Fall skincare edit

The change in weather means it’s time swap out the skincare products in my bathroom shelf just like I would my closet. Below are my picks for the Fall.

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  • Makeup remover- La Roche Posay Micellar water- I picked this up when I was on vacation three months ago and have loved it since! It takes off all my makeup and leaves my skin feeling soft.
  • Cleanser- La Roche Posay Purifying cleanser- This cleans my thoroughly and however doesn’t leave it feeling tight.
  • Toner –  The ordinary glycolic toner- I’ve loved this toner for almost two years and raved it multiple times. It’s a great treatment for my hyper pigmentation and always keep it in my rotation
  • Vitamin C – The Ordinary ascorbic acid + alpha arbutin toner – This has been a life send for my skin. I went through a really bad phase of going to sleep with my makeup on and this reversed all the side effects. This is my favorite vitamin c serum that I’ve used so far.
  • Hydrating serum – Botanics hydration burst serum- I love this affordable serum from Target! It feels amazingly hydrating without feeling too greasy.
  • Moisturizer – Origins energy boosting ginzing moisturizer- i’m not crazy about this moisturizer but I find it perfect for sealing in all the layers of product that
  • SPF- Glossier invisible shield – This is the best SPF I’ve ever used. It doesn’t leave a white cast which for my ebony queens is a miracle to find in an SPF product! It also never leaves me feeling greasy and I love the neat and neon packaging.

What products have you added to your routine with the change in season?

 

 

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Sun’s out Glow’s out!

New York’s still pretending we’ll never get summer with these drab 50 degree days but I choose to believe that any day now, I’ll be ready to get out my reformation summer dresses and all the straw bags I didn’t need to buy for the summer. To make the change from spring to summer official, below are five swaps I’m making to get my skin summer ready!

 

Primers, Primers, Primers!

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This is the biggest change I make when it comes to my makeup! Since I’ve been cursed with the oiliest of T-zones, I always get the most mattifying primer when the weather starts heating up. The one I’ve been using is the Becca matte primer which doesn’t leave a dry white caste like most matttifying primers.(*ahem *ahem Makeup forever and Urban Decay primers *ahem *ahem). The Becca primer is amazing for both liquid and powder foundations and keeps me matte for the entire work day!

 

Holy Grail MUFE velvet matte foundation

 

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When I die, kindly slather me in my holy grail foundation please. Not only does this give me the medium full coverage look I look for in foundations, it also has a velvet matte finish (just like the name suggest!) and has me feeling confident each time I leave my house. It doesn’t last alllllll day long, but I don’t mind blotting during the day as its finish is heavenly! Ladies, run don’t walk to your nearest Sephora to get yourself a 1 oz tube!

 

De-greasing toner

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I love my skincare staples like any beauty junkie. However toners are an item which I always tend to forget!! I know I know, how can I forget my skincare ABCs aka cleanse, tone, serum, moisturize, eye cream. It’s not that I forget per say, it’s that I’m so excited for my serums that I skip right over toning. I’ve however been training myself and went ahead and switched over to the very summer appropriate Murad hydrating toner to prep my skin for my cosrx serum. Now you might be thinking, “Sameera, why on earth would you be using a hydrating toner when you’re trying to be matte?” Because lovely reader, adding hydration to the skin actually helps combats le grease. When I give my skin the moisture it so thirstily needs, it doesn’t work as hard to create “moisture” in the form of oil. If my words don’t convince you to grab a bottle of this toner, maybe a stamp of approval from the godmother of skincare Caroline Hirons  might?

 

Anti-Clogging Clay Cleanser

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While every Sunday Riley fan might be losing it over the brands new influencer foundation (review coming soon), I actually am losing it over her ceramic slip clay cleanser! Now the $45 price tag is nothing to laugh at so THANK YOU MACYS EMPLOYEE DISCOUNT! However, the cleanser is performing well above my expectations. I was a little skeptical after reading its rating on beautypedia, so I’ve been thoroughly and pleasantly surprised at how well I’m liking the cleanser. The reason why I forked out for this pricey 5oz cleanser was because of the fact that it contains clay which is great at deep cleaning and getting rid of clogged pores which is essential in these hot and muggy New York streets! My final opinion is that this cleaner is great for the summer when you need to keep those pores tight!

 

Summer Scent

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I love my deep, musky spicy winter scents but even I put them on the shelf once the highlighters and rompers come out. Changing my scent to a lighter, fruitier version always gets me in the mood for rooftop happy hours and park picnics. My summer scent during my high school days consisted of victoria secret and pink body splashes but I’ve since graduated to longer lasting perfumes. This summer, my go to flirty summery scent is none other than Chanel’s Chance au Tendre. It’s the perfect blend of fruity and sweet without being too sickly.   I always get the 1oz bottle and it lasts me exactly all summer long!

What are the swaps you make for the summer?

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The best lip balms for my girls with a lot of real estate 😜

So I have big lips…they’ve been with me my entire life. They were big back in Africa where majority have bigger lips, so you can imagine how big they are here in the N Americas. 😜 Not only are they big, they’re plumpy too, exhibit A:

My main point is that I have needed a lot of lip balms in my lifetime. Therefore, I think of myself as a teensy lil expert when it comes to choosing the best balms to moisturize your lips!

  • Clinique super balm

This is a great option for the winter months when you need a jolt a moisture. It’s a $17 tube and truly leaves my lips moisturized for ages. The only gripe I have with this lip balm is the fact that it’s never in stock! I guess that must mean people really love it and can’t get enough of it!!

  • Aquaphor lip repair

This was a lip ointment that worked so well until it didn’t. It was touted to me as being the best lip balm ever! However I find in the winter it doesn’t spread or sink evenly when I put it on. It sits on the lips looking ashy and doesn’t do anything to help my parched ass lips!

  • EOS new reformulated lip balm

This brand has had a constant presence in all my purses. This particular formula I absolutely love as it always brings my lips back to life! There are a wide variety of lip balms from EOS but my favorite are the plain flavors, and theses duo sticks. They are absolutely worth more than the $4 price tag and I always ALWAYS, recommend them to my faves!

  • Jack black lip balm

This is an amazing lip balm and one that I always have in my purse! It does the job and then some. It’s also very reasonable for a premium cosmetic brand ($8)! I loved that they created the lip balm in so many flavors and I would say run, don’t walk and pick this up.

  • Smith’s Rosebud Salve

This is just overpriced Vaseline. And like Vaseline on MY lips, it was a mess from the moment I put it on. It slides right off my lips and doesn’t provide ANY moisture. The only time I use it is when I have on a dry liquid lipstick and need to take it off midway through the day. The greasy balm helps me slide all the liquid lipstick right off and then I go right ahead and put on my EOS balm.

What are your favorite lip balms especially in these winter months?

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Glossier fans rejoice! Beyoncé’s Grammy’s eye shadows have dropped

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Remember that time at the Grammy’s when her majesty, the queen Beyoncé, wore an full face of Glossier and we all almost lost it because said face featured eyeshadows we couldn’t get our hands on? Yeah, ringing a bell? Welll time to rejoice because said shadows have officially dropped!

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The product  is called the lidstar (how stereotypical-ly cool you guys!) and is basically a liquid pigment in a tube!

Lidstar lights up eyes with a wash of soft, glistening color that lasts all day. The effect comes from a delicate proportion of ultrafine multicolor pearls suspended with coated pigments in a buttery base for the silkiest, most blendable formula. To apply, dab doe foot applicator onto clean lids and use fingertips to shape. The cream dries down to a sheer veil, locking onto lids with no creasing (no need for primer). It’s one-step eye enhancement you can do every day.

It reminds me of the colorpop eye shadows but with a very handy dandy applicator! It fits right into their brand with the no muss no fuss one step shadow with no primer needed.

The tubes are $18 each which is pretty standard, but a they have a cool offer where you save $6 if you buy a duo!

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This sounds right up my alley as I’m eyeing up  Herb a smoky green with yellow gold pearl and Fawn a cool smoky taupe with violet and neutral gold pearls. Top 2  shades below.

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Welp, you know how it goes. Heading to the showroom after work and handing over some coins to Emily.

 

How about you guys? Are you getting tired of the Glossier launches? Or keep em coming???


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What I do to get ready for the week

Sunday blues are a real thing. Thinking of how amazing yet fast the weekend was and how long you are away from yet another Friday always makes my Sundays feel a lil blah. That’s why I came up with a routine on how to get rid of the grey mood I find myself in every Sunday.

  • Meal prep

Not only does this make me feel so much better while I’m doing it, it makes my life so much easier during the week! I always ALWAYS feel guilty for buying lunches during the week. So I always thank my Sunday self for the prepped lunches.

  • Make plans during the week

Who says you only have to hang out with your faves on the weekends? As someone who feels best when I’m laughing with friends, Im always excited when I know I’ll be seeing my faves during the week. Another great thing about living in NY is the endless amount of things to do in the city. So I always make sure to check timeout’s list of events and the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) calendar. Just last week, I was able to see my new fave actress Danai Gurira, in a screening of the incredible movie “Mothrr of George”. Next week I have a talk with Neil Gaiman to see at BAM!

  • Plan outfits

This makes my mornings SO MUCH EASIER. I am definitely that person that loses inspiration with regards to getting dressed unless I have something new. A great way I’ve gotten over this hump is making a list of potential outfits right on my notes app. It has helped me on really tight mornings when I’m panicked and frustrated. Another great way to prep outfits is Polyvore or Pinterest!

  • Clean out your main space

For me this is my bedside table, vanity and living room. I feel so refreshed whenever I do this. It makes me feel way less cluttered and disorganized and ready for the week.

  • At home facial

This is the last step on Sunday nights, and it really makes me feel like I have my shit together. What else says you’re doing this adulting thing right more than layering on all the sheet masks, peels and hydration treatments. I always light a candle (current fave is anything lavender scented) to make it feel all the more spa like. I always do the facial in my plushest of robes and end it in the comfiest of pajamas right in time for bed.

Do y’all get the Sunday blues? How do you chase the feeling away?

Top 5: February

Hermès: Eau de Rhubarbe Écarlate

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This has been my winter fragrance and I’ve loved dousing myself in especially thsi February. It’s fresh yet fruity, soft yet commanding, and sensual yet not too overpowering. Plus the bottle and packaging are very adorable. $130 for 100ml

Bare minerals bare pro foundation in Truffle 

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I’ve been UBER lazy when it comesto putting on my makeup this month so this has been my saving grace. All I do do is sweep it all over my face and it blurs everything, and give me a glow I do not deserve. Run and buy it @ $30 a pop!

SMASHBOX: LIQUID LIPSTICK IN GIRL GANG 

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You see that little smirk on my face above, that’s the face you make when you find the perfect plum/fuschia lip colour you’ve been searching for since eternity! I love using this paired with Mac lipliner in Nightmoth or Color pop’s Ellarie for an ombre look. The smashbox liquid lip lasts FOREVER and doesn’t dry out my lips AT ALL. You know the deal…go run and buy $24

ABH: CLEAR EYEBROW GEL

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Already a cult fave, not a lot of words needed. This simply keeps my brows in check and helps my lazy self leave the door looking like a high functioning adult.

SELF MADE SHEA BUTTER SOUFFLE 

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I love using Shea butter as a body moisturizer in the winter months. I however also find the raw version very hard to use, and not very exciting. I then discovered a line called Karité sold by a lovely pair of Ghanaian sisters in Dekalb market, and fell in love with their shea butter body cream. The $50 tag for their cream is a little steep to repurchase every month, so I looked into making my own Shea butter body cream. I simply add some essential oils and whip it into a consistency I love and voilà! My very own body cream.

What have you guys been living this month?


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Favorite red lipsticks: dark skin

As a beauty junkie that bought her first bullet of Ruby Woo at age 17, finding the perfect red lipstick is a topic I feel extremely passionate about.

I have tried so many of the red lipsticks out there that I could fill a cube with the amount of red lipsticks I own. I however scaled it all down and have curated for you guys below, the top three red lipsticks that I can’t live without

 

3)Mac:  Ruby Woo 

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I bet a lot of you are surprised that this isn’t #1 but let me explain. Although I do love a dry immovable MATTE lipstick, Ruby Woo just sucks too much moisture out of my life.  Hence, the #3 spot. It is I believe the #1 red in terms of sales in the U.S and for good reason! It suits so many women of different skin tones and has been touted as the universal red by Mac itself. At $17.50, it also can’t be beaten and also lasts a long time on the lips. I’ll always love this lipstick for being my first ever statement lip and for being so universally flattering.

 

2) Chanel La Fascinante 

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I’d been on the hunt for a true blue red lipstick and this one is truest blue red lipstick I’ve been able to find in the market. It also has a soft velvet finish that makes it feel comfortable all day long. I love it because it doesn’t look orange at all on my skin tone and doesn’t fill into any cracks or lip wrinkles you may have. The $37 tag is a little steep for a lipstick, but the gorgeous package kind of makes up for it

 

1) Sephora creamy lip stain: Always Red

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My favorite red lipstick HAS to be the $14 Sephora liquid lipstick. It feels so light when you put it on, yet lasts all day without feeling dry/tight which for a liquid lipstick is miraculous. It’s not too orange and not too blue but the perfect Goldilocks red. I bought my first tube senior year of college and have repurchased 2 since then which is saying a lot, as the tube has a lot of product. I simply just love how bright the red is.

What are your ride/die red lipsticks?

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Getting back to basics

Over the past couple of months, I’ve neglected my skincare routine. I know, shameful. Y’all are free to drag me. It wasn’t something that happened suddenly but slowly over the winter months. I wasn’t wearing much makeup or going out much so I kept convincing my self that going to bed without washing my face was no big deal (*** insert GoT shame gif)

After really looking at my face over the weekend, and seeing the damage my laziness has done, I’m slowly trying to get myself back to a semblance of a skincare routine. Below are a few tricks I’ve used to motivate myself to go through my routine, when I’d literally rather be doing anything else. 😥

  • Play a Youtube video while doing your skincare routine.

I recently got a pop socket for my phone and it’s been a game changer. It helps me watch videos while doing chores and especially while washing my face. My favorite people to watch at night while going through my bedtime routine are Fleur, Estee, and Amelia. They’re so chill and inspirational in terms of skincare routines, that I have no choice but to plow on with mine

 

  • Facetime a friend who’s also into skincare

This is a little unusual but it has helped me so much! My friend and I have the same schedule and love catching up before bed. This way, we also get to see what we each use during our routine. We tend to face time on Sundays as we both have more time to chat and catch up on all things fun, like the thirst levels produced by the box office hit that is Black Panther 😛

  • Do it right after walking through the door

I tend to have a lot of more energy as soon as I get home compared to at 10 pm when it’s time to go to bed. For that reason, I immediately walk myself to the bathroom when I know I don’t have to leave my apartment for the night and take off my makeup. It makes the rest of my night feel like a Sunday.

  • Use multipurpose products to make the process go by faster

I’ve found I get exhausted just thinking of the 4-5 serums or the 10 steps in my routine, so I’ve tried cutting down the process. One way I did this was in using products that are muilti-functional. For e.g. my beloved toner which has 7% glycolic is already a treatment because of the high % of glycolic acid. Therefore I feel satisfied to use a basic serum afterwards and then a moisturizer instead of using two serums (one to prevent oiliness and one to target hyper-pigmentation) so my routine goes by much more quickly.

The current steps in my routine consist of the below

  1. Makeup remover-Bioderma
  2. Cleanser: M-61 Glycolic cleanser
  3. Toner: The Ordinary 7% GA
  4. Serum: The Ordinary Buffet
  5. Moisturizer: Glossier priming moisturizer

P.S, I ditched using a separate eye cream recently and instead take my already potent night cream and take it up high.

What are some tricks you use to motivate yourself to go through your skincare routine.

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Worth the hype? Glossier’s NEW solution

Now I’m here for brands snatching my edges every once in a while, and a brand that I will let take my wig along with my edges, is none other than Glossier. The brand once again proved they know their customer base and its needs when they dropped a brand new product called SOLUTION, with nary a peep to the general populace.

Girls went crazy as you’d expect, and the launch in a manner very similar to their fragrance launch, has drawn a wide range of reviews (eye emoji, eye emoji, eye emoji). I took myself to their showroom once again and picked up a brand spanking $24 bottle, in the hopes of giving my own two cents.

The toner claims to transform skin in four weeks by

Gently sloughing dead cells away through chemical exfoliation, dissolving the bonds gluing problematic dead cells to the healthy skin beneath.

With daily use, expect cleared acne and blackheads, smaller pores, and reduced redness. Skin’s texture will be smoother and softer, and the fabled glow of balanced, healthy skin will be in full force.

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They honestly had me at “smaller pores” and the rest of the things it does sounds mighty great. My my main excitement however was on the beautiful list of key ingredients. Y’all know how I feel about glycolic acid so guess how excited I was to see the below.

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I already love my AHA + BHA mask and my 7% Glycolic acid toner from The Ordinary so I’m super excited to see what this does for my skin. Fingers crossed it DOES NOT unseat my current HG toner from The Ordinary because I’ll take $7 > $24 any day!!

Have you guys tried the solution from Glossier? Did you like it, love it, want to marry it?

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