Tuesday, September 29, 2009

New Amerykah Part 2 release date????

I was delighted to wake-up to a lovely e-mail that said Erykah Badu's highly anticipated "New Amerykah Part II: Return of the Ankh" will be released on Feb. 26, 2010.
But knowing how Badu works, I'm also kind of skeptical.
That's my girl, my fave singer in fact, but home girl changes release dates like Madonna changes her image.
"Part II" and "Part III" were supposed to be released last year, the same year that "Part I" came out.
So I don't know about this one.
I'll believe it when I hear a first single and see an album cover.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Taj Mahal

Me, Poh Si and Mayank went to the Taj Mahal in Agra on Saturday.
It was a three-hour train ride from New Delhi.
What a beauty it was.
It's massive and marvelous and gorgeous and grand.
A very breathtaking sight in person.
The inside has colorful flower inlays and intricate details.
It has very tall marble ceilings and floors. What a wonder.
The ironic thing was that I ended up being the attraction later on in the day.
The Indians have been staring at me since my arrival but it got funnier at the Taj. Children waved at me. They smiled and pointed too. People wanted me to take photos with their babies! I felt like Obama must've felt during his campaign stops. LOL.
The attention was kind of annoying at first but I've got to admit, it felt very flattering in the end. After all, children are innocent (and cute).
Mayank says the attention stems from my locs and features. I look "African" and they've never seen anyone like me in real life before, he said.
Makes sense.
The Indians did ask me if I was "Aprican."
I told them I was African American. They kept staring. And smiling.
I just laughed and smiled and waved and held their children.
We laughed at that scene all night.
Good times:)

These little girls kept looking at my locs, lol.

Jiggetts loves the children, lol.

Me getting my Obama on by waving to this cute baby.

Holding this adorable baby.

Me and Poh inside the Taj.

Poh and Mayank in front of the Taj.

These kids were so adorable.

Friday, September 25, 2009

India So Far...

Me and my girlfriend Poh Si at a party at her apartment.

I'm having a great time in New Delhi. There's so much to see and so much to do. The food is to die for; very spicy and veggie-friendly. The clothes are beautiful. The people are gorgeous. The road conditions could be a little better but we're getting around safely. Yesterday, we went to the Durga Puja festival. It is a homecoming ceremony for the eight-armed Hindu goddess Durga. I've taken lots of photos of my trip so far but unfortunately, my camera won't upload to my girlfriend Poh Si's Apple laptop. She has uploaded some of her photos to her Facebook page. Check out the link here: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2178328&id=11710605&l=a5b291aa70. Today, we're going to the Taj Mahal in Agra, India. Pics of that will come soon, I promise. Continue to pray for my safety and well-being. Love you all and see you soon.

A Malaysian curry dish that Poh Si made. It was sweet curry, but still yummy to my tummy.

At Poh's apartment again.

Lots of cool people and good food at the party.

Me and silly Nitin at the Durga Puja festival.

Saturday, September 19, 2009


Hi all,

Just wanted to let you know that I'll be on vacation in India starting today until Oct. 5.
I won't be posting as often as usual.
Please pray for my safety and well-being.
I'll post pics and stories shortly after I return.

Best always,


Friday, September 18, 2009

Weekly HLMN Beauty Blog Round-up

BeautyLuxe has compiled the ultimate Fall Beauty Guide.

Check out exclusive peeks backstage during fashion week and the man of the week at Beauty Sweet Spot.

Best Things in Beauty has a fabulous giveaway contest going; you could win a Giorgio Armani Beauty Crema Nera Regenerating Cream ($230).

Claire's Beauty is really loving the new L'Oreal Telescopic Explosion Mascara!

DenimDebutante learns more about ECBC, a shopping site for women, by women (with a giveaway bonus!)

Fab Finds Under $50 has selected 20 items for $465 creating over 40 outfits for the plus size gal!

Fab Glance Nashville takes a look at the new owl-inspired jewelry trend.

Fabulous Over Forty discovers the wonderful Spa Bath products of Lisa Hoffman Beauty.

Gouldylox Reviews shares what to do when haircuts go wrong.

Go backstage with Francois Nars and Marc Jacobs at the Marc Jacob's Fashion Week Spring 2010 runway show at The Glamour Whore.

The Informed Makeup Maven previews Victoria's Secrets Holiday Collections.

Krasey Beauty goes backstage with Mehron at Vassilios Kostetsos.

Marina from Makeup4all tells you how to create bright coral lips that you could see at NYFW.

Check out MAC Bible Secrets and My Views on Color Theory at The Makeup Snob.

theNotice has finally found the perfect blue-red lip colour -- honestly!

Temple of Glam is serving up NY Fashion Week Coverage + "True Blood" Inspired Beauty.

Money Moment: Having No Cable a Good Thing For Me

When I first moved to Maryland, I decided to hold off on getting cable so I could save a couple of bucks.
Well, it's been a little over a year and I still don't have cable.
Don't plan on getting it neither.
I'm saving about $30 by doing this.
It's all good though.
Most of the TV shows I watch are all online.
If I want to watch a movie, I'll just pop a DVD into my computer.
And I'm able to do more writing, reading and listening to my records.
My TV just sits idle in my living room.
And I keep some green in my pocket:)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

One-word product reviews

Hey there. I've recently bought and acquired plenty of beauty product. Instead of doing one post on each item, I thought it would be different to do one-word reviews instead. Read on:

-Free Victoria's Secret body lotion: Citrusy.
-Free Aveda hand cream: Nice.
-Free Aveda feet lotion: Soothing.
-Boscia Clear Complexion Tonic: Refreshing.
-Free Caudalie Day Perfecting cream: Soft.
-Korres Basil Lemon Showergel sample: Fragrant.
-Oatmeal Face Mask sample from The Body Shop: Gentle.
-Giovanni body butter in Grapefruit Sky: Subtle.
-Smoothing Touch Sweet Blossom body butter: Sweet.
-Lancome eyeshadow in Brown Mist Shimmer: Natural.
-Hard Candy eyeshadow in Sour Apple: Okay.
-NYX Luxurious Black Label Lipstick in Tribute to Marylyn: Sexy.
-Korres make-up removers: Productive.
-Korres primer: Decent.
-Carol's Daughter Toner: Sweet.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Product Review: Suave Body Wash

Last month, I scored a $1 off Suave coupon from the RedPlum sales insert.
I paired the coupon with a sale at Target and ended up getting two bottles of Suave body wash for $2. Yeah!
I got scents in Cocoa Butter, which I gave to the boyfriend, and another one in Wild Cherry Blossom.
The wash is part of the brand's new naturals line.
Loved it.
It was light, sudsy and did the job.
I like to call it the poor woman's Cherry Blossom.
Pick up a bottle of the Suave wash here.

Photo courtesy of www.drugstore.com.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Money Moment: How I Spent $30 on 5 Fall/Winter Coats

I was in the market for an inexpensive fall jacket to wear to work. Didn't want to spend a lot of money so my first place, naturally, was to visit the local thrift shop. I found these two jackets for $5 and $7, respectively:

This jacket is by Forever 21. I thought it would work well for a crisp fall day. Can't go wrong with a blazer.

This jacket is by Gap. I liked it for its casual look. Cute deal.

While in Walmart on Friday, I came across these CUTE jackets on the clearance racks. Can you believe they were only $7!!!???!!!

I've always wanted a trench coat so when I saw this, I had to get it. Tried it on. At an XS, it was a size too small. Still got it though. You can never go wrong with a trench coat. It works for professional settings and play. Plus, I can also have it for when spring rolls around next year.

And since they had it in black, I got that color too. Yay!

I also got the jacket in the first picture. It is both very professional and chic. It has a structured look. And since it's a neutral, it'll go well with lots of colors. But it's one size too big. Oh well. No one has to know but me.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Weekend Haul: Beauty and Music Treats:)

Here's a pic of some goodies I got from Towson Town Center this weekend.

Happy Monday,

I had a great weekend. Very productive, relaxing and fun. I went shopping at my fave mall, the Towson Town Center. Hadn't been in ages and I needed to treat myself. I found lots of goodies and freebies there:)

Here are the beauty items I got:
-Free Victoria's Secret body lotion
-Free Aveda hand and feet lotion offer
-Boscia Clear Complexion Toner from Sephora for $20
-Sephora Body Wash for $2
-Free Caudalie Day Perfecting cream
-Free Smashbox Lid Primer
-Korres Basil Lemon Showergel sample
-Lancome Paris Anti-Wrinkle Cream sample
-Carol's Daughter Toner Sample
-Korres Face Primer Sample
-Korres Face Wipes Sample
-Two Face Mask Samples from The Body Shop

All that and I only spent $22 (on two items)??!! Holla. And on a sidenote, I learned from a Sephora lady that I had been using toner the wrong way. I had been applying toner after taking off my make-up. "You're supposed to cleanse, tone and then moisturize," she said. Womp, womp. Hey, you learn something new everyday, right??

On the music end, I picked up Joni Mitchell's "Court and Spark" and Nat King Cole's "Golden Treasury: Unforgettable" from my local thrift store. The Mitchell record was $1.67. The Cole record was $5; not bad for a box set of six records:) I've listened to the Mitchell record and love it, especially since it contains one of my fave Mitchell songs, "Help Me." The Cole record is just as beautiful.

Records by Joni Mitchell and Nat King Cole join my collection.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Make-up Moment: My Fave Lip Glosses

I'm definetly a gloss girlie that doesn't discriminate when it comes to lip products.
I have a nice little collection of the pout prettiers and here are some of my faves (in no particular order):

-Iman: Very classy. I love the shimmer and sometimes use it as a lipstick.

-Juicy Tubes: I recommend this brand to my girlfriends because it lasts long and isn't sticky. It's worth the price tag.

-Victoria's Secret: A cheaper version of Juicy Tubes, in my opinion. Has nice coverage and tastes good.

-HIP: I love this gloss because it's not too shiny and has a beautifully pigmented color. I use mine as a substitute for lipstick sometimes.

-Make-up Forever: I got a sample of this from Sephora earlier this year and have been using it ever since. It makes your lipstick pop.

-C&O Bigelow: love, Love, LOVE this gloss!! It softens, conditions and shines your lips. I can almost feel it working when I apply it.

Um yeah, I know that's a lot of glosses. But a girl can never have too many lip glosses, right? What are some of your faves?

Photo courtesy of www.lancome-usa.com.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Product Review: Bliss Big Blue Bar

Ever buy something because of the name?
I did that when I saw a bar of bliss' big blue bar soap on clearance for $6 at T.J.Maxx about a month ago.
Got all excited until I finished using it.
I liked the size of the soap. Felt like I was getting a lot of soap for my money.
And I also liked the grooves on one side of the soap. It created a nice scrubbing action.
But I didn't like the soap's soft foamy action. I loves me some suds and although I felt somewhat clean afterwards, this bar didn't have enough of them for me.
The smell wasn't good neither. Too medicinal.
Needless to say, I wasn't as impressed with this bath buddy.
I expected more, especially from bliss.

Photo courtesy of www.drugstore.com.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Freebie Find: Hallmark Card from Walmart

We live in technological times and sometimes I think we forget how impactful that small, personable touches are.
For example, messages are sent with the click of a button.
I'm guilty of it too, I know.
But I also love the sight and feel of a hand-written message, mainly a card.
I love both receiving and sending them.
That's why I was delighted to find this goodie on the Walmart wire: a free Hallmark card.
Just fill out your information and you should get the card in about four weeks.
Sweet deal.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

So Much for "Shop My Own Stuff" Month:(

Last week, I wrote that September will be called "Shop My Own Stuff" month.
Well, I fudged.
Yesterday, I bought several beauty items that were on clearance from Marshall's.
(That place truly is the devil; they ALWAYS have a good deal in there.)
Here's what I got:

-One jar of Giovanni body butter in Grapefruit Sky for $5. (I own this in the shower gel and like their products.)

-One jar of Smoothing Touch Sweet Blossom body butter for $4.

-One Lancome eyeshadow in Brown Mist Shimmer for $1.

-One Hard Candy eyeshadow in Sour Apple for $1.

I really didn't need the shadows, but they were Lancome and Hard Candy eyeshadow for $1!!!!!! I would've been stupid to leave them.
And the $4 creams were warranted only because my skin gets super dry during the fall and winter months.
Plus, I didn't have any body creams on hand.
I knew this "Shop My Own Stuff" month would be hard for me to do.
Guess I'll have to give it a try sometime early next year.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

House Helper: Coconut Oil

One of my summer go-to moisturizers has been coconut oil.
I love this oil because like shea butter, it's so multi-faceted.
It can be used while cooking, on skin, as a supplement and in your hair.
I love it on my skin because it's very light, as I feel moisturizers should be in the sticky, humid and hot summer weather.
I use the Nature's Way EfaGold brand and get it from Whole Foods for about $10.
It's a good buy and even better product to keep around the house.

Photo courtesy of www.drugstore.com.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Music Moment: Betty Davis

Betty Davis.
I don't even know what to write next.
All I know is I think this woman is one of the most underrated singer/songwriters in music history.
Wanna know why I feel that way?
Because of her musical courage.
Davis released three funk albums during the '70s.
They were "Betty Davis," "They Say I'm Different," and "Nasty Gal."
Most of her material was about sex.
Yes. S-E-X.
And she made it sound soooooo good. Was so unapologetic about it too.
I love that fierceness.
But that's why Davis wasn't really accepted by the mainstream.
She took musical risks that no one else did. And she was waaaay ahead of her time.
She still had a small following though.
I've been blessed to discover Davis' music through the Internet and word-of-mouth.
I own all three hard-to-find vinyl recordings of the former model.
My fave is "They Say I'm Different," which was released in 1974.
Her voice isn't polished on any of the tracks. Didn't need to be.
It worked well with the hard guitar riffs and soft bass lines of "Your Mama Wants Ya Back" and "He Was a Big Freak," which is supposed to be about her former husband, Miles Davis.
My fave songs are the groovy "Shoo-B-Doop and Cop Him," and the title "track."
Overall, Davis' sound is one that is classic, edgy and sexy.
All befitting of a woman who wasn't afraid to be herself.

Photo courtesy of www.amazon.com.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Budget Beauty: Aloe Vera Gel

I love multi-dimensional products such as shea butter and coconut oil.
Add aloe vera gel to that list too.
The gel comes from the aloe plant and can be used for lots of things.
Poison Ivy treater.
Shaving cream.
In high school, I used it on my hair to condition and moisturize my tresses.
It gave it a nice sheen and kept it soft.
The brand I use Fruit of the Earth's aloe gel.
Invest in a bottle today.
It's good stuff.

Photo courtesy of www.drugstore.com.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Freebie Finds: Vitamins, Towels and a Candle

Hi there,

Came across some more goodies on the Interwebs recently:

Walmart is offering a sample of the new Emergen-C in cherry- pomegranate in the form of a drink mix. It's a vitamin that provides 11 vitamins and minerals. Get it here.

The next sample is for two large ShamWow towels. I'm sure you've seen these on TV. They supposedly wipe up liquid really good. Well, here's a chance for you to try one out. You just have to fill out this form about your cleaning habits. Allow two months for delivery.

Finally, here's a sample for a candle from Beauty Herbal Spa in Loveland, Colorado. You should receive the candle within five to 15 days after it's shipped.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Product Review: Bath & Body Works' Volumizing Shampoo

Last week, I tried Bath & Body Works' Volumizing shampoo in Sweet Pea for the first time.
I picked up a few of these travel size bottles from the store's semi-annual sale in July for $.35.
No joke.
They were marked down 75 percent and I would've been stupid to pass up a deal like that.
I have to admit that I was a little skeptical about the product at first because I love Sweet Pea on my skin and wasn't sure how it would hold up on my crown.
But the results weren't bad at all.
The shampoo nicely cleansed my scalp and left it smelling good.
You can get one 12 ounce size of the product here for $7.50 or two for $10.

Photo courtesy of www.bathandbodyworks.com.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Money Moment: Shopping My Own Stuff

I've decided that September will be "Shop My Own Stuff Month."
Now what that means is that I will try (key word: TRY) not to buy/acquire any beauty products, unless I can get it for free.
I have so much product that I could open up a beauty store. OK, I don't have that much but I really don't need another tube of lipstick, bottle of lotion or thing of eyeshadow.
I'll just use what I have. I mean, really use what's lying around in my bathroom and bedroom.
Hopefully, I'll save some money during the process.
We'll see how it goes.