Happiness is a Ritual

The definition of the word, Ritual claimed by Google.

“A solemn ceremony consisting of a series of actions performed according to a prescribed order.”

Has anyone wondered the key to happiness? Those days when you ask yourself when will the good days EVER start?

I can’t help but sit in bed and wonder why I led myself to those questions. I should be cherishing life everyday!! Waking up at 7 a.m!! Going on a jog!! Buying some groceries!!

Shaving my legs!! And being the best student, daughter, friend, grandchild, mentor, leader and feminist ever possible for the sake of my sanity and approval of those I love.

Wow that sounds like a lot, right? But this is a pretty average list of the small but BIG roles we maintain everyday. And for that reason, I think it’s easy to lose track of that genuine feeling of life (happiness) everyday in our lives.

Happiness is a ritual. Not a group ritual necessarily either, you’ll be happy for that later. It’s a commitment you make amongst yourself to keep light inside you. Literally a set of actions you need to establish in your life to keep balance or to restore it when insanity breaks loose.

For a prescribed order. No one knows this correct order and every order is different. But whichever destiny you have faith in, this order is meant to stay as an order and keep us from evil versions of ourselves.

Billions of people going through this complex journey, no wonder the answer only resides in you. It’s you, it really depends on you and the actions being taken to keep a stable relationship within yourself (happiness) !!

Ever heard of self-care? Lately the things that have kept my spirit running are the purchase of my new car (BMW gang!), a new gym I’ve just subscribed to, and the sense of getting my money together (heck yeah for new credit card!).

It feels new, gives me motivation and it stops me in my track once in awhile and reminds me of the good things coming my way in life. That’s key. I know I’m never getting today back or reliving the moment I stepped in my new car, so this sensation has got to last. Not for those glam moments, but for the sake of my mind.

These actions I give myself is a recipe for happiness. I give full effort in these tasks because that’s what I deserve. Neglect your actions and you’ll neglect your happiness. Sounds familiar right?

Stop what you’re doing. Think about your past few days and remember what’s been keeping that smile alive. Now keep doing what you’re doing because you’re about to ride a happy wave. I’ll be riding this wave with a glass of wine in my hand.

comment below your successes this month ❤ -Pauly

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Back to Black

Hi everyone!

I hope your Tuesday has been wonderful and get your butt off the couch! Today was a life changing day as I walk around now in my new hair, back to Black!

I originally dyed it in 8th grade and continually kept up with it throughout high school but leaving for college, taking care of it just wasn’t in the picture for me. UGH SO WRONG!

So bottom line, it’s been two years! My amazing stylist hooked me up with Redken Demi Permanent in Onyx Black & Espresso Brown to find a happy medium between the two.

I also trimmed the ends and got that nice, sharp V in the back so I regained that structure for some hair flipping lol.

Gosh, I literally forgot how rewarding and satisfying it feels to pamper yourself this way. I feel rejuvenated? Definitely not going to forget this feeling, self care is such a huge discipline I need to get into!

I also had an interview at a retail store followed by some business emails and preparations for my cell bio class. In the midst of my busy schedule, changing up my hair even if just a little bit really did vamp me up! I feel lighter and like a fresh new Pauly walked right in. 🙂

So for YOU reading this, get that color or cut you’ve been dying for! lol get it?

Enjoy your week xo

Rant with Pauly: Shade range consistency

Hi everyone!

How’s everyone celebrating their Friday tonight? Another week has flown by and for some reason I always have this irritating, lingering thought of some palettes I’ve been seeing launched.

I’m sure they’re of great quality! Morphe and Kylie Cosmetics have had amazing reviews globally and their profits seem in good shape.

But let’s talk about color scheme, shall we. Has anyone ever seen eye looks and they detail in their caption how many colors they used and you just can’t believe it? Warm, bronzey tones have a lot of shade ranges in common so it’s easy for them to look opaque and just too similar..

Duh, these colors are so effortless for a casual and even sultry look. But the idea that they’re so general and easy to use, makes you even question if it’s worth buying. Here are some pics of Morphe’s and Kylie Cosmetic’s palettes.

I could give atleast 3 pans that literally look the same! The idea of placing your brush on your eyes and expecting pigmented, unique shades just doesn’t come across these. Is it even worth the purchase or effort into launching?

Morphe Oh Boy Eyeshadow Palette


Morphe 25B Bronzed Eyeshadow Palette


Kylie Cosmetics The Bronze Extended Palette


I was so excited for the Gigi Hadid x Maybelline series but the range was so shockingly sad! And similarly, they’re very warm, dull/opaque tones. The shades just seem the same and it doesn’t makes my eyes pop at first glance. It’s hard, I get it.


Maybe some creativity will inspire a new wave of warm, bronzer tones. I just want to see some different scheme brought to the table.

While we’re here, let me show you some palettes I’ve definitely been eyeing this week. Or maybe obsessing over!

Violet Voss HG Eyeshadow Palette


Continue reading

Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters has been crowned!

Watching Miss Universe pageants since I was practically 5 years old is a HUGE reason why I dedicated so much love into this article. Miss Universe celebrates the power of femininity in so many ways – in ways that I think make us powerful human beings. Being an intellectual, a self-less friend, peace giver and a health advocate are only a few things a Miss Universe contestant must enlighten their voters and the judges.

Sunday night, Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters from South Africa was reigned Miss Universe. After Steve Harvey, this year’s host had announced South Africa would be crowned, Demi-Leigh raised her hands in disbelief and I could only imagine the emotions she was going through! What a magical moment to be sharing the stage with 91 other women from all over the world and wear the crown being placed by last years Miss Universe 2016 from France, Iris Mittenaere.

66th Miss Universe Competition

At the young age of 22, Demi-Leigh has been advocating for self defense. During the pageant, she shared her story of being robbed at gun point and how it ultimately changed her life. With the title of Miss Universe, Demi-Leigh wishes to start ‘Unbreakable’, a campaign consisting of experts teaching self defense and confidence-boosting for women around South Africa. Knowing your value and how no one can walk all over you was the premise of her motto on stage.

“It’s okay not to have a perfect life, and it’s okay to have emotions, and have feelings. If we are able to express our feelings more and share them with others, it’s so much easier to work through when you know there are people holding your hands and walking through this with you,” Demi-Leigh reassures.

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Back home in South Africa, this is MAJOR news. Demi-Leigh is the second Miss South Africa to win the Miss Universe crown since 1978. Aside from taking her modeling to the next level, she recently earned her degree from South Africa’s North Western University in Business Management. She urges women to understand how life is filled with hills and obstacles to overcome, but the humbling moment to look back and see all that you’ve done makes everything worth while.

During the question portion of the pageant, Demi-Leigh expressed her passion for equality and her hopes for a better future all around the world. “I want woman to be treated as equals in every part of the world. We are making great strides but there is still so much to be done.” She speaks on the wage gap in South Africa, women empowerment and self-defense.

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Can we talk about her gown for the final round?! A sleek, fitting tan dress with accents of sparkles to illuminate her olive skin. This dress was killer when she strutted down the walkway with some classic, ankle-wrapping silver heels. She let her curves take control as she wrapped her hair in a braided bun to extenuate her highlights – the color scheme fit to a 10!

You know we can’t skip the bathing suit round – a bright, yellow bikini to bring a smile on everyones’ face. Working hard for your body isn’t something to be ashamed of and we should all be proud and welcomed to show it off; A few contestants stated prior as a result for the backlash on the ‘bikini round’. This certain round in the pageant isn’t for men to critique their bodies or for anyone else really, it’s to celebrate the female body and all the healthy measurements we take to stay beautiful and fit. But would you look at those heels? Any girl who can strut in those is a winner to me!

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So what exactly does a Miss Universe win for her time wearing the crown? According to their contest rules if a contestant is able to fulfill her duties, she will be given a year-long salary to spread advocacy of her choice, a luxury apartment in New York City, client representation in management agency WME IMG and my favorite part, access to all the premieres, fashion shows and even some opportunities to apply for acting roles.

Currently, Demi-Leigh is undergoing her ‘media week’ as the newly crowned Miss Universe. She will be attending conferences and press releases to unveil her plans for the upcoming year and what she hopes to accomplish back at home and all around the world for women.

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A true princess! I can’t wait to see where she’ll take her platform and the advocacy she has in store for empowerment. xo

Comment below if you’d like updates of her work during her time as Miss Universe!

Red heart, Red lips

Hi my beauties! Today I’m going to go step by step on how I achieved my vanity look. I was inspired by Fall, red bold lips and some shimmy-shimmy red on the eyes to pull everything together. Enjoy!

I spend a lot of my time working on my skin because I love a flawless, full-coverage face. I skipped the primer and drenched my skin with Tarte’s Marine Boosting Mist in their ‘Rainforest of the Sea’ collection. It’s not my favorite (sometimes it leaves my skin feeling greasy) but moisturizing your skin is KEY to a smooth canvas.

For foundation I used one of my holy grail, Maybelline Fit Me in the shade 122 (creamy beige). It feels super lightweight on my skin and gives me that medium coverage..trust me, its pigmented! I have super oily skin and although it claims it gives a matte finish, I start getting a shine within an hour. But no complaints here, I’m used to it!

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Because of acne scars, I use LA Girl PRO Conceal in the shade ‘Light Ivory’ over top my cheeks to fade away any scarring that my foundation couldn’t cover. While we’re concealing, I use LA Girl PRO Conceal in the shade ‘Peach Corrector’ to cancel out my dark under bags, it works like a dream; just make sure you blend! Over the peach corrector, I use my ‘Light Ivory’ to neutralize the peach shade and bring some brightness back!

While all my creams/liquids are settling in, I start to fleek out my eyebrows with the Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Pomade in ‘Granite’ with an angled brush. Granite is the darkest shade ABH provides and it works in my favor because ‘Ebony’ was beginning to be too soft for my brows. I have extremely dark, black eyebrows! I carve out my brows with some concealer and a small-tapered brush to give that sleek, polished look. To lock my brows in, I use my Urban Decay Brow Tamer in ‘clear’, it’s not my go-to because it doesn’t add texture but at least it holds my brows in place!

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Before I set my face with powder, I use this time to contour out my cheekbones with the Sephora Contour Palette in the lightest version. The reason I powder contour over my creams is because I don’t like the cakey, powdery finish if I were to contour over my face powder. In my opinion, after I set my face with my Bare Minerals Bare Pro in the shade ‘Light Natural (09)’, it diminishes the harsh contour shade and blends seamlessly once I apply my face shade; it just looks more natural!

I use my Milani Baked Bronzer in the shade ‘Dolce (09)’, I find myself applying more than 2 layers to bring that bronzy look to my face. It’s build-able if you have the time to layer it on. I skipped the blush and moved on to my Laura Geller Highlighter in the shade ‘Gilded Honey’, this stuff is AMAZING. With or without spritzing some mist, you WILL get that gold reflex.

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For my eyes, I used two of my favorite palettes, ABH Modern Renaissance and Morphe 350. I start with some light browns in the crease and build it up so my red shades won’t start so abruptly over my eyes. I bring the red shades into the outer corners of my eyes and blend up so it’ll meet with the light brown in my crease.

I decided to cut my crease and use a light gold to compliment the red transition in the outer corner. Finally, I love darkening the very outer corners because it elongates my eyes with some dimension. I use a dark brown so it’s not that intense and only blend in that area – not up!

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One of my favorite eyeliners is the NYX Matte liquid liner in the shade ‘black’, the pigment is super dark and glides perfectly with the brush. I applied it to the outer half of my eyes so the cut crease is dominant while giving that almond-shaped effect. For mascara, I used the Maybelline Lash Stiletto in the shade ‘very black’ to really bring my lashes to life without falsies.

Now, the grand finale. Bold, red lips! With such an intense color, I like to map out my lips with a liner so I don’t go crazy and draw outside of the lines. I used the Wet N Wild Gel Lip Liner in the shade ‘Plum Together’, it’s creamy and stays on for hours. I focus a lot on my cupids bow because I love defining my top lip for that heart-shaped pout.

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My red lips are all thanks to the NYX Liquid Suede in ‘Kitten Heels’. It’s a red-blue undertone which compliments my pale skin and brings vibrance. I was totally getting that Selena vibe and I was NOT disappointed!

That’s it for today! Please comment below if you enjoyed this mini step by step vanity look. I can start going into depth and add more engagements if you’d like. Also, comment below what look you’d like to see next!

xoxo

When businesses lack customer service

I’m not one to judge. We all have issues going on in our lives and unfortunately, life DOES get in the way of our most passionate hobbies, hanging with friends and even focusing on academics. However, I do believe that taking on a business/job/lifestyle does require commitment and consistency.

So here’s my story on a business that took 3 months and 21 days to send me my small package of 2 lip glosses. This story isn’t about how awful the business is because truly, I wouldn’t have minded the wait IF there was customer service involved.

Heres the break down:

I ordered my package from Oalika Cosmetics on August 19th. I received an immediate email regarding the order number which comes automatically with any purchase. On August 24th, I became concerned because I still hadn’t received my processing email or tracking number for UPS!

What did I do? I emailed Oalika Cosmetics with the email they provide us if we have any questions (like any other concerned customer). I wrote I was beauty journalist who was thrilled to try their cosmetics and write a review on my platform for PBC Mag.

11 days later and no response. So I decided to re-send my email! Keeping myself optimistic because I was aware Oalika Cosmetics is a small, emerging beauty business with only 11.6k followers on Twitter and 1,440 followers on Instagram. Small businesses are usually under the most stress. Entrepreneurs taking a leap of faith to build their own empire, I’ll give them that; it’s not a walk in the park!

Sadly enough, I still didn’t receive a response. So I took it to the one place they HAVE to answer me to avoid public embarrassment, Twitter. And what happened? They finally decided to answer me.

Below are my screenshots that I kept with Oalika Cosmetics, via Twitter DM’s. I slowly became frustrated because I thought this was a legit company, not a company who will ignore your emails but answer you via Twitter. Please look at the dates between all these messages, you’ll see they don’t reply for weeks at a time. *Disclaimer, my conversation with Oalika Cosmetics was hostile and I’ll own up to it. But there comes a point when you’re the owner of a business, stealing customers’ money and acting as if they’re nonexistent.

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Yes, I even decided to threaten with legal action. Moral of the story: if they don’t care, they truly don’t care.

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I decided not to publish with my newspaper, they don’t need the recognition.

 

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Oalika didn’t document me with any proof. And I’m not going to believe that when I’m being blatantly ignored for a reason. 

 

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Yes unfortunately, I’m the one saying thank you

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Meanwhile during this one way conversation, Oalika Cosmetics was tweeting about new, upcoming launches and retweeting pictures of women who had been flaunting their products. My problem with that is you can’t be investing in more products if you’re not even focusing on your current issues. That goes against any value in business. If you don’t treat your customers right, why should anyone care about your new launches? 

I was constantly tweeting at Oalika Cosmetics, I even took it to Instagram. And I guess once they noticed I took my problem to another social media platform, they decided to actually talk to me again.

At this point, I just wanted my money back. At the end of the day, it’s not about buying the best of the best, it’s about purchasing and supporting businesses that actually care about you. I had one goal with Oalika Cosmetics, to help their business with my platform by writing a review and possibly a mini-tutorial.

During September, they told me their policy states they don’t do refunds until 35 days of placing your order. I begged them for three months and 21 days (82 DAYS) to give me a refund. On October 28th, they decided to change their rules and say NO REFUNDS. I was furious. Who wouldn’t be?

Strangely, I wasn’t the only one involved in this. Julie, aka @jujubeanbeauty on Twitter reached out to me with the same issue she was facing with Oalika. As a makeup enthusiast, trying out products comes with exploring new businesses. After receiving no response from the company about a color change for her order, she started to become skeptical (like anyone else would too!) Julie recently updated me saying,

“I don’t even care about my money anymore, this is too tiring. I disputed it with my bank and I got credit for it. I don’t know what they’re gonna do to get their money from Oalika.”

If you needed to hear it from another person, there’s your witness. Or better yet, there have been hate accounts in Oalika’s name for their delays and lack of customer service. Please look it up, I’m not lying!

This isn’t meant to be seen as a bashing article. If that’s the case, you don’t take critique well. I wouldn’t have minded the wait if I knew there was going to be a wait. That’s my point. That is where the customer service is lacking. Oalika Cosmetics never told me they were going to fix the issue, when it would be done or any other reassuring response.   They simply ignored my DM’s and emails for weeks at a time and continued to glorify their newest products as if they had any room to do so.

That is why they won’t be getting any product recognition on my site. Their products are beautiful and chic, I won’t lie on that. If you saw the packaging and the products, you would be tempted to buy them because you saw pictures of them from my site. But that’s not my purpose for this article. Oalika Cosmetics does not deserve more customers because of the help from my site. I tried doing that once and they rejected me in the most unprofessional way possible. 

Regardless, every emerging business will have its challenges. If you do happen to fall upon their website and fall in love with a gloss, by all means, go ahead and purchase it! Instead of me telling you to screw them and block them on social media, I’m advising you that your products will not come in 2 weeks or even one month. Fortunately, mine came in the mail 3 months and 21 days later. I was also given a loose-glitter pigment and a third gloss; I’m assuming to compensate for the wait.

And if Oalika Cosmetics is reading this, your business has room to improve. Every business has room to improve. There’s nothing wrong with that. That’s the beauty of owning your business, accepting its flaws AND working towards its goals.

As a beauty journalist, it’s my duty to inform my readers what goes on in such businesses, good or bad.

xoxo

Welcome Mother Nature back on your campus

Whether you believe climate change is real or not, nurturing our Earth is the least we can do since we’ve marked our territory on pretty much every inch of this planet. Although it’s not something we think about everyday out of our busy schedules, it seems fair we should at least incorporate easy and quick ways to take care of our planet into our very own lives.

One of the easiest ways to conserve energy is by recycling. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, they’ve estimated at least 75 percent of our waste can actually be recycled, but it turns out Americans only recycle up to 30 percent of it. That’s a 45 percent actual waste dump we’re leaving onto our precious Earth to use and produce all over again, not to mention we’re doubling our natural resource production by almost half. With helpful data provided to us, we can make arrangements and recognize that not all our waste has to end up in a landfill, we can make use of it.

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Across from Dorill Dining Hall at Longwood University in Farmville, VA are two separate trash bins for recyclable and non-recyclable items. 

Acknowledging your surroundings is the first step, take a good look around and observe what’s keeping your community from being a sustainable and pleasant environment. The key is to observe now. Creating eco-friendly habits for yourself can motivate others around you to follow in your steps, and the skills you learn on campus can easily be incorporated while you’re back home, or really anywhere on Earth.

For many people, recycling can be seen as an extra chore or a burden added to their schedule, but how can we make conservation and the act of doing it, easy and almost like second nature? Well thinking about it, recycling can actually make your life easier. It can eliminate trash build up over time if you actually separate the bins, one for recyclable items and the other for non-recyclable items. Instead of piling up one trash can, balance out the waste and get organized. If you’re not sure where the nearest recycling service is in your area, use this app to track it down at iRecycle, Earth911 Inc. on the iTunes Store.

That’s not all. By reusing recyclable products, we’re expanding their longevity and expanding our wallets. Reusing plastic water bottles can actually save your wallet the next time you take a trip to your local grocery store. Stock up on a carton of water bottles and save now. Also, there are numerous institutions around the country that will take your recyclable, precious goods and give you money in exchange. That’s an extra dollar for your buck while helping other companies modify and reuse products for sale again.

Lastly, if you’re a college student, you want to maintain a positive image for yourself and your potential company’s image of a quality employee. If you’re not going to recycle for Mother Nature’s sake, do it for yourself and how you might outshine the rest. It’s no secret not everyone is as heavily motivated to save our planet, but by expressing specific interest and commitment to your close surroundings, employers can see you as the one different from the rest, proving devotion to not only the company, but the environment around you. Transform yourself into a hard-working, well-rounded citizen and others will follow.

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Longwood University keeps a steady ratio of recyclable to non-reyclable bins throughout campus. 

A huge problem nowadays is the hesitation to recycle. Do we need to re-educate ourselves the difference between recyclable and non-recyclable items? Without a doubt, recycling standards differ throughout each community and each year, the Environmental Protection Agency is changing what’s acceptable to recycle. So stay up to date, here’s a list of what’s appropriate to recycle as of now:

  • Steel and Aluminum cans (pasta and vegetable cans)
  • Glass containers (vases and beer bottles)
  • Paper, including cardboard (juice cartons and old homework assignments)
  • Plastic (floral wraps and sandwich bags)
  • Batteries (non-incandescent lightbulbs, printers and old keyboards)
  • Electronics (cell phones, stereos and televisions)

The most essential factor when recycling any of these items, is to make sure they’re clean and physically safe to grab. In other words, don’t throw away pieces of your broken glass frame; at this point the glass can’t be used and the worker separating the products can end up hurting themselves. If you’re going to recycle anything that was touched by chemicals and/or food, rinse it thoroughly before disposing or even reusing it – that also includes rinsing your plastic water bottles too.

Here’s what NOT to recycle:

  • Pizza boxes (cross contamination)
  • Used napkins or paper towels (that’s just not right and definitely not sanitary)
  • Wet, shredded and/or colored paper (broken fibers and color-dye is not safe to reuse)
  • Prescription bottles (major identify theft alert)
  • Plastic bags and used chip bags (too much of these items can clog up machinery tubes separating these products)

When you’re on campus, familiarize yourself with the locations of accessible recycling bins when it’s time to dump the trash away. If there aren’t enough around you, speak up! There is no excuse why higher institutions can’t create a healthy, clean environment. As students, we strive off of a good-looking campus. If your school isn’t emptying the recycling bins in appropriate increments during the week like the regular trash bins, speak up and have them prioritize!

Recycling is a whole concept in and of itself, but what’s another way to conserve energy and protect the environment around you and your peers?

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A clean, green enviornment can create a positive and studious atmosphere in and out of classes. 

Well for one, stop littering. It’s possibly one of the easiest and quickest ways to destroy our planet. If it wasn’t meant to be on the ground, it shouldn’t be left on the ground. Non-biodegradable items can sit on the grass for weeks before slowly fusing out its toxic chemicals into the soil. Do us a favor and wait until you see the next available trashcan.

 

Finally, practice what you preach and stick to it. All it takes is one person to inspire another and start a movement together. A huge reason why conserving energy is hard to keep up with is because we simply aren’t used to it..yet. No wonder why you rarely see anyone committing to these actions, we all stopped halfway. All habits start somewhere, so develop yours today. Jessica Hoak, an environmental studies major at Longwood University said, “I try my best to recycle and use eco-friendly products at home. Here at school, I wish they would have better advertising of it and actually empty out our recycling bins when requested.”

Start your own club and reach out to environmental studies majors, they probably know alot more and can give fresh, new perspectives for innovative eco-friendly tricks. You can also reach out to business majors if you end up taking your club to the next level and build fundraisers. The key is to network and use your resources to the fullest extent. Kind of like the whole idea for our natural resources we’re trying to conserve.

One last reminder, stop sticking your gum beneath chairs and tables. It’s damaging your school’s property, preventing other students from studying and not giving a good look to your school – we’re not in fifth grade anymore.

Be consistent with your eco-friendly tricks and realize it’s not an overnight miracle to possess, just know it’s all for the sake of Mother Nature.

Xoxo

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Spring allergies: Give them your best fight

It’s that time of the year again and no, I don’t mean the beautiful side of Spring. I’m talking about the coughing sensation, runny nose and sore throat dilemma we face this time of the year. If you’re not prepared for the outdoors, consider trying my tips and good luck!

First, Spring means the flowers blooming into your favorite dandelions and the trees standing tall and green. April showers bring May flowers, right?

With all the wild-life blooming, that means pollen is growing and flying everywhere to fertilize other plants as far as the wind can push those small particles. So it’s no wonder you see everyone around you sneezing up a storm and grabbing the nearest tissues, it’s allergy season!

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Try Vegan 

Getting your allergies taken care of can save you the hassle of not being in bed all day. Allergies can affect your ability to work, study and even sleep. Especially this time of the semester for all my student readers, you can’t afford a sick day.

My first tip is to close your windows, especially at night before you fall asleep. Having your windows open gives any pollen or dust the opportunity to sneak in and disturb your breathing pattern. This tip is one of my favorites because from personal experience, if I leave the windows even cracked at night, my throat will suffer the consequences. I’ve even seen people use masks when they’re outside which doesn’t sound like a bad idea. You can’t escape the great indoors, so might as well work around it.

My next tip is to take a hot shower before you go to sleep. Although there are some suggestions saying you shouldn’t shower before you sleep, I think for allergy season it’s a must. Giving yourself a hot shower will allow the steamy temperature to relieve your dry pores and give your nostrils the necessary moisture it needs. After stepping out of the shower and hopping in bed, you can go to sleep in peace knowing your nose has been washed and revitalized for the next day.

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Self Magazine

I’ve had numerous questions on how to get rid of a sore throat and since my allergies result in solely sore throats- yay me- I have a few tips for this one. I really recommend drinking water, and so will any other medical doctor advise too. Think of water as your body’s personal shower – moisturizing your throat after a rough day of mucus clogging your glands. Not only that but water is key to life, essentially. The water you drink today is the water your body will use tomorrow, so fuel up!

I also suggest trying salt and water gurgles, like mouthwash. You can use it at room temperature but I usually boil my water, add salt and then wait for it to cool down for use. After a few gurgles and spitting it out, my throat no longer feels raspy or even that insane itch no one seems to be able to reach with their tongue – we’re all guilty of that. My theory to this is the salt acts as an exfoliator on the throat, cleaning all the old, mucus cells away when you spit it out.

My last tip for a sore throat is purchasing Claritin ($19) or Zyrtec ($14)

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Model Images

from your local drugstore. I’ve personally never tried either but there seems to be a rave about these two allergy-focused medications. They claim to last four to 12 hours when you’re outside in the pollen-infested fields and according to many reviews on Target and Walmart, it actually works. Now, in no way am I telling you to purchase it – I just gave you 2 D.I.Y tips at home so don’t waste money if it’s not necessary.

My last tip is probably the most important when it comes to things you can actually take care of. You can’t control the amount of pollen outside when you’re walking by your favorite florist shop, but you can control your space at home and keeping it clean. I’m not talking about the dinner table you clean every day after a good feast, I mean the furniture you haven’t moved in months – collecting dust and debris over time. Any furniture or fancy paintings you haven’t touched in ages need a good clean too. Even wetting a paper towel and swiping the dust away does just the trick.

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Shutterstock

Now that we’re practically done with Winter, when was the last time you used your fan? You’re most likely going to start using it again as the weather gets warmer and more humid, but before you turn it on, stop and clean the wings of the fan before you start walking around in dust-infested air.

Lastly, if you truly do suffer from allergies with severe symptoms, consider visiting your doctor and have them test/diagnose you for allergy implications. Even if you don’t suffer from allergies all-year round, some bacteria build up from the pollen/dust can hide dormant in your system and cause serious allergy episodes later down the road, get that treated now instead of waiting for next Spring!

The good thing about getting ready now for Spring allergies is you’ll have a stronger immune system for Summer weather. Isn’t that what we’re all waiting for anyways?

 

Virtzy: A Revolution

Imagine an app that can be your beauty destination for all things inspiration, business, wellness and so much more. Sound like your kind of personal app?

Beginning of March, Isak Mirzak and Kristina Aran came with the idea to build a social media platform devoted to the beauty/wellness industry.  Think of it as your personal realm to stay in touch with artists and their ongoing creativity.

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But it doesn’t stop there. I had a phone interview with the two co-founders in the concrete jungle of New York City.

www.virtzy.com

Download the app here!

“Our main goal (the mission) is to help beauty and wellness professionals run their businesses better…beauty professionals are able to build their portfolio from scratch and include their education, specialties and share videos/photos,” Kristina said.

Who better to trust than individuals who have been themselves, working in the industry?

Isak Mirzak is a graduate from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York with a specialization in advertisement and graphic design. He is also a professional hair stylist with 20 years of experience.

Kristina Aran is a psychology undergrad from Queens College and later took her studies to a Masters at NYU in mental health counseling. Juggling all of that while working as a skincare and makeup researcher for private companies.

Follow their journey on Facebook , Twitter and Instagram here!

Isak mentioned the struggles he faced working as a hair stylist and managing all his portfolio work in several places at once. He also noted it was hard to balance his personal and professional life under one platform. As Isak and Kristina emphasized, your audience determines your business.

With Virtzy, your profile is strictly professional keeping new on-coming clients interested in your creativity. Making this your one-stop resume galore.

“We understand the challenges these professionals face. With this, we created a platform…We want to study the behavior of the professionals and think of how else we can make this platform a better place,” Isak added.

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How is it possible to get the right audience for the right business? These strategic experts have confessed their secret. It’s all about the tools, behavior and feedback. AKA people like you and me!

“For right now we want to focus on the individuals, not businesses. We want individuals to be able to express who they are and share their unique touch/specialty,” Isak explained.

And that to me, is one of the best catches. Beauty professionals can sometimes feel swamped and overlooked by huge advertisements from businesses on other platforms. But to Isak and Kristina, it’s about us, the producer and consumer.

No gimmicks, no lies. Just truth and creativity. No more cringe-worthy ads popping up about the latest Fit Tea plan 20 percent off if you use someone’s code; This platform is about your purpose and contribution to the industry and clients.

Ok but what if I’m just a raging beauty junkie? What’s in it for me?

Virtzy has been discovered as a two-sided market, meaning it was made for you and me.

By having more professionals use Virtzy, you can stay connected with your favorite stylists and see what they’re up to. If you had trouble remembering who did your nails last week, you can look them up if they have a profile on site. Never miss out!

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Use their profile to hunt for your next look as they upload their pictures or even book an appointment right on Virtzy.

Ahhh, a new weight has been taken off your shoulders. Search for professionals by location, name, industry or specialty. You won’t have to rely on how to search for a certain niche (like Google or Facebook) because with Virtzy, one click is all you need to find your destination.

“We have more than enough professionals to give something clients to search,” Kristina added.

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What if you’re not ready to make a commitment? Virtzy has organized their app to give you a Pinterest-feel even when you’re not so sure what to look for yet. Scroll through specialities listed at the top with endless pictures and profiles like makeup, hair, tattoos, nails, personal trainers and more! 

“Our purpose was personal. I put in my 20 years of cutting hair and four years of college learning how to market and advertise. I want to do this not only for myself but for others. I have a gut feeling we’re going to be successful and make it big,” Isak concluded.

My time away from blogging and reading has mostly been spent on Virtzy just scrolling through pictures for my next summer-glow hairstyle. Not only is this app free, but it’s reliable when you’re on the search. Virtzy has you covered.

New launch of false lash brand, Baby Coco Lash

When it comes to false lashes, you either love them or you can’t be bothered to poke your eye out by them. Not only is getting into the crevice of your eyeball intimidating and terrifying, but having to pay more than $10 for a long-lasting pair is not ideal – not to mention when shipping fees aren’t included, not exactly how I imagined spending all my money.

Breaking news, a new lash brand is in town and ready to save you of your false lash nightmares! Internet sensation and CEO of Baby Coco Lash, Courtney aka Coco, has just revealed her secret project with a purpose. “I practiced (false lashes) for months and went through dozens of different brands and styles…only to find they were almost all overpriced, too short or just too heavy,” Coco explained.

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The new lash brand has claimed to be 100% cruelty-free, high quality and long-lasting all while keeping your wallet and budget intact.

“How is your lash line set apart from the rest?”

“The Baby Coco lashes are aimed for ladies and gentlemen who want beautiful lashes

while still keeping their look casual enough for everyday wear. Natural but noticeable, and most important: COMFORTABLE,” Coco said.

It’s no secret Coco has had such a huge hit with her upcoming brand. With a strong social media background, Coco has 51,500 followers on Instagram and 42,000 on Twitter making her launch that more public to her fans and viewers, including myself.

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Instagram @glitterytearz

Coco reached out to me and sent me her lashes to try and review for the past few weeks and the results were stunning.

Before applying, I trimmed the lash so it could fit my eye prior to application (I encourage you to measure the band length and trim it best to fit your eye shape) and applied my Ardell lash glue adhesive to the band, which I might add, was so incredibly thin! Having a thin lash band made the application process easier and gave it a natural look opposed to a thick lash band anyone can see from a mile away.

I managed to apply the lashes so quickly, it cut down mascara time by half! I applied eyeliner (NYX Matte Liquid) over the lash band to hide any traces of left-over glue and finally, curled my lashes to blend in with my new falsies. Voila, all done!

As far as comfort and longevity goes, these babies stayed glued to my eyes for well over five hours and I did not feel a thing. I usually have a hard time finding false lashes that don’t look heavy on my top lid as I have hooded eyelids (skin that drapes over your crease making your eyelid nearly visible) but to combat this, I applied mascara to my bottom which seemed to balance out the semi-volume and length I had going on with my falsies on top.

I found that I was obsessed with the lash length – practically touched my eyebrows which to me gives that extra, flirty look. They’ve lasted me eight wears and to be completely honest, they could be used for a few more nights out.

“How do you see your new brand influencing your mark in the beauty industry?”

“I am not a makeup artist by any means but I do know what I like and I think you guys will love how light-weight but poppin’ they are. I am so thankful for all of you who stand by me, I see you and thank God for you,” Coco concluded.

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Instagram @alexiskenzie

These lashes are perfect for nights out and days in. The lash design created by Coco was intended to space out the lashes, giving room to see your bomb eyeshadow at any time of the day. Although Coco has not released an official date, be prepared to hear anything sometime soon early April. I know, I can’t wait either!

Click here for Baby Coco’s official Instagram page & official Twitter page to stay up to date with new launches and giveaways!

Congrats Coco!