Sistalove: Not Just For Sandra Bland Or Bobbi Christina: For You Too

Sistalove is a hashtag that I use on almost all of my posts. Not that all of the things I post are about imagewomen who are blood relatives, but everything I post is about uplifting and empowering the female collective. This sistalove is about the sisterhood that is defined as a society or community of women linked by common interests, religion, trade, or environment. This is the Sistalove that takes work. It’s this Sistalove that requires us to remember that little girl that inside us that needs to know she’s worthy.

In the last few days there has been an overall sentiment ( which I share) of condolences and sympathy for the tragic loss of lives of Sandra Bland and Bobbi Christina Brown. Although I do not want to lessen the value of their lives, I do want to call attention those of us still here.

We have all prayed for, offered virtual condolences, and some have posted comments and remembrances in honor of the lives of the young women whose lives seemed to be cut short far too early. Neither of them having reached thirty years of age. Sigh…no doubt this is surely one of those things that only God knows why this happened. But what amazes me is how the same Sistas that feel so much sympathy for people who they will never meet, are the same Sistas that are degrading, belittling, and plotting against their fellow Sistas that maybe standing right next to them.

Sometimes it’s as simple as planting a negative comment. Sometimes it’s outright slander and defamation! I’m not talking about teens either, I’m talking about grown women. This behavior happens in churches, at schools, in the office, and it’s rampant in our digital sisterhood. It’s so common that it’s sickening!

This Mean Girl behavior is so defeating. I can’t say that I’ve never engaged in selective affiliations, but I can say that I’m not mean. Every time I see this or encounter it, it just screams insecurity! Yes everyone is responsible for their own happiness, but some are also responsible for other peoples sorrow as well. By judging, making fun of, putting down the next woman that doesn’t make you a better person, it actually makes you worst. We’ve all heard you reap what you sow, so do you really want to reap negative energy?image

Everybody has some value, and not the same value! One thing that I try to promote is love. As a follower of Jesus we have a very direct commandment to love our neighbors as we love ourselves. My father use to say give me my flowers while I’m here to enjoy them. Will you give your Sista some flowers while she’s here to enjoy them? Don’t wait for your sister to become the next tragedy to love her. Love her now. Love her skinny, love her fat, love her meekness, love her boldness, love her weave, love her naps, love her, love her as you love yourself.

Then again maybe this is the key, in the words of Whitney Houston “Learning To Love Yourself, Is The Greatest Love Of All” . If you are happy you can’t help but put out happiness! There is a saying that says, “A flower doesn’t worry about competing with the flower next to it, it just blooms”. As you begin to bloom, allow your sister to bloom her way. If you are not blooming, find your happiness and spread it around like confetti!

So what if she doesn’t have a college degree. Maybe she’s a single mother, or she doesn’t go to church, or maybe she’s a holy roller. None of these makes the next woman any less worthy of respect and love. Most women come from environments that treat us as second class anyway, we don’t need to make it any harder by trying to make another female your footstool to elevate your self worth.

For some the sheer act of picking themselves up and deciding to do better for themselves is nothing short of an act of God. We all have our own life to live, and just because someone’s gift isn’t in a package for you, that doesn’t mean their gift isn’t valuable.

So if you’re a mean girl, undercover or blatantly, please take a step back and consider, what does it profit you to bring someone else down? And if you or on the receiving end of the “you can’t sit with us” attitude, fret not. Your time will come! Keep moving forward and stay true to yourself!image

Just know if no one ever tells you that you are important, you are important to your Heavenly Father ! When God is for you no weapon formed against you shall prosper! Remember it’s not saying that the weapons won’t be formed, but the victory is yours! You are important! You are enough!

So the very next time you see or hear a Sista trying to take another down, call her out. Don’t let it be ok. Just remember what goes around comes around so send out good. And good will come back. When you see your Sista, give her her flowers while she can still enjoy them.

See Ya later Phatty!

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HOW TO HAVE A TOTALLY AWESOME LIFE: Step Out On Faith

My intention was to write this post about packing to go away on a long weekend road trip. My plan was what to wear and how to pack it. But, so much has happened to me this past week , I know there is more to be shared. Sometimes on your journey to a really awesome life, God will challenge you with a risk of faith. These risk will cause you to go beyond your comfort zone. The reality is everything we do all day involves some level of faith in action. imageWhen you sit in a chair you have faith that it will hold you up. Sometimes it doesn’t, lol but that doesn’t stop you from sitting on chairs 😉. We faithfully go outside and turn the key in our vehicle, knowing it will take us to our intended destination. With these actions we go through our days with a childlike faith, never questioning the outcome. Yet, sometimes God challenges you to take greater risk so that He may get the glory from your life. The bible tells us with out faith it is impossible to please God. In fackt Rick Warren author of “ The Purpose Driven Live” says the worst thing we can do is play it safe with ourselves. This brings to mind that familiar phrase “no test, no testimony”!

Last Tuesday as I sat at my desk contemplating going shopping to pick up a few things, I decided to check my account balance. To my horror I was at -52 cent. I panicked! I went through my transactions and found out that someone had completely emptied my checking account! To say I was sickened couldn’t possibly be enough to explain the feeling I was having. Now this was 2 days before the holiday and I had no money! The bank employees were very helpful and reassuring but guess what I was still broke👊. They explained that it could take up to 90 days to get my money back😫. Brokeness aside ( note everybody’s broke has a different number) I couldn’t help but wonder what God was using this experience for, and why did He have to take my money for me to get the lesson!image

I made it through the 4th of July and my work week began, now I started to think about my plans to go to Virginia for the “Return Of The Curls 2 Weekend”. I purchased my tickets months ago when I found out Myleik was going to be there.

Should I go in brokeness, lol?! I prayed hard about it. everything in me said go, but fear was holding me captive. I started seeing all these words ( I’m going to label them convictions) posts, emails, conversations and even unrelated photos that spoke to me about stepping out on faith and trusting God. Now usually by the time I see words, God has resorted to His last way of communicating with me😂. If I explain away the feelings, He plants thoughts. If I dismiss the thoughts, He brings up my experience of victory. If I’m still hesitant, then the yelling starts( “words” lol. )That’s the last way God converses with me.

Being a faith filled person it is necessary for me to recognize and acknowledge God. Finally I got the lesson! Realizing that money will fail you but God never will. So I decided to press my way on.image

I kinda thought staying home would be the safe thing to do, but this would rob me of the awesome life that I desire. I’m not use to traveling, but God has planted this seed of travel in my spirit. I often describe my self as the tree by the river, but my roots are growing long and strong, stretching further, grounded in faith, and trusting Gods plans for me.

By the way, the images I used are my younger cousins travel photos that inspire me to pursue my totally awesome life by stepping out on faith!image

Remember when the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him. Isaiah 59: 19

May the love of God bring you peace as you seek joy.image

Honey Be Natural : How To Use The Humidity To Increase The Moisture In Your Natural Hair

Summer Time Frizz Is Realsummertimeconditioner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I know your probably thinking , how can humidity and natural hair go together? But it can, let me explain. If you are like me, my natural hair is always dry. So, I’m always trying to find ways to add moisture to my natural hair routine. In the summertime a lot of us do protective styles or wash n go styles. Often these styles look great and fit well into the easy breezy laid back summer attitude, but very often our hair is in bad shape at the end of this trip. Your hair is dry and frizzy and of course it breaks or at best sheds a lot. So why not take advantage of some of natures natural moisture and loc it into your natural hair in the summer? I do this by adding honey to my natural hair regimen. Honey is a natural hair moisturizer, honey is a humectant which means it grabs the moisture from the air ( humidity) and locks it into your hair.
Now if you are wearing a protective style this summer, adding and locking in moisture is a must. You want to make sure your natural hair is in the best condition possible before you get your natural hairstyles. To make sure your hair is healthy and strong you should also add some protein to your natural hair routine. You can do both with my Honey Be Natural Protein Mask, here’s how.  ( click here to get all of the ingredients from our store)summertimeprepoo
Honey Be Natural Protein Mask: Crack an egg into a bowl and whisk in 2 Tsp. olive oil. If you have a conditioner that you didn’t not really like to use as a stand alone, add some to the mix. No need to let it go to waste. Then add about 2 Tsp honey and continue to mix until it is a smooth mixture. Apply it to your sectioned hair and finger comb and detangle at the same time. Let it sit with a plastic cap or bag for 20 min to an hour and rinse. Shampoo and condition as usual.

sheamoisture 10 in 1 renewal systemFor my wash I used the Shea Moisture 10 in 1 Renewal System Shampoo and Conditioner. Call me crazy but the first thing that wins or looses me is the smell of my shampoo, and I love the smell of this 🙂 . It lathers well and did a great job clearing my hair of my Honey Be Natural protein mask! To follow I used the 10 in 1 Renewal System Conditioner and it was just as remarkable. It has a pleasing scent, good slip, and a nice thick consistency. Just the things I must have in a natural hair conditioner .summertimeloc

To seal the deal I always use the LOC method. For my summer hair routine I used Carols Daughter Black Vanilla leave-in, Tropic Isle Living Jamaican Black Castor Oil, and Wonder Curl Better Than Love Whipped as my cream. It’s been 3 weeks since my washday and my hair is still soft and moist.
Having frizzy hair is something that I’ve gotten use to as a naturalista, but dry natural hair is something that doesn’t have to be. Please comment and share, don’t be a stranger we’d love to hear from you!
So here’s to healthy natural hair journey! See Ya!image

Full Beauty & Style- Full Figured Fashion Week & The Curvycon

 

This week I had the pleasure of being in the same space as some of the innovator’s, creators, and leaders of the #Full Beauty / Curve movement. I started my week off with the Official Welcome Party Luau given by Ms. Gwen Devoe creator of Full Figured Fashion Week.image
imageThere I met the likes of Ms. Sharon Quinn of “Model Behavior” she was the coach for #FFFWeek2015 hosted by “#FitforMe” Fruit of the Loom.
I live in central Jersey and I usually drive to NYC, but this week I decided that it would be more economical for me to just take public transportation, and plus it was raining and I hate driving in the rain. I do not do the Subway, but to get to this event in Midtown I had to go underground! I was very proud of myself, I took the New York bus to the Port Authority ( I’m not going to mention that the highway was flooded and the driver kept going as if it was nothing, oh I just mentioned it), I followed the signage to the subway and hopped the E train and in 5 stops I was there!imageimage

“Sometimes Our Destiny Is Closer Than We Think”.image

The party was amazing all of the guests were beautiful and the Food was off the chain! A Fat Girl party with great food great music and lots of dancing! imageHow could this not be the grandest party ever! Although I was a newbie, to say all the models and staff were very welcoming and accommodating would be an understatement. It was a great event!image I also met some of my favorite fashion Bloggers such as #Mariedenee of The Curvy Fashionista, Farah from #Estrellas Fashion Report, I had the pleasure of meeting some of the FullBeauty.com team ( they were formerly one stop plus) and a host of other inspiring and enlightening people. Although their exposure to me was quick I pray it was lasting !imageimage

If you are going to a Luau this summer or just want to sport the trend here are some inspiring looks:image

 

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Day 2 for me was the #FFFWEEKBUSINESSPANEL meeting. I almost skipped this event because my youngest son was graduating to middle school and my second oldest was graduation from High School on Wednesday and Thursday and I needed to get things together for them, but as I prayed and contemplated my choices, my spirit spoke to me and told me I needed to be in the mist of this and it would be good for me.

This was a rather intimate (about 25 people) setting in a beautiful Midtown space with a panel of some of today’s sharpest and brightest innovators. They gave tips and insight on ways to effectively navigate today’s business climate. We discussed everything from Social Media Marketing and strategy  building, to trademarking and licensing, branding, and even the usefulness of addressing negative comments and how to use it as a tool to promote positive responses to negativity.

Not only was the #businesspanel on point but the attendees were a wealth of invaluable information. Having so many different people from so many different levels of success all with the same goal to advance and help others was so powerful!

Day 3 was the White Party: # CURVESATSEA although I had one of the coveted tickets, I had to forgo this one. imageknow, I know, I was not happy at all. I was watching all the beauties from the comfort of my bed! Thank God for #socialmedia I was able to still feel the energy and live vicariously through my fellow #curvygirls . My little one graduated that day and my bigger son was graduating the next day, so for the better peace in my heart, head and my boys I sat this one out. But there will always be next year!

For some White Party inspiration – Yes Curvy Girls wear white! :image

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As my real life called me back to work and family for the next 2 days, again I had to depend on the vision and sharing of my fellow Full Body Beauty Bloggers. I was checking the hashtags and clicking the links to see all that I could.

Here are some of my favorite looks shared by others:

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And as they say “The Icing on the Cake” (yes a food reference) on Saturday I had the pleasure of attending #THECURVYCON! image

 

imageimageimageThis was the first time I have ever had been to such an event. For my fellow nerds we go to all kinds of conferences. So the whole idea was not foreign, but to actually have a full conference filled with brands, bloggers, vendors, celebrities, and members of the plus sized community all gathered for the purpose of expanding celebrating and uplifting Full Figured Beauty & Style was amazing! imageimageThe topics ranged from looking good at any size, dating, healthy curves, and over all body acceptance. The Key note speaker was none other than the Cute and Curvy Amber Riley.imageShe talked about how she didn’t know she was “fat” until she started acting. She said she would kill the audition and then not get the job. It took her managers to tell her that the powers that be felt she was too heavy for the roll. Now I’m short and she couldn’t be any taller than 5’ and she’s a size 8. So in real life she is very tiny, but in Hollywood not so much. She said something that so touched my heart. She quoted scripture “We are fearfully and wonderfully made” then she added “When you know God nothing can stop you”. I needed that #msamberpriley.
imageBeing fashionable or being fat is not new to me. Being a blogger is, at #thecurvycon I was able to meet some of my peers. I’d say the most impressionable to me were Grown and Curvy , and Ciaa of My Curves and CuI’s. They both took time to talk to me and give me some encouragement and direction. To me that is the sign of a great blogger. image

 

 

 

 

 

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My intention as a blogger is to encourage and enlighten and I can see they are like me in this pursuit. I’ve  always been comfortable with myself at every size up and down, but I never thought I could share the same space with those who others see as leading authority on fashion and beauty. It was a real joy to experience all of this. I am so grateful to God for all that He has done for me! The seeds He plants in my heart never cease to amaze me. I know this post is about my week at #FFFWEEK experienceing the #Fullbeautystyle of some beautiful ladies, but we can’t leave God out. He makes it all happen!

imagePlease follow us in Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook. We welcome your comments!
With Love See Ya Phatty!

Why Isn’t My Natural Hair Regimen Working For Me?!!

Why Isn’t My Natural Hair Regimen Working?

imageIf you have asked yourself this question chances are you are probably getting frustrated and about to do something really rash! Let me guess either you are checking the ground for a soft spot and you are about to hop off this “Natural Hair Bandwagon” ! Or you are seeing letters the old “BC” big chop? Maybe just maybe you are a little less extreme than most and you are just going to get braids and wait it out?

Guess what if you get braids they have to come out sometime. The “BC” will soon grow back. And even if you go back to the creamy crack, the thoughts of what could have been will only lead you back down the natural hair highway only now you will be starting from less than zero.

Well, maybe not that bad, but none the less you already made the decision to start on this path so let me see if we can get you on track!

The good news is more than likely the solution to your hair woes is right before you. If you don’t have a regimen this is a great time to start. Below are some of the most common culprits that’s causing you to get frustrated with your natural hair journey. ( Click her to visit our store and get all your haircare needs )

 

  • Hair porosity– this simply means the ability and level at which you hair accepts and holds onto imagemoisture. There are 3 types of hair porosity. Chances are if you are transitioning or if you cannot seem to keep moisture in your hair, your hair has high porosity. The hair cuticles are open so it’s difficult to hold onto moisture. Normal porosity hair accepts most products, doesn’t get overly dry, and keeps a good shine. Low porosity hair is usually very coarse because the hair shaft is so compact , that it’s very difficult for the moisture to penetrate. The upside is when you do find out how to get the moisture in it stays. This type of natural hair is often seen as “ healthy hair” because it seems strong and dense.  The porosity of you hair will directly affect the outcome of your wash, style, and overall hair appearance. I hope this didn’t scare you, lol. Don’t worry it’s all correctable!

click the link here to understand what hair porosity is and how you can correct it.

  • Consistency- There is no magic formula here. Chances are you’ve spent years relaxing, coloring, locing or doing whatever it was you were doing before you got to this point. So it’s going to take some time and regular consistent care and treatment to bring your hair back to its natural state. This is where you will get the most out of your hair regimen, if you stick to a product, style, and/or care routine it will get easier and you will get better at it. Period, find what works for your hair and dedicate yourself to making it yours!
  •  Poor diet – Believe it or not what you eat plays a big role in your overall hair health and appearance. Drinking plenty of water is good all around, and great for your hair hydration. I’m not against the hair vitamins but I think you should get them from your food. I guess this is why a lot of naturalistas eventually become vegetarian 😉
  • Too much too soon – Just as with everything else in life it’s best to be realistic about your hair goals and limitations. For an extreme personality such as myself, it’s natural to want it all right away, but as I said earlier it took years to get to this point and its going to take sometime to get back to center.
  • The Vlogger Myth – Your hair is never going to look like theirs! Lol, No disrespect intended, most of the Vloggers I watched were very skilled and entertaining at taking care of their own hair. They made everything look so easy. The problem was almost none of them had hair like mine. Also most of them had their hair well trained and conditioned prior to starting the style. Factor in the editing, do overs, experience and their hair doesn’t look like that either! No just kidding, but what I’m really trying to say is, you can’t expect your hair to look like anyone else’s but yours. And if you keep trying to do every style, use every product, jump on every promotion you are going to miss your hit. By all means if something doesn’t work change it, but don’t expect for your fifth grade style to look like someone else’s high school. Most Vloggers are what we call expert learners so they’ve learned to perfect that which they do.

imageSo all in all make a commitment to good hair health, not length, trend, or style and you will be on the Road to Hairvana quicker than you know it!

As always we welcome your comments and questions. Please like our Facebook, follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and have a happy healthy headspace!

See Ya Curlfriend

Why Did You Go Natural: My Nappyversary Story

nappyversaryMay 25, 2013, I remember it like it was yesterday. In fact it was today, but 2 years ago. I had been silently suffering from a very common medical condition that was causing me to lose massive amounts of hair. My hair has always been pretty thick, so I was able to camouflage the hair loss for a long time. But as with any thing that goes ignored it was only getting worst. I consulted with my doctors, as well as did my own research on remedies for hair loss concerning my medical condition. All of the medical data showed that the damage was irreversible and the progression to complete baldness was very likely. At the very least I would suffer from Alopecia.

14nappyyellowhair (2)I was losing hair when I combed, when I washed, and massive globs ( no exaggeration) when I permed ( relaxed) my hair. The thought entered my mind to just stop perming it, but as quickly as it came up, that Lye-er in my head would say “ girl you know your hair is nappy you better perm them naps”. So, I continued to struggle with the thought of being bald or having nappy short hair ( which is what I thought would happen to my hair without a perm) for about another year. Only relaxing it every 12 weeks which is 7 weeks longer than the cycle I had been on for 30+ years. The struggle was real, and all the while I was losing more hair literally by the day. The center crown of my head was shorter than the tip of my finger. Hiding it was getting harder because my hair was getting thinner and in very many spots I had nothing to cover.

At a funeral of a beloved family member I ran into an old friend that I had not seen in 20 years. Her hair was bushy and beautiful! I asked her the common black girlfriend question. “What kind of hair is that?” IMG_7507 her reply floored me. It’s mine, I’m natural. Her hair was healthy and curly! And I knew her hair was just as thick and nappy as mine. So I asked what she was using and how she achieved the style. She explained that she used Miss Jessie’s Curly Pudding, and that this style was called a wash n go. She told me how she washed her hair in the shower applied this product and let it air dry. I was in awe, this seemed so easy, this was it the end of my creamy crack, fried dyed and laid to the side love affair. Just that one hit was the last bit of encouragement that I needed to jump off the decades long mindset that even the fear of baldness could not break.

You know that didn’t happen for me right, lol. Her regimen worked 1blazerlookbackfor her but not for me. She was fully natural and had been for years. I was just beginning. It was a struggle but I kept the thought of her full head of thick hair in my mind to encourage me to stay the course.

So now what? I start researching products, styles,and terminology to get the best understanding of what I needed to do. I decided to transition because as I eluded to above, “ I didn’t want to be bald headed with short nappy hair” the fear was still very close to the surface.

I come from a long line of fierce “ Kitchen Beauticians” and I also graduated from cosmetology school, ( although I never took the state board) so styling my hair was no big deal. Yup, that turned out not to be the 5nappyblacktwistcase 🙂 . My hair was not as easy to manage as I though it would be. I would watch the YouTube vloggers and try a style and it just never seemed to work for me. Their hair always seem to be loser, tighter, shinier, something was different.

I started to wonder, what about their hair was so different, and I realized it was the starting product. The condition of their hair was much different than mine so the results were different. So I began to build on the wash day routine. For me this is the basis to any healthy hair journey. Finding the right regimen is paramount to a loving lasting relationship with your hair.

I mentioned before that I transitioned, what I did was a series of about 3-4 mini chops every 8 weeks 13nappyyellowhipuntil I was fully natural. To be successful at transitioning you have to treat all of the hair as if you are fully natural. So this means limit the harsh gels and shampoos, deep condition often, an find a great leave-In or daily moisturizer to combat dryness. If you wear protective styles limit them to 6-8 weeks. Any longer is not protecting its damaging.

During my transition I used the co-washing technique for about 4 months. Only using shampoo once a month, and deep conditioning every other week. This allowed my natural hair as well as my permed hair to stay well conditioned and manageable and not drying either out. If you are transitioning there is a very important point on the shaft called “ the line of demarcation “ this is where the natural hair meets the permed hair. It is the 11nappyversaryfav (2)weakest point of the shaft and it’s where the hair will snap off. Just know the natural hair is stronger than the permed hair, treat all of the hair as if it’s fully natural and you have to protect the line of demarcation, to have a smooth transition.
If you are fully natural and your mane is just not making the moves you desire, consider changing or developing your hair care regimen. I have an epic post on hair care regimens for ever Curly Girl. I cover every thing from my own personal Lazy Girl products an tips, to hair porosity, and even what foods you can eat to optimize your hair journey. Click the link to see the post.

In honor of my 2 year Nappyversary we did our very first official photo shoot! So in a departure from the norm, all of the photos are from the shoot! I hope you like them! on Pinterest there will be a my Nappyversary board as well as on Facebook.  Please tell us your thoughts, and ask your questions. See you around on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

Stay Happy & Nappy!

 

see below for more pic and the outfit details.

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Mesh Sleeve Shirt is from Torrid , Window Pane Knickers are from Ross, The sandals are from Lane Bryant.

 

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This is look is head to toe Lane Bryant, with the exception of the Betsy Johnson bag that I got from Marshals for less than $15!

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The pumps are from Lane Bryant, The Blazer is from my closet, and The sheer side leggings are a few months old I don’t remember where I got them. But I’m almost certain they came from Torrid or Asos Curve.

This is my first outfit post so bare with me on the dets…but I’ll get better 😍

Love Ya!

Girl Don’t Do That : Worst Plus Size Mistakes

I always come across great tips for the modern plus sized woman. I say modern because gone are the shabby mumu’s imageof yesterday, the one look for all over 200 pounds, and the grandma gear. The modern day curvy is fierce, bold, and chic. The modern day “big” girl is usually dipped honey *two finger snaps*. imageGrowing up I was always the chubby one. The chubby sister, chubby cousin, and chubby friend, buuuut I was always fly. My mom was anti frump lol! So I always tried to wear figure flattering clothes, though I see some pictures that make me take deep sighs lol! So let’s talk about the donts of plus size fashion!
#1 Under Garments
Let’s start from the very beginning, because the proper under attire can make or break your look!
The right sized underwear
I know we all would like to think because we are chunky that we have Beyonces booty but heavier, this is not true lol! Having a big butt or a wide butt doesn’t not mean you have an apple bottom. But with the right underwear you might be able to convince people that you are the heavy Bee that you envision lol! Underwear that is too tight looks bad even with your clothes on. It squeezes the butt into an awkward shape and let’s some parts hang out. Panties that are too big bunch up and give you granny booty. So please buy the right size!
-The right bra
I can not stress this enough! The right bra is the way of life! The right sized bra will give you an equal balance of the proper cleavage and a smoother upper back. I know it’s frustrating as a busty girl that you can’t run and get a cheap $3.99 bra that will give you support and last after wash day, but the proper bra is worth the right amount of coins. But here’s a secret that I’ve known for a while but did not realize it was a secret lol, Walmart has good cheap bras for us! A lot of women are surprised at this. Cacique is the ultimate best place for a bra! imageIt is worth every penny! I have literally cried when damage has happened to one of these bras (seriously lol). Also here is a tidbit, if you want the correct size go get measured and stop guessing. A bra that is too tight looks really bulky in the back. Making your upper fat rolls look like they are ready to pop! imageAnd that’s not sexy cleavage, when your bra is too small your breast look angry lol! Don’t believe me? Ask some one. A bra that is too big, fits incorrectly and a lot of slippage occurs throughout they day. No one wants to be readjusting their boobs all day. Remember do not dry your bras (especially the good ones) in the dryer. Always bend forward when putting on your bra to ensure every tidbit is in place. Here’s another secret, the three different rows of hooks are there for a reason. You’re supposed to comfortably fit into your bra using the first hooks and graduate in to the other hooks once the bra gets older.
-Shape wear
If you’re anything like me, you cringe deep down inside when you hear the word shape wear. Suddenly your palms are sweaty, your diaphragm is tight, and it’s hard to breathe lol! But the truth is, some desired looks need shape wear no matter what size you wear. Sometimes we need to smooth our rolls out to rock that hot dress! As we know there are many different shape wear options, and honestly you should own more than one. Chasity from Garnerstyle can be seen rocking different styled shape wear, she has a whole post about shape wear on her blog. If you are anti shape wear try going with a fitted camisole. It just smoothed your tummy and back out, they aren’t as tight because they have less elastic. imageThe proper way to wear shape wear is to first try it on! You want to get the correct size because shape wear that is too big is useless, and too small actually pushes the rolls and curves all over the place. Always step into your shaper, even if it is just a camisole.  Last but not least do not dry your shaper! This wears on the elastic! Follow your care instructions they are there for a reason.
#2 Dress for your shape
The media makes us believe that the only desirable shape is the hourglass, but in reality you should always feel desirable no matter what! There are many different shapes and sizes so what may fit on your shape may not fit on mine.image
#3 It’s not always for you
I know we see these hot trends from the local plus size trend setters, but it’s not always for you. But this takes us back to dress for your shape. Sometimes we have to realize that just because it’s in our size it’s not always flattering. We can’t always be in the “me too” crew!image
#4 Your size doesn’t define you
It’s just a number ladies! And sometimes that number changes. If you are one size and you can squeeze into a smaller size does not mean it looks good. So if you wear a 22 and can squeeze into that 18 but it doesn’t look good, make it a goal to look good in that. But if you’re anti diet and exercise give it away if it doesn’t look good. Wearing clothes are too big to “hide” your weight isn’t flattering to you, just like wearing too small clothes. Embrace it honey! So don’t let the number on the tag define how you feel.image

We are all about self love and feeling good about yourself. So if you feel good just go for it. But we also want you to look as good as you feel. We are not trying to bash our fellow curvy, but just trying to show you the best you! Always remember wear it with confidence!
Muah phatty!
Ja’ nay of mrsphatandnaptural

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Mother’s Love: 5 Gifts To Make The Caregiver Give Herself Some Care

Mother's Day GuideMore often than not the Mom is the caregiver, nurturer and, problem solver. She often puts her own needs and wants aside for the happiness of the family. Sometimes it’s even this happiness in her family that give her the greatest joy.

We give gifts of flowers, meal, presents, and sometimes  gifts of rest and me time. It’s almost impossible to give her a gift that will even come close to what she deserves, but why not give her the gift of self care?

Check out our Caregivers Gift Guide for the caregiver in your life. As the natural caregiver we very often put ourselves last. This list was created with this in mind. All of these add value to her life while encouraging Mom to care for herself.

Make Mom a Workout Playlist~TheGrove Is In The Heart: yes this was one of my favorite jams!
research has show the following affect of music on the human body:
Mothers Day Gift Guide

Changed the heart rate
Affected blood pressure
Changed the metabolic rate
Reduced physical and mental stress
Reduced fatigue

All of these things aid the flow of energy in the human body.

The sound waves of music enter your ears and turns into pulses or vibrations, which travel to the nerves in the brain. The pulses influence the brain, which then translates to the body’s movement.

Here is my Mothers Day Workout Playlist :

Sugar Scrub~You ever see those people who just look so shiny an soft? More than likely they exfoliate. They Mothers Day Gift Guideuse a mild scrub like sugar or salt and rub away the old skin. This leaves the new younger skin exposed and it is shiny and soft. Why not get Mom a little jar of sugar scrub that she can mix with her favorite body wash, or you can whip up a batch here is a basic recipe!

What Are the Benefits of Sugar Scrubs?. The seasons can wreak havoc on the skin. In summer or winter, skin exposed to the elements can become dry, itchy and flaky. Sugar scrubs can be a perfect solution to keep your skin smooth and radiant throughout the year.

If you want to try your hand at a DIY Sugar Scrub here is an easy 4 ingredient one.
Kick It~  Why not treat mom to a new pair of sneaker as we call them in the Northeast? To everyone else they are either Tennis or Gym shoes. 🙂 Every Mom no matter what her age can use a little me time walk. More often than not we make time for everything and everybody. By getting her a new pair of kicks you will be letting her know, it’s ok to put herself first. Even if it is only for an hour or so.

Mothers Day Gift GuideHow to know if it’s time for a knew pair of kicks:

The typical athletic shoe is only built to last 350 to 500 miles. While walkers are not pounding their shoes as hard as runners, you are unlikely to still get good support and cushioning past 500 miles. Your weight is also a factor — the more you weigh, the faster your shoes will wear out. If you are walking 30 minutes a day, or an average of 3 to 4 hours a week, replace your shoes every six months. If you are walking 60 minutes a day or an average of 7 hours a week, replace your shoes every three months.

Happy Feet Basket~ Almost everybody sells a pedicure kit. From Sephora to Walgreens. To keep it simple buy her a cute pair of open toe sandals, a pedicure kit, and put it in a nice bowl or pail for soaking feet. Make sure the kit includes at least these items: nail clippers, a nail file, a cuticle stick/orange stick, a nail buffer, a pumice stone or scrubbing brush, a clear top and base coat, and a polish color of choice. Optional additional supplies include bath salts for soaking your feet, cuticle trimmers, cuticle oil, and Mothers Day Gift Guidelotion fora massage afterwards.

And just know pedicure are not just for beauty click the here and see other help benefits that are derived from getting regular pedicures.

 

Don’t Read Me Read A Book~ Well we all know a mother’s read can be infamous! 🙂 but why not give her something else to read? Like Valerie Burton’s book Successful Women Think Differently! We love Valerie Burton books! True to form this life coach continues to give words of encouragement all the while dropping jewels on how to think different to be different. She shares the common practices of successful women. So give mom some food for though while encouraging her to take some time and curl up with a good book.

Mothers Day Gift GuideHere are 5 unconventional affects of reading a good book:

1. Most affective way to relieve stress.
2. Keeps your brain sharp
3. Helps you sleep
4. Increase your empathy
5. Has been shown to ease depression

So don’t just get her something that for that one day, give her the gift that we all want but don’t even know it! The gift of time to care for herself! I hope you take care of mom everyday, but Mother’s Day is her official day of honor!

Whether you add these to your gift you already have or you make all or one of these your gift, or even if you gift these to yourself I hope you enjoy your Caregivers Gift Guide! Be sure to let us know what you think. Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram, Twitter and like us on Facebook.Mothers day

Happy Mother’s Day!

Frugal Frogal: Natural Hair Regimen Under $10

Frugal Frogal
Frugal Frogal

Yes ! You read it right ! A natural hair care regimen, for less than the price of my favorite shampoo! Right now my most favorite shampoo is Carol’s Daughter Marabella Shampoo. My Carol’s Daughter shampoo cost $10. Yeah, umm hmmm, ten dollars is my budget. So that’s the first criteria. The second is the products needed to be easily accessible, meaning they can be picked up anywhere. The third criteria is it can’t be too much of a departure from my normal regimen. I always see a lot of post about a shampoo or a conditioner under $10. In fact one of my first post was about shampoos under $12. But this one is a complete regimen under $10, from wash to style.

  • On my quest to “Live Richer”,  I am always looking to “find money”. So I’m taking all of my spending to task, it’s not forever but for now I’m trimming the fat, tossing coins into the piggy bank. By nature I’m a modern day treasure hunter so frugal finds and discount shopping gives me life!

So are you ready to slice your natural hair product budget like a loaf of bread?

Yes everything comes back to food with me! 🙂 ! True to form we at mrsphatandnaptural.com promote healthy hair care above all else! We don’t believe in sacrificing good hair health for any reason. That being said, we want to find quality products that will give the desired result for a fraction of our normal hair product budget.

You should not compromise healthy hair for a style or a dollar. But, If you could get your natural hair regimen under $10 would you do it? Keep reading and let me show you how.

Frugal Frogal

Prepoo: if you don’t normally prepoo than here’s an inexpensive introduction to one of the process I use. It’s the hot towel method. It cost nothing. All you need is a hand towel, ziplock bag, water and a microwave. Free ninety nine!

Cleanse :Shampoo is a very important part of every Curly’s journey. I found this VO5 Strawberries N Cream at CVS for $1.25.

Conditioner : This is a very necessary process that can not be skipped. This one actually came free with another product, Hollywood Beauty Olive Cholesterol deep conditioning crème. Cost me nothing, it was attached to the styler. Free ninety nine!

Frugal FrogalSeal: I usually use the LOC method I want to make sure the moisture is sealed into my hair. That’s what works to keep my hair managed. Oldie but goodie Blue Magic Coconut Oil. Yes it’s grease, what’s wrong with that yo mama used grease and her mama used grease. So why you can’t use it? Lol no seriously though, I did a little research and found that although this does not add any nutrients to your stands it does work as an excellent sealer to loc in moisture. Cost me $2.99 at CVS.

Styler: I don’t normally use stylers but in this regimen the styler is important to pull together any look. Hollywood Beauty Olive Crème hairless for dry hair. Priced just right at $2.99 at CVS

Including tax this cost me a wapping $7.28! Yup! Way under $10. And I got $. 50 in extra care bucks back to be used on a later purchase! Whoop whoop! (Found money $12.75 added to long term savings)Frugal Frogal

I know getting the products is only part of the equation, the other part is the how-to, so here is how I used them:

  • Pre-poo- I sprayed my hair down with water, put a wet hand towel in a ziplock bag and mic it for 3 minutes, (be careful the towel and water are hot)wring the excess water, (again you may want to use tongs) I then wrapped my head in the towel, and placed a bag on my head for 20 min. I normally se a lot of oils in my hair, so this is a way of using those oils already on my hair one last time. The hot towel will open up the hair shaft allowing the oils to penetrate the shaft.
  • Shampoo- I then finger detangle and section my hair into 4 or 6 sections. I wash my hair section by section. Now, because the VO5 is a sulfate shampoo be careful not to tangle your hair. The shampoo has a very pleasant scent and lathers very well. I could hear my hair squeak! Lol
  • Condition and Seal- I run the conditioner through my hair, keeping in the same section by section process that I used to wash it. Put a bag on my head and let it sit for at least 1 hour or 30 min if you use a bonnet/ hooded dryer. Then rinse out section by section. I dry my hair with a t-shirt, squeezing as much moisture as possible into the t-shirt. Then while the hair is damp, I apply the Blue Magic Coconut Oil Crème to seal the moisture into hair shaft. This is the oil for my LOC method.
  • Crème- While the hair is still in sections I apply the Olive Crème. Section by section. This is the crème for my LOC method.
  • Proceed to style as usual, I blow dry my hair on the coolest setting, section by section. At this time if you need a trim, this is the time to do it.

This process left my hair soft and fluffy! It feels very strong. Although I wouldn’t say the product are the same quality, they are good enough to work in the lean times.

Hair tip: always rinse your hair with cool water, be sure to deep condition often, and seal hair with oil and crème after each shampoo.

I will be using these products for the next month, to see the progress and styles I’m able to create with Frugal Frogalthese products, follow us on Facebook and Instagram. Please leave comments and suggest below. If you have any frugal hair finds please let us know! I also challenge you to find a hair care regimen for $10 or less!

It’s the Frugal Frogal Mrsphatandnaptural signing off! See ya Phatty,

Nailed it!

As we shed our clothing and bring bounce back to our curls, we need to ditch those deep wine and black polishes! So keep reading and see how we “Nailed It”.  When you revamp your closet don’t forget to revamp your polish collection too! This Spring your favorite polishes are back, they’ve been tweaked just for us!image

imageDuring Fashion Week, clear top coats and sheer creams adorned with designs and/or glitter dominated the runway. We also plenty of white nails! Are you bold enough to rock this look with your little white dress? imageAs the temperature rises the classic nudes and bright colors are back so if you aren’t fan of the bare look just stick to what you know.

I really love a good red polish.image Red is a color you can rock every season, so I keep that in heavy rotation throughout the year. Since its Spring be sure to use your brighter reds straying away from the burgundy family. Back in October the Mrsphatandnaptural team attended the circle of sisters expo in NYC, where Erica Campbell (a favorite around these parts) debuted her new collaboration with Color Club Nail Lacquer EC X CC.image Ohhhhhhhh did I love this set! I have the catwalk red and the gingerbread glitter gold. I will still rock them this season !

Glitter’s and Matte’s are very popular in the warmer months, and I would go with Color Club or MAC nail Lacquer. Lacquers are very thick so the glitter and Matte’s coat better. imageI mean did you ever buy a pretty glitter polish and have to coat your nail time and time again? For me it’s annoying because the glitter spreads out and it’s never what I envisioned. But with a nail lacquer being so thick with one or two coats your nails are fully covered and it looks great (especially when you can’t get to your local nail salon!) Plus I love the textured look you get from the Matte and glittered lacquer!image

April and May always brings out our favorite pastel nails hues such as Blues, lilacs, soft pink, etc. but remember pastels are very thin so they require multiple layers. imageAlso this is the time for corals, orange, and all pinks. Neutral tones have outgrown the plain beige. Different tones of browns and grays have joined this family and should almost always be paired with a shimmer. Look for an iridescent imagepolish if glitter isn’t your thing but you still need a pop of glitz! Keep in mind that pastels, shimmers, and iridescent polishes are very thin so these should be your go to imagechoice if you are in a hurry because they will dry quickly!

I really love polish! A good nail color can set an outfit off. I love just looking down and seeing my nails look so pretty. It’s something so feminine and satisfying about it. I know that it’s purely something for me, my man always says no man cares what his girl nails looks like as long her hands aren’t rough lol!image

To be honest this is one of those areas that I have “found money”. I used to spend $110 a month on my bimonthly mani / pedi. But after completing the Live Richer Challenge earlier this year, I decided to add that money to my long-term savings account for one year. So that’s $1300 a year that I have “found”, but I can’t bear to have bare nails!

I know I gave Color Club a big shout out, I’m new to their line thanks to Erica Campbell and I loved it! I washed dishes, did hair, changed diapers (lol) and it took days to chip!image

I haven’t graduated to the whole advanced nail art. By this I mean 3d designs such as pearls, hoops, and chains. I’m still a French manicure or a flower and a few lines kind of girl if I’m feeling fancy. But this daring look is centered around the art, the polish is usually nude.image

imageI don’t want to see any dark nails reminding of this cold winter we endured! Go out and get some polish and #springitonme for a feature. But make sure your stroke game is proper if you don’t have time to get to the salon lol. Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Pinterest!

Muah Phatty
Ja’nay of Mrsphatandnaptural

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