February 2015 archive

Confessions of a Shopaholic: Plus-Size Activewear

Plus Size Active Wear Collage with text If you’re anything like me this three degree weather is definitely not helping you reach your February fitness goals. Because lets be honest it’s hard to stay motivated when you have to move a mountain of snow off of your car. Luckily retailers like H&M and Nordstrom are presenting flawlessly fitted plus-size activewear options that are so cute you’ll want to climb out from under the covers just to show them off.

This sweat resistant, multi-colored, tank top from H&M is not only practical and stylish it’s a steal at just $12.95. The print invokes the celestial theme seen at Marc Jacobs for a much more affordable price. Vibrant color is just the things to cheer wake you up on a chilly day. Layer this tank underneath a fleece or down jacket for any outdoor fitness activities.

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3 Ways to Rock It: Blanket Scarves

3 ways to rock it blanket scarves with text Collage

Blanket scarves are the infinity scarves of this cold-weather season. They are a must have accessory in this soon to be eight degree weather.  Bloggers Kela Walker, Courtney Fowler and Rachel Parcell have found unique ways to rock this item reflecting each of their personal styles.

Courtney Fowler of Color Me Courtney opted for pattern play  pairing the plaid in her fringed scarf with leopard booties. She kept her beauty look simple by sticking with her trademark red lips finishing the look off with a matching red coat and tortoise shell shaped leopard sunnies from Karen Walker. Not confident about mixing prints? See how Christina pulls off the look here .

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The Truth About New York Fashion Week


This past Thursday, February 19th concluded Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2015 and also marked the close of my 11th consecutive season covering New York Fashion Week. That’s right, you can consider me a seasoned veteran of NYFW as I’ve been attending as press since February 2010. Just one season prior to that I had my first experience ever under the tents (back when they were hosted at Bryant Park!) as a VOLUNTEER. It was my one dream growing up watching the shows play on NYC Access TV and watching fashion commentators like Constance White and Phillip Bloch do reviews of the shows live on air, that one day I would have the opportunity to sit front row at the shows.


So it comes at no surprise that once I found out about an opportunity to volunteer at the shows and FINALLY get my foot in the door – I took it! At the time I was an intern at BET Networks and I asked my boss for permission to miss a few days of work so I could fulfilly my lifelong dream of going under the tents at Bryant Park. All I wanted was access. I just wanted to be under the tents – the mecca of high-fashion trends – and rub elbows with the best of them. And be validated as an insider.


Fast-forward 5 years and 11 seasons, and I’ve now had the opportunity to attend many of those same shows I was dying to get access to, I’ve covered every designer under the sun and been backstage to see many of the beauty trends before they even hit the runway. And now after 11 seasons, countless broken heels, arguments with rude PR girls and 3,807,403 celebrity selfies later – guess what? I’m over it.


Before you think I’m completely DONE with everything Fashion Week related, let me preface this open letter with this – I still love and appreciate everything Fashion Week represents. It’s an amazing opportunity to see the work and art that many of these designers have spent countless hours creating and conceptualizing for the world to see.

I love what Fashion Week is supposed to be. I hate what Fashion Week has become.

What I can no longer stand to endure is the systematic and (sometimes) intentional dismissal of certain audiences from the conversation around high fashion.


If you look around the rooms at the most prestigious NYFW events you’ll see a very select group of black editors, bloggers and influencers covering the shows. And only them. We all know each other. We wink, wave and nod at each other from across the runway. And season after season we ponder about why there are only a select few of us in attendance. Season after season we have to re-confirm with the same PR girls our names and affiliations, assure to them that we are (in fact) on the invite list and then proceed to be placed in 2nd or 3rd tier seats because an editor of color with an audience of color obviously doesn’t deserve to be in front row.


I think, more than anything, I’m really over how pretentious and phony people are during Fashion Week. Attending the shows used to be about the thrill of seeing the trends hit the runway first, keeping your audiences on the brink of what they’ll likely see in stores the following season, and giving beauty-obsessed girls (who may not be able to afford the high end luxury looks) a chance to get the runway look via hair, makeup and nails. These days, NYFW is more about getting your picture taken by Tommy Ton or The Sartorialist on the steps of Lincoln Center by wearing the most absurd an overtly over-the-top ensemble, than it is about covering the shows.


It’s about seeing and being seen. And while I LOVE the opportunities that blogging and digital democracy have afforded online writers and influencers, our worth and importance under the tents is now determined strictly by the number of social media impressions we can give a designer’s hashtag. Not about our genuine love for the brand, or our audience’s likelihood to purchase. It’s about the numbers.

Anyway, though I’m not as in love with it as I was when I first started my career, like an ex you never get over – I’ll always have love for New York Fashion Week. The truth about New York Fashion Week is that braving the tents has taught me so much about myself and about what it takes to succeed.


 Cape: ASOS | Top: H&M | Leggings: Missguided | Shoes: Zara | Bag: H&M | Necklace: Street Vendor

I’ve learned to be comfortable with rejection and comfortable with hearing the word “no” over and over again. I’ve learned not to take things personally when people are incredibly rude to me when they don’t even know me because, well, being rude at NYFW is a way of life. And above all, I’ve learned my worth and what I will not accept or tolerate. And those life lessons – all learned within a 7 day span of time, only twice a year in February and September – those lessons are priceless.

So next September during Spring 2016 shows when you see me snapping an “obligatory #selfie in front of Lincoln Center”, know that there’s alot more being endured behind those tents than meets the eye.

What are your thoughts on New York Fashion Week? Does any of this surprise you? Feel free to leave me your opinions in the comments section below.

Photos by Lydia Hudgens

Red Carpet Countdown: Oscars 2015 Red Carpet

oscars red carpet


Last night was the biggest and final show of the awards season: The Oscars! This award show is the one we’ve been waiting for because the celebrities save their best looks for last. Despite the lack of racial diversity in the award nominations this year, that didn’t stop these ladies from giving life on Oscars 2015 Red Carpet! See all their life-giving looks below.

Related:Red Carpet Countdown: Grammys Red Carpet 2015

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Best of NYFW Fall 2015 Street Style

nyfw street style fall 2015

New York Fashion Week Fall 2015 is officially over, but we’re still taking the fabulousness all in. One of the best parts of fashion week is the amazing street style! Everyone is always dressed in the hottest trends and boldest looks. Despite the freezing weather and snow we had this season, the fashionistas were still out and about. Being fabulous is a full time job! See all our favorite NYFW Fall 2015 Street Style looks below.

Related: Brown Girls Love Fashion Week

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The Ultimate Red Lipstick Guide For Brown Girls

PicMonkey Collage

Adding a pop of red lipstick is the easiest way to spice up a casual outfit or fun evening dress! Red lipstick is one of those shades that can complement so many different skin tones. If you are on a hunt for the perfect lip color for your complexion keep reading for the ultimate red lipstick guide for brown girls and tips for pulling off this bold color!

Related:The Ultimate Purple Lipstick Guide for Brown Girls 

1. Ruby  Woo By MAC: This may be the holy grail of red lipsticks for us brown girls. The color pay off of this matte lipstick is rich and vibrant. The only issue most have with this product is how drying it can be on the lips. When rocking this lipstick be sure to apply a lip balm first! This red shade has a subtle blue undertone that complements a variety of brown skin tones.


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Essence Black Women In Hollywood with Lincoln

essence-black-women-in-hollywoodOn this past Thursday, I was invited to attend and cover one of the most incredible and inspiring award ceremonies I have ever attended. The Essence Black Women in Hollywood luncheon and awards ceremony sponsored by Lincoln Motor Company is by far one of the best events I’ve ever attended.



This special day, taking place a few days before the Oscars, is dedicated to celebrating and honoring the outstanding achievements of women of color in Hollywood. Women who dominate the big and small screens, who take on roles that are transformative and groundbreaking, and who take the charge in representing our stories and our realities for the world to see.


It was not only a pleasure but an absolute honor to be in the presence of such greatness. Guys, I MET OPRAH. I literally stood next to her, embraced her and got a #SELFIE with her! And I have to thank Lincoln Motor Company for making that possible. The event was attended by notables and VIPs including Common, Laverne Cox, Viola Davis, Ava DuVernay, Uzo Aduba, Kelly Rowland, Mara Brock Akil, Tracee Ellis Ross, Shonda Rhimes and so many more! Here’s how my day went:

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Runway Review: Best of Fall 2015

Runwa y Review Fall 2015 CollageThere are literally hundreds of presentations that take place during fashion week, and I’m just speaking of the domestic showcases. One can literally go into a fashion tizzy from all of the new trends, ideas, and statements that are presented each season. But luckily for us, the stars always align in our favor and designers display similar ideas that we can digest as trends. Fall 2015 is no different, and there are indeed a few standout trends that we can take note of to look out for come fall.

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Red Carpet Countdown: Essence Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon 2015

black women in hollywood collageYesterday the 8th Annual ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon took place in Beverly Hills. Presented by Lincoln Motor Company, this luncheon celebrates the talented women of color in the movie and television industries. Our Editor-in-Chief, Christina, was there with all of the biggest black names in Hollywood to celebrate their accomplishments and even got to meet Oprah! In addition to their talents, these women are equally fabulous! Keep reading for our favorite looks from the event.

Related: Red Carpet Countdown: ESSENCE Black Women in Music 2015

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LBS Red Carpet Beauty: Bouncy Curls With African Pride


Last week, when I attended the NAACP Image Awards screening event with African Pride and Walmart, I had a pretty simple beauty look. Before I left for my trip, my hairstylist Seto Mccoy gave me a fun side part and long flowing tresses with a u-part wig he made using Vixxenn Hair extensions. I haven’t actually had long straight hair in a while so this was a fun look to switch up from my normal curls.

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