Goddess Rising Facial Appreciation

Hello My Lovelies!

If you follow me on Instagram, then you already know Triiinity & I are in the midst of our Goddess Rising Yoga Challenge! It’s been a blast growing in love & light with my fellow Goddesses and I know we shall continue to grow and ascend in positivity and self-love together. For Day 10 of the challenge, our self-loving task was to give yourself a facial. So I wanted to share my facial process with you all.

Ingredients :
Urban Oreganics Facial Mask (100% vegan)
Honey
Instant Coffee
Water

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SN: Did you know honey & coffee are both naturally occurring substances that are good for your skin? Coffee has anti-aging properties as it tightens and tones the skin while mutually stimulating the skin, bringing increased circulation. Honey is humectant, so it is perfect for bringing natural moisturization. It also has anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, and anti-fungal properties that are perfect for fighting acne. You can mix these ingredients without the use of a store bought facial mask or in addition to one and follow the steps below for amazing skin benefits!

Step 1: Mix Ingredients
{stir until mixture becomes a fine paste}

Step 2: Apply Mixture
{It is best to do this while laying down, over a towel to avoid any drippy carnage. Feel free to use your hands for application but I found this application best done with a utensil liken to a Popsicle stick shape. So a mixing stick or even the flat side of a butter knife would work fine to apply the proper spreading. I like it best when I apply a coating, let it dry for a minute or two, and then go back and apply another for a nice thick facial layer.}

Step 3: Wear Facial
{Relax and let the properties take hold. I recommend you let the mixture sit on your face for about 15-20 minutes before rinsing, for maximum benefits.}

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Step 4: Rinse

{Rinse mixture away with warm water. Then rinse with cool to lock the amazing effects into your pores}

Step 5: Moisturize & Enjoy Your Glow!
{Seal your skin with a light moisturizer. Enjoy the glowing effects of your after-facial radiance!}

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Love & Light
Amiiiri

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Spiritual Sundays: How to Meditate (5 Easy Steps)

Greetings & Happy Sunday, Spiiirits!

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Meditation is a vital component for self-awareness and spiritual growth. The practice of meditation brings with it not only spiritual benefits, but mental and physical benefits as well. After educating myself on meditation and its many benefits, as well as beginning to experience some of the benefits myself, I believe meditation should be practiced by every human being on the planet, daily, in some shape or form. This would be beneficial, not only for each individual, but for all mankind collectively.

Many stray away from meditating because they don’t have a complete idea of what it is or how to do it. And we can all agree that Mother Culture has taught us to fear what we do not know/understand. But meditation should not be something we remain in the dark about any longer. And it should be something everyone knows how to do.

Feeling as such, I have decided to compile a basic how-to guide to meditation. Nothing too stressful, a couple of quick steps…so easy a caveman could do it! 😀

 

Step 1 – Find Your Meditation Location. Find a private spot where you feel safe and comfortable. The spot should be quiet and free from external distractions. This can range from a bedroom, a bathroom, a closet, a spot in your backyard, etc. just anywhere where you can create a comfortable, quiet, uninterrupted moment for yourself.

Step 2 – Get Comfortable. Once you have secured your meditation location, find a spot and get comfy. You may sit in a chair or on the floor. You may also lie down, though it is easier to accidentally fall asleep this way. Just choose the position that is most comfortable for you. But be sure that, no matter how you choose to sit, you keep your posture upright as to properly facilitate the flow of energy. Make sure to clear the exact spot where you plan to meditate of any clutter. Many people use crystals to amplify their meditative sessions. If you have crystals or some other object pertaining to the meditation, it is fine to keep those near you. Also, if you become uncomfortable at any later point in the meditation you can mildly maneuver. However, for best results, movement should be kept to a minimum.

Step 3 – Decide the Time Frame. Once you begin the act of meditating, it is easy for time to pass without you being aware how much of it has gone by. While some may just let the meditation lead them and just get up whenever they feel “done”, this may not be the  best move for a beginner. You also don’t want to find yourself inclined to think about time at all during the act of meditation, as this may just make you figity, and bring stress that draws attention away from your meditation. The best way to avoid this is to predetermine a time limit. This can be done by setting a timer or alarm. 30 minutes is a good amount of time to meditate, though you should feel free to do more or less. Guided meditations are another good way to decide the time frame of your meditation, but more on that later.

Step 4- Breathe & Observe. Close your eyes.  Now its time to get into the groove of actual meditation. Take deep breaths, fully inhaling and fully exhaling. Now begin to clear your mind. You can do this by focusing on your breaths or by counting to 100 in your mind as you continue to breathe. Thoughts will come during this time, but it is your job not to engage with any of these thoughts. You are to separate yourself from the thoughts, simply becoming a passive observer of them. It is important in this moment not to classify the thoughts that come as good or bad, or really respond to the thought in anyway. Don’t delve into the thought, don’t analyze it. Simply observe the thought as it passes and then send it away.

Step 5 – |END| Return to the Physical Realm. The alarm (or whatever timer you have put in place) sounds, signaling that the time has come to draw your meditation to a close. DO NOT just bounce up hurriedly. Slowly ease into the physical state of being. Start off by mentally becoming aware, again, of where you are physically. Next become aware of your physical body. Wiggle your toes, yawn, stretch. Then slowly open your eyes and re-accustom to your surroundings. It is important to do this because shifting modes too rapidly can be discombobulating. However this whole process need not take longer than one minute. Now you can get up, move about, and carry on with your day! Some people, alternatively, choose to remain in their spot and reflect upon the meditation or send silent gratitude into the Universe. This is perfectly fine as well. Go with how you feel! (which after a meditation, is usually GRRREEEAAAATTTT! 😉 )

***Quick Tip***- I mentioned guided meditations in step 3. Guided meditations are a great tool for beginners! (and pros, alike, if you ask me). They are perfect for giving those who have trouble clearing their mind, on their own, something to focus on. There are also guided meditations that cater to specific areas (such as balance, prosperity, healing, etc.). And with guided meditations ranging from as short as 10 minutes to as long as 2 hours, they can be perfect for deciding the time frame for how long you want to meditate, as well as what aspects of your being you are primarily want to focus on in each session.

Hope these tips prove helpful to you guys. Happy Meditating, Spiiirits!

Namaste

☮XOXO A.T.☮

Menswear Mondays: Paul Fredrick Summer 2014 Collection

Greetings all my sharrrp gentlemen out there! (*southern belle accent*)

Yes I’m talking to you, you stone cold playa.

Now you know a man in the right suit & tie ensemble, can take over the world! And with the recent launch of their Summer 2014 Collection, Paul Fredrick will help you do just that.

Paul Fredrick is a menswear brand started 25 years ago, originally specializing in dress shirts. Dedicated to providing high quality, the brand designs, manufactures, and directly distributes all of the items in its collections. This new collection features lightweight seer sucker suits, fashion dress shirts, and unique ties that host amazing debonair style with right-on-time colors and patterns for this Summer season.

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My favorite aspect of the new collection? Their stylish ties. I feel like the right tie takes a good suit to the next level of awesome. Here are my top 3 faves. Check out these amazing patterns & color combos!

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However, true to their original specialization in dress shirts, Paul Fredrick stocks up to 89 unique combinations of sleeve, collar and fit options in a single dress shirt style, alone. Talk about tailoring to your preferences!

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Check out Paul Fredrick’s new Summer Collection ASAP and see what they might have to fit your sleek, stylish, summer suit needs.

☮ XOXO A.T. ☮

Photoshoot Phresh: Tribal Warrior Goddess Makeup

Hey, hey, hey guys n gals!

Today, Triiinity & I had a photoshoot with amazing photographer and our good friend , KwithyKat. It is our second photoshoot with Kwith (of many more to come!) and the continuation of the first concept we ever explored with her, uni-Goddess Ilati Masalu.

{Ilati Masalu: Goddess of Balance & Equality. Ying & Yang Fire & Ice Creation & Destruction There are two sides to this omnipotent Goddess. She manifest herself as two women who are themselves two sides of the same coin. Depicting her power over all Earth’s elements, she commands power over chaos & order, creation & destruction. She embodies the importance of perfect universal balance, knowing that everything has its perfect place and perfect time. Her symbol is Asar, or the all-seeing eye. Residing on the spiritual plane she uses her third eye, seeing in light & the color spectrum, to identify and rectify imbalances that reside in the physical world.}

The first shoot was this Goddess’s introduction. For the continuation of the Ilati Masalu’s story our intent was to depict the Goddess in different situations. This one…the Goddess in anticipation of warfare.

Here’s my half of the look.

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These are quick snaps before we started shooting and the best shots I could capture really quickly. Once the pictures from the shoot are ready I will add another to this post where my eyelids are down & the makeup shows a bit better. (Plus it’ll be in HD…ooh la la, lol)

For the warrior-Goddess look we wanted to go a bit bolder with the tribal so we made black face paint, using a black crayon and coconut oil, to create these dots and lines.

On my brows I used a Wet n Wild brow pencil in Midnight Brown.

For lid shadows , I used the Coastal Scents 88 Palette. Chapstick served as a cheap primer alternative and I put a bright base coat of  2-shades-brighter-than-flesh-tone eyeshadow on top of it. This allowed the makeup look to be stable and well-pigmented.

The lid colors contain yellow, red, and two shades of orange from the palette.

I lined my eyes with black liquid liner and for mascara used both Wet n Wild Mega Protein Mascara & Wet n Wild Mega Length Mascara.

Lastly, my lipstick was a combination of some brown lip base Triiin had from a past makeup kit. A brown lip color from Black Radiance called “Copper low”, shade 5023B and a golden shade of lipstick called “24 Carat gold.”

Can’t wait for the finished products of this shoot!

Check out more of KwithyKat’s work, in the meantime. 🙂

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Do you guys like my tribal warrior makeup look? Have you done tribal makeup before? How was it similar or different to this look? I love hearing from you guys, soooo let me know!

☮ XOXO A.T. ☮

How to Care for Natural Hair

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More & more, women of color are embracing their crowning glory. Its an amazing thing, seeing all this large-and-in-charge, curly, kinky, natural hair. I just love it! However many women complain that they don’t know what to do with their natural or how to care for it. This is often times is a deterrent for women who may be interested in going natural and this issue sometimes sends naturals running back to the “creamy-crack” (as its been coined).

I’ve been fully natural a little under 2 years now (growing it out for close to 3) and in that time I’ve learned a couple tricks to the trade.

  1. Never detangle dry. Natural hair can tangle beyond belief, simply because the curls grow and curl around each other. This is a natural occurrence and while it doesn’t need to be tackled every day, it is something that will need to be tackled. Break your hair down into sections and use some sort of moisturizer or conditioner to soften your hair before you go at it. Then use a wide tooth comb and go to work. (Only pull out the rattail for small knots, otherwise you’ll be ripping out hair unnecessarily.
  2. Keep your hair moisturized. It takes a longer time for natural scalp oils to reach the tips of curly hair, simply because of our wave pattern. You have to compensate for that by keeping moisture in your hair. Pay attention to ingredients as this is very important to keeping moistue in your hair. Watch out for ingredients that strip hair such as sulfate (which is found in many shampoos) as well as ingredients like mineral oil and petrolatum which only give the appearance of moisture but actually just coat and suffocate your hair while leaving it dry and brittle. The best moisturizers are ones that have water as their first ingredient. Also, if you can’t find sulfate-free shampoo, try co-washing (washing with only conditioner). It does wonders for my hair, I actually rarely even use shampoo anymore. Leave-in is cardinal as well. Apply after washing and seal lightly with the oil of your choice. (coconut oil & olive oil can be found at your local grocer and are great for sealing and/or scalp oiling). Also sleeping with a satin cap or satin pillowcase is cardinal to keeping the moisture in your hair and off the pillow.
  3. Low Manipulation Styles & Protective Styles are your best friend. First let me state the difference between low-mani styles and protective styles. Low-mani styles are styles that do not require a lot of manipulation for upkeep. You don’t have to comb through this type of style every day and it is usually low stress on the hair. These types of styles include, but are not limited to, twist-outs, braid-outs, bantu knot-outs, etc. Protective styles protect the hair. They usually involve your hair being hidden from the elements in some way, whether it is just the ends of your hair, or your whole head. Buns can be seen as protective styles because your hair is tucked under and the ends do not have the opportunity to be exposed to the elements (and henceforth, more opportunities for breakage). Hair extensions, marley twists, bohemian braids, etc., can also be used as protective styles. Both of these methods of styling are cardinal for the natural who desires healthy hair. Our hair is just not made to be combed and raked through all the time. Sometimes it good to just leave it alone for a while. Continue to care for it an nourish it, but do not feel like you have to comb it every single day. Embrace your nappy! I usually do a braid-out or twist out and leave it that way for a week. I cover it with a satin bonnet at night and just fluff and go in the morning. If my hair gets too shrunken throughout the week I may revert to a puff or some other bi-product style, but I do not recomb and rake through it every day for a new style. I also throw in a long term protective style every now and then (My last one was bohemian braids). Giving your hair a rest keeps it from breaking and over-shedding, while helping it stay strong.
  4. Be careful with heat. I’m not going to say you can’t use heat. I mean, what’s natural hair if not versatile. But I will say go easy on the heat. You shouldn’t be blow drying and flat ironing every week. This kind of constant direct heat can pop your hair, make it dry broken & brittle, and even potentially change your curl pattern. Look up heat damage on YouTube and you will see dozens of horror stories about people who flat-ironed their hair too much and literally lost their curl pattern. It just kept getting looser and looser until it got straight…and in some cases it only took one time to cause those sort of damaging effects. With those kind of risks, excessive heat use is just not worth it, if you ask me. If and when you do choose to use heat, use a good heat protectant on your hair. Grapeseed oil is a great natural heat protectant.
  5. Remember, your hair is not the next girl’s hair. Does your hair need more protein or moisture? Do twist-outs work best for you or are puffs more your style? Get to know your hair. Pay attention to what it needs. If it is too limp, it may need protein. If it is too dry it may need moisture. If your hair tangles too much when left in a puff, opt for another style. Your hair will tell you what it needs, if you would just be willing to listen.

Before you give up on your natural hair, give it the best chance for survival! Try these couple of tips and I’m sure that you will see a dramatic turnaround in the manageability and health of your natural hair.

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♥ XOXO A.T. ♥

Trendspotting Tuesdays: Orange Lipstick + Finding Your Shade

Orange lipstick is hot, Hot, HOT for the summer.

Check out a couple of celebs that have taken to rocking the trendy color…

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Now orange is a color that can easily look tacky and loud if done incorrectly. However, it can look great on any skin tone, if you pick the right shade for you.

A Couple Tips on Finding the Correct Shade

Light Skin: Choose a very true-to-orange shade, it’ll pop against your bright skin
Medium Skin: Choose an orange with golden undertones, it’ll accentuate your skin and give it warmth without bronzer
Dark Skin: Choose darker oranges with more brown to brick undertones, it will be less harsh on your tone while giving you the poppy look you desire

For all shades: Always opt for liner whenever possible, its the secret to long-lasting and defined lips in any lipshade. (You can buy a beauty supply lipstick and make it look like a million bucks with liner, Trust Me.) Also if you can’t find your exact shade in the stores, don’t be afraid to mix colors and liners until you do!

The right orange lip gives you a fun look and a warm summer glow. And with these tips & tricks in your arsenal there is no need to fear getting it wrong. Go forth & get funky in orange!

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♥ XOXO A.T. ♥