Tag Archives: skin

A Demi Grace Exclusive: Face of Sephora Releases New Track “Afraid”

Written by. Chalise Macklin  

It is not every day that an up-and-coming artist becomes the face of a cosmetic product and sings the jingle in a well-known hair product commercial. Demi Grace’s entertainment career is off to a good start with credible accolades behind her name.

Grace’s infectious voice can be heard in the current Dark and Lovely commercials and she is one of the faces of Sephora’s new “Makeup Forever” lipstick line.

“I’m so excited. It is a funny story how I got the job. My agent sent me on an audition, but I did not get it. Later, I got a call back for a voice over audition. I told them I could sing and recorded a track during the audition. They loved it and offered me the job. It was really accidental,” said Grace.

Grace has been singing all her life, but she didn’t start releasing music professionally until 2012.

“I always wanted to be a professional singer. I had a talk with God and asked him what I needed to do to get my start and walk through the right door. I started building my social media following and releasing music independently,” Demi Grace said.

Gone are the days that an artist has to be signed to a major label. The music industry is embracing independent artist like Demi Grace. She contributes her current success to her willingness to interact with fans on social media. The effort has caused fans to become more familiar with her sound which she calls Afro-Dance or Afro-EDM infused with a little bit of Pop.

“My sound is influenced by Hip Hop, Nigerian and Afro beat music, and Reggae,” said Demi Grace. “I am extremely diverse. I tapped into many genres and I am a singer-songwriter.”

Her musical style is also a reflection of her heritage. She is of Nigerian descent,was born in London, raised in California, lived in Atlanta and currently a New Yorker. Her time in New York has influenced her new single “Afraid.”

“I moved to New York and met a guy who was nothing like anyone I met before. The relationship was party-driven, but when we were by ourselves it was hard to get him to open up. It was just a mess, hurtful and I expressed that in the song,” Grace said.

She describes the single as an emotional record that you must be ready for.

“When you go out and hear a song like ‘Afraid’ and listen to the lyrics you have to be ready to feel and emotionally connect,” said Demi Grace.

Demi Grace distinct sound is not the only thing gaining attention, her beauty is as well. Her ebony complexion and tall, slender physique serves as an example to young girls that beauty is diverse and unique.

DemiGrace2 (1)I want girls to be okay with what God gave them and work it. I look up to Missy Elliott and Rhianna and how they wear their body makes it (their body) sexy,” said Grace.

The future is bright for Demi Grace. The Sephora campaign she is a part of debuts in August, her upcoming EP is tentatively set for release in September, and she just finished working on a mix with an Atlanta producer which include heavy hitters such as: T-Pain, Trina, Flo Rida and TI.

For those of you in the New York area, check her out at Webster Hall on August 16th.


Miss USA Pageant: More Than Just A Crown

Written by. Chalise Macklin

And the winner is….Miss District of Columbia, Deshauna Barber. Barber was crowned the new Miss USA Sunday night in Las Vegas. 52 contestants battled it out for the coveted crown and title. But Barber slayed the competition with her stage presence and strong interview skills. She made history as the first military member to ever snag the crown.

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This year’s pageant seemed on the mend after the pageant endured a bit of controversy last year. Former pageant owner, Donald Trump, made some controversial comments about immigrants that lead to NBC and Univision cutting ties with the businessman and the organization. Following the Trump debacle, the organization experienced another hiccup during the Miss Universe Pageant when host, Steve Harvey, mistakenly announced the wrong winner.

The show made some changes to add a fresh feel and connect with the viewers. It was aired on its new home Fox, the organization added a new contestant, Miss 52 USA, and the fans at home served as the sixth judge. The unofficial theme of the night was “Confidently Beautiful” which all the ladies embodied. And showed the world the pageant is more than a competition.

group pic            Perhaps the most recognizable change to the pageant was the background story of the contestants. It was not only a way for the viewers and judges to get to know the contestants better, it also allowed little girls, teens, and young ladies to see how relatable the women are. The contestants are more than just beautiful women with killer figures. The women are entrepreneurs, athletes, philanthropists, and highly successful and educated women. Some of the ladies’ personal stories really resonated with issues many young girls face today such as: body shaming, anorexia, depression, and defying the odds. Young girls sometimes experience low self-esteem and have a difficult time navigating through their teen years. Those women personal stories can provide inspiration and empower all while wearing high heels.

Barber will start her preparation for the Miss Universe pageant. She said she plans to use her time as the reigning Miss USA to support veteran’s causes and tackle the issue of suicide and post-traumatic stress disorder among military members.



You Look Like What You Eat

Written by: Barrie Ladipo

Now let’s face it, as women, scratch that, as human beings we face so much adversity that obtaining healthy skin is last of our priorities. Most of us are lucky enough if we make it to work — late! With some much going on in our world on daily basis, we all still try to maintain beauty and radiance through our looks and our skin needs have a good foundation to obtain that. So that golden rule, “you are what you eat” plays a significant role in our skin. Kimberly Snyder, celebrity nutritionist and author of the best-selling The Beauty Detox Solution informs us the importance of his our diet really affects the way we look in her book. Here are five foods Synder shares that will certainly make a drastic improvement to skin’s health.



Not only for a great spa day, but cucumbers are filled with hydrating enzymes which is essential for beautiful skin. Vitamin B, C, zinc, iron, folic acid, calcium, magnesium and potassium are the major components in cucumbers.



Papaya automatically look like they contain juices that help maintain beautiful skin sigh that beautiful orange palette it embodies. Papayas carries properties that help digestion and advocates fir brighter skin and eyes.



Lemon are always cute in a martini, but also comes with Vitamin C and enzymes that advocates skin collagen.


Cabbage already look like strong vegetable. They are extremely high in fiber and carries compound sulfidaphane, the key to the anti aging antioxidant movements in the body.

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are already snacks that carries Vitamin B and biotin, the essential component to healthy hair, skin, and nails. They also have zinc that decreases the growth of acne.

8 Shaving Commandments to Know Before You Hit the Beach

We’ve all been there: you finally found a flattering bikini, and you’re 100-percent beach ready . . . until you realize you nicked a cut or got some major razor burn from your last shave. That’s why we’ve rounded up tricks and tips to avoid awkward and embarrassing razor mishaps. You’ll stay fuzz-free longer and feel even more confident in your own skin.

1. Never dry shave! When we’re in a rush, dry shaving can be so tempting (no drying off, no mess), but we’ve learned to beware of this “time saver.” When your skin is wet, it is softer and less likely to flake. Since shaving is a natural exfoliant, dragging a razor over dry skin puts you at risk for cuts and nicks and also clogs up your razor.

2. Keep your razor dry. While storing your razor in the shower is convenient, keeping it somewhere warm and wet can cause the blades to rust, which can leave you with a painful red rash. To extend the life of your razor, make sure it’s thoroughly dry once you’re done using it. Give it a quick blast with your blow-dryer and stash it in your vanity so you can shave without fear of an itchy and unsightly aftermath.

3. Exfoliate first. When you wait to exfoliate until after shaving, you are at risk for some major skin irritation. Scrubbing before you whip out the razor helps prep your skin for a smoother shave and will keep it from getting angry and red.

4. Skip soap. When our shaving cream runs out halfway through the job, we’re guilty of turning to soap as our shave savior. And while it’s great for cleaning the body, the big bubbles and slippery residue can prevent your razor from doing the work it was meant to do. If you want a shave that’s smooth and spotless, stick to traditional shaving creams or gels (though conditioner can work if it’s really an emergency).

5. Don’t over do it! To avoid razor burn, keep your shave short and sweet. While missed hairs are a major annoyance, running your razor over the same area for too long leads to irritated skin. Use a foaming shaving cream to help you keep an eye out for spots you may have missed.

6. Move in the right direction. When it comes to shaving, direction matters; dragging your blade the wrong way is a serious no-no that leads to a rougher shave and seriously irritated skin. Underarm hairs grow in from all angles, so be sure to run the razor different directions. Since leg hairs grow downward, start from your ankle or knee and shave in upward strokes. The exception: if your skin is extrasensitive, consider shaving in the direction of hair growth instead of against it. While you may not get as close of a shave, you’ll save your skin from unnecessary irritation.

7. Rinse your razor. On those days when you hop in the shower for a quick shave, it’s easy to get into a rhythm. When you’re in a rush, it’s easy to forget that the secret to a close shave is keeping your razor squeaky clean. Rinse off the blades in between strokes to ensure that a clogged razor won’t cause cuts or prevent you from nabbing every stubborn hair.

8. Change your razor. Dull, old razors give you a poor shave, but did you know that they also build up scum and bacteria that can cause a seriously painful rash? If you’re trying to squeeze every last swipe out of your razor, you could be setting yourself up for a skin disaster. As a rule of thumb, change a disposable razor after three uses and the head of a razor after six.

Top 10 Sunscreens to Wear Under Makeup

I totally get that wearing sunscreen seems to be a hard habit to get into. There are so many good reasons to really make the effort, though. In addition to minimizing sun damage and reducing premature aging, the biggest is prevention of skin cancer.

The FDA mandated new label requirements for sunscreens. In order to be considered “broad spectrum”, a sunscreen must protect against UVA and UVB rays. Each one of the sunscreens listed below is broad spectrum and a minimum SPF 30, which means that it can prevent sunburn, reduce your risk of getting skin cancer and help prevent early signs of skin aging.

For wearing under makeup, it’s important that my sunscreen not have a greasy feel or leave my skin shiny. These sunscreens all pass that test too. Some of my favorite sunscreens for wearing under makeup include:

1. CeraVe® SPF 50 Sunscreen for Face – Lightweight, dries to a clear finish. I like that it has zinc oxide and titanium dioxide (physical sunscreen), along with ceramides and niacinamide . Water-resistant, too. Excellent!


2. CHANEL UV Essentiel SPF 30: Light, with a lovely, delicate fragrance. Because of the texture and fragrance, this one feels like you’re using another skincare product, not a sunscreen. Of course, my favorite. Love!


3. Estee Lauder Daywear UV Base SPF 50+ feels like a very light moisturizer that also has sunscreen in it. If you’re used to wearing just a moisturizer, this would be a great choice. For those with normal, normal-oily or combination skins, this will be enough moisturizer. Love that it also has antioxidants, so it’s good for your skin.


4. H2O+ UV Defense Fluid SPF 50 PA+++ – light texture, zinc oxide and titanium dioxide (physical sunscreen); it does impart a slight white cast, but if you’re sensitive to chemical sunscreens, this is a great choice. I also like the antioxidants and Japanese seaweed, which give skincare benefits.


5. Kate Somerville Daily Deflector Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 50+ Anti-Aging Sunscreen is ultra light, has anti-aging benefits, a unique formulation and is hydrating. This is a physical sunscreen, so you may see a slight white cast (I haven’t in my use). I do love the feel of this one; very easy to wear under makeup.


6. Kiehl’s Super Fluid UV Defense SPF 50+: A good choice for sensitive skins, this sunscreen is oil-free, fragrance-free and non-comedogenic. Dries to a matte finish. Great for under makeup!


7. L’Oreal Paris Advanced Suncare Silky Sheer BB Face Lotion SPF 30 is a fabulous new product. This sunscreen is slightly tinted when coming out of the bottle, but is colorless once applied and dries to a matte finish, making it perfect under makeup. Water-resistant up to 80 minutes, so you can toss it in your purse and use it at the beach, also. Fragrance-free and should work for most to all skin types. Highly recommended!


8. Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face & Body Stick Sunscreen SPF 70 is the “driest” formula I tested, because it is a stick. Goes on totally dry, non-greasy and virtually weightless. Very convenient for travel too. If you don’t like feeling like you’re wearing a sunscreen, I’d recommend this one.


9. Shiseido UV Protective Compact Foundation SPF 36 + Limited-Edition Case: I started buying Shiseido sunscreens forever ago; they were one of the first that offered UVA/UVB protection in a formula light enought to wear under makeup. This powder-foundation sunscreen is another great option, for those days you don’t feel like wearing makeup. You can use wet or dry. Love this for travel, too. The case is a separate purchase and comes in limited-edition styles.


10. Skinceuticals Physical Eye UV Defense SPF 50: Have you ever gotten a sunburn on your face? It hurts. And the skin in the eye area is so delicate, you need to make sure it’s protected. I love this protective eye base; it’s tinted and you apply it like an eye cream. It blends right in and doesn’t settle into fine lines or make your eye area appear dry/cakey. You can even apply to the eyelid.


And for lips, try Carmex Cherry Stick, with broad spectrum sun protection, SPF 15 and up to 80 minutes of water resistance.


This list of sunscreens definitely is not all-inclusive. I just wanted you to have a go-to of some of the newer sunscreens (and some of my favorites) that meet the criteria for sun safety and wear well under makeup. I’ll be covering beach and body sunscreens later in the month on “Don’t Fry Day”…watch for it! You can also find plenty of other sunscreens that I’ve reviewed here and some of my absolute favorites here.

If you’d like more information on sunscreens, skin cancer prevention and tips, head over to the American Academy of Dermatology website.

10 Best Beauty Dupes

You ever heard the saying you get what you pay for? Well, that’s not always true. Some of the best beauty products can be subsituted for a product that is less pricey. You don’t always have to go spend all of your money on your make up. It’s is always best to shop smarter and not harder. Ten of the best beauty dupes are:

1. E.L.F. Make Up Mist – $3

2. NYX Cosmetics Setting Spray – $8

3. MAC Cosmetics FIX+ – $21

4. E.L.F. All Over Color In Spotlight – $1

5. NARS The Multiple In Copacabana – $39

6. E.L.F. Studio Bronzer In Golden Bronzer – $3

7. DIOR Diorskin Shimmer Star In Amber Diamond – $49

8. E.L.F. Mineral Infused Primer – $6

9. NYX Cosmetics Photo-Loving Primer – $13

10. Smashbox Photo Finish Light Primer – $36