Bite Beauty Lip Lab Experience


What better way for a makeup enthusiast to spend her afternoon than creating her own personalized lip shades.

After a viral video on Facebook was brought to my attention, I was determined to make a trip out to Manhattan to create my very own lipstick. My initial visit was on a whim, I walked in thinking that I would simply be able to go through with the process. However, they were backed up for weeks, so I had to make an appointment for the next available date. (Word of advice, do not walk in with the same mindset I had initially. Book an appointment.)



When I arrived, I was immediately greeted by the artist I would be working with. The store space is very compact, so it was very hard to maneuver especially with the crowd of people that were already there. My artist sat me down and gave me a lip scrub and moisturizer to prep to my lips. I knew I would be testing shades so I didn’t bother to wear any lipstick or makeup at all. She got to know me a little better as far as my preference in makeup and what shades I’m into. For the most part, I love all shades of lipstick but I didn’t want to duplicate anything I already have. (I have everything, to be honest lol.) So I chose to go with creating two colors. I wanted to create a nude, because its always difficult finding a nude with my complexion. I also wanted to create a rich chocolate brown shade, because I don’t feel like I have much that is perfect in that range without manipulating it.

The artist asked me what kind of finish I wanted to go with for both. For the nude I chose more of a semi-gloss and for the brown I went with matte. She pulled a bunch of colors and started mixing them on a glossy wax paper-like sheet. She had me test them out until I was completely satisfied with both shades. After that she had me test other colors just for fun. Then you get to pick out the fragrance you want your lipstick to be. I went with a citrus smelling flavor that’s is almost tempting to eat, as well as a vanilla-lavender sent which smells divine. The artist then worked her magic to mix the shades up in a lab-like sense which then results in an lipstick form ready for you to take home.


Overall, my experience was so much fun. I personally have a love for anything makeup and I appreciate all the creativity that goes into it. From working in Sephora previously, I have knowledge of BITE and their products. Their line is all handmade and cruelty free. If your ever in the city, you need to check this studio out. They’ve been around for almost 4 years and I never knew about it until I saw the post on Facebook. If you’re a makeup artist, makeup enthusiast, or just interested in the process visit them ASAP.

An Open Letter to My Princess

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Dear Zahra,

When I first discovered there was life inside of me it was July 14th, approximately 8 o’clock in the evening. So much was running through my mind, I was in disbelief. I made my first call to my best friend and what a conversation that was.  Still in disbelief, I made an appointment because I  just needed the proof. When I first heard your heartbeat on August 8th, I was seven weeks. ARE YOU SERIOUS? To know that there was life inside me I fell to my knees and prayed. I prayed so hard because I was so much in shock.  I asked God what I should do and he insured me this would be a blessing. I knew I needed you, I knew your life deserved a chance. I knew you were a blessing. I’m not going to lie I was a bit nervous but I quickly got over that. I had no time to waste, you were growing fast. I had to come up with a plan. I prayed so many nights for us. I prayed God would put me in a position to make sure no matter what, you will always be okay. Since then I have been receiving so many blessings so I know everything will be alright. When I found out what you were on October 27th, I told my ultra sound technician to tell my mom only. It was a moment I wanted to share with your dad, so I drove all the way to his house to surprise him and to both of our surprise IT’S A GIRL! That is one moment I’ll never forget. I knew in my heart you were my little princess, I felt it. The first time I felt you kick, I was so confused. Like was that gas? When I felt them again I laughed because it felt like little butterflies dancing on my bladder. I was so sick. For months I couldn’t eat anything, smell anything. I had BAD morning sickness every day, ALL DAY. Eventually it got better and when it did, I made my mom go with me every night to get Mexican food. Needless to say all I wanted was a Quesadilla and a water with lemon, those were my cravings.  When I see you on that ultrasound screen at each visit. I know it’s one day closer that I will be able to hold you. You’re so comfortable in there, so you have no idea how much pain your putting me through. My body aches, my feet are swollen, and my nerves are in pain from you resting on them. I wake up all hours of the night, but I know it will be worth it. You will be my greatest accomplishment to date. I can’t wait until they place you on my chest and I can kiss your face. Mommy will love you forever and even after I’m gone away from this Earth, I will still love you. I dream every night about the day when I finally get to meet you. Truth be told, I’m nervous but I know I’m strong enough to handle that pain. Once I hold on to you I won’t ever let go. I’m going to spoil you rotten and I know I’ll regret  it later with how much of a brat you’ll be. You have so much love around you and you don’t even know it yet. I just want you to always know I love you and how much of a woman you have made me. You have made me so much stronger. I’m a different person because of you. Because God needed me to see things in myself that I just couldn’t see before. I’m calmer, more mature, and even when I feel sad you kick me and I feel refreshed again. It took me some time and I know now that I had to change my ways for myself and for you. I’m so sorry if you’ve felt any of my tears or pain during this journey. This hasn’t been the easiest thing I’ve had to deal with. Just know when you get here I won’t ever show you any of that. And if you happen to feel any pain, just know I will be right there to dry your tears, I will be there to cancel any fears you have. I pray that everything you want in this life, it will be yours. I pray that as a little black girl you’ll know that you can do anything you put your mind to. I pray you’ll know how beautiful you are. I will tell you how beautiful you are. I will show you the World and give you things I’ve never had before.I want you to know anything you’ll ever need just ask. Don’t ever be afraid to talk to me. I will always provide for you and make sure everything you need you will have it and everything to want you will get. You have parents that love you, you have family that loves you. I want you to know that you are a blessing. I have never felt this kind of love growing inside of me. I thank you for choosing me to be your mom. I thank God for choosing me to raise a child in His Kingdom. So here’s to our future. I love you and I can’t wait to meet you in March Miss Zahra Raine.

Love,

Mommy

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Weary of the ways of the World

Wednesday, November 11th 2016. Its 7:35 a.m. The morning after Election Day.
Waking up the sky was a different kind of grey and the air held a different kind of smog. The night prior, I fell asleep with Hillary Clinton in the lead, fully prayed up I was certain she would win. To my surprise the atmosphere I awoken with matched the new leader of this free world. I have never been so hesitant to check social media in my life, and to confirm that Donald Trump is president was all the more frightening. As I began my day to do my makeup, silent tears rolled down my face, as my mother began to pray.

I can recall, in 2008, the moment Obama was elected in office. The look on my face that a change had come. A fifteen year old black girl saw change for my loved ones and a breath of fresh air for those who had come before me. Being black in America was a good look. Our president was BLACK. Again in 2012, my first time voting, to know that my vote mattered and four more year of change was on the brink allowed me to feel a sense of relief.

On the contrary, going to the polls this year was full of sorrow, disbelief, and confusion. Why would I ever have to choose the lesser of two evils? How as a country (the wealthiest and most powerful country in the world) did we come to THIS?
People constantly make jokes around and create “Memes” to disguise what is going on. “I’m packing my bags.” “I’m leaving this country.” Why would you ever leave a country our ancestors built? This is a country my Grandfather fought for. This is a country our people fought to make change just so we can coexist. A country that inaugurated a black man for eight years. This is a country that our people died for our right to even vote, and my people have the nerve to claim they didn’t exercise their right to do so. How embarrassing. At least Trump supporters came together and voted. At least they supported what even it is they believed in.
I am not even upset that Trump is a Republican, I am not upset that he is white, and I am not upset that he is wealthy. I am upset at the fact that he displays the character of a deplorable bigot. He is a reality star that moseyed his way into this election and somehow won. How? He singlehandedly exposed ALL of the individuals that are similar in personality and have been hiding for years.
So many questions stir up in my mind. Are we going to be able to finish school? Can us as African Americans make it home safe every night. What kind of world am I introducing my daughter to? Thoughts of a world where I can survive and thrive and obtain the “American dream.”

In the midst of this chaos, God is and will always be in control. Do not be dismayed and do not be misconstrued by the ways of the world. I will NEVER question God and his ability to works miracles. His plan is already set in stone. This is not a battle for us, but for the Lord. Never underestimate the power that lies within. This is a test of faith, now is not the time to turn on Him.

To my fellow students in college please keep grinding and striving for that degree. To my fellow minorities working just to feed your families, please continue to provide. To my fellow mothers or mothers to be, please continue to set an example for your young, they are our future. Lastly to my fellow black men, you are the most feared species on this planet; your worth is more than gold to me. Please in a time like this we need you to be strong and understand that we got you.

“But in that coming day
no weapon turned against you will succeed.

You will silence every voice

raised up to accuse you.

These benefits are enjoyed by the servants of the Lord;

their vindication will come from me.

I, the Lord, have spoken

Isaiah 54:17

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So, What does Black Love mean to You?

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Brown Sugar is my favorite movie of all time .. In the movie Sidney Shaw (Sanna Lathan) has an opening question she inquires in all her interviews; “So when did you fall in love with hip hop.” For so long I searched for my own personal tag line and I believe I found the perfect one! Black Love is so important to me so much that I wrote about it on MyBlackMatters.com. When I speak to and hear from my people, I am intrigued to know what it means to them. Be it good or bad. So I asked a few of my peers what this meant to them and here are their beautifully thought through responses. So what does Black Love mean to you?

“Black Love to me, is the coconut oil in the morning. It’s that Saturday, Etta James kind of feeling. It’s the ‘let’s clean the house while the kids aren’t home’ kind of love. It’s a love that is unconditional, and conditioned into being strong and firm in times of need. Black Love is having a Praying Grandmother that dishes out the church dirt. Black Love is running around carefree and having a good time because you know can’t nobody party like us. Black Love is being able to grove to Jazz and then turn up with your partner because you know there’s nothing like a couple with some soul. Black Love to me will always be the epitome of beautiful. It’s soulful, it’s raw and it’s always real.” LaTifah Wright
“When I’m involved with a black man everything seems heightened. My senses all over. One word I have immediately is intense.” Keana Lopez

“Black love is being faithful and trust worthy in a world that encourages you not to.” Teahna Lockhart

“Black love is feeling like you’re the only person in this world. Its feeling safe and knowing that no matter what happens that you can depend on one another. It’s about uplifting each other and helping each other to reach our goals.” Jasmin Reid

“From my experience black love is a love that is deeper than just a physical attachment or desire, it is a soul bond that cannot be imitated. There’s nothing like having two black people come together with unison, knowledge of self, respect and unconditional love. It’s a certain spice of life that can’t be detained in words when the love, trust and admiration is shared fairly. We connect on a different level, who can understand you more when you’re from the same lineage? Who knows the struggle of being black in America, but will still support you through it all? It’s not only beautiful but it is powerful to have someone who can connect with you in a supernatural way. To say black love is phenomenal is definitely an understatement.” Serenity Bracey

“When I hear the words, ‘black love,’ I hear a term that transcends-be it love of self, love of a significant other, the love shared between a mother and child or that between brothers. And that type of transcending love, once truly given or accepted, to me is one of which births great radiance in strength and power through unity. Black love to me is a real reflection and insight as to how great our greatness can ultimately be. Something so beautiful and serene in its uniqueness, and lends way too much prosperity.” Cassie Denis

Being Blessed in Dark Places

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My spirituality has stood the test of time in many areas of my life, some battles I won some have been losses. Lately my faith has been tested significantly in which I found myself battling hardships. I’ve recently watched a sermon by pastor Joel Osteen, where he preached on being ‘blessed in dark places.’ Needless to say the questions I had to myself are now slowly being answered.

Pastor Osteen brought forth a metaphor in which he compared life’s heinous situations to a mere seed. When a seed is planted it is in a dark place, underground, alone, and nonchalant to what is about to happen. But in due time that seed will grow, come to the light and blossom into something much greater. Something beautiful! This particular comparison spoke to my spirit in ways unimaginable. Many times I feel low and down on my luck; wondering how I’m going to rise up out of a bad situation. But I know now whenever my faith is being tested, it is a set up from God to bring me into something much greater.

At times life can hit you all at once and the adversary can try to attack from every area. From people trying to mentally and emotionally break me down, to real-life situations that effect my family. At times I have no physically person there to console me or to even talk to, I tend to try to handle things on my own. Bishop T.D. Jakes had an AWESOME message where he talked about letting people go. So many times I have attempted to try so hard to make people stay in my life because of my fear of losing them. But the inspiration I received from Bishop T.D. Jakes, has me searching for my gift in goodbye and to refrain from raising dead situations.

I have to know and put my best foot forward and look to the greater outcome. My faith is strong and is something I cherish deeply. So even when it is being tested I have to know in my spirit that God is placing me in a position to receive something much greater and blessing me in those dark place.

 

 

Feathered Fun


These Tumblr inspired heels I created  were so much fun to wear, I embraced every strut I took in them.

They were so simple to make:

  •  The heels were on sale at Target.
  •  The feathers are from Party City

To put it all together I took my trusty glue gun (which everyone in life should own) and meshed it all together. Of course I made a huge mess but there was obviously beauty in all the madness.

I wore these out in New Years Eve and  definitely plan to make more in an assortment of colors …. I’m thinking pink. Hmmm?

MAC Oval 6

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People let me tell you about my best friend *singing*

Obviously you can tell I am gagging over this brush. I’ve been using this tool for a little over a week now, and I can now share my honest opinion. This brush is pretty much LIFE. As a girl who swears by the beauty blender sponge, I find that this has quickly taken over. The application is so smooth and gentle, leaving your foundation looking as if it melted seamlessly into your skin.

This brush is described as a tool that is ideal for powder or liquid. It is MAC’S largest brush in the “Oval” franchise. Made of synthetic fibers, and allowing a more flawless coverage to blend in all the contours of the face. This tool has a specially designed grip and a brush tip that is slightly titled for ultimate precision. The retail price is $42, but I must say it is without a doubt worth the every penny.

My method of application starts with me first priming my skin (per usual), followed by applying my liquid foundation directly onto my face, from the bottle. Then I take the Oval 6 brush and gently rub it all over my face until all of the product is evenly blended. At this point my skin is looking absolutely smooth and flawless, I can continue on with my daily make up routine.

It may take some getting used to when using this brush, especially if your more accustomed to using a blending sponge or a regular foundation brush. Some users have claimed that the brush isn’t sturdy enough and it can be likely to snap in half; however, I must disagree. This brush is not meant to be vigorously used, and no one should even be aggressively applying their make up anyway (Lol).

The only negative I have is the fact that it could be a little bit bigger. I find myself taking more time applying my foundation because it is slightly smaller than I would like it to be. However there are other brands that make the same brushes in a variety of sizes.

If you’re a makeup lover, hoarder, or just interested in trying new things. You NEED this brush. I’m telling you, it is a life changer.