Simple Autumn Glow

Fall is my favorite season. I love everything about it, from crisp air, to chilled breezes, to snuggling up with my boo next to a fire, to wrapping up in a plush blanket with a book and let my imagination run wild. Another thing that I love about Fall is the fashion, swraters, turtle necks, pea coats, booties, boots, gloves, hat and scarves all excite me! I love the breathtaking  mixture of rich orange, red and brown tones that the tree paint the sky with during Fall. I love Fall trend makeup as well!

Today’s simple Autumn Glow look with a burnt orange lip is affordable and easy to recreate.

  • Foundation: NYX Total Control Liquid Foundation (Cappuccino)
  • Concealer: NYX Gotcha Covered Concealer (Golden)
  • Contour & Blush: NYX Cheek Contour Duo Palette (Wine & Dine)
  • Brow: MAC eye brow pencil (Spiked)
  • Top Lash Line:Lancôme Grandiose (Matte Noir)
  • Lower Lash Line: MAC Technakohl Liner (Graphblack)
  • Lashes:  Ardell 210 Demi Whispies
  • Lips: NYX Lip Lustre (Moznow) and AJ Crimson’s S+M Metallic Lip Gloss (Coinz)
  • Glow: Fenty Killawatt Hightlight (Chic Phreak)

Quality at a steal!

NXY Total Control foundation is definitely a cosmetic product of quality at an affordable price!

My Experience At The Makeup Show Dallas!

For the past two years I’ve wanted to attend the Makeup Show in Dallas, but, without any industry credentials, I couldn’t even pay my way into the show! [Insert 2017] I made it to The Makeup Show Dallas and my experience was utterly amazing!

The show itself is the “ha-ha,” providing a wealth of information,  resources for makeup artists and beauty industry professionals in every city it hits. The line up for this year’s show included some industry heavy hitters. I was able to meet and speak with a few one on one (screams and faints), and others I was able to experience through their Keynote and Business Forum platforms. Brands ranged from up and coming, and local, to world renowned.

I was especially happy to be in attendance this year after learning from the show’s Director, James Vincent, that Texas is one of the best areas in the world for salon and spa services, and that this year the show focused on brands known for diversity and inclusion. And if you know me, then you know that basically,

Same Fine and the Basics of Beauty

I attended the show both days, and was able to sit in on part of Keynote, Sam Fine’s session on the Basics of Beauty on Saturday. He shared a wealth of information with us, and  since I’m not stingy, I’ll share a few tips that stood out for me.

  • To insure that your product doesn’t settle into fine lines. For eyes, look up and gently pull down or expand the skin under the eyes. For fine lines around the mouth, press your lips together and blow. This causes the skin around the mouth to expand and you’ll be able to buff the product out accordingly.
  • Shimmer eye shadow and women of a certain age. Because the skin becomes more textured the older we get, it’s best to play up the brows and lips to add pop to the look versus using shimmer eye shadow.

Follow Sam Fine on Instagram at @iamsamfine

Danessa Myrick’s Vision Cream Foundation!

One of the busiest booths on the floor was Danessa Myricks’. Every time I walked by or looked, over there was a mob of people rushing the counter. I avoided the crowd for as long as I could, but I’ve had my eye on her Vision Cream Foundation and couldn’t leave the show without it. So when I saw a window of opportunity I took it, and ended up being second in line to be matched for foundation (winning)! The foundation is full-coverage and long wearing, I was matched with the shade W05. Shop Vision Cream Foundation at www.danessamyricksbeauty.com.

AJ Crimson’s Lipsticks!

I also purchased two lipstick shades from AJ Crimson. I purchased the S+M Sultry and Matte, Matte Liquid Lipstick in Keep It Cute. I also purchased the S+M Sultry and Matte, Metallic Lip Gloss in Coinz. I love the metallic orange/gold magic they make when paired. Find the entire collection at www.ajcrimson.com.

Terri Tomlinson’s Flesh Toned Color Wheel!

I have always struggle with finding my foundation match, and knowing what colors to put together that compliment my skin tone. I have cool and warm under tones. I’m cooler in the winter and warmer in the summer. Trust me, finding my best match is a struggle. Thanks to Terri Tomlinson and the Flesh Toned Color Wheel I will struggle no more! Terri launched her Flesh Toned Color Wheel this summer and is a great investment! Color theory is taught with primary colors, the actual colors. We all know skin color is not actual color. White skin is not the color white. having cool, warm, olive under tones do not translate as cut and dry as looking at colors on a piece of paper.  The Flesh Toned Color Wheel take color theory using true flesh tone color as a base. Purchase your Flesh Tone Color Wheel at Makeup101.com

More Locs!

General Loc Maintenance

Wearing locs is great, and one of the best things about wearing them is low maintenance! When I say low maintenance, I mean almost no maintenance. I get my roots interlocked (retightened) every six weeks, and try to wash my hair every ten to fifteen days. I may miss a wash day here and there, but I ensure to have my retightening done on a regular basis. Another low maintenance perk is product usage.  Locs can be maintained with shampoo, water and oil  90% of the time.

Mature, Color Treated Loc Maintenance

I suffered a devastating experience with breakage (due to low iron) in 2015 when I colored my hair just before discovering I was pregnant with my second child. I haven’t given up on color, but I have started to include products to help strengthen and maintain moisture in my locs.

So far, all of the products that I’ve used have been for loose natural hair. Both of my daughters have loose natural hair, so their haircare products are easily acessible. And while locs are a form of natural hair, they aren’t loose strands of hair, and mine are colored treated, so there are some products that can work for me and others that simply won’t.

Even though I’ve branched out and added some additional products to my routine, my scalp still felt dry and itchy, and my locs still looked dry and frizzy.

More Life with More Locs

I finally got my hand on a brand that I’ve had my eye on for a while, MORE LOCS! The first things that I immediately noticed about my hair was the SHINE! After using the product for about a week -OMG! Like, for real!

More Loc debuted earlier this year (2017), the line features over ten products made to give your locs More moisture, More shine, More growth! Because one of my biggest scalp and hair issues is dryness, I selected two items to help me with that.

scalp nourish

PC: @ishagainesphoto

The Scalp Nourish oil feels like heaven on my scalp! I like that it’s not as thick and heavy as some other oils that I’ve used in the past. It’s easy to distribute, it absorbs into my scalp and locs, and it smells like tropical heaven!

white tea moisture mist

PC: @ishagainesphoto

I use the White Tea Moisture Mist daily. It adds moisture to my locs that I can see, and feel when I touch my hair. My locs feel less brittle and the added moisture brought more life into the color of my locs.

The products didn’t just sit on top of my hair nor did it absorb into non-existence like I’d never used it. My scalp and locs feel nourished and moisturized. Not only does my hair and scalp look better, the added moisture has also helped eliminate some of the frizziness I was experiencing with my locs.

More Locs offers products ranging from cleansers to oils and serums. Find out more about More Locs on Instagram at  @More_locs.  Next on my list of things to try from More Locs is the Herbal Cleanse (shampoo) and Loc Silk (conditioner). Have you experienced More Locs? Tell me your favorite product within the line and why you love it!

3 Things I Love About NYX Cosmetics

NYX Cosmetics has rose in the ranks of beauty brands in this multi-million dollar cosmetic industry. The brand that was once notoriously known as a beauty supply brand can still be found in those places, but you can also find it in drugstores, big box stores, specialty stores and malls worldwide. I attended the recent opening of NYX Cosmetics store in Dallas’  NorthPark Center Mall. Being inside that store is like being in candy land, the options are limitless! NYX cosmetics offers a wide range of products used by pros, novice and everyday girls worldwide.  Find out my three favorite things about NYX Cosmetics below.

It’s Affordable!

You can complete a full (glam) face using NYX products for just over $100. Let me say again; complete a full (glam) face for just over $100! This brand is perfect for moms with teenagers, teenagers, young adults, professionals, beginner makeup enthusiasts, and those who like to get the best bang for their buck. I completed this look using the products listed below.

Total Control Drop Foundation $14.00

#No Filter Blurring Primer $15.00

Gotcha Covered Conealer $6.00

Cheek Contour Duo Palette $6.30

Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder $8.00

3-in-1 Brow Pencil $13.00

Ultimate Multi-finish Shadow Palette $18.00

Cosmic Metals $7.50

Soft Matte Cream Lip $6.50

Double Stacked Mascara $15.00

Total $109.30

It’s Functional

I can confidently put on  NYX products in the morning with a full day planned,  knowing my makeup will still look decent a the end of the day.  The look shown above lasted for more than six hours of wear.  One of my favorite products that NYX has out right now is the Duo Chromatic Illuminating Powder. Girl! That powder shines so bright, you could send light signals off your cheek reflections! Synthetica is a must have!

It’s for Everyone!

Whatever look you’re going for, NYX has you covered. Their lippies and eye shadows range in colors that are  a theater majors dream! Create looks from no makeup makeup to fantasy with these vibrant, metallic, futuristic, goth, whimsical, corporate, professional, fun, neutral, and nude shade options. See me below in Out O This World Metal Lip Cream .

NYX Cosmetics is a brand that’s able to tickle the tastebuds of just about all personalities, it’s  easily accessible, and I simply cannot mention enough how affordable this brand is.

What NYX products do you have in hour collection and what are your favorites?

My Frenzy For Fenty

Fenty Beauty by Rihanna launched at the stroke of midnight on Friday, September 8th and is all the rage (see my immediate reaction below)! Fenty Beauty is EVERYWHERE, but does the brand really measure up? There was no way I was willing to let this product sell out before I got my hands on it, so I skipped lunch on Friday and clawed my way through the crowd at Sephora. I even had to go back Saturday, with my children in tow. But I got it, and spent my entire weekend dancing and romancing with this collection to get the deets.

The line features Fenty Beauty by Rihanna: Pro Filt’r Matte Longwear Foundation in forty (40) brown-girl and pale-girl inclusive shades, Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer, Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Primer, four (4) Match Stix Trio sets, twenty (20) Match Stix Matte Skinsticks, six (6) Killawatt Freestyle Highlighter, ten (10) Match Stix Shimmeer Shinsticks, Invisimatte Blotting Powder, Invisimatte Blotting Paper and refills, a Full-bodied Foundation Brush, three (3) Portable Brushes, and a Precision Makeup Sponge.  All available exclusively at Sephora.

My undertones are a mix of cool and warm, and I have a hard time finding foundations that match; so hearing Rih-Rih boast about how brown-girl friendly her shade range is definitely piqued my interest. After seeing her on the red carpet for the premier of Fenty in Oscar de la Renta solidified the fact that I would definitely be purchasing a highlight; my girl had glow for days!

The foundation shades did not disappoint, and I was pretty impressed with finding my match on the third swatch. I’ve been wearing it for the past three days, and the formula is beyond light and airy. I purposely packed it on once, and it still felt like I wasn’t wearing any. It’s a buildable, medium coverage, soft matte formula, but not drying. It’s also longwearing and will last through a full days work.

The Match Stix Trios are pre-packaged to take the guess work out of finding your conceal and contour shade. I needed Deep, the darkest set they have, so if you’re any darker than me, you’ll want a customized set. The pigment is great, and they are easy to apply and blend out. The Match Stixs are also light and airy as well.

But girl, what you will need in your collection, hands down, is a KILLAWATT Freestyle Highlighter! I promise you they had to have been in the lab blasting “Shine Bright Like a Diamond” from start to finish while formulating these. Trophy Wife is simply insane. So insane that I honestly can’t think of a better use for it than to perch myself atop a plush chaise, naked, with my entire body dusted in its glittery gold glow, with a red lip and some stilettos, patiently awaiting the mister. However, in all seriousness, you can’t go wrong with any of them, the pigment is intense.

Fenty beauty swiftly earned a spot in my daily use collection. My homegirl (in my head) Rih Rih came through, and I’m anxiously and eagerly anticipating the expansion of this brand! See my three face by Fenty pics below.

Day 1: With a full day planned, I moisturized heavily (because of dry skin) and packed on the product. The foundation looks like skin and the additional moisturizing steps taken in combination with it provided a beautiful and luminous glow.

Day 2: Not as long of a day as day one. I needed to be cute for a couple of hours. This look was created with my normal skin prep routine without any additional hydrating steps, with not as much product.

Day 3: The real functionality test, wearing the product to work with a white shirt! I didn’t use much product this day. But, as you can see, the foundation did last all day. I won’t even call the product you see on my shirt transfer, because it only came off on the areas of the shirt that actually rubbed against my face.

All product pictures are from @fentybeauty

Accessories In The Nude 2017 Fashion Show

“If you aren’t wearing the right accessories, you may as well be nude.” -Meko Krout.

For nine years, Accessories In the Nude has produced the highly anticipated A.I.N. Fashion Show! On Saturday, July 22nd, at the Esé Azenabor Fashion Gallery, A.I.N. held its annual showcase where the 2017 Accessory Designer winner was announced. Six local designers also showcased their collections.

Out of a necessity to support fashion production, creator/owner, Meko Krout founded A.I.N. in 2008.

“We started off wanting to do a fashion show, then decided to branch off into helping other designers build their brand,” she says.

According to Krout, wardrobe designers get highlighted more. “We wanted to focus on accessories and make it a competition,” she says. “Our goal is to help designers build their dream and keep building. The winner receives  money  towards their business.”

A portion of the proceeds from this year’s showcase will be donated to the  non-profit organization, The Birthday Party Project! TBPP  provides birthday parties to homeless children in the metroplex.

Krout explains that, “The decision to donate a portion of the proceeds is because we always want to give back. The Birthday Party Project gives back to children! They have birthday parties for homeless children! I try to have people visualize. How did you feel when you had a birthday party experience growing up? Everyone should have that experience. I thought that was something fun, and something everyone would want to jump on.”

“It is a blessing that we continue to grow,” says Krout. “Shout out to my A.I.N. team, especially [Executive Producer] Willie [Johnson].  I think he loves the brand as much as I love it. We couldn’t do it without him, and the entire team; the makeup team and everyone who steps up and assists.”

Master  of Ceremony,  Housewives of Dallas star, LeeAnne Locken kept this fashionable event rolling, while DJ M*Knight rocked the house, setting the stage for the show.

The competition!

This year’s winner is Michael “Bow Tie Mike” Williams. Mike has been designing bow ties since 2005 when boredom inspired his creativity.

Last year’s winner, Tina Peters announcing Bow Tie Mike as this year’s winner.

“I was bored with seeing the same style of ties over and over again,” he says. “I wanted something that stands out. Something to draw people’s attention; get people going. I wanted to do something to put smiles on people’s faces. This tie took five days to create,” says Bow Tie Mike.

Mike is a humble, yet appreciative artist. “Bow ties are my life. God is good!”

Look for Bow Tie Mike @bowtie_mike on Instagram

The show!

Six designers. Six collections. Plucked from Dallas’ Fashion Scene. Indigo 1745, Yvonne Johnson, House of No Lady, Jamel Hawk, RADKEEM SIMS, Uyo by Udoh Atelier and Josette Couture made up the montage of futuristic, innovative, avant-garde looks that set the runway on FIRE!

Indigo 1745

 

This collection was eclectic and easy to wear.

 

Yvonne Johnson

 

A fun, colorful collection with class.

 

House of No Lady

 

This collection was jaw dropping. A literal take on survival of the fittest.

 

Jamel Hawk

 

The swanky side of calm, cool, and collected.

 

Radkeem Sims

 

Stylishly daring, this collection is for the Bad Girl/ Bad Boy hidden inside.

 

Uyo by Udoh Atelier

 

Afro beats and chilled drinks. This collection will have you summer festival ready.

 

Josette Couture

 

This lady sings no blues. The Josette Couture collection by Josette Gollatt is classy and feminine, with just enough drama.

“I love black. Black is beautiful baby, and white is alright. And what makes us both the same is the Red, the Blood. That is where I come from, says Golatt.”

Gollatt is not new to fashion. Her experience spans from her childhood and continued throughout adulthood.

Gollatt says, “I started sewing at nine with my lunch money. I started then.”

Even as a young girl, Gollatt knew that she had a gift, so she did-away with patterns.

“I wanted to experiment, so mistakes weren’t mistakes,” she says.

“It’s great when someone else loves what you love, and it’s ok if they don’t. That’s the cherry on top, because when you’re designing, you’re in your own headspace, in your own zone and you have to do what comes out of you first -not concerning yourself about anybody else.”

Finally, if you love fashion, you will not miss the 2018 show. Stay in the know. Follow A.I.N. on Instagram @ainshow.

For more information about being a part of the A.I.N. Showcase, visit Accessories in The Nude Showcase or e-mail Meko Krout at mekokrout@accessoriesinthenude.com.

Photo Credit: Cy Davison- Beyond Reach Media

Hair Extravaganza at The Texas Intern’l Hair & Trade Show

I attended my first Texas Hair Shows’ International Hair Show, the Texas International Hair and Trade Show, this year. And I have to admit that I must have been living under a rock for the last sixteen years, because the show was amazing! I’ve attended hair expos in the past, so I had a general idea of what to expect as far as the set up, vendor booths, and class breakouts. But I had absolutely no clue what to expect nor what I was in store for during the America’s Next Top Stylist Competition/Hair Battle and other competitions!

favorite finds

From classes, to live demos,  to vendors, if you have any interest in the beauty industry there was something there to benefit you. The exhibition hall hosted a variety of vendors, a main stage, and Barber’s Island; a stage set exclusively for barbers to showcase their work live on stage! The vendors ranged from hair & body product manufacturers to jewelry and fashion. Mocca Cosmetics and Pretty Girl Pillow were in the house. I also spotted all natural, organic and handmade products from Like Second Nature and Unique & Natural!

let’s get it started

As the vendors shut down for the night, the crowd shifted to the ballroom of the convention center and the mood changed drastically. The lights were low, the music was bumping, and the stage was set center to two large projection screens. K104’s Dede McGuire of DeDe in the Morning and actor/model, heartthrob, Christian Keyes opened the show and introduced the opening act, Dooney da Barber.

The performance was followed by the presentation of the Ultimate Groomer Award. Diana Fowlks crowned, or better you could say cloaked, Marcus (Tipp) Mitchell  with an Ultimate Groomer bomber jacket! Up next were the Souljahs Steppers. These young men killed their performance, and had a cheering squad like no other!

Our hosts for the evening were the beautiful Michelle Barber, and Glynn Jackson. Glynn kept me in stitches with quick-witted, comical antics throughout the night. The battle was a fist-pumping, edge of your seat, you betta work, yaaasssss type of production. The pressure was on, as the contestants were first critiqued by Tracy Jones, Anita Hawkins, and KC Fox. Then judged by a host of industry giants: Zerlene Rogers, Keya Neal, Dave Raye, Hair Majesty, and Texas T.

I’ve seen hair battles on TV before, but being in the room and feeling the energy of this show was amazing. I loved every minute of it!

There were twelve creative and innovative competitors with industry experience ranging from five to twenty-plus years, all competing for a Grand Prize of five thousand dollars! Each stylist showcased their skills through themed performances ranging from African Safari’s to The Great Gatsby. I had a great time the entire time, and as the millennials would say, “It was LIT AF!”

This year’s Grand Prize winner was Toni Ancher from Spoil ‘Em Rotten salon in Waco, Texas. Toni’s Toy Story Hair Tale brought down the house! It was colorful, had insane energy, and she showed off her skills from natural to fantasy hairstyles.  Toni left us in awe -she shut it down!

Loc Love

Sunday night’s festivities were fun, fully of energy and long, but I couldn’t miss Monday’s Loc Competition and I didn’t.  All five contestants had dope loc-styles. I’m always delighted to see locs on a platform showcasing their versatility and beauty.

Beautiful Braids

And while everyone isn’t quite ready for the commitment required for locs, we can all get down with braids and corn rows! The braid competition was fit for a queen, the styles were majestic mixed with some ‘around the way’ vibes.

I also had the opportunity to see the Fantasy Hair Competition and the Cosmetology School Competition. Another display of talent and innovation that left me wowed.

All I can say is that I’m kicking myself for all the other shows that I missed. This may have been my first time attending the Texas International Hair Show, but it will not be my last! Follow Texas Hair Shows on Facebook and Instagram to keep up with what’s happening next!