananas, oats, honey. Basically anything you would put in a smoothie, I’ve put on my face. Again, a whole mess. All of those ingredients are great for the inside of the body but not so fabulous to use topically. Many food ingredients are too harsh for the skin and can cause dryness, irritation, and even allergic reactions. No bueno. Now, I look for derivatives of those ingredients that my skin can soak up without breaking out into hives.

The products have saved my skin and given me a youthful glow.

The products have saved my skin and given me a youthful glow.

My Weekly Routine

Every Morning: wash with a cleansing face wash, tone, hyaluronic acid, cell repair serum, moisturizer with sunscreen

Every Evening: wash with a moisturizing face wash, tone, hyaluronic acid, retinol cream, eye cream, moisturizer, gel sleep mask

Once a week: moisturizing face mask

As Needed: detoxifying face mask, eye mask, or sheet mask

This routine keeps my skin glowing, moisturized, and healthy.

Products Featured:

DIY Your Wash Day: 3 DIY Recipes for Natural Hair

This one is for all of my kitchen beauticians!


Jacket | T-Shirt | Jeans | Boots (similar)

Let’s get into these recipes!

Luxe Duo Hair and Skin Mask

2 TBSP My Fluffy Puffs Luxe Duo Mask

5 TBSP Apple Cider Vinegar

1 TBSP Olive Oil

1 TBSP Honey

Once mixed to a smooth consistency, apply to freshly shampooed hair. Leave on the hair NO MORE than 15 minutes. Rinse out and condition. This masque is great for anyone who needs a good cleaning with a shot of moisture. It also doubles as great facial treatment!

Coconut Avocado Deep Treatment

1/2 Avocado

1/2 Can of Coconut Milk

2 TBSP Coconut Oil

1 TBSP Olive Oil

1 Aloe Vera Leaf

1 egg yolk (optional, adds a ton of shine)

Blend all ingredients until smooth as possible. Strain completely so there are no chunks in the mixture. Apply to clean hair and cover, leaving on for 15-30 minutes. For extra penetration, sit underneath a hooded dryer.

Black Tea Rinse


2-4 Black tea Bags

1 TBSP Olive oil

10 Drops tea tree oil

Boil water and steep tea for 5 minutes. all olive oil and tea tree oil. Allow to cool before applying to hair. Use after washing and deep conditioning hair, pouring over the entire head. Let sit in hair, massaging the scalp. Rinse after 10-20 minutes.

What are your favorite hair DIYs? Let me know if you try any of these!

5 Natural Hair Mistakes NOT to Make This Winter

Winter is coming...

it's (almost) the most wonderful time of the year: everyone is wrapping up in large knit scarves, wearing Ugg boots and drinking Pumpkin Spice Lattes even though it's still a smooth 75 degrees outside. Everyone, that is, but me. Why, might you ask? Because the fall and winter months wreak havoc on my hair.

After five full years of having natural hair, I think I've mastered surviving winter . And because i'm feeling generous (and because it's actually the reason I started blogging), I figured I'd share what I've learned with you.

Wigs are great protective styles for the winter months.

Wigs are great protective styles for the winter months.

5 Natural Hair Mistakes Not To Make This Winter

1. Using too much heat... Winter may as well be called silk press and roller set season for those of us who wear our natural hair. After all, the cold months are the most ideal time to straighten your hair: there is little to no moisture in the air, everyone wants to look fancy for holiday/ family events, and we all want to see the length and process we made. That's all well and good but don't get overzealous! We all know that using too much direct heat can cause heat damage, breakage, and dryness which would be no good once you want to wear your hair curly again.

2. Neglecting hair while in protective styles... Just don't, okay? Yes I know you're wearing a wig... you still need to wash your hair. But my box braids look so clean and dirty hair grows faster... no it doesn't. Oh and by the way...

3. Deep Condition For Your Life.... for real. DC ing is not optional. I don't care if you're protective styling or wearing it out you have to deep condition regularly. I switch from bi weekly during the summer to weekly during the winter just to make sure I have enough moisture in my hair to outlast the harsh temperatures.

4.  Going out with wet hair... your mother told you that it would make you sick and while that's not completely true it can damage your hair. Imagine walking around with wet hair in below freezing temps. What do you think will happen? There's a possibility that your hair could freeze and break and that's not cute.

5. Don't "Overprotect" your hair.... if you're like me then you would probably keep your hair in protective styles all winter long. But back to back to back high manipulation protective styling can put a ton of stress on your hair and edges. I try to give my hair a break of at least seven days between styles so that it can recover from what was possibly a long period of stress.

Let me know what your tips are for maintaining healthy hair during the winter are!

How To: Go Blonde Like a Pro

Going blonde is simple; all you need is time, patience, and a ton of product.

How to go blonde, step by step

How to go blonde, step by step

First and foremost, I will say that I do not suggest doing this on your own hair. The hair that I lifted and colored is from B&HF Extensions. I lifted and colored three bundles and one closure of their Premium Peruvian Loose Wave Hair prior to installing the hair to create a wig. The entire process took me about 8 hours which was spread out over several days. I would suggest doing this over several days so as not to over stress the hair.

In order to complete this look you will need the large bucket (yes I said bucket) of BW2 Pure White Lightening Powder, 20 and 30 Volume Developer (I used the Clairol Flare 20 Volume and a generic 30 Volume from my local beauty supply store), and hair color to be used after you lift the hair to tone down the brass (Loreal Preference 8 1/2 A and 9 A and Loreal Feria Absolute Platinum). You will also need a mixing bowl, a baby whisk (I'm pretty sure that's not the technical name but this is my blog and I do what I want), a color brush, hair foils, and something to protect your tables/ floors like some old news paper or plastic bags.

To start this process off I mixed three scoops of the BW2 lightening powder with about three and a half scoops of the 30 volume developer and mixed it together with my baby whisk. The cream should have the smooth consistency of pancake batter.

Quick Tip: Wear long sleeves and pants so as not to irritate your skin like I did and be sure to wear clothes that you don't really care about like I didn't. Basically do as I say and not as I do.

I started with the bundle that I wanted to be the darkest which would be on the bottom layer of my hair. I applied my mixture to the hair starting from the ends working my way up to the weft so as not to create an uneven color. After I was finished applying the product to the entire bundle I wrapped the hair in foil (not kitchen foil, go ahead and spend the coins at the Beauty Supply for actual hair foil) and let it process for 10 minutes. The result should be a very pretty and rich dark brown color.You will now need to rinse, shampoo, and condition the hair.  At this point you can blow dry the hair or let it air dry in preparation of the second process. for the second process I wanted to create some highlights and an ombre effect. Why? Because I'm extra. Y'all know this. I mixed together my lightening powder with a twenty volume developer this time and pulled aside some small and random pieces where I wanted the hair to be highlighted. After applying the product on my highlights I brushed the creme about halfway up the remainder of the bundle to create an ombre look. I let this hair process for about twenty minutes before rinsing, shampooing and conditioning.

Quick tip: To create a natural looking ombre as opposed to a straight across line you can either slightly tease the hair or apply the product in upward strokes.

After washing and conditioning the bundle I used a deep treatment by Doo Gro to revive the hair.

I repeated this process on the remaining bundles but I let the hair process for about 30 minutes for the first process and I used 30 volume developer when lifting for the highlights and ombre. This made the bundles much lighter than the first one which was what I was going for.

In order to remove any brassy tones from lifting the hair, it's necessary to tone OR deposit a color on top of the hair. I chose to put a color as toning needs to be retouched more often the color. For the darker bundle I used the Loreal Preference 8 1/2 A and left it on for about 40 minutes. For the lighter bundles and closure I used Loreal Feria Absolute Platinum which I placed on the ends and applied to certain strands to get MORE highlights (again, I'm extra). On the remainder of the hair I used the Loreal Preference 9A. This created gorgeous highlights and an amazing ombre as well as a beautiful overall color. Using the three bundles and a closure I created a wig unit.

As I said the entire process took be about 8 hours over a period of four days. It is extremely time consuming but well worth it in my opinion. The hair from BHF Extensions lifted AND colored beautifully and I'm extremely happy with the results.

I hope this was helpful for you guys!