Thursday, February 28, 2013

I have no idea what to write about - Tia

Every so often I wander into these place of not knowing what to write about. So here's some random stuff that's on my mind.

- I just started Series 4 of Doctor Who. I'm not really sure why it took me so long to get into this show. It is everything my inner nerd believes in.

I got hopelessly attached to the 9th Doctor and he was only around for one season. So I know I'm going to be a mess when the 10th Doctor leaves. I'm not sure how I'll feel about the 11th Doctor. I'm very "Martha Jones" in my feelings for Doc 10.

- The So So Def Anniversary Concert was EPIC!!! Kris Kross, Xscape, Da Brat...EVERYONE was there. Usher showed up. Monica showed up and SANG! HER! FACE! OFF!!! But the pi├Ęce de r ├ęsistance was when Hov showed up. His way too brief performance made me decide that I wanted to see him and Mr. Timberlake in person. So I'm taking myself to the Legends of Summer tour for my birthday. Yeah...that's what grown folks do. 

- The masochist who teaches the mid-day Kickboxing class at my gym caught me singing a Foo Fighters song. He said, "You don't know who sings this.." I politely schooled him regarding the band, the lead singer and my everlasting crush on Taylor Hawkins. Sir, don't let my brown skin fool you. I know this is Atlanta and I may fight like I'm a hood chick, but I will school you on music of ALL genres.

- I seriously can't stop listening to Justin Timberlake's "Pusher Love Girl". He needs to go ahead and drop this as a single.

- I've been house hunting and every time I think of a 30 year mortgage I feel like I'm going to vomit. For my readers who have bought homes, does that feeling ever go away? Or will I feel sick every time I write a mortgage payment?

- I need a job where I don't have to I can get a cat. Yeah, I don't know what's happening with that either. In the past I'm haven't been the biggest fan of animals I can't eat. But for some reason I think I want a cat. Part of the reason is because cats are jerks. Something about that makes me smile. Prime example:

- I think all of the Harlem Shake videos are stupid. I file them with planking, coning and all other ridiculousness.

- I usually have NO cares to give about Kim Kardashian. I mean NONE!! But I've actually been feeling sorry for her because whoever her pregnancy stylist is has it out for her. They are doing her DIRTY with the clothes they're putting her in.

- I'm ready for Spring and then Summer. I'm tired of always feeling like I'm on the verge of catching a cold because it's minus something ridiculous degrees outside.

- I haven't showered yet and so I'm gonna go do that now. Laters BGLUers!!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Finally Something We Can Get Behind: The Cast of Awkward Black Girl Do The Harlem Shake for Real

I have been waiting to crack at least one smile or giggle at these Harlem Shake videos that have been all up and down my timeline and I just can't get behind it. First of all, how do you call something The Harlem Shake and not one person in the video is even doing The Harlem Shake??? How am I expected to get behind that?!

But lo and behold, here comes Issa Rae and the cast members of Awkward Black Girl to set the record straight on how this whole Harlem Shake phenomenon should have gone down in the first place. Let's discuss shall we?

1. Sister Mary is giving me Oaktown 357 realness on top of that table and I live!
2. Darrius...better...WERQ!
3. Issa Rae's face while doing The Bankhead Bounce has reminded me that it is pretty much impossible to do that dance without looking completely serious.
4. Jesus doing The Macarena? I can't.
5. Pattie doing The Butterfly with those nasty tissues in her hand is what I needed to see in these last and evil days.  Or was that The Tootsie Roll? They're so similar!
6. Did White J pull the short straw? What in the world does he have on??? Haaaaaaaaaaaaa!
7. Were you able to name all of the 90's dances represented in this video?
8. Umm...where's Fred?

Awkward Black Girl's last episode of the season airs this Thursday on

Monday, February 18, 2013

Stranger in My House- Toya

"Stranger in My House" is a song by Tamia who I am so glad has never made her way to Basketball Wives.

When I was a kid, there was a movie that came out starring Farrah Fawcett called "Extremities". I don't remember a lot about the film (it came out in 1986) but here's what I do remember: Farrah Fawcett is at home in her bathrobe with the door unlocked.  A strange man walks through the door asking if Joe is home. She replies that there is no Joe there. This man turns out to be a rapist and makes her life a living hell until she fights back and gets revenge.  Now it wasn't until I looked up the trailer on Youtube  that it was brought to my attention that she had been raped one night by this same man in a parking lot prior to him coming to her house.   The police were of no help because she couldn't identify him. He stole her wallet and knew where she lived.  Still after all of this she was comfortable enough to be at home in her bathrobe alone with her door unlocked.

I remember watching this movie as a kid and saying to myself over and over "All he did was take two steps into the house!"  I was blown away by the fact that someone's life could be altered by a stranger being allowed to take just two steps inside of their home.  This lesson made me more cautious about how I answer the door to my home but recently I was reminded about how this same lesson can be applied to the kind of men that I let into my life.

It's one thing to get blindsided by the wrong guy.  Sometimes you just don't see things coming.  Sure there can be some warning signs. However, I think that the worst mistakes are those that even though there was a sign or two, you would have never thought in a million years that the consequences would be as extreme as they turned out to be. I remember telling Tia one time that if I would've been able to immediately see into the future upon meeting *someone who shall remain nameless*, not only would I have never had any interaction with him, I would have taken a chair and beat the fool out of them for even trying to talk to me in the first place over what I foresaw. Unfortunately life doesn't work like That's So Raven. You are not always going to know what consequences a little "harmless" fun can bring your way.

You know the saying "fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me"?  How is it that we get so comfortable after making the wrong choices about what kind of men we let into our lives? I say this because recently there has been someone that has popped up in my personal space who in no way needs to gain two steps inside of "my house".  To make it even more ridiculous, he really isn't that different from the type of guy that seems to trip me up all of the time. I've been here before.  I know all too well due to my own mistakes and the consequences of other people's mistakes that there are certain people you just don't entertain.  However, it doesn't mean that I don't catch myself thinking about how I can get away with doing something I know would be stupid.  Reason being, he...umm...well...*starts fanning*.  He...uh..."gets" to me. I'll leave it at that.  Whereas some women would just give in for a little meaningless fun, I know better. I've seen and experienced enough to know that you can't play Russian Roulette with your life. Sometimes you can get a little meaningless fun out of it but sometimes it can turn out being the worst mistake you've ever made.  I'm not saying to live in fear. I'm just urging you not to live life according to your hormones or your exasperation over being single.  You can't go through life thinking that if you take one wrong small step to the left that the consequences will be minimal.  You have no way of knowing that, Toya, I mean, ladies!

One thing that I like about Olivia Pope's character on Scandal is that there is one huge flaw: she is beautiful, she is brilliant and she is completely rendered helpless when it comes to one man that she has made the mistake of letting into her house. Her life will never be the same. She has compromised her morals because of her love for Fitz. She has also compromised her common sense. She can't think straight!  There's no way that she could have foreseen that falling in love with this man and engaging in an adulterous affair would lead to her committing voter fraud. You just never know how falling for the wrong guy can completely alter your future.

So I say this to myself as I say this to all of you, be careful of who you let into your life. If you see warning signs, do not hesitate to take them seriously.  If you've made mistakes before, don't sit around chillin' with the door of your heart unlocked  so the wrong guy can come in and make your life hell again.  You never know what making just one small mistake can do and you're better off not finding out.  The further away a wrong choice can take you, the further you could possibly be from getting what you really want and deserve.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Can We Talk? How I Feel About Singles Events on Valentine's Day

Okay before I get into this, let me just say that I am not entirely sure how I feel about this subject. I am actually writing this to get some clarity so bear with me. 

Within the past few weeks I have been invited to a few single ladies events for Valentine's Day.  When I tell you that I have had some sort of physical reaction likened to a war veteran with a nervous tick, I am not joking.  Some of them have been church related, others have not.  Mind you, I absolutely love Valentine's Day.  The joy I get from walking through Target during Valentine's Day season with all of the pink hearts and candy and such makes me feel like I am going to explode into a pile of glitter and Skittles.  I am no V-Day hater.  However, there is something about celebrating singleness with a bunch of women on Valentine's Day that makes me want to run towards the hills.

Yesterday I texted my friend Mel who is my doppleganger.  We are so similar in the way we think that sometimes it's a little scary. More than a few times has someone met her and said "Oh my goodness you remind me so much of Toya!" and vice versa. I figured that perhaps she could give me some insight.  She said she has celebrated the day with friends and pizza as well as celebrated it alone with pizza.  This makes sense because I know her to be just as content alone as she can be around people that she loves.  Mel would celebrate Leap Year alone with pizza because she absolutely loves it so a special occasion isn't necessarily the point.  When she told me this, I wasn't taken aback because honestly I would totally hang out with her on Valentine's Day with no problem. So why did I start itching when I was invited to some single ladies Valentine's Day events?

Because I know Mel. Because I know that if we got together we would have a blast. And I know for a fact that at no time during the evening would it turn into a gripe fest or a bunch of sad faces wishing that they were booed up somewhere. Nor would it turn into an evening of a bunch of women trying to affirm each other and themselves that they are okay. I just...uh uh. For an entire evening?   I am happy being single but I don't feel like getting dressed up with a bunch of women proclaiming "We are happy being single and we will prove it crowded up in this restaurant booth with each other while we are surrounded by couples." NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

Nor am I going to any church events where I will be subjected to stuff like this:

No ma'am.  Jesus is not my Valentine!  I'm not sitting around listening to Jodeci and Peabo Bryson with Jesus!  I'm pretty sure he's okay with that too.  He knows me.  He gets it. 

It wasn't until this year did I see this as a holiday almost exclusively for couples.  My dad has given me a Valentine's Day gift every single year of my life. For the most part this has made me feel like you celebrate the ones that are close to you a little extra special on Valentine's Day.  For instance, I got my roommates each a card and some chocolate.  I also think you should totally celebrate yourself as well by doing something that you love to do.  But lately, I feel like this really is just a holiday for couples and I am cool with that because I love celebrating romantic love.  For instance, right now as I do every year, I am listening to a collection of my favorite love songs by 80's and 90's R&B male groups.  Love is a beautiful thing and I love to hear people sing about it, especially on Valentine's Day.  So why do I not want to celebrate it with other single women?  I guess I just feel like if I get together with a bunch of single women on Valentine's Day to celebrate ourselves, I will be sitting there the entire time thinking "You know we only got together because we're single, right?"  That's much different than going out on a random Friday night and spontaneously staying out until 3 am and then turning to one another and saying "You know we can only do this because we are single right?"  The latter scenario is said with sheer joy. The former, not so much. 

Like I said, I am still figuring this out.  I hope I am not offending anyone that is headed out to their single ladies Valentine's Day events tonight. It's just that when I am that adamant about not doing something, I need to get to the root of it and figure out why. Is there anyone else that avoids single ladies events on Valentine's Day like the plague?

Happy Valentine's Day from Andre 3000!!!

Best. Card. EVER.

One of my favorite sites, Afro-Punk, has featured three Andre 3000 Valentine's Day cards created by The Soulflower Group.  If I were in a cubicle these would be my new wallpaper.  My day is officially made. To see more, click here.

New Music: The Official Video for "Suit & Tie" Justin Timberlake ft. Jay- Z

As a little gift of love on Valentine's Day to all of the fans out there, Justin Timberlake released his long awaited video for "Suit & Tie" today.  This is his first single in over five years.  Someone said that he's brought sexy back twice and you know what? I can't even front on it. It's smooth y'all.  I mean, he is giving us new millennium Frank Sinatra realness and I dig it!  Check out the new video and let us know what you think.  Will you be copping his new CD, 20/20 Experience when it drops on March 19th or are you still waiting to hear more singles?

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Weekend Mid-Week Roundup

I stand by what I said. I still think JC is a better singer than Justin. And if I have to choose, I'm Team Robin Thicke because he practices what he preaches. (I know we've had our differences in the past, but I'm on his squad.) But LAWD HAVMERCY!!!! Justin SHUT! IT! DOWN! at the Grammys. I will be going to his show with Hov if it comes through the ATL.

Apparently, I'm the only person who DOESN'T like the show Girls. *insert Kanye shrug here* - ICYDK

Adam and Sting...somebody catch me. - Just Jared

This kid won Jeopardy! like a BOSS!!! - Mashable


President Fitz just looked like he was going to DIE when he found out he wasn't really the president. Then he went all Tupac, Hail Mary,"I ain't a killer but don't push me." - PITNB and Awesomely Luvvie

I'm excited about this because Agent Coulson is back. (Not sure how though.) I'm not ashamed to say I shed a few tears when he died during The Avengers. - screenrant

I've been a Duke Fan since I was 11 years old. You have to be ride or die with Duke. There are no fair weather fans. - BuzzFeed

I like Beyonce. But I stan for Solange. She is without question my favorite Knowles. - Fader Mag

Bill Nye the Science Guy tells us how close we all are to being killed by an asteroid. - CNN

A "bubble" keyboard on a touch screen?!?! I need this NOW!! - CNET

Monday, February 11, 2013

Recap of the 2013 Grammy Awards

If you notice, I didn't call them the Hot Mess Championships like I normally do.  This year's Grammys was the best show in years!  I was so proud of Nashville at this year's show too as so many Nashvillians received awards.  Check out my play by play. 

-The last person I expected to come out with something that looked darksided was Taylor Swift.  I am a fan for real but this was just dark and awkward.  Bring the cheerleaders back or something.  I can’t deal.

- LL Cool J- *sigh* He really has become my favorite person in recent months. I am so proud of all that he has accomplished in his career. I know his opening remarks may have seemed a little too longwinded for some but I think they were great.  We need to be reminded about the good things about the industry and he did a good job of that.  However in other news, I don’t know what makeup they are using on him but they don’t do his lips justice at all on television.  Anyone else notice that his lips look brown on TV?  Someone mentioned that he may have licked them into another color. See…

- I love the Grammys for these old school/new school collaborations.  It must be awesome for Ed Sheeran to sing with a legend like Elton John. Tonya said that Ed Sheeran’s “The A Team” is the most endearing song about a crackhead she has ever heard. I am so done.

- The “I’ll See Your Angelina Leg and Raise You Five Inches” award goes to J Lo’s outfit.  WOW!  Is that half of a bodysuit attached to half of a dress? Well okay then!

- Adele won!!!! I love that she is so surprised. She is so fun to watch.

- I loved Fun.’s performance. The rain was a really neat effect. Quick, someone watch Adele so she doesn't try to set fire to it. *Baddump bump crash*

- Bonnie Raitt and my musical best friend John Mayer are presenting now.  I know people are clowning him for looking like Blueberry Muffin from the Strawberry Shortcake prom collection but I’m just glad to see that he’s doing well since his surgery.

- Miranda Lambert’s pink microphone and matching ear piece are adorable.

- *Looks up at Miranda Lambert’s and Dirk Bentley’s performance* Wait…this is still on?

- They just showed a clip of when LL Cool J was on American Bandstand and he got teary. Sir please don’t make me love you more. I am sure that my feelings for you are already past inappropriate.

- That performance by Miguel and that cat from the Cheetos commercials was KILLER!  Oh that’s Wiz Khalifa. Loved it!

- Carrie Underwood won! Here’s a drinking game to keep you sober: Take a shot every time someone thanks God on the Grammys.

- Tim McGraw. You know what? I am already in trouble with the Lord for talking sideways about one married man on this show (LL) so let me not get into deeper trouble.

- Mumford & Sons just performed and I really like that song. However, if my life hinged on telling them, The Lumineers and The Avett Brothers apart? Well, to be absent from the body…

-They just shot to Sting and his wife Trudie in the audience. Tia and I both applauded because Trudie STAYS winning.

-Why did they play Jay Z’s music when Beyonce’ and Ellen DeGeneres came out?

-Ellen is one of my favorite people on the planet. The way she is playing Beyonce’ while she is trying to introduce Justin Timberlake is HILARIOUS!

-And then it happened:  Justin Timberlake got on stage and let us HAVE IT. As much shade as I have thrown at him in the past, I cannot deny that he KILLED. His band was crazy, the BGV’s featuring Aaron Camper were crazy, it was just….WHOA.  Beyonce and Justin Timberlake back in the same year?  It's going to be bananas. 

-They should have gone directly to commercial after Justin Timberlake’s performance so that I can recover. The second song was so good that I just completely forgave him for that Super Bowl fiasco. As good as it was however, I can’t help thinking WHEN IS D’ANGELO COMING BACK??? *Breathe Toya*

-GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH not this Alicia Keys “Girl on Fire” song again! *Starts singing like Alicia Keys*“This song makes me TIIIIIIIIRRRRRRRRRED!!!!” Oh but wait. Adam Levine? Let’s watch shall we?

-Okay so basically what has happened is that in putting the song in Adam Levine’s key, we have found the key that Alicia Keys should have been singing it in in the first place?  Can they go back and rearrange some of her other songs then because clearly they are a present help in her time of trouble.

-Kelly Clarkson just got up after hugging a bunch of people to accept her award. That speech was hilarious! Can someone please arrange for us to meet up at Fido downtown next week?  She seems like my kind of people.

-Steve Sudduth to some and Mikky Ekko to others is about to sing "Stay" with Rihanna which he wrote. I just screamed myself hoarse.  Nashville is having the best night ever. Wait. Did Rihanna just sing? Like flawlessly sing?  Get ready Nashville. Artists are going to start flocking here to see what’s in our water.

-Jay Z, The Dream and Frank Ocean are accepting their award for “No Church in the Wild.”  They started to play the cut off music after The Dream’s speech but when Jay Z went to speak, they cut it off. Oh really???? *Kanye voice* “No one man should have all that power!*

-The Black Keys y’all!  If they bring out that dancing man from the “Lonely Boy” video, my entire week will be made and it’s only Sunday night.

-Why is one of the characters from Where the Wild Things Are playing on keys with The Black Keys? What is happening right now?

-Kelly Clarkson is about to sing with just a piano. I am already rocking back and forth like an old church mother. She’s singing “You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman”!  Sing about them “Wranglers” Kelly!!!!

-While we’re in commercial, I’d just like to mention something: I see a lot of shade towards Chris Brown in my timeline over this Chris Brown/Frank Ocean fight that happened a few weeks ago. Why do people act like they were in the parking lot with them?. Frank Ocean is affiliated with Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All. Don’t let the sensitive music fool you.  That's about all I have to say and will say about Chris Brown and that entire ordeal.

-Bob Marley tribute: Bruno Mars sure does put on a great show. If it weren’t for the annoyingly repetitive “uhs” in "Locked Out of Heaven", I’d probably like it but they annoy me so much!  But this performance is great. Oh and also…psdjf avopeirmngiobaeorgjasiognasiopnrg[aionra[rgnoirngoian[gnai STING!!!!!!!

-Yes “Walking on the Moon”! Yes!!!!  I love the Marleys! This is awesome!  I would not hate a Rihanna reggae record. I can tell she is feeling this from way down deep.

-The Lumineers are giving me Dexy and The Midnight Runners realness right now and I am loving it!  If they break out into “Come On Eileen” I will be no more good.

-Jack White, another Nashville resident, is on….with Ruby Amanfu!!! Represent Nashville!!!! My girl!!!!

-Ladies and gentleman, Katy Perry….and ‘em.  I aint mad atcha Katie!

-Fun. just won for Best New Artist. They’ve been a band for 12 years. Turn to your neighbor and say “Seasons".

-Hunter Hayes is singing his sweet “I want to make you feel wanted” song. I would go into my rant about what the current state of R&B could learn from country music right now but I am trying to have a pleasant evening.

-This projection screen dress that Carrie Underwood has on is interesting. We are wondering what Mariah Carey has to say about her use of butterflies. Speaking of Mariah, does she even show up for award shows anymore?

-Prince….Prince….Prince.*Gets back up off of the floor* Gotye just won for This generation's "Don't You Want Me Baby" AKA "Someone That I Used to Know".  How cool must it be to receive an award presented by Prince?! Take note though: Let it be said and forever written that you don’t touch Prince. Gotye tried it. Gotye failed. Glad he won though!

-They are now doing the video montage of people we lost in 2012. I can’t take it. Every time someone I love comes up I yell “nope!”  Donna Summer “Nope!”.  Adam Yauch “Nope!”

-This Levon Helm tribute is the business!  Elton John is churchin’ us on the keys.  Can I please get a  Mavis Staples/Alabama Shakes collaboration soon? I love Brittany Howard!

-Mother Mavis caught the Holy Ghost Hiccups at the end of that performance and I’m sorry…I was rollin’!

-Why are we paying tribute to Elton John after paying tribute to people who have passed away? He is still with us. He just left the stage!

-And then…the Frank Ocean performance: I know he is singing “Forrest Gump” but his outfit and the avant gardeness of his set is giving me Royal Tennenbaums realness.  This is the thing: I honestly didn’t notice how off key he was because I have chalked him up to being quirky. Usually people that are quirky singer songwriters, I give a pass to. I loved the visuals. I thought the stage set up was really cool. And since I really do not have much to say in regards to the performance, I will just share what I felt was my favorite Tweet of Shade of the entire evening from my friend Meredith:             

“Why are they showing an SNL skit at the end of the Grammys?”

-Brandon already warned me that Travis Barker and LL Cool J would be performing on the same stage. I still wasn’t ready. And Chuck D?  I love this!  I know they youngin’s are bored but imagine how I feel trying to watch The Source Awards…with Rick Ross..with no shirt on. How on earth did I get to that visual? Make it go away!

Best show in years!!!  There's been talk of the Grammys coming to Nashville next year. With all of our wins this year, that would be amazing! We shall see.  What did you all think of the show?

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Yet ANOTHER open letter to JC Chasez - Tia

Dear JC,

Sir, that side eye that you're kind of giving in the picture above, well, I'm giving you a deluxe version of it as I sit here and type this.


I'm trying not to be mad. I don't know your life. I don't know what you've got going on. So I won't throw too deep of a temper tantrum at the fact that you refuse to put out new music. I'm sure there is a perfectly good explanation for why you're not back in the studio. I'll mind my manners.

Let me stop lying...WHY WON'T YOU PUT OUT NEW MUSIC?!?!?!?!?!?!?!!? Seriously, I have watched that sorority video dozens of times and your vocals still SLAY!!!

Forget what the haters say, anyone with good, functioning hearing, knows that you were the best and most solid voice in N'Sync. I say that with no irony or untoward shade to the other guys. But let's be sang the HELL out of every verse/hook/chorus/bridge you took the lead on.

The European version of "I Drive Myself Crazy" is SICK!!! Your subtle runs before the last chorus are the BUSINESS!! And I still lose it every time I hear you belt out, "Crazy, CRAZY, CRA-ZAY CRAZAY-YEAH!!!" Honestly, your voice is ridamndiculous and I'm tired of missing out on it.

I see Justin "Hollywood" Timberlake decided to take a break from acting and go back into the studio and put out some new music. Good for him. But he's no you. And while I'm sure his new stuff will be fresh and will have the production teams, PR wizards and social media gurus shoving every single, snippet, sneak peak video and live performance down our throats, he will never be able to vocally hold a candle to you. Yes, he can sing. Yes, he can sing well. But he can't SANG. Not like you. You know that kind of voice that just takes you in to where you need to be. That voice that makes you wrinkle your face and try to smell the funk on the vocals. The kind of voice that give you chills when it hits the money note. Yeah...that ain't JT. That's you Boo!!!

Obviously, you're gonna do what you want. But please trust and believe that there are a WHOLE bunch of people out there who would love to see you step back into the booth and deliver a project that's not just flash and glitz, but will show these children in the music game what it really looks like when someone can SANG!!

And if you need someone to have your back, I got you Boo!! Brown girls can be some of the best inspiration.

Kindest Regards,

P.S. You still fine!!!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Shameless Product Promotion: Skin Care - Tia

Before I even get into this post I need to say two things: 
1. This girl is BEAUTIFUL!!! When I was looking for skin care pictures for this post I found this one. Holy Crap!!! This chick is gorgeous. And her skin is amazing. 
2. I also found this picture. 

You always see people washing their faces like this in commercials. But NO ONE in their right mind would wash their face like this. There would be water all over the floor, your clothes...everywhere. And your face would never get clean. AND you'd always get water in your eye or on your fresh press. Not buying it. 

Moving on.

Yes, I'm wearing a tiara. 
People often ask me what I use on my skin. I have to be honest, I don't have a huge skin care regimen. I've pretty much been using the same products for just short of forever. Yes, I think part of the reason my skin is the way it is, is because of genetics. My grandmother had skin that looked like warmed caramels. I know that's a weird analogy but that's what it reminded me of. Smooth, creamy caramels. But she was also consistent with what she used on her skin. My mother used what she used. I use what she used. (We'll get to that momentarily.)

But while genetics, plays a role, I'm also consistent. Up until about a year ago, I only used 3 three things on my skin. (I added a fourth scrub last year.) And while I don't use an army of assorted products, I do make sure that I stick with what works.

My hope is that my shameless product promotion will help someone to develop their own skin care habits.

1. Water
Yeah, I can't really promote water. But I'm utterly convinced that the amount of water I drink plays a key role in my skin health.

I drink no less than 2 liters of water a day. No...seriously. My mother instilled the importance of water in us from an early age. Yes, we had milk and Kool-aid. Occasionally, there was soda in the house. But water was always there. My mom always talked about how water flushed out the impurities and would not only keep our bodies healthy but our skin clear as well. So to this day, I almost exclusively drink water. It's hard enough trying to keep weight off so I skip sodas (even the diet ones) most of the time. And everything else just seems like empty calories. Now, I will have a regular Coke every once in a while because COKE IS AWESOME. But I'm telling you, water is what's up when it comes to healthy skin.

2. Noxema

I have used Noxema for as long as I can remember. My mother uses it. My grandmother used it. It's all I've ever used to cleanse my skin.

I love the smell of it and the tingle as it cleans. (I know I sound like a commercial. I said "SHAMELESS" didn't I?) That tingle makes me feel like it's digging the dirt right out of my pores. And I don't have to worry about it stripping my skin of moisture.  Plus, when I was younger I used to walk around the house with it on my face and scare my little brother. I'd always try to give him a kiss when I had a face full of Noxema. As you can imagine, he hated that.

I once had an esthetician try to tell me that Noxema was bad for your skin. She said something about the chemical make-up of the cream being toxic for skin. I politely listened while rambled on and waxed my eyebrows. About half way through the wax, after she'd stopped trying to convince me of the evils of Noxema, she said, "You know, you have really great skin..." Do I? DO I? Could it be from the Noxema maybe...possibly...since that's all I've used since I was about 10. You were saying....

3. Neutrogena Visibly Even Moisturizer
It is a common misconception amongst African Americans that we don't need sunblock. Granted, we are less susceptible to the sun's harmful rays because we have more melanin...(I think) But we're not immune. 

Sun block is for EVERYONE, regardless of race. But let's be honest, how many of us actually use it on a consistent basis? I don't see any hands. 

For me Visibly Even kills two birds with one stone. While I don't have overly dry skin, I don't negate the importance of a good moisturizer. I see no harm in keeping it my face baby smoove...Yes, smoove IS a word. So since I'm going to moisturize anyway, why not use a moisturizer that already has SPF built in?

Don't get me wrong, I am a sun worshipper. I often sit by the pool in the summer like it's my job. But since I don't want to look like a California Raisin when I'm 50, I will continue to use plentiful amounts Neutrogena. 

4. Ocean Salt Scrub by Lush
I freaking LOVE Lush. I can literally go in there and spend my last dime on body soaks, lip balms and lotions. But I only recently discovered their Ocean Salt scrub. I never really looked at their skin care line because what I use was already working. If it ain't broke, ya know?

I had just returned from a trip to NYC and my skin just felt GRIMY. I think it was just the city air and subway fumes plus the recycled air from the plane ride. Whatever it was, I found myself wandering around Lush looking for something that would scrub the day off of my face and body. Enter The Scrub. 

The scent alone is great. And the sea salt is a great exfoliator. While I don't use it every day, I feel like it would be a great daily scrub for anyone who deals with blackheads. Plus IT HAS VODKA IN IT!!! (For some reason that makes me really excited.) 

So there you have it ladies and gentlemen. My shameless plugging of my skin care products. I use what works. And I don't deviate. While these may not be the products for you, I encourage you to figure out what works and then stick with it. Great skin comes from great skin care. There's no ifs, ands or buts about that. Drink your water. Clean your skin. Be magnificent. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Weekend Roundup

Hands down BGLU's favorite moment of the Superbowl.  

The Ravens
Beyonce won the Superbowl. -

Justin did some of his new songs. No shade, but I'm still team Robin Thicke. But Justin is doing his thing and I respect that. shade. - Lainey Gossip

Keyshia Cole hated on Michelle's Superbowl performance. True Story: I once walked out of a show where Keyshia Cole was the opener for Kanye West. Her singing LITERALLY made me leave. I asked my brother to text me when her set was over. That's all I have to say about that.  - Concrete Loop

Face tattoos are for people who have NO aspirations of doing anything other than...I'll just leave it "anything." Seriously, I hope this is fake.  -

Chris Brown allegedly got into another fight. I realllllly wish I could have a heart to heart with this kid. - TMZ

I didn't realize that Fall Out Boy even broke up. I just thought they were on a break. Well, glad they're back. And can I just tell you that the "commercial" failure of Patrick Stump's solo project essentially lends weight to my argument that most of the listening populace wouldn't know good music if it walked out of their radio and slapped them in the face. - BuzzFeed

Upside Downton Abbey wins!! - People

When Mellie was yelling about Olivia on Scandal, I IMMEDIATELY thought of Beyonce's "Ring the Alarm." Apparently, so did Shannon. Great minds... - PITNB

I always feel like Facebook is doing juuuust a bit too much. - CNET

Black Girls ROCKED the Super Bowl. - Clutch

Monday, February 4, 2013

Meet My New Life Coach: Soulpancake's Kid President

Facebook is not hardly short on people posting video clips but once in a while you click on a gem that absolutely makes your day such as I did about a week ago. If you are not one of the 7 million plus people who have been schooled and delighted by Kid President's pep talk from Soulpancake's Youtube channel, then please do yourself a favor: Watch this and get your life!

It was all fun and games until Kid President hit me with that "What will you be your Space Jam?"  I almost burst into tears!  That's the question of the hour isn't it?  What exactly are you going to do with your life that not only brings you joy but makes a difference in the world?  What a profound statement from a 9 year old kid from Tennessee huh? Here's another video that'll make you sit up straight and strive to be "gooder".

You know he had me at point 14, right?  I tell you if this kid stays on the right track, he will definitely have my vote in 2028.  For more on Kid President, check out his website where he has even more awesome things to say as well as interviews with Josh Groban, Andrew WK and the creator of Soulpancake, actor Rainn Wilson.