Midwife Assisted Births -The Calm, Natural, Mom-Lead Delivery Option

While home, water, and birth center delivery is slowly rising amongst childbearing women, midwife assisted births are still a somewhat taboo subject. Deciding on the best prenatal and delivery method is a decision that all expecting mothers are faced with. Educating yourself on the steps involved in the various methods of bringing a new person into the world will ensure that you make the best decision for you and your baby. LaQuita Brazile shares her journey to midwifery, and defines their roles and capabilities.
Brazile comes from a family of educators -three generations of educators, to include her sibling, who was also an educator at sometime. She too became an educator, but something changed for her after stepping in to support a good friend throughout a pregnancy and childbirth. Shortly after the experience Brazile came to the realization that being just an educator was not the purpose she was meant to serve.
“I started really thinking about it and doing my research with the first birth that I did. But after the second birth, I started contemplating and was like, ‘This is it. I’m good. I’m not going back to teaching after this year.’ I decided to resign after my fifth year of teaching and just went for it,” she said.
A midwife is a licensed healthcare professional who takes care of the clinical aspect of prenatal care, labor, delivery, and after-birth care for healthy women. They may deliver babies at birthing centers or at home, but most can also deliver babies at a hospital. Midwives have assisted women with childbirth since the beginning of time. However, unlike physicians and doctors, there are no medical school and residency requirements necessary to become a midwife. But there are requirements; in the state of Texas, a person has to complete written and clinical requirements within a five year period to attain a license in midwifery.
Brazile completed her academic and clinical requirements in March of 2018 and attained her license in November of that year. And explained that she has primarily been a home birth midwife and is now a staff midwife at The Nest Birthing Center, located in Mansfield,Texas. She enjoys assisting her sister midwives in which she has developed a supportive and trusting relationships with.
“I hold my interviews there to give them an idea of what a birth center looks like -it’s a mutual place to meet if they don’t really know where they want to birth. They get to tour it, so they can have options; and if they want to have a birth center birth, this will be the place that they will have their baby if they decide to have me as their healthcare provider,” she said.
The natural progression of childbirth has been met with mainstream technology and practices, skyrocketing the number of (C-Section) cesarean section births in the U.S. (United States). CDC (Center of Disease Control) reports show that the percentage of C-Sections for first-time expecting mothers in the U.S. has risen from 20.8% in 1998 to a staggering 32% in 2018. And the number of low-risk pregnancies ending with C-Sections in the U.S. rose from 18.4% to 26% in the same twenty year time span.
Society’s push to “get the epidural” for painless deliveries, or to pick your baby’s birthday and  “schedule that C-Section” is enticing and seemingly effortless for new moms, with overly busy lifestyles. But how many of those C-Sections are absolutely necessary? Unfortunately, many women lack the knowledge and are afraid to ask the questions necessary to fully understand the process of natural childbirth, and find themselves being fast-talked into the operating room.
“You have to trust in your health care provider and your health care provider has to trust in you. And you -in your body, as in, letting you know that your body can do this. I allow the person to be who they are. I have no judgment, whatever you prefer to do -as long as it’s within normal limits of your pregnancies. There is no judgment in your situation, your choice, your religion, your lifestyle. My concern is your whole well-being and baby’s well-being. If you’re going to have an out of hospital birth, you have to be low risk.”
A licensed midwife is trained to recognize the variations of the normal progress of labor, and understand how to deal with deviations from normal. They may intervene in high risk situations such as breech births, twin births, and births where the baby is in a posterior position, using non-invasive techniques.
Often times, the role of a midwife is confused with that of a doula, so Brazile explained, “A midwife and a doula. A midwife pretty much does the clinical side of things. Our job is to monitor the birthing persons pregnancy throughout, and, as well as, the labor and the delivery and the postpartum. So, instead of going to an OB (obstetrician) -go to your midwife,” she said.
“You will see your midwife just as often as you would see an OB. From early pregnancy to 28 weeks you’d go to your midwife every month, once a month. Then, when you hit 28 weeks to 36 weeks you see your midwife every other week. And then from 36 weeks to birth you see them every week; and we do the blood work.
Now a doula is pretty much your friend, your coach, your advocate and who helps you with your nutrition. They help coach you throughout labor -labor sit, and help you with different positions. They also get you and dad, if there’s a dad or partner in the picture, to understand the needs of the birthing person. Just, pretty much try to get the flow and the relationship going, and understanding of the process of birth. Some doulas only do labor and postpartum. Some doulas only do labor. You have doulas that do prenatal labor and postpartum. You may just have a postpartum doula. Bereavement doulas, abortion doulas. There are a lot of different doulas,” explained Brazile.
When a pregnant woman requires care beyond the midwife’s scope of practice, they are referred to an obstetrician, or primatologist -medical specialists in complications related to pregnancy and birth, including surgical and instrumental deliveries.
“So as I mentioned before, like a midwife, if you are seeking midwifery care outside of the hospital, you have to be low risk. But, if something does arise throughout the prenatal care and it can still be monitored and you can still have your baby outside of the hospital, but you still need an OB’s expertise in it, it will be like your co-caring with the doctor. If you don’t necessarily need an OB just stick with your midwife,” she said. “Now, OB is for high-risk. You know, say for instance if you have gestational diabetes that you need insulin or have preeclampsia or you have certain situations that will keep you from having a baby outside of the hospital. If you know that you may need a caesarian, your best bet is to be in the hospital. I’m not against hospitals at all because midwifery is not my last stop,” she said.
“So I would like to be a women’s health or family nurse practitioner someday as well as keeping my licensure as a midwife. I desire to serve underserved persons and families, especially pregnant incarcerated persons someday,” she said in closing. For more information about services and care options, Brazile can be reached via email at midwifelaquitabrazile@gmail.com

Makeup and Beyond -A Chat With Celebrity MUA Frederick ‘Fred4Face’ Saunders

“I love every aspect of being a makeup artist, even the clients with bad attitudes. There is nothing that I would rather do. I feel like I wake up and breath makeup.” -Frederick Sanders

@Fred4Face

There aren’t many people who can honestly say, “I love what I do,” but there are a few and celebrity MUA, Frederick Sanders is one of them. His looks have graced red carpets, album and magazine covers, and been seen center stage on host of celebrities; Regina Hall, Shirley Cesar, MC Lyte, The Clark Sisters, Robyn Dixon, Avery Sunshine and Tamela Mann to name a few and is known for his “anointed hands.” I caught up and spoke to Sanders about who he is on a personal level, his career as a makeup artist  and what the future holds for “Fred4Face“.

Photo Gallery Credit: @Fred4Face

PC: @shebatty

On a typically warm, fall night in Dallas at the swanky Design District apartment skyrise clubhouse amoungst outstanding views while enjoying the sounds of DJ Luqwon, I had the pleasure of watching Saunders work his magic on “The Chain Breaker” herself, Speaker, Author and Philanthropist, Dr. Catrina Pullum.

“I’m the guy that’s behind the scenes. People know my work and name, but not necessarily my face,” he explains as he enters the clubhouse modestly, charmed and flattered that the Concierge recognized him on sight and greeted him with excitement. Seems like he’d  set up and was ready to roll by the time he finished that sentence.

SheBatty: I read that you were preparing for law school and walked into MAC and got hired on the spot.

Fred Saunders: “This is true, this is true.”

So have you always been artistic or were you practicing makeup at that time, or do you just have it?

“I’d like to think that I just have it. However, I did grow up being the only boy in a house full of sisters. So I think it just kind of fell on me -I inherited it, if you will, I was the youngest and the only boy. Seeing my great-grandmother, my grandmother, my mother and all of my sisters, you know, it kind of helped along. But I’d never had any desires to be a makeup artist.

I was always artistic. Years ago, as a child, I thought I wanted to be a fashion designer. I would draw clothes and -you know, really try to sketch things out, then I moved to being a cartoonist. So, I feel like -I’d like to say I did have the artistic side, I just never knew that I would develop it as a makeup artist.”

Those things sound so far from lawyer, but I guess we’re all multi-faceted. Did you know that makeup was your calling upon being hired at MAC?

“It was after, at that moment it was just a summer job for me. I was a school teacher, so my summers were free and I wanted to do something fun that I could do and not have to think about, and I gathered that it would just be something fun -you know, something I would just kind of learn and leave behind or maybe something I could do on the side. I never envisioned being a full fledged artist.”

Now that you are an artist, what do you love about it?

“I love every aspect of being a makeup artist, even the clients with bad attitudes — there is nothing that I would rather do. I feel like I wake up and breath makeup.”

PC: @Fred4Face

 What’s your favorite bold looks that you’ve created or the most fun?

“The most fun bold look….that would have to be on one of my clients    who was very conservative, she did not really allow me to step out of the  box, but I just kind of like –really, just kind of did my own thing one day.  And it ended up being a cover shoot for a CD. And the CD picture went  viral.”

PC: @Fred4Face

You are great at creating classic red carpet looks. Do you like to step outside of that and do bold looks?

“Absolutely! I’ve done everything from fashion makeup, to red carpet beauty makeup, to body painting to face painting for halloween. I’ve even gone as far as to do female impersonators, so it’s really like a big circle.”

You just told me that you had a client who was conservative, and you had a little fun and it worked. Do you often do that -play up looks and have fun?

PC: @shebatty

I often do what I want -to be honest. And I hope none of my clients see this. I let them tell me what they believe they want, and I take their idea and make it my own. So, if somebody tells me, ‘I just want like, six colors on my eye.’ And I know that you’re not patient enough for me to put six colors on your eye and blend them down, then what I’ll do is i’ll do a simulation of what you want. And you might believe that you have six colors, but at the end of the day it may only be two. And that’s just real, because a lot of times I feel like most clients sit in the chair and tell you what they think they want, but then when they actually figure out what they really want, they’re like, ‘Oh, that’s not what I wanted.’ So to save myself some time, and save them a headache -you know, let me just combine the two.”

What’s your go to brand?

“My go to brand is actually Temptu, believe it or not. I do have a lot of things that I use. I can’t say that I use a certain foundation or a certain concealer, because I generally just use whatever I can find a good match with for color and whatever just works in my bag.”

What’s your go to budget brand?

“My go to budget brand…I’m actually enjoying, believe it or not, Kiss Cosmetics Professional and you can find that in the beauty supply store. They have some great longwear lipsticks and they have some great brow pencils -I’m actually using a brow pencil right now by Kiss Cosmetics.”

What’s the one product that we can always find in your bag?

“One product that you can always find in my bag, is my Temptu Airbrush Machine. That is my must-have. I travel with it everywhere I go. I find that when I’m working with gentlemen, they prefer the airbrush, because it doesn’t give you that makeupy [sic] look. But it’s still nice and natural enough that they can walk outside and nobody would be like ‘Oh my gosh, are you wearing makeup?’ so, that’s my must have.”

PC: @shebatty

What advice would you give aspiring MUAs?

“Be able to listen, be able to learn and never stop learning. Even at my age now and the number of years I have under my belt as a makeup artist, I’m still open to learning new things. So, always be open to learning new things.”

How do you feel social media has affected the industry?

“Social Media has definitely impacted the industry in so many different ways. I think it’s more so negatively, because there are so many people who feel like because they have two brushes and a pencil, they can say, “I”m a makeup artist” because they know how to draw their brows on. However, not necessarily knowing the art behind it, where you actually have to put in some work and understand, like other peoples skin types and other peoples structures and things of that nature.”

fred beyond the makeup

PC: @Fred4Face

Who are you beyond the makeup?

“Beyond the makeup….I am a mentor, I am a father, I am a friend, I’m a brother. I’m a Dillard [University] grad -hello!  I speak three languages: Spanish, French and German. I was a foreign language major in college most people don’t know that about me and that’s pretty much a fun fact.”

What are your plans for 2018?

“I’m taking bigger faith walks. I’m actually stepping out of my box and trying to do something on a bigger level. Somethings that I never thought that I would even dream of accomplishing. Stepping out on the waters a little bit.

Always be on the lookout for me. Cause if you sleep on me you’re gonna look up and be like ‘Oh, he’s up there!”

Visit Fred4Face for booking information and to see more Sanders work.

Meet Tashara ‘TJ’ Robinson, POWER MOM!

After more than a decade of “living the dream”, Dallas native, stay-a-home mother of four and wife, TaShara ‘TJ’ Robinson found herself in an unfamiliar space.

“To make a long story short, I ended up filing for divorce after 19 years of marriage,” she says the discussion about her contribution to the newly released POWER Moms book begins.

Who signed up for this

“I met my husband at Texas A&M University and we dated for a few years. Got married, and I decided to be a stay-at-home mom -we had already had the conversation and decided that if we had kids, I’d stay home and raise the kids, and at the time I felt like that was the best decision for me. I wanted to just, you know, be a mom -be a good mom, and I wanted to be a good wife as well. And you know, even as noble as that desire sounded, I found that I still had to deal with real life and a real marriage,” she says.

steps to overcoming

It’s easy to feel alone when faced with adversity, but Robinson explains that, “I find that I have an -unfortunately, it’s not an uncommon story. So, I am encouraging people who have experienced any type of loss. My loss, in particular, was a divorce. So I’m just sharing all the wisdom I have learned,” she says.

”There was a lot of journaling where I was processing a lot of decisions that I knew I would have to make. The journaling, for me, is what helped me come to that decision and even after the divorce, there was still a lot of adjustment with my children and family and friends and -wow, I felt like I just had get it out,” she says.

Through the POWER Moms book, Robinson provides a glimpse into what she had to overcome and shows that, “Hey, everything can look good, but yet there are still some difficulties,” she says.

judging a book by its cover

“The years leading up to that divorce, and, even now it’s been two and a half years, I’ve had a lot of introspection time where I actually had to decide for myself how I wanted my life to go and run and operate,” she says.

She recalls being compared to the Obamas from those on the outside looking in and says, “I thought to myself that they [the Obamas] would be mad with y’all comparing us to them! No, ma’am!” Because everything and everyone who looks good on paper is good, right?

“To be clear, the 19 years weren’t all bad. We have four beautiful children who are emotionally healthy and physically healthy that I’m extremely proud of,” she says.

in the end, it’s a win

Be assured that her story does not end there. The best part of Overcoming obstacles and adversity is most definitely the Win!  In reflection of the journey, and while working on POWER Moms, Robinson came to realizations and discovered Empowering things about herself.

“Obstacles act as an astringent, they bring things out of you. I realized that I operated in a lot of fear. I was afraid…of a lot of things. Like, I’ve been married for 19 years and I haven’t worked in so long. How am I going to make it? I have four kids! How am I going to do that? Can I do this? I don’t  know! So, the fear and the self-doubt I dealt with, but what I also found me,” she says.

“Like, ‘Ok, you might be scared, but we g’on [sic] figure it out!’ That’s what this drew out of me so, I’m not afraid to move past that fear anymore. That’s where I am right now and that’s what that obstacle drew out of me,” she says.

The P.O.W.E.R Moms book  is a compilation of stories of by 12 mothers who exemplify P.O.W.E.R., an acronym for Persevere Overcome Win Empower and Restore. Read more of Tashara’s story, and for book signings, additional POWER Mom events and to purchase your copy, visit www.powermombook.com/t-robinson

Contact www.phenixx.com to book POWER Mom Co-Author Tashara Robinson.

To learn more about Tashara (TJ) Robinson and any upcoming projects visit www.tasharatjrobinson.com.

All photos provided curtesy of Tashara Robinson and Powermomsbook.com

Hill Harper Discusses His New, Natural Grooming Line And The Importance Of Product Knowledge In The Black Community

“I couldn’t be more proud of these products. They’re about health. They’re about wellness. They’re about making you smell good, feel good, look good and they check a lot of boxes -they hit home on a lot of levels. They’re premium quality products that are healthy for you and your skin, but at the same time they’re very affordable.” -Hill Harper

The Architect & co.

Hill Harper debuted H2L and JUA via The Architect & Co. in March 2017. H2L and JUA are natural, non-toxic grooming products for men and women. Over a pre-Thanksgiving midday chat, Harper explains, “The company that we founded is called The Architect & Co., betheartitect.com, it’s foundationally a health and wellness company built off the idea -what I write about in my book, that we are all active architects of our own life. And we can build our life like an architect builds a structure, but we have to start with a real strong blueprint or a plan and then we have to have the right foundation. And so, the first line of product we have for men is called H2L, and for women it’s called JUA. JUA means sun in Swahili, and H2L is just a play on my name; there are two H’s and two L’s in my name.”

H2L for men

H2L Nourishing Body Wash, H2L 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioning Cleanse, H2L After-Shower Hydrating Oil Spray, H2L Invigorating Body Lotion

H2L Natural Shave kit

H2L Natural Men’s Pre-Shave Primer Oil, H2L Natural Men’s Shave Lotion, H2L Natural Men’s Aftershave & Bump Prevention

JUA

JUA Nourishing Body Wash, JUA Smoothing Shampoo, JUA Restoring Conditioner, JUA After-shower Hydrating Oil Spray, JUA Invigorating Body Lotion

hill harper, founder

Harper, is best known for his role as Dr. Shelton Hawkes in the CBS hit drama serie CSI: NY and has a long list of noteworthy experiences spanning from critically acclaimed actor, to author, to Harvard Law Graduate. So what inspired the creation of an all natural line, in the beauty genre and something as intimate as a skincare?

It would take a personal experiences with cancer, in combination with serving as a member of  a cancer panel, could with his passion for community to add founder of affordable and health driven grooming products into his notable list of accomplishments.

“In 2010 I was doing a movie, For Colored Girls, in Atlanta. Kerry Washington was playing my wife and we were there shooting and I woke up one morning and I couldn’t swallow very well and, ultimately, to make a long story short, I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. My father had actually died of pancreatic cancer, but when he was my, almost, same age he had been diagnosed with thyroid cancer,” he says.

Community needs

The Architect & Co. formulates products with consideration to melanin, and they launched their mens and womens lines simultaneously. Knowing that cancer is one of the leading causes of death for the Black male demographic, I couldn’t help but wonder, so I asked,  “was the creation of this product, in-part, due to the lack of attention that Black males, in particular, pay to healthcare?”

He replied, “I created this line and it’s healthy for everybody. But, it particularly has properties for folks with melanin in their skin. We tend to have a lack of Vitamin D and Vitamin D is something that is critical for good health, so I put in a lot of oils that have a lot of Vitamin D and things like that. But at the same time you’re absolutely right, as African American men, we have a tendency to not stay on top of our health or our health checks on a regular basis; but we still use products we just throw some stuff on and keep it moving.

After I’d had surgery for my thyroid, President Obama -who I’ve been friends with for a number of years, asked me to join his President’s Cancer panel, which is a three-member panel that makes recommendations for the White House. There are two scientist on the panel and one non-scientist, and I was that non-scientist. Different experts would come present to the panel; we would take their information and make recommendations.

Many of these doctors and experts would talk about what we put on our skin. And the fact that our skin is our largest organ on our body, and it absorbs everything you put on it, almost like eating it. And they were making a point, to me, and to the panel, that the same companies who own the drug company are the same ones, these multi-national conglomerate companies, that own most of the products that come out for skincare, lotions and etcetera. These companies own these companies and so there’s not a big interest in doing research and study on the impact of having these carcinogenic elements that are in many of these products. And I thought about our community. I remember when I was young, my grandmother was like, ‘You gonna put some Vaseline on that?’ [Right] Vaseline is Petroleum Jelly, it is a toxic byproduct of oil, you know, oil refining.”

H2L and JUA, affordable solutions

A thyroid cancer diagnosis and working so closely with research surrounding cancer lead Harper to being aware and conscious of daily-use products. He is also aware of the price tag associated with non-toxic living and says, “I was in a position where I could afford these high-end products that didn’t have any carcinogens, but I said to myself, ‘What about people in the community? They can’t afford $40 for conditioner or $40 for the organic shampoo.’ I said, “There has to be a way that you can have non-carcinogenic products at an affordable price -the same price as some of these other brands.”

Shop now and save

Hill has done just that by offering H2L and JUA exclusively from his production plant TheArchitect & Co. via bethearchitect.com. A subscription based model that renews annually, or as frequently as necessary through a la carte orders. Ladies, subscribe for your JUA and hook your man up too, with a subscription to H2L for the year.

Use the Promo Code: TRY ME 20 for 20% off of your order now through the 2017 Holiday Season! 

Photos from bethearchitect.com

Séxūal By Michel Germain

Séxūal by Michel Germain was founded on love and is a romantic fragrance, frequently referred to as, “A love note in a bottle.”

Michel Germain

Michel Germain, a French-Canadian Perfumer for more than 25 years, known for his prestigious fragrances. Germain credits the sustainability of his brand to creating a storyline that stands out and does something that no one has ever done. When shopping for a fragrance you want compliments. Michel Germain Parfums wants you to get noticed and asked what you’re wearing!

The Pop-up

I had the pleasure of co-hosting the Séxūal by Michel Germain Pop-up at Macy’s in NorthPark Center Mall in Dallas, Texas on October 21st.

Attendees enjoyed treats, and detailed information about the brand  and the Séxūal line by a Michel Germain Account Executive.

Séxūal

“I haven’t found a fragrance that makes me feel confident. I haven’t found a fragrance that lasts and I haven’t found a fragrance that makes me feel like i’m the only women in the world.” -Norma germain

Inspired by a comment from his wife, Norma, Séxūal by Michel Germain features eight fragrances in total. Four Women’s fragrances: Tendre, Paris, Sugar and Noir. And four for Men’s fragrances:Tendre Pour Homme, Paris Pour Homme, Pour Homme and Noir Pour Homme.

But what goes into making a fragrance that makes a women feel like the only women in the world? This sent Germain on a five year quest through France, Africa and the North East for the perfect notes needed to create a fragrance that would do all those things. Ultimately creating Séxūal, a fragrance that exudes romance. MG Account Exec explains that, “In all Séxūal fragrances there is a hidden note, an aphrodisiac. It invites closeness. It invites romance, hugs, and kisses guaranteed. That is what makes this frangrance so unique. They are also oil based, the natural oils blend with your body chemistry and creates your own signature fragrance.

So what happens when you wear the Séxūal? It’s not, ‘oh, you’re wearing this, or are you wearing that? The question becomes, ‘oh my goodness miss! What is that that you’re wearing?’ They can’t identify the scent, because you’ve just created your own signature fragrance through the natural oils, through the aphrodisiacs. That’s why you want to own Séxūal!”

Event Photo Credit: Alfena Williams

M.I.L.F.

Never in my young adult life did I EVER imagine being sexually empowered and secure enough in my femininity to hit M.I.L.F. status. But here I am, “HEY GIRL!”  And yes, the euphemism may have some of you clutching pearls and judging. But I’ve birthed two children and this body has been through some things; ain’t nothing wrong feeling great about looking good!

 

Motherhood is an experience like no other. I wouldn’t trade it for the world -well, I wouldn’t trade parts of it. Motherhood is the most instinctually selfless process humanly possible. Understand that most days are not pretty, there simply isn’t time for it all.

And because we are women and much is expected and required of us, it’s easy for us to lose anything we’ve ever known about ourselves when we become a mothers. Add marriage and a job to that equation, and you will unknowingly find yourself stretched as thin as ice. Your days start to run together and life passes you by.

The Hubs and I enjoying date night.

Just like the weather, we go through seasons in our lives. It’s our job to learn how to best navigate through life during each of those seasons. Once we learn how to seamlessly adjust to change, things start looking up. I believe it is true that, “with age comes wisdom.” Settling into this crazy, sexy, cool life that I’ve created for myself and some days are a struggle. I’m not too proud to admit that, but when I’m on, I’m on and it’s so refreshing.

P.H.A.T. (Pretty Hot and Tempting) if I do say so myself.

Self-care is all the rage now days and something that I believe in wholeheartedly. It helps me stay focused and at at my best. In today’s society, we allocate the majority of our time to our to-do list leaving little time for rest and relaxation. That can be problematic. As a mother of two, full-time employee, blogger, beauty expert, freelance writer who is married to a high school athletic coach, I have to take “Me-Time” whenever and however I can get it. Some of the ways I sneak in time for self-care are:

Play in makeup – Little girls aren’t the only ones who love to see themselves dolled up. Playing in makeup is good for practicing  applying your favorite looks. It can help you get used to seeing yourself in colors you may normally not wear, and it’s a self-esteem booster.

Have sex -I’m talking about the sex that YOU like. What you like, how you like it and for how long. It’s your world, squirrel! Have the kind of sex that blows your mind and makes you roll over butt-naked, smiling so hard that you have to hide your face in the sheets so your partner doesn’t witness you melting inside.

Working Out -When my schedule allows, I hit the gym and work up a good sweat. Working out helps to relieve stress and tension, and it also helps maintain weight, build muscle and it’s an overall health benefit.

Spa Treatments -A facial, Swedish massage, manicure and pedicure are the ultimate in self-care. But, they can be pricy so on to the next!

Home Spa Treatments -My Toxin-Free facial is relaxing, affordable and will leave your skin feeling silly smooth.

Sitting in silence –I’m not often afforded the opportunity to have the house (or any space) to myself. When those occasions present themselves, I sit in silence. No TV, no radio, and sometimes no cell phone or any other electronic device.

 Go out –Meet your girls, go to brunch, go shopping, go to an empowerment event, go dancing. Do whatever makes your heart smile -and be sure to laugh and take pictures while you’re doing it.

 When I make sure to take time for self-care it shows! My family and friends notice, but most of all, my husband notices. And trust, when I’m top of my game, he reminds me often. After all, he reaps  the benefits  from it!

Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number!

I’m a few years away from being forty, a mom of two, and my husband and I are eight months away from our tenth wedding anniversary. I think it’s safe to say that I’m seasoned with noteworthy life experiences, and for the most part, I’ve settled into who I am confidently. But that doesn’t mean that I’m unwilling, too old or too set in my ways to embrace change (or a little fun).

We planned a five day getaway to Grand Bahama Island, Freeport, Bahamas with my brother, his girlfriend, and my cousin and his wife. My anticipation for the trip grew daily in the months leading up  to the trip. Between feeling my way through this new blogger-life and work-life balance stress, I NEEDED THIS TRIP!

We aren’t new to traveling. My husband and I travel with groups of friends regularly, and it’s always a good time. This trip was a little different because I was traveling with my brother (his girlfriend) and male cousin (and his wife), and both couples are a decade younger than us! Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m a damn good time. But, I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that I was concerned about how things would play out being a generation older than the other couples. We automatically claimed our roles as the elders of the group, along with a list of things that “we” do  (or don’t do) while on vacation. You know, in true old people fashion.

Y’all, this was the best destination vacation trip I’ve been on to-date! The island was crazy, sexy, cool. The people where friendly and welcoming. Our travel group was lit! And I learned three valuable lessons from this trip!

Always, always, always be that girl!

Photo by: CreateHer Stock

I’m mindful about keeping it sexy and spicy at home, but when it comes to vacation all I want to do is relax! I pack books and loungewear for all vacations. The girls reminded me that even while relaxing, I should to be sexy and spicy for my man. A vacation without the children is the perfect scenario for taking a few additional minutes to oil up from head to toe, throw on a face and prance around scantily clad all day and into the night.

Don’t put so much focus on age appropriateness (especially while on vacation) and relaxation that you miss the opportunity to be reminded of the girl you were when you were younger, and playful undivided attention from your man.

Seek out the fun you want to have and make it happen!

Photo by: Shebatty

We wanted to experience night life on the island. We asked around, googled a few spots, then called a taxi! While out, we twerked, drank more drinks and took more shots than we should have, and did a damn good job of being hype-men for whomever we pleased. With  five days blocked out, there was plenty of time for sleeping in and nap time.

Let your hair down, order the extra drink, take the shot and dance like nobody is looking! What happens on vacation stays there…well kind of, social media has blurred those lines a little. But, there is no crime in wilding out every once in a while.

Expect the unexpected (and still have fun)!

Photo by: CreateHer Stock

When we finally arrived to our destination, all I wanted to do was freshen up and lay down for hot second, but, of course, our room wasn’t ready. Then, a few days into the trip, someone came down with a stomach virus. Inconvenient? Yes, but we didn’t allow those moments to ruin the entire trip.

Hurry up and wait is definitely a thing during travel. Flight delays, long lines, getting sick, and hotel rooms not being available until check-in are inevitable, so make the best of it. In most cases, your significant other is the only person you might inconvenience on a trip. The rest of the group will find their way and make the best of the situation. Yes, everyone will wish you well with hopes of you getting well or ready soon, but the show will go on. When things are more under control or you start feeling better,  hop on the party train and enjoy your time.

 

Meet Me at The Show -The Texas International Hair & Trade Show!

There is a buzz around town, and it’s all about The Texas International Hair & Trade Show! All stylists and beauty industry lovers are welcomed! 2017 marks its 17th annual production. The show is Sunday and Monday, June 25 – 26, with a kick-off party Saturday, June 24th, that you do not want to miss!

Party of the year!

The TEXAS INTERNATIONAL HAIR SHOW Kickoff Party is going down at Akoi Lounge 13465 Inwood Rd (directly across from the Galleria Mall). A-list stylists, barbers, makeup artistS, fashion designers, models, socialites, and bloggers will be in the building for this birthday bash, meet and greet, kick-off party!

Birthday bash?  Yass! Miss “Success Anyone?” herself, Cratina Webb (Girl Talk Salon and Spa’s CEO, and Texas Hair Show director) is the birthday girl, so you know it’s going to be a  Gemini/Cancer TAKE OVER!

After the show is the…You know the rest, but after this party, ‘gon-on to the house and rest up, because Sunday and Monday are both full of events, competitions, and the latest and greatest in International Hair!

The show

Celebrity guests include: Christian Keyes, K104’s Dede in the Morning Show team, Big Bad D, Tracy Jones, Zerlene Rogers and more…..

  • Education! Color classes, natural hair classes, barber classes, nail classes, and business classes! Learn how to start and or grow your business.
  • Live demos from the most sought after, influential stylists in the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex.
  • Vendors! Get in on the cool fashion finds your stylist rocks.
  • THE HAIR BATTLE! It’s live and the absolute most  exciting part of the show!

This WILL be the greatest show in TIHTS history!

YOU ARE WELCOMED!

Cleary, the show’s main focus is bringing the latest, most innovated products and techniques to professionals (and y’all already have those tickets purchased, I’m sure). However, the general public is welcomed as well! Now, we aren’t privy to everything, but we are welcomed to enjoy,  all  show events and competitions. So, if you have hair, had hair, love hair and the industry in general, GET YOUR TICKET TODAY! Pull your best and most comfy outfit out, whip your hair, and beat your face, cause we are in that thang y’all!

contact info

Tickets are available through EventBrite. Find out more about TIHTS via Facebook (FB Texas Hair Show Media Group), InstagramTwitter, email INFO@TEXASHAIRSHOWS.COM or TEXASHAIRSHOWS.COM, or by phone at 903-926-7211 or 972-322-6996!

Photo Gallery

Enjoy a peek of what’s in store from last year’s shows!

 

Pretty Girl Pillow

Pretty Girl Pillow, curated and founded by Ashley Turner in April 2017. Yes, girl April! Yes, girl it’s only June, but, when God puts a fabulous, innovative new product on your heart you do what He says, and get it on the market!

it was all a dream

Pretty Girl Pillow is literally a dream come true for its founder and curator, Ashley Turner. The inspiration came in a dream. Like most of us, Ashley has grown tired of spending so much money on maintenance just to end up having time, money, and efforts wasted by the next day from sleeping on traditional pillows.

out with the old

Traditional pillows smash, cause breakage, and absorb oils from the hair. They damage eyelash extensions, decrease extensions or tabs. Pretty Girl Pillow is a custom shaped satin covered cushion that preserves your pretty while you sleep. Get a full night’s sleep without compromising your hair, eyelash extensions, or comfort level.

in with the new

The PGP has a satin cover which is designed to accommodate your neck and shoulder areas. The pillow’s design props you up so you’re not resting on the bed allowing you to get a full night’s rest. PGP is a custom, handmade, U-shaped pillow. It has a removable cover, and washable assembly (wash on cold, dry on low).

It is a little bigger than a travel pillow, but still small enough to travel with, and comes with a tote for storage. You can sleep on either side of it, and it’s made to accommodate side and back sleepers. It can also be manipulated to your desires.

It comes in six colors: Serenity (Teal), Tangy (Coral), Royalty (Purple), Fiyah (Red), Candi (Pink), and Stormy (Black), and retails for $39.99.

Within one month of her visionary dream, Pretty Girl Pillow had been designed and on the assembly line. In less than two months, PGP launched and is now available for purchase -no games played, and no time wasted.

love it

I love the feel of satin against my skin, and the texture and weight of the pillow are heavenly. As a naturalista, loc wearer, the pillow helps to preserve moisture by not stripping and absorbing all the oils from my hair. It also helps in preventing lint from getting stuck in my locs.

I spend a lot of time lounging at home, and use my PGP throughout the day as well. I usually walk in and immediately throw my hair into a ponytail, or throw on my bonnet. Sexy, right? With my PGP I’m able to leave my hair down and uncovered while relaxing. PGP takes snuggling up with a good book up a notch. It’s a great head rest, and allows me to be comfy and cute. I’ve caught my husband lounging with my PGP more times than he’ll want me to disclose.

While we’re on the topic of husbands and significant others, here is a little nugget for those of you who may be curious. Yes, girl you can use it for THAT too! It’s designed to accommodate your neck and shoulder area, won’t smash your hair, and won’t damage your lashes. Got it? No? Then I’ll be blunt. Use it during sex, it’s great (thank Ashley later)!

Another one of my best experiences with PGP happened the night I had my hair rolled on perm-rods. I had over sixty rollers in my hair, and the plan was to wear them overnight. PGP came through! Of course, the bottom row of rollers were a pain, but this was my first experience sleeping in perm-rods that didn’t end with me getting little to no sleep.

I use my PGP every night. So much so, that it also serves as a decorative pillow on my bed when not in use, and my children know that when I say, “Go get my pillow.”  that I want my PGP.

The Launch!

The Pretty Girl Pillow launch party took place on June 3rd 2017 at The Beauty Lab Salon in Arlington Texas. Light hors d’oeuvres were served. Terelyn Freeney kept the cocktails rolling, and we mingled and grooved to the sounds formulated by Dallas DJ’s, DJ Madd Scientist and DJ 50 Grand.

Being in the house for the PGP launch came with perks! Upon entry, guests received tickets that landed grand prizes in the laps of two lucky winners. Angela Bell won a Pretty Girl Pillow, and Zerontrea McCullough won 6 months of credit repair from BK Credit Consultants.

Lady Jade was also in the building, showing support, and mixing and mingling it up with the crowd.

Pretty Girl Pillow will definitely pique your interest when you see it online, but seeing, touching, feeling, and experiencing Pretty Girl Pillow in person is unmatched.

Bonnets were being ditched left and right, and Pretty Girl Pillows were flying off the shelf.

Great product, grand prizes, good music and good company are always a great time. If you missed the launch party, do not fret! Pretty Girl Pillow is available at www.prettygirlpillow.com and you can stay in-the-know with Pretty Girl Pillow on Instagram @prettygirlpillow.

Photo Gallery

Makeup Mixer with Glamour Rx

Glamour RX kicked off an Initial Introductory series, where its founder, and celebrity MUA, Bridgette Washington is personally conducting makeup classes with small, intimate groups  in the Dallas/Froth Worth Metroplex.

Let me start off by saying, “I’m sold!” I’m on a mission to lessening the toxins in my beauty routine, and Glamour RX  is a win-win for me. Not only is brand black owned and brown girl friendly, the products are made with consideration of our well-being, and Bridgette is passionate about providing a product that is healthy to wear daily. “We’ve sourced the best!”  Glamour RX foundation is zinc based, made with no fillers, has concentrated silk amino acids, and sourced minerals from around the world.

makeup monday

Monday night’s Makeup Mixer was hosted by Donisha Reed of Love-N-Hair, in Garland, TX, where ladies learned 10 steps for a fresh everyday look in 10 minutes.

Bare-faced, and armed with makeup bags and hand mirrors, everyone was ready to learn and play in makeup. Skill levels ranged from novice to advanced, and by the end of the night everyone had leveled up and walked out beaming, with a new attitude.

10-in-10

Skin prep, conceal, foundation, brows, blush, highlight, shadow, mascara, lips, and set! Bridgette provided individual, hands-on instructions and techniques to each attendee. She explained the different functions of liquid and cream foundations in comparison to Glamour Rx’s mineral foundation. She also demonstrated how to use different carrier’s such as water, setting spray, and lotion with the the mineral foundation. The ladies even had the opportunity to try new products that have yet to launch!

I’m not one to gossip, but keep your ears to street about Glamour Rx’s new primer and eyeshadow/highlighter pots. Just pre-order all of it when you can, you won’t be sorry!

Bridgette demo’d covering hyperpigmentation, redness, and acne scarring with Glamour RX Mineral Foundation using a variety of application methods. She also explained and demonstrated how to skip concealer and use the foundation for under eye coverage, and answered a host of questions down to cleaning brushes.

Girls Night!

There was no way the ladies were going to let their fabulous faces go to waste, and by the end of the night, the Makeup Mixer shifted to a Girls Night Out. A few of the women came in as non-makeup wearers. They strutted off rocking a full face (including lashes), with newly purchased Glamour Rx, and the knowledge and tools needed to recreate their look over and over again.

Follow Glamour Rx for product updates, and celebrity MUA, Bridgette Washington for upcoming makeup events near you!