Vincent Longo Earth-Tone Eye Shadow

The eye is the jewel of the body. Stay beautifully natural with earth-tone eye shadows. Check out selections by Vincent Longo.

Earth-Tone Eye Shadow [Vincent Longo]

Get the London Look with Rimmel

Who said you have to spend a lot on makeup to get the London look?! Here’s some makeup inspiration featuring Rimmel.

Get the London Look with Rimmel

Beach Hair Beauty {Style Tips}

Wishing for beautiful beach hair? Follow along with these easy steps to get the beach hair look. Enjoy!

Beach Hair Beauty

Carrot Facial Mask

Carrots are packed with vitamins your body needs. Not only are carrots good for you, they are good on you! This carrot mask can help restore vibrancy to your complexion. A word of caution: use carrot masks in moderation. We don’t want you to turn orange!

Carrot Facial Mask
Sources:
http://www.thefitindian.com/10-natural-face-packs-for-all-skin-types/
http://hudabeauty.com/2011/07/24/vitamin-hb-skin-repair-facial/
http://realfoodforlife.com/carrot-face-mask/

Hair Bow Style Tutorial

Enjoy this quick visual tutorial on how to do a hair bow style!

Hair Bow Tutorial

Fresh You: Spring/Summer Essentials

Makeup, if used, is to complement and not compete with your features. It can be a challenge to find the perfect foundation. While no foundation is truly the be-all and end-all of makeup, CK One is one of my favorites, and is the inspiration for this beauty set. It applies smoothly and holds up well, even in hot/humid conditions. From the EcoTools brushes to NYX concealer, these are beauty supplies I have in my “Fresh You Essentials Kit.” What’s in yours?

Enjoy a fresh you…from the inside out!

{Fresh You} Spring/Summer Essentials

10 Tips to Deal With Anxiety

You’ve heard it before. Worry doesn’t solve problems; it only creates more. Anxiety compromises health and wellness. It is known to negatively affect blood pressure and glucose levels, as well as increase the heart rate. Prolonged anxiety affects concentration, digestion, and can lead to depression. If you are sick, anxiety can delay healing and recovery.

Philippians 4:6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

To “be careful for nothing” means to not worry. God doesn’t want us to be full of  worry and anxiety. They gnaw away at our faith.

10 Tips to Deal with Anxiety

1. Recognize your limits. Some things are outside of your control. Let go of what you can’t control. You’ll feel better when you do.
2. Accept each day as it comes You can’t know how every story or situation ends.
3. Find healthy ways to deal with people and circumstances that make you anxious.  Exercise, journal, craft, sharpen your skills, Polyvore 😉 etc.
4. Be patient with yourself and others High levels of anxiety correlates with impatience. It’s okay to slow down.
5. Forgive yourself and others. It’s easier said than done, but when you forgive, there are no more reasons to fret about what has come and gone.
6. Eat healthy foods. It’s a catch twenty-two. When we’re anxious, we tend to eat unhealthy foods, which can produce negative effects. This may make us even more anxious. Yikes!! TRY to eat healthy foods to keep yourself off the anxiety wheel. Don’t forget to drink water!
7. Talk it out. Many times all we need is a good listener in our corner. We are usually able to talk ourselves to a solution or encourage ourselves in a conversation.
8. Love a pet (or person). Petting and snuggling with a furry friend can help alleviate anxiety. For the allergy sufferers and those without pets, cute animal pics are in abundance online. Spend time with a person who brings a sense of calm in your life.
9. Laugh. A meme anyone? Cute and funny baby or animal pics? A funny show? Get to laughing! It’s great for the heart and reduces anxiety.
10. Last, but not least: Pray, meditate, and read God’s Word (and inspiring stories). — Simply put, it’s good for the soul.

Still Waters: 10 Tips to Deal with Anxiety

World Vitiligo Awareness Day: I Am Not My Skin Color

How important is skin color to you? Or should I say, how important is the absence of skin color to you?

logo_vitiligo1Supporters are petitioning the UN that June 25 be recognized as World Vitiligo Day. We are building awareness about vitiligo and the psychological and social consequences that can erupt as barriers in a person’s life, as well as to raise funds for education and research.

The stigma of vitiligo is real. It often takes the form of a master status, or primary characteristic that shapes a person’s social identity. This influences a person’s perception of him/herself. In many parts of the world, people who have skin depigmentation are discriminated against or socially isolated. There are uninformed individuals who see vitiligo or skin depigmentation and confuse it with leprosy, or as something contagious.

Simply put, vitiligo is a skin condition that occurs when the melanocytes stop producing melanin, which are responsible for giving color to the skin. The result is loss of skin color, or depigmentation. This can happen due to a variety of reasons, from autoimmune deficiencies, to skin trauma from a sunburn or reaction to chemicals.

The Stigma Is Real

While I have not experienced the extensive stigmatization as those in India with vitiligo and other parts of the world do, I understand that any pronounced skin depigmentation, such as vitiligo, marks you as different. To many, the idea of something or someone being different evokes fear or confusion.

The skin depigmentation I have is on my lower legs, feet and right arm. The contrast between the white patches and “normal” colored skin on people who are brown or dark is more prominent than on people who are light or white. I know the glances, the stares. But it was seeing another woman with brown skin—an educator, like myself—who proudly wore the depigmentation of her skin as a badge of honor. I didn’t see her shrink or appear overly self-conscious. I was inspired, and because of her witness, I no longer felt threatened by the stares…by the glances. I know it was God who used this woman in my life.

Understanding how someone developed vitiligo or any skin depigmentation is important. It’s the first step. But knowing how to live with it is a daily effort, and is the most important part. With close friends and family, it’s easy to live with. But when you face the world and looks of strangers, it’s not so easy.

The medical field positions that while vitiligo poses no significant threat to the body, other than limiting the skin’s protection from the sun, the huge impact skin depigmentation has on a person is with the mind and emotions. I do not believe the medical field is discounting physical medical needs; but the psychosocial needs far outweigh those.

 My Source of Strength

In 2 Corinthians 12:8-9, Paul said,

“For this thing I sought the Lord thrice [three times], that it might depart from me. (9) And he said to me, My grace is sufficient for you: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest on me.”

How you see things, or your perception, is key. I prayed and asked God to help me better understand His grace. Goodness, did He answer me!

How I See Me

God used my skin and the depigmentation to teach me that He and His grace are enough. My skin didn’t need to change. I needed to change my mind—how I saw things. How I saw myself. I have no control over the minds of others and how they see my skin. But with Christ, I could change my perception and overcome the barriers placed before me. Even the ones I erected.

World_Vitiligo_Day-Im-Not-My-Skin-Color-ModelMeGirlI began to see my skin depigmentation as powerful—not something to make me pitiful. It gave me a testimony and the ability to identify with others. It moved self out of the way so that the power of Christ could rest upon me.

If people see that I can still give God the glory, it’s worth it. If one person’s glance or stare stirs up a conversation, or if I remain silent and be read as a living epistle, the light of Jesus will shine through me and I stand as His witness. It’s all worth it. If someone is inspired to not be ashamed of how they look or who they are—it’s all worth it. If this depigmentation keeps me humble—it is more than worth it.

What am I saying? It’s worth the cost…the price.

Learning To…

Having the depigmentation compelled me to love the skin I am in more than ever. As such, I began to love others more, and care about the everyday experiences that shape a person’s identity—including being stigmatized and ostracized. I began to care about how to undo the effects of the hurt and build healthy perceptions.

I am learning to model. To model how to yield, and show God is able to change a person and the relationships they have—from the inside out. Even how you relate to yourself and society.

When I hear and read about the dark skin/light skin debates within the black community, my heart breaks. I think about women in India who are forced to flee their homes and abandon their marriages because in-laws found out the wives have vitiligo. The meaning of skin color takes on a new definition, and you see another layer of ignorance and need for education and reconciliation. This make me care even more about how we can protect our minds and hearts, and learn to not identify ourselves based on circumstances—past or present.

But how do I say this to the girl who feels like her life is not worth living all because of the condition and color of her skin? Wait. Not because of the condition and color of her skin, but because of how people react to it, and how she sees herself through their eyes?

It Is Well

If my skin color becomes uniformed again, God is great. If it doesn’t, God is still great. I am not my skin color. My skin is just the shell, the covering, that God decided to drape over me. My skin color is symbolic of God’s creativity. It is what it is, and I operate in the realm of reality.

As it is with shells, it is what is beneath that is the most important element. God is more concerned with my heart, my mind…my soul. So He is with yours.

Support

After being inspired by a woman with vitiligo, I asked myself how I could pass on that inspiration. The answer? By using one of the most powerful tools in my possession—my voice. I could also wear purple on June 25—the vitiligo awareness color—in support of increasing health awareness and education in the global community, and in support of those who live with skin depigmentation. I could also sign a petition in support of a World Vitiligo Day.

Will you join me? We are petitioning the UN for worldwide recognition of World Vitiligo Day. Be inspired and support those who, like me, are proclaiming: I am not my skin color.

VR Foundation

http://vrfoundation.org

Sign the petition.

 

 

How to Prep Your Face

Please enjoy this short and sweet video on how to prep your face.

Combat Dry Winter Lips

Combat Dry Winter Lips

 

Most, if not all of us, have been plagued with dry, cracked lips. If you’ve ever wondered why we experience this more in the winter time, it’s because the cold, winter air dries out the thin layer of oil on our lips. I don’t about you but, but I have been guilty of doing a major dry lip no-no—licking my lips. While we think licking our lips will alleviate the dryness, our saliva evaporates and makes the problem worse.

Causes

  • Lack of lip moisture due to low indoor humidity
  • Dry, cold winter air
  • Sun exposure
  • Smoking
  • Licking, picking, scrubbing or biting lips
  • Cold sores
  • Allergic reaction or irritation from toothpastes or mouthwash

Symptoms

Dry, peeling, burning, red, swollen, sensitive/tender, bleeding or cracked skin on lips. Excessive licking can also cause a dry, irritated ring to develop around the lips.

Prevention & Remedies

Drink adequate amounts of water.

Use lip balm or ointment, preferably with at least SPF 15. Depending on the severity, you may need a medicated lip balm.

Key ingredients include: petroleum jelly; lanolin; natural oils, like squalene, castor oil, jojoba oil, Vitamin E, cocoa butter or shea butter; glycerin and honey.

A creamy lip therapy will most likely be water based and provide needed moisture. Just like with your hair, think of oils as sealers—something to seal IN the moisture and provide a barrier from the environment and irritants.

Let’s recap and do your lips a favor!

  1. Drink water
  2. Moisturize & seal your lips with lip balm throughout the day. Don’t wait until you’re on your way out the door. Indoor air can dry out your lips, too.