The Ultimate Treat Yo Self Guide: Self Love is the Best

February is sniffing at my dress and I am in a flow of life and love. I wanted to embrace this month of self-love with Black History and Valentine’s day! I look at self-love as one of the most precious and highest levels of love. We often don’t and mascaraed as though we do.

I have been aggressive on my healthy weight loss journey so far and I have made a point to enjoy my journey this time around. Instead of waiting until I get to the end to reward myself I am doing it along the way.

Fitness

I have really been trying to take advantage of moving. I am an avid watcher of the show “My 600lb Life” On TLC. It really resonates with me because at one point in my life I was tipping the scale at 350+lbs. I was so ashamed of myself and wouldn’t look at the scale.

Now after losing 100lbs before and now working on going for the goal again and more, I know the stories that most share.

. Don’t hold yourself back my loves by holding on to things that are expired! If you wouldn’t drink expired milk then don’t keep holding on to that expired narrative.

I have been on the road a lot so I have been getting creative with my workouts and make sure I plan than like any other appointment. I have been using a lot of different apps to help me keep my body as healthy as possible. My favorite fitness apps are Nike Training and Simply Yoga. These help me to not have any excuses for not getting a workout in. If it’s important to you, you will make the time.

Nutrition

What you eat is just as important if not more than your workouts. I know a lot of people say they work out so they can eat whatever they want. I sadly have to let you know that unless it’s in moderation that ain’t going to work boo. You have to add quality fuel in order for you to push in your workouts and your life goals. I am a fan of adding supplements like my beloved Optimum Gold Standard Whey Protein from GNC. The more you increase your workouts your body will need more especially if you are lifting heavy which has proven to burn more fat and help you to be stronger for your daily life.

If you aren’t getting a balanced diet that is tailored to your special needs, then your body won’t live up to it’s highest level. I have been trying to incorporate a lot of green veggies and a few vegan items. I actually am enjoying the process as I find replacements for items I really love. I recently made vegan nachos using cashews as my cheese substitute.  That was life changing experience and so easy to make.

Respect your body and it will pay your dividends. Wonder why those who are wealthy will go out of their way for health. They have the true sauce which is your health is connected to your net-worth. If your health is funky so is your mind. Your mind is what is going to give you the keys to the winner circle. Make sure you are practicing self-love with your foods.

Fashion

When I created my goals for the year I also created a weight loss milestone reward plan. After losing 10lbs I allowed myself a little shopping spree. True story, once an upon a time I was wearing a dress when I was losing weight. I tried as much as possible since I was broke and didn’t believe in rewarding myself, I wore some undies that were a bit too big. Well as I was strutting on the catwalk aka the workplace, I felt my undies start to make a nose dive. Luckily I was able to slowly get to an office and snatch them off.

I will not be doing that this time so I partnered with Thred Up! They are an online thrift store which is so amazing. They carry major brands with deals up to 70% off retail. So you know your girl loves a good deal while she lives her most festive life.

I picked up a few items that I feel will be able to flow into my current wardrobe and keep me motivated to hit my other goals. I picked items I felt that I could wear to the office but also flip it and wear it on this rare thing called time off.

Corporate Fierce

I have been compared to wildfire in many professional settings lol. I had a professor who would say she is no wallflower, she is like wildfire. Over the years I have become more comfortable in my skin. I use to try really hard to assimilate but failed each time. I noticed that when I honored who I was more and did what I wanted, it made me stand out in the way I wanted. When I saw this INC International Clothing dress I was like get into my basket.  I love bold colors and prints.

Red is a power color that most women are scared to wear. Whatever makes you scared unless it’s life-threatening you more than likely need to do it. Maybe it’s wearing a statement piece to work or speaking up in a meeting, you have to step out to make a change. I can rock this with a blazer for work and then take it off and be instantly ready to find my redhead at happy hour.

Now this spicy number may not be in stock anymore, which is the joy and at moments sad face when shopping. However, I would never leave you ladies out so here are some possible options.

 

Reclaiming my goals

I am a force to be reckoned with. I was extremely excited to get my hands on a nice blazer. Many of my professional pieces are from Jones New York. They make high-quality items that can truly go far. When your picking items for your professional wardrobe pick items that are high quality and constructed well. When Oprah calls me and says she needs me to speak at an event, I don’t have time to worry about if an item will fit well.  This look was a hit at the office as it has balance. I give you pulled together sparkle. You can pair anything with a well-made blazer and instantly go from basic to refined.

As you are pursuing your goals in 2018 especially those that involve in branching out of your comfort zone, it’s a great time to take a deep look at your image. Does your image match your goals? Do you want to start that business or go for that promotion yet your wearing poorly made clothes or just look disorganized? Many people say that being concerned with their image is frivolous or too self-indulgent. Let’s be honest ladies, if a guy walked up to you looking like he may be homeless would you still chat? Nope, you wouldn’t, that also applies to how you look for the goals you want. Your image matters because if you look great you will feel great and the energy that will come out is amazing.

Plus Size Jones New York Black Blazer Forever 21 Sequin Skirt

Warm and Professional

When I saw this dress I was intrigued. I loved the cowl neckline and the detailing. The model vibes really came out in this look as you can see lol. Those who love dresses can totally understand. I love dresses if you can’t tell but I especially love dressed that can go the distance. The dress has a lovely belt that you can tighten as your weight changes. I believe this dress will keep me nice and cozy.  At work, I tend to pick bold items so I can feel my most authentic self.

This dress is one of those you can wear to work or transition easily for a book club. I also love that the print can be paired with a variety of shoes from pumps to boots. Fashion for work and life is meant to be fun. Wearing fashion that really enhances your look is truly the best self-care you can give. It makes the self-care circle of life come full circle.

Cory Plus Size Sweater Dress

 

I hope you guys enjoyed this post and let me know if you did in the comments below. Now because I love to share my favorite things, use promo: ChristianSimone and you will get It gives 50% off all first-time orders up to $50 to the first 150 users! Let’s live our best lives and be cute too!

Black and Proud: How to rock African print in your life

African print skirt on plus size black woman

 

We are in the deep of Black History Month. For many years I tried to minimize my blackness in corporate America like many others. However, my heart was not happy. I wanted to fully express myself and it not be perceived as me being outrageous. As I got older and figured out that folks will be uncomfortable with my presence no matter what I do, I just said f it and morphed into my full self.

So I went digging in my closet and stumbled upon my African printed skirts. I often travel in parts of the US that aren’t welcoming to people of color. In 2018 we will not live in fear anymore so I wanted to incorporate my prints into my work day. I love things that are colorful and intricate.  Hiding behind what others may think of you is a life that isn’t being lived fully. I wear my kinky hair and melanin with pride. Fun fact, the night before shooting these looks I wanted to give myself an edge up, yea that ended with me doing a complete baldie look. I think I look damn good if I say so my self.

Button down- Rock the green

Here I paired my lovely skirt with a button down. It allows me to have a nice elegant feel that is black opulence. I got many stares and some even felt ok enough to ask about it. I look at each opportunity I move boldly as a teaching opportunity. If you’re not around other types of people you often are unaware.

Black and Proud

I really loved how versatile the skirt is and the color just makes me feel like wealth. For more of a casual look, I paired it with my fav shirt from my fav tee shirt company, Adorned by Chi which is the epicenter of Soft Black Girl Magic.  My Black and Proud shirt make me feel super femme yet strong, which is how I view every black woman.

To wear something as bold means you have to really bring it.  As a black woman, the world often overlooks our beauty. Now don’t get me wrong every woman has her own beauty. But there is something that is often missed or is an afterthought from the societal narrative of black women. When I adorn my head with such head wraps, I feel regal and just the definition of black opulence.

African print skirt on plus size black woman African print skirt on plus size black woman

I hope you enjoyed these looks as much as I loved creating this looks. I felt as though I was the queen of the world! Make sure to check out Adorned by Chi to get your dope nerdy tees.

Total Adoration: Love Letter to the Black Woman

elements of aliel arise black soap and coffee scrub

February is the month of black history and love. Many will be swept off their feet for Valentine’s Day. As a black woman who hasn’t dated anyone in her adult life, I often feel so left out of the love. Me as a black woman I never understood this notion of my power until recent years. As I continue to evolve I am able to see the beauty in me. Self-love is a powerful force that is truly rare and the most liberating feeling in the world because if you set your tempo then you are able to flourish.

For every woman out there but especially my black women who may have battled so much in your life. We battle the appropriation of our essence by others who desire to appear cool but aren’t. We are stripped of our power often in corporate settings because we desire to scale the ladder. The stigma of being Superwoman to a world that doesn’t love us. As I reflect on my life, I know this one thing that if I focus on love it will grow. If I focus on my strength and power it will blossom.

Often left out of the mainstream mix of faux depth and positivity, I wrote this love letter to myself. Instead of wallowing in self-pity and repeating the negative recording I wanted to push out something that was different yet me. I am not one of those peppy types nor am I into the faux images of greatness. My version of beauty is like that of a dark roast coffee. It’s robust and pungent. Once it takes effect it can have you seeing the world from a higher level.Elements of Aliel arise and love cleanser

If your single or not you are so perfect and deserving of nothing short of a miracle. Recently I learned about this notion of self-compassion. Now it’s something that makes sense on an intellectual level but on a heart level is so delicately worn. To see yourself in the light of compassion is to truly understand yourself to be unapologetically yourself. To strip down the day before my enticing self-care session with my Elements of Aliel, an amazing Black created and owned brand. I value not just what I adorn myself with but also the depth of my beauty.

I penned this love letter to myself as I embark on this year I want it to be surrounded by the notion of love and self-reflection. I am proud of being a black woman. I see the value in being someone who has overcome so much and learned so many precious lessons. We can’t be connected to anyone until we have done the work of connecting with ourselves. We can’t love another until we fully love ourselves. I would love for you to do try this exercise with me.elements of aliel arise black soap and coffee scrub

Strip off of everything from makeup to your wig if you have one lol. I’m rocking a baldie so I can get real nakey. Dim the lights preferable put on some candles that will uplift your mood. Play something softly or nothing at all. Look into the mirror and really look at yourself. Do you like what you are? Do you love who you see? For a long time, I couldn’t look at myself. I noticed I was only looking at the surface. I didn’t want to acknowledge my own presence. I wanted to have outside folks validate me. But in 2017, I began a new thing by looking at myself. I looked at the woman with her rolls, her hyperpigmentation, her damage. I began from the top of my head to the soles of my feet. I wanted to know her, who is the woman in the mirror. I don’t really know her.

Elements of Aliel arise and love cleanser

We often feel anxious or worried because we don’t really know who the fuck we are. We have an image in our head that we have made a shrine to, and anytime anything comes close to not validating it makes us scared. For the longest time, I wanted to be the pretty black girl. The one with the pretty hair that was full, perfect body and skin. She was sought after by men and women wanted to be near her. She was pleasant and sweet and always seemed to have it together. She excelled in her life and was able to be exalted.

As I began to look at myself more deeply, I began to destroy the image in my head. See I’m powerful, fierce and a force to be reckoned with. The pretty little image was an image that was never obtainable. I had to destroy it in order to actually love me. Valentines may be something I haven’t experienced but I have now experienced self- love which is something that goes year round.

Elements of Aliel arise and love cleanser My self-love letter

When I look in the mirror the face I see is that of a multi-faceted diamond. She is hard yet soft, spicy yet sweet. She is deeper than an ocean that can drown anyone who isn’t properly ready. Her skin is not perfectly even and she has a double chin. She currently growing out her hair after having to cut the damage from the world. She has full lips that make lipstick come alive and give loving kisses even though it’s been many years since they have been used. Her eyes are like warm coffee that have seen many things that no words can articulate intelligently.

Her body isn’t as defined as many others and often has been a source of pain. She allowed for the longest time others to define her worth. Her tummy is puggy and her butt isn’t plump. She often felt she wasn’t authentically black because she didn’t look like the girls who were hailed as black. Is her blackness in equated to the size of her ass? Her thighs keep her hands warm and have carried her far.

Her beautiful mind is something to put in a museum. It has encountered so much yet is stronger with every lesson. Depression kidnapped many years of her life after the pain of growing in a home that could be the equivalent of a trap house. She is like so many who are under watered and left to flourish, yet still, she rose. The days came when she wanted no more of this world but she remained as she is a gift to this world.

Your beauty is like no one has ever had the blessing to see. You deserve nothing but complete and utter adoration. Anything below that isn’t acceptable. You sparkle and enchant so many. Walk in your glo my beauty. 

I hope you were able to see yourself in this letter. What would you add that wasn’t here? Make sure you check out https://www.elementsofaliel.com for their amazing skincare products.

Best face forward: Match your beauty for your goals!

black woman smiling wearing lancome lancome teint idole 520w

Happy 2018 ladies! I hope you’re ready for a year filled with doper content and more amazing life tips. I have committed myself to give more of me on my blog. That means sharing my life where I am now. Being 32 now, I can say comfortable the desire to be like anyone else is dead like a bad lace front.

Living your best life is my focal point in all things. From working with clients to launching my business to getting fit. You really have to look at yourself objectively and ask yourself does my image match my end results? If they don’t then you need to make the change. So if you say you want to climb the corporate ladder, start a business or find a man, you have to look the part.

In this post, I’m going to give you the basics of getting a perfectly crafted face that can be your foundation for many looks. I believe every woman especially those in their 30’s should have their go-to looks. From hair, makeup, fashion. Those things that make your booty look amazing, face looking like you woke up like this and hair that makes you happy. As I mentioned in my past post, when you look better you feel better. When you feel better your energy will shift to be in alignment with your goals.

black woman smiling wearing lancome lancome teint idole 520w
Looking at my future like…

Basic Face Must have

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How to look like a complete snack for the holidays with Catherine’s!

Do you want to look like a complete snack for the holidays? I teamed up with Catherines and want to show you how to make you look yummy this Christmas season! Most people sleep on Catherines and I will be honest I use to as well. I would only go there if I  needed to get my nylons or girdles as I find them much better than other plus size stores. After spending some time with them I have changed my tune. I got all these items for 50 or less per item which is even more amazing. Head over to their site now to get your favorite items.

Causal Office Party/Brunch

So this cute Black Label Aster Ponte Peplum Top paired with jeans will be an easy thing to throw on for those last minute brunches or office parties. I love the faux leather detail on this shirt which adds a bit of edge. The shirt is great if you have a little tummy and want to wear a skinny jeans or pencil skirt. Top it off with a nice statement necklace and now you look like your just fabulous with trying.

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