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March 2016 archive

On the Market: Eat Me Up Cuisine

Eat Me Up Cuisine’s Chef Alexia Grant is on a mission to feed the world. When she’s not cooking up vegan feasts for celebrities, including fashion designer and reality star Angela Simmons, or developing creative healthy eating challenges to engage and motivate her beloved clients, she’s lending her services to charitable endeavors like the hashtag movement #TakeCareofNewark where with the help of local activists the New Jersey native worked to feed over 700 less fortunate members of Newark’s population.

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Learn more about this amazing chef below!

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Monday Motivation: Choose Happiness

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Yesterday was International Day of Happiness. I’d be lying if I told you I knew this before yesterday. I didn’t. Like many of y’all, I found out about it through social media. I was swiping left on Snapchat to change my filter, and I happened to stumble on the International Day of Happiness filter in all it’s elaborate and colorful glory. Seems like they have a special day for everything these days, but this one in particular is so necessary.

One thing I’ve learned is that happiness is neither a person, place, or thing. It’s a choice.

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We spend our entire lives striving towards this “ideal state” of lasting happiness. It’s like the promised land or heaven for us. Many of us work, day in and day out, for achievements and money and things that we hope will bring us closer to this perfect state of happy. Many of you come to LoveBrownSugar.com to be inspired through style and beauty, because ultimately looking good equates to feeling good, which makes you happy.

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Coat & Top & Pants: Fashion To Figure | Hat & Shoes: Forever 21 | Bag: GiGi New York

And I love that this outlet provides that for many of you. But I also want you to know something even deeper and more life-changing. Even without the highest heels, the latest trends or the perfect red lipstick – you can choose to be happy.

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Even though we think our outside circumstances control our happiness, they don’t. Really, we control our own happiness with how we choose to look at and digest our circumstances. . I’ve visited some very destitute neighborhoods in foreign countries and surprisingly the people inhabiting them were often enjoying life WAY more than I was. Less money, less opportunity, less technology, less everything. But still had an excitement for life that was unmistakable.

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So lovelies, I’m challenging you this week to choose happiness above everything. Take the time to examine yourself when your mood shifts from happiness to sadness or anger or frustration. Figure out the triggers and take back some of that control. And, if you have some time this week, go to Netflix and rent this film Happy, The Movie. It goes a little more in depth on what I touched on about people around the world with way less than Western standards choosing happiness and living their best lives. It was an eye-opener for me and I’m sure you’ll love it.

Photos by Augusta Sagnelli

So how do YOU choose happy on a day to day basis? Have any tips or encouragement for others? Leave it in the comment section.

17 Tablescapes to Try This Easter

Of all the seasons, spring is ideal for creating fun and vibrant tablescapes. And what better holiday than Easter to hunt for pastel colors and blushing floral arrangements. Pair that with glass vases and colorful eggs and you’ll be set to host an impressive Easter brunch or early dinner. Your table has the potential to grow into a fresh and cheerful display with these 17 Easter-inspired tablescape ideas.

Traditional

Traditionally, you’ll see plenty of pinks and yellows used in Easter decoration.  Keep it light and airy with these traditional color choices but don’t forget to gather vibrant moss or glitter to accentuate them with, after all it is a holiday.

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Check out sixteen more tablescape options below.

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LBS Beauty Closet: 3 Lip Colors I Love from Black Opal

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Yesterday was National Lip Appreciation day and in honor of the day, I got to thinking about some of my fave lippies. Up until last year, I hadn’t really tried the Black Opal beauty collection but after experimenting with their products for this post about day to night makeup, I was hooked. It’s not always easy to find fun and vibrant lip colors for brown skin so when I found one lippie from Black Opal that worked, I decided to try a few more, and now I have a collection of colors from them I adore. Here are the top three bold, daring and beautiful lip colors I love from Black Opal:

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LBS Beauty: Get Cassie’s Braided Bun

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Perfecting a Cassie look can be tricky, but not impossible. A couple weeks ago the beauty took to instagram and posted this look. I immediately said to myself, “That hairstyle is so cute! I can do that!” This is where I thought I would master this style in 5 minutes or less. I was wrong, but click below to see how I finally got it together.

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Get Like Me: Strength of Nature Global Marketing Director Charlene Dance

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In a time where hair is being glorified in all its states, Charlene Dance is taking her position as Global Marketing Director of Strength of Nature to new heights. Managing a total of 14 brands under the Strength of Nature name (including African Pride Shea Butter Miracle, a proud sponsor of BrownGirlsLove Power Day), her goal isn’t to just merely promote and sell products, but to create and provide women of color with hair products that speak to their personal style preferences. We spoke to the hardworking boss about her role, the diversity of the beauty industry and the keys to making it in marketing.

Name: Charlene Dance

Location: Savannah, Georgia

Personal Style in three words: Professional, Versatile, Sophisticated

Favorite Designer(s): For just everyday/weekend wear, I really like Rag & Bone. I love Tadashi Shoji for eveningwear, he’s one of my favorite designers, and then professionally I love Elie Tahari.

Must Have Accessories: One of the things I don’t leave the house without, and don’t take off is my wedding ring. I’m a sunglasses girl too, so I always have my sunglasses! I have a pair of Roberto Cavalli’s right now that I like. I had a pair of Tom Ford’s that I wore over the summer, that I usually wear on weekends and then I have a pair of very simple Kate Spade sunglasses that I wear on the professional side.

Read more about this powerful businesswoman below.

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LBS Travel: 14 Destinations for Spring Break 2016

Whether you’re still hitting up sites like Groupon for last minute travel deals or patiently waiting with your bags packed for your next adventure, time is winding down and spring break 2016 is just around the corner. Traveling the world is one the best and most immersive ways to add to the richness of your life. If you haven’t made up your mind just yet, consider one of these offshore travel destinations for your spring break vacay.

Cuba

Vintage car passing modern bar nestled between dilapidated Art Nouveau buildings along the Av de Malecon.

For so long Cuba has been forbidden fruit. Americans were prohibited to venture there, to indulge in it’s emerging food culture or sigh in awe at the sight of The Malecón, Havana’s breathtaking 8km-long sea drive. No more. While traveling there still requires approval from the US Government and frequent flights to and from have yet to be established, it’s better to see the island now before it becomes a major tourist attraction.

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LBS Kickin’ It: In Her Shoes & Sundial Brands Present “The Brothers Behind the Brands”

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Everyday black women are making it their mission to show up for and support each other at brunches, panels and on social media but black men don’t seem to be doing the same.  Recently In Her Shoes Blog helped to change that as it celebrated “The Brothers Behind the Brands”. The popular inspirational blog conceptualized by Crush Media founder Renae Bluitt is known for its annual celebration of “fly, female, entrepreneurs” but after being served a healthy dose of Instagram’s ever present #blackgirlmagic Bluitt began to wonder why black men behind brands didn’t celebrate themselves they way women do. She soon took it upon herself to assemble a panel of intelligent, innovative entrepreneurs to share their experiences at Brooklyn’s WeWork. This event was an opportunity for attendees not only to learn from the men in attendance but also provide them with genuine praise and appreciation.

Being honored were co-founder of Sundial Brands Richelieu Dennis, extraordinary journalist and founder of W.O.W. (World of Wilbekin) Emil Wilbekin, Brooklyn Circus founder Ouigi Theodore, and former LoveBrownSugar Classic Man Crush photographer and co-founder of Grits & Biscuits Alzo Slade.

Find out more about this wonderfully unique event below.

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LBS Beauty: 3 Easy Steps to Master Strobing aka Highlighting

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If you’re anything like me then you absolutely love the final step of applying your makeup, which includes using pretty shimmery highlights to finish your look. The technique known as strobing is basically using a ton of  highlighters to create a more dewy, glowing, youthful look. This is one of the hottest beauty trends right now and I love it because all it requires is that you load on the light. Because we don’t want you to be shinning too bright like a diamond, here are three easy steps to get you on the right track to strobing below.

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Classic Man Crush Monday: Joe Chea

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While documenting everything from concerts to conferences, including this year’s Brown Girls Love Power Day, photographer Joe Chea brings his unique perspective to every subject he showcases. We recently spoke with the pensive photographer about art, travel, and why he does it #fortheculture.

What is your definition of a classic man?

A man that is aware of who he is and the role he needs to play to live the most fulfilled and progressive life possible.

What makes a classic woman?

A classic woman is a woman that isn’t afraid to speak her mind and go out and get things on her own. She is the perfect puzzle piece. She’s a complete solution.

Read more about Joe below.

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