Sunday, January 30, 2011

LoveBrownSugar Feature: Links à la Mode

I'm proud to announce that The Great Debate: Do Skinny Girls Have More Fun post was selected for this week's Links à la Mode. Check out the rest of the amazing links featured below...

links a la mode

It's Getting Hot In Here

Edited by Ann of Holier than Now
Though you may be living in a snow globe (sure feels like it here on the East Coast), you're never out in the cold - assuming the snow hasn't knocked out your internet ... This week's links will warm you up with hot topics that, ideally, bring out the best in a thoughtful, vibrant blogging community. Take your gloves off (the wool kind, not the boxing kind) and join the conversation!
P.S. If you'd like your voice heard here in Links a La Mode, take a look at this helpful guide by Grit & Glamour.

Links à la Mode: January 27th

Shopbop: Clogs, Flats, Heels, Platforms, Knee Highs Boots, Wedge Sandals, Booties, Open Toe, Shoe Sale, Designers
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Friday, January 28, 2011

Flavor of Friday: Curlism & the Natural Hair "Movement"

Nope, you're not the only one who didn't realize 'curlism' was an actual word. I too was in the dark about the bitter controversy over what people are calling the natural hair "movement". Let me first declare that I, for one, didn't decide to let go of my relaxed hair back in 2006 because of any kind of movement going on. I did it because I joined an African dance troupe (shoutout to African Rhythms at UPENN) in college, had rigorous dance practice on a regular basis and couldn't deal with maintaining straight hair at Philly hairstylist prices.

Me, circa 2006 (First time natural since childhood)
 Anyway, fast forward 5 years later and everywhere you turn there are girls chopping off their relaxers and rocking their curls. Hell, even I decided (after regretfully relaxing it last year) to chop mine off again and start from scratch. I think it's great that there are so many resources out there now for people who want to do it. But I didn't realize there were SO many strong viewpoints about who could "rightfully" participate in this movement. Well, one of my fave Youtube vloggers Taren916 decided to make a thought-provoking video about the controversy. After a few followers told Taren she couldn't rightfully be part of the "movement" because she's of mixed race and has loose curls, she sounded off with her opinions:

I thought this was interesting to highlight because I know for a fact that you guys are a mixed audience. I'm grateful to have all of you as faithful blog readers - from dark & curly haired gals to blond bombshells with bone straight hair. And I'm curious to know your opinion on this. Should there be such a thing as CURL-ism? Like racism, it separates people based on a physical feature - the texture, shape and size of their CURLS. Can't we all just get along?
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It's My Birthday!

Me, 2 Years Old (I've always had a big mouth)
 Today is the one day of the year I can be completely SELFISH and get away with it!! Ok that's not why I wrote this post, and that's not what I intend to do all day (maybe just from 10am-2pm) but the real reason I'm writing this is to reflect on the amazing 20-something years I've been afforded the opportunity to live. 

From Summer Wrap Up: Part 2

So many people in this world don't make it to their 20-something birthdays, so I'm grateful. Everyday. And more than anything I'm grateful for all of you lovelies who follow my daily journey and motivate me on a regular basis, with all your thought-provoking, knee-slapping, and tear-jerking comments. I love you all. A toast to us!

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Thursday, January 27, 2011

The PJ Chronicles: Bee Mine Curly Butter

Reader Nicki of NickiBCurly writes in:

*Stands Up*
Hello! I am Nickki B. Curly and I am a fellow product junkie. One product in particular is my Bee Mine Curly Butter. 

It smells like candy y'all and it makes my chunky braid-outs look awesome and touchable. It also keeps my hair very moisturized. It is a STAPLE product in my hair product closet....yeah, I said closet lol!

Check out Nicki's gorgeous hair:

Has anyone else tried Bee Mine Curly Butter? What were your results? Soundoff below!

Are you a PJ? If you’re giddy over a beauty product, email luvbrownsugar@gmail.com with subject line "PJ Chronicles"and provide the following: Name, Contact Info and/or Website, Name of Item, Description of why you love it, and Images (preferably of you wearing the product).
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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Beauty Buzz: Jimmy Choo Fragrance Launch

 Luxury and truly covet-worthy shoe line Jimmy Choo is now branching off into the world of eau de parfum. The newest addition to their product line, Jimmy Choo Fragrance is coming to a Saks Fifth Avenue fragrance counter near you. This one's going on my birthday list for sure. Here are some behind the scenes flicks of Jimmy Choo founder Tamara Mellon shooting promo for the fragrance...
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Fierce: Michelle Obama at the State of the Union Address

Michelle Obama
 For the first time in LoveBrownSugar history, I did not leave the "Fierce or Foolish" option open. Michelle O at the State of the Union address last night was simply fierce - no doubt about it. She looked absolutely flawless in a fitted Rachel Roy frock, simple jewelry and the perfect hair and makeup. What's not to love? I have to say, she just might surpass Jackie O as the "Most Fashionable First Lady of All Time". She's definitely got my vote!

What about yours? Soundoff below!

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Friday, January 21, 2011

Flavor of Friday: 365 New Things

Inspired by a number of sources, at the beginning of this year I decided to embark on a new challenge for myself. A 365 day challenge to be exact.You may have seen photographers and bloggers alike embark on year-long challenges like this before, all based around a year-long commitment. I first saw one of these in action over at Apricot Tea's blog some time ago. 

Ev'Yan of Apricot Tea
 She embarked on the project as part of her personal development in photography and now once again in 2011 she's doing the project as a renewed commitment to her blog. Love it! Check out her Project 365.

Tales of Twipics Past Collage, NYFW SP'11
Anyway, my 365 challenge is similar but slightly different. I'm the type of girl who thrives on variety, so my challenge this year will be about discovering 365 New Things. I know it sounds crazy, but considering all the things there are to do and see in this world, I think committing myself to discovering a measly 365 of them shouldn't be too hard. Once a month, similar to my Tales of Twitpics Past collage above, I'll be filling you all in on 30 new things I've discovered. So far, I've learned about 5 new recipes, gone a few places I've never been and tried a few products I've never tried before. Stay tuned for my update at the end of January! (Of course with beauty products alone, I can knock out 75% of this challenge off the bat, right? I kid.)

What about you guys? Embarking on any year-long challenges in 2011?
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The Great Debate: Do Skinny Girls Have More Fun?

Jennifer Hudson: Before & After weight loss
The other night I found myself in the middle of an intriguing discussion on Twitter with a well-known maven in the fashion & entertainment industry. The discussion was so thought-provoking, I figured I would bring it to LoveBrownSugar and get you guys' opinion on the situation. As you all know, from my Curvy Girls Ode and all the hype that generated in the fashion blogosphere about that post, I'm very outspoken when it comes to the great debate about plus size vs. skinny in the fashion industry. If you haven't read it, check it out HERE.

So on last Tuesday evening as everyone on my timeline revved up for the premiere of BET's new series The Game, I stumbled on a tweet from a prominent black socialite and fashionista while she was watching a rerun of hit TV series Glee. I've always loved her sophisticated style as a plus-sized vet in the industry. So I was surprised and intrigued when I saw this statement from her on Twitter...
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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Ask LBS: How Do I Get My Blog Noticed?

Fashion Blogger Rumi Neely of FashionToast

Reader Shabana of Coco and Olive writes:
Hi Cece! I have been reading your blog for awhile now and I just wanted to say what an inspiration you are. I really like your fashion tips and your celebrity info. As well as your views on products and other stuff. I was inspired to start my own blog so that I can also share my thoughts with the world. But I am new to this and I just wanted to know what suggestions or advice you have for a newcomer trying to get her blog noticed.

Now I can't proclaim to be an expert as I've only been blogging for about a year and a half now and I'm far from superstar blogger status, but there are definitely a few key takeaways I've learned over the course of time I've been part of this world. Read on for my Top 4 recommendations on getting your name out there...
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The PJ Chronicles: Miss Jessie's Curly Pudding

Reader Kadyann of SpainMadHatter swears by Miss Jessie's Curly Pudding for her hair. Here's what she had to say...
Hey girl. Its Kadyann and I became a product junkie when I got married, moved, and chopped all my hair off. I have eczema and so finding products that work for me is pretty hard.You can imagine what my apartment looks like, with various drugstore items sticking out of cupboards and falling off shelves at all hours of the day and night. I finally bought Miss Jessie's Hair Products when they had a Buy 1/Get 1 sale recently and got up the urge to try it a week after.

 OMG! I had gotten the Unscented Curly Pudding, Curly Merengue and Quick Curls and they helped a lot. Now they are basically all I use but that doesn't mean i still wont try new stuff so i guess being a PJ will stick with me for the rest of my life. Why not? When there are so many cool things to try.

Anyone else swear by Miss Jessie's Products like Kadyann? I personally have used the Curly Pudding and LOVED the results, but they only give me good results when I twist on wet hair. What about you?
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LoveBrownSugar Feature: Natural Expressions

Special thanks to Alice of Diary of a Kinky Curly Transitioner for posting a super cute "Natural Expressions" feature on me and on my natural hair journey. Here's a snippet of the Q&A:

Christina of Love Brown Sugar, a fantastic fashion blog, recently went natural. Yay! If you love the fashion spreads in Honey Magazine or enjoy articles in Uptown Magazine there is a good chance you’ve been looking at and loving her work!

Is there anywhere we can find you? Youtube, twitter, facebook, blog?

You can find me primarily at www.LoveBrownSugar.com. I’m also a social media addict so I tweet at Twitter.com/LoveBrownSugar and post updates to my Facebook page here: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/pages/LoveBrownSugar/265959727218

I’m slowly getting into the Youtube thing. I want to start tutorials soon, but right now it’s mostly my celebrity interviews from fashion week and beyond: Youtube.com/LoveBrownSugarTV

Tell me a little about your hair journey–when did you get your first relaxer? What inspired you to big chop, etc.

I got my first kiddie relaxer when I was in 2nd grade. I remember because I came into school the next day bouncing and smiling because I could shake my hair around like the girls on the Just For Me commercials. And I maintained relaxed hair all the way up until my senior year in high school. After my senior prom I had severe damage to my strands from wearing weaves and extensions, so I decided (since I was going to college and wouldn’t have the $ to maintain a relaxer) I would just grow it out. So I did and I stayed natural for all 4 years. Until I graduated and became part of the “grown up” world, working in Corporate America and scared I might not fit i with curls. So I relaxed again, and less than weeks later I regret it. And so in November 2010, I decided to Big Chop for the second time. I’m convinced this will be my last!

Read the rest HERE and please comment! I'd love to see them. Alice also has some nice tips & tricks on her page for newly natural girls like myself, so be sure to check it out!
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Monday, January 17, 2011

LoveBrownSugar Fashion Countdown: Golden Globes 2011

 Last night at the 2011 Golden Globes, there were fashions and fancy pants galore. You know how we do at LoveBrownSugar - we have our faves and we have our SMH-worthy fashion fails. Below find my Top 10 picks for the best and worst of the 2011 Golden Globes Red Carpet. Let me know if you agree...
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Friday, January 14, 2011

Flavor of Friday: Identities Photoshoot

Jessie Adore| Photo by Rog Walker
 The other day I was flipping through my weekly blog reads when I stumbled on an update from Jessie Adore of AdoreDAILY. I really dig her style, and her amazing hair so I was hyped to see that she was featured in a recent photoshoot called IDENTITIES with photographer Rog Walker.

Joshua Kissi | Photo by Rog Walker
 Also featured was another one of my fave style bloggers Joshua Kissi of Street Etiquette.

Coco & Breezy | Photo by Rog Walker
And of course my favorite twins Coco & Breezy. See pics of me and the girls Kickin' It when I was working at Honey Mag.  

Be sure to check out the full Identities by Rog Walker shoot featuring some amazing bloggers, designers and young tastemakers.

Flavor of Friday is a  series on LoveBrownSugar.com highlighting amazing people, places and things on my radar each week. Flavor suggestions? Send them to luvbrownsugar@gmail.com.
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Bootie Calls: Jeffrey Campbell Throwdown Boot

Jeffrey Campbell recently released a new exclusive wedge boot called the Throwdown. You guys know how obsessed I am with Jeffrey Campbell so when these pics landed in my inbox, I had to share...

This rugged canvas wedge is a must-have for anyone determined to look chic this winter. Featuring a hidden wedge and espadrille detailing at the bottom, it definitely looks rugged enough to battle the cold winter months. I can appreciate a style like this considering my other Jeffrey Campbell Clinics from [THIS POST] are tucked away 'till Spring...le sigh. Here they are in all black...
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The PJ Chronicles: Coconut Oil vs. Olive Oil

Shabana from Coco and Olive says:

"Hi Cece, I have an obsession with two very healthy products. Coconut oil for its moisturizing properties and Olive Oil which is also very good at adding moisture to your hair and skin. I use these two oils on both my hair and skin and I must say they WORK! Above is a photo of the products I love - as you can see I have tons of it..."

I must agree. Coconut oil has worked wonders for giving my hair shine and moisture ever since going 100% curly. I actually haven't tried it yet on my skin, though. And I haven't tried olive oil either, aside from my weekend italian dishes. Have you guys tried Coconut and Olive oils? Which ones do you prefer? Sound off below!

Are you a PJ? If you’re giddy over a beauty product, email luvbrownsugar@gmail.com with subject line "PJ Chronicles"and provide the following: Name, Contact Info and/or Website, Name of your favorite item, Description of why you love it, and Images (preferably of you wearing the product).
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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Fierce or Foolish: Sanaa Lathan

Sanaa Lathan showed up to the 42nd Annual NAACP Image Awards Nomination ceremony wearing a colorful belted dress and siren red heels. I have a special place in heart for Sanaa. Ever since Love & Basketball premiered back in 2000, she's been one of my favorite actresses. I think this silhouette really faltters her and she has pops of red in all the right places.

 What do you think? Fierce or Foolish?

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'Fit Room Flicks: Beacon's Closet

 Last Saturday I took a little trip down to Williamsburg, Brooklyn to meet up with fellow fashion blogger Poca of Style.Spot.Run. Poca had invited me on a shopping excursion with her, and being the thrift maniac that I am, I jumped at the opportunity. So Poca and I headed to popular vintage consignment shop Beacon's Closet...

 The amazing thing about stores like Beacon's Closet and another fave of mine Buffalo Exchange is that, unlike thrift stores and the Salvation Army, these stores have specialty buyers who are appointed to only pick the best of the best vintage items for sale within the store. So instead of having to scour through racks and racks of unamazing duds to get to your gem, every piece is already a gem! Here are some of the pieces I tried on:
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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Kickin' It: NY Screening of The Game

Cast of BET's The Game
If you guys follow me on Twitter you probably know that last night I attended an exclusive press screening of BET’s new series The Game. Though the series is new to BET, it definitely isn’t new to loyal fans who’ve been following the show since it’s cancellation on the CW Network. I’m one of those people who didn’t understand the hype behind the show until AFTER it was cancelled. I spent summer of 2009 watching each of the episodes on Youtube and I absolutely fell in love. So you can imagine my delight when I had the chance to cover the event and interview some of my favorite characters...

Wendy Raquel Robinson
I snagged a quick Q&A with Wendy Raquel Robinson, better known as “Tasha Mack” on the show. You can check out my one-on-one with her over at UPTOWN Magazine.

From left: Hosea Chanchez, Me, Pooch Hall
I also got a chance to meet my favorite guys – Hosea Chanchez and Pooch Hall, aka “Malik Wright” and “Derwin Davis”. I even snagged a smooch from Pooch – he’s a cutie! (sorry for the blur)

Here area few of my favorite Twitpics from the event...
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Monday, January 10, 2011

Cover Girls: Nicki Minaj for V Magazine

I haven't done of these Cover Girls features in quite some time! I felt compelled to post this one because I think they did an amazing job with ts. No topless shot, no overtly risque outfit. I think Nicki Minaj looks sultry without being raunchy on V MAgazine's Spring 2011 Preview Issue. 

What do you guys think?
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Sunday, January 9, 2011

The PJ Chronicles: Carol's Daughter Hair Milk

Kicking off our first rendition of the PJ Chronicles is naturally curly-haired diva Karese from NYC. She swears by Carol's Daughter Hair Milk for styling her tresses and keeping them moist.

Karese, after using Carol's Daughter Hair Milk
Karese says, "The product that I have been experimenting with lately is the Carols Daughter Hair Milk. It had been sitting on my shelf for almost a year after I bought it to try on my sons hair. I did a twist out on freshly washed hair and used the hair milk as my twisting agent. The same way I would would Miss Jessie's Curly Pudding. I never had better definition on my own. I had volume and most importantly I had shiny, moisturized hair!!  Glad to know I am not alone in my junkie-ism lol!!! Thanks for the forum for this!"

Are you a PJ? If you’re giddy over a beauty product, email luvbrownsugar@gmail.com with subject line "PJ Chronicles"and provide the following: Name, Contact Info and/or Website, Name of your favorite item, Description of why you love it, and Images (preferably of you wearing the product).

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Friday, January 7, 2011

Flavor of Friday: Kimberly Sumner

You know when things just...work? And you really have no idea why or how they work out, but you just have to trust that it's fate? That's kind of what happened when I first moved to Harlem and ended up becoming roommates with this lovely lady - Kimberly Sumner.

Image Courtesy StyleLikeU
Though I found her via Craigslist (which we know can be hit or miss), we became fast friends and she was definitely one of my style inspirations for the two months we shared space in uptown NYC. A recent graduate of the Parsons School with a major in Fine Arts, Kim is an artist in every sense of the word. She works passionately and always speaks with conviction. She also has one of the most colorful and perfectly afrocentric closets I've ever seen. I absolutely love her style and I'm not the only one! Kim was recently featured on popular website StyleLikeU. Check out her featured video below...
Though Kim has since moved on to live in artsy Brooklyn, she's obviously still inspiring the masses with her beautiful mane and eccentric closet. You can find Kim at a local BK vintage shop, fabric store, or at an Urban Outfitters where she spends much of her time being uber fab.

Flavor of Friday is a new series on LoveBrownSugar.com highlighting amazing people, places and things on my radar each week. Stay tuned for more of this weekly feature. Flavor suggestions? Send them to luvbrownsugar@gmail.com.
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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

LoveBrownSugar Introduces...The PJ Chronicles

I have a confession to make. I’m a junkie. Not the kind you send to rehab, or the kind who crawls into “Alcoholics Anonymous” meetings with sunglasses, but the kind who finds herself overwhelmed with the possibilities of what beauty and hair products have to offer. A term coined by the natural hair community, the "product junkie" is a person who is OBSESSED with trying new products. It’s something that inevitably happens to you when you cut off your relaxed locks and are overwhelmingly faced with the task of figuring out what the hell to do with your head of hair. So at the suggestion of fellow natural girls, you go on a quest to create the perfect curl via hair products…

I’m a firm believer that you don’t have to be a curly-haired African-American girl like myself to be considered a product junkie. Any girl can be prone to junkie-ism. I’ve encountered my fair share of makeup mavens, perfume connoisseurs and nail fanatics that have bathroom shelves that would rival any natural-hair diva’s hair product collection. So deep down, there’s a little bit of “Product Junkie” in us all. 

 And so after a long 2010 of attending media events, racking up on all types of samples from hair to makeup to nails, I’ve decided to kickoff 2011 with a month’s worth of product reviews starting on Sunday, January 10th. I have tons of stuff and I’ll never know what works until I try them. But it’s not all about what I love. I wanna hear from YOU all what your favorite products are. I want this to be an open forum, for us ladies to share the products we really love. If you’re giddy over a product, just email luvbrownsugar@gmail.com with subject line "PJ Chronicles" and provide the following...

1. Contact info, Website. Youtube Channel, etc
2. The name of your favorite item and a description of why you love it
3. Any images/videos you’d like to include (preferably of you wearing the product)

Stay tuned for the very first PJ Chronicles post this Sunday. I have tons to share and I hope you do too!
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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

VIDEO: Beyonce Walks Tom Ford

In what was known to be one of the most exclusive runway shows in fashion history, Beyonce was dubbed an official runway gem in Tom Ford's S/S 2011 Womenswear show. Only the top most prestigious editors in the industry were allowed to make an appearance and very limited photography was allowed. Finally after months of secrecy, images and video have surfaced of the exclusive event; I snagged this video of the runway show which included most of the top models in the industry including LBS faves Liya Kebede and Chanel Iman as well as the ultra-glam Queen Bey. Check it out...

Image Source
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LoveBrownSugar Chic: Limited Edition

It's ok to ignore the conventional every once in a while. I would normally slap myself for pairing a cropped pair of pants with a fur vest. But today I just...felt like it.

Nothing like leather and fur to boost your fierce factor. And all of it is thrifted. Oh the power of secondhand threads...

The hair is growing on me (no pun intended). Just can't wait until it gets a little longer. All I can do with it right now is wear curly fros. By summer I'll be a pro at taming it...

Statement necklaces used to be my fave accessory but I've been cheating on my chains with cocktail rings this season. There's something so lovely and refined about a gaudy cocktail ring. I absolutely love them.

Fur Vest: Vintage Andrew Marc, Leather Jacket: Thrifted, Jeans: Thrifted, Top: H&M, Turquoise Chain: Forever 21, Ring: Forever 21, Shoes: Anne Michelle, Bag: Thrifted

- Photography by Justified Photos
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Monday, January 3, 2011

Fierce or Foolish: Beyonce & Solange at Cosmopolitan

First off, Happy New Year loves! So happy to see 2011 and I'm even happier that you're joining me for another year. Now onto the good stuff...

So the Knowles sisters, Queen Bey (Beyonce) and Solo (Solange) attended the grand opening of Marquee nightclub at The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, Nevada last week. I recently stumbled on this pic of the famed siblings. So you know I had to do a Fierce or Foolish right?

1. Under normal circumstances I wouldn't like that dress. But it's Beyonce. Somehow it works.
2. Of course I appreciate a good turban. But is Solo just "protective stylin'" it out? Or has she caught Poetic Justice fever with these braids?

What's your verdict? Fierce or Foolish? Soundoff below!

Image Source
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