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¡Adórate! I Use Makeup As An Instrument For Intentional Self-Care And Undeniable Self-Love

Women and femmes are told that we’re conceited if we spend too much time looking in the mirror. According to society, we’re full of ourselves and narcissistic for taking several selfies and, to our loved ones, we take too long on our beauty routines and look “better” without it. People feel uncomfortable when we love ourselves loudly. But I have spent many years not loving myself, allowing others to love me badly and being too busy to even notice I was neglecting myself. Through these failed relationships with others and myself, I used the art of makeup as an instrument for intentional self-care and undeniable self-love.

My makeup ritual is how I began to pay attention to myself, and it’s how I honor and adore myself daily.

To start, I sit down at my vanity and repeat my daily affirmations aloud. I prep my skin with my favorite products and repeat: “I am beautiful. I am strong. I am resilient.”

(Photo Credit: Samanta Helou)

I continue by blending my eyeshadow and drawing my winged eyeliner — I’ve gotten the precision down to a science — in perfect symmetry. My eyes are almond-shaped, just like my dad’s, and lining them with black eyeliner brings out their fierceness. My eye shape tells a story that moves beyond my mixed ancestry of latinidad. To accentuate these inherited features, a true mezcla of my Mexican mami and Peruvian papi, I use makeup as a tool of empowerment, reclamation and inspiration.

(Photo Credit: Samanta Helou)

Next is possibly my favorite part of my makeup ritual: contour and highlight. All the women in my family have prominent cheekbones, and contouring and highlighting allows me to accentuate these features. I used to feel really disconnected from my Peruvian heritage, until I lived in Perú and saw all the beautiful carved out cheekbones – a feature I’ve come to love. Of course, there’s many other reasons I’m connected to my peruanidad, but learning to love myself and my identities meant loving the skin I’m in. Now with a greater sense of self, I let the confidence exude through adornment.

(Photo Credit: Samanta Helou)

On any given day, I stick with mauve shades of lipstick for a neutral look. I switch it up with a classic red lip when I need the extra confidence boost. If I have a presentation, a photoshoot or just want to impress myself – I pull out the red because wearing it makes me feel unstoppable.

The art of applying makeup is a personal, intimate ritual of care and adoration of self. Deciding which pair of gold hoops to wear is an act of resilience because adornment isn’t always afforded to women of color. We’re called excessive and tacky when we boldly don acrylic nails, big hoops and a deep lip color.

(Photo Credit: Samanta Helou)

Although the innovative techniques we use to apply makeup are discounted, we create works of art with palettes, bronzers and brushes. We create masterpieces in the comfort of our homes, in our sacred places of rest and leisure. We learn the artistry of armor and war paint and complement each other on what we’ve created. Receiving praise for your makeup from another woman or femme with a sharp-ass wing is like an exchange of love and adoration, an unwritten rule of sisterhood and kinship, whether on the ‘gram or in person.

There’s something about adorning myself with makeup and accessories that feels like worship. I love and honor myself better than anyone else will. The amount of time I dedicate to myself is invaluable so I can blend my foundation and concealer with love and intentions and call it self-care because it is.

(Photo Credit: Samanta Helou)

It’s not frivolous, extra or unnecessary. It’s the armor I wear to deal with day-to-day challenges with extra style and glam.

Makeup is art and ritual that sets the tone for my day. Every day isn’t well balanced and intentional, but at least my winged-liner is on point. At its best, self-care should be sustainable. It should not be an after-thought and practiced only once we’re burnt out. At the very least, I spent 45 minutes applying my favorite lipstick, listening to music and preparing to hustle and get shit done, and I look fly while doing it.

Makeup is a form of artistry that allows me to tell that story and emphasize whatever I want it to. Whether it be with a bold lip, a nude one, false lashes or no makeup at all, I get to decide what makes me feel beautiful. I decide how to adorn myself today.

Read: A Curly Hair Expert Walked Us Through The Process Of Achieving Tessa Thompson’s Latest Unicorn Hair Look

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Sweet And Sexy Lingerie To Buy Just For You This Valentine’s Day

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Sweet And Sexy Lingerie To Buy Just For You This Valentine’s Day

Michael Loccisano / Getty

One of the greatest falsehoods of our time is that lingerie is to be bought for others. Sure, lingerie can be fun to share with others but often times we underestimate the fun of wearing something sexy just for ourselves. That’s why we rounded up some of the sweetest and sexiest itty bitty pieces to wear for yourself this Valentine’s Day.

If you invite someone to come see it then lucky them and happy Valentine’s Day!

Fenty Embroidered Lace Corset

 But it here: Regular:$99.95

Draped Back Jacquard Cami Set

Victoria’s Secret

Buy it here: $49.50

VS Wicked Unlined Balconette Satin Bow Teddy

Victoria’s Secret

Buy it here: $119.50

Love Stories Lacy satin-trimmed stretch-lace soft-cup triangle bra

Net-a-Porter

Buy it here for: $70

VS Chiffon Pleated Babydoll

Victoria’s Secret

Buy it here for: Price$59.50 Current Price$49.50

Linking Hearts Embroidery G-String

savagex.com

But it here: $22.95

On the Rocks Pasties 3-Pack

savagexfenty.com

But it here: $32.950 Reviews

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Top Reviewed Brushes for Naturally Curly Hair

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Top Reviewed Brushes for Naturally Curly Hair

Arthur Elgort / Conde Nast / Getty

Every curly-haired girl knows that to ensure strength and growth in their tresses, staple items are needed. From a moisturizing deep conditioner to a perfect leave-in conditioner, these staples are vital for the care and keeping of our natural hair. With the right brush, curlies can stop breakage, put an end to split ends, and see growth if that’s what they’re seeking. We searched the internet for the best brush tools for Curly Hair and put them on a list for you.

Here’s a look at the top brushes you’ll want for detangling your natural hair.

Ouidad Double Detangler Comb

Curly Hair brush
Amazon.com

Users say Ouidad’s Double Detangler is perfect for those with curly, thicker hair. The brush features double rows of comb teeth and is perfect for tackling tangles without being too forceful or rough.

“This is the best comb that I’ve ever used for detangling my hair. It detangles with ease and with a speed that I’ve never experienced and I couldn’t be happier. I have a range of 3c, 4a and 4b hair and this comb handles all of it with ease.” Amazon.com user.

Denman Brush

Curly Hair brush

An absolute classic, the Denman Brush has long been touted as the fairy godmother of brushes. Loved by 3c to 4 hair types the Denman brush has been known to dentangle its way through curlier hair pattern with a stroke of the brush.

Ladies and Gents do yourself a favor and get you a brush! My boyfriend is so shocked at my curls too! Honestly, I had never thought I could have a consistent curl pattern. The pics are 6 weeks apart but my curls never were this defined as they are with the Denman brush. I had 3B but now I am full 3C hair curl type.

I didn’t remove any rows and combined my curls with Shea Moisture Hair smoothie and some eco gel to style. Watch some youtube videos to help see how to properly brush hair out. I sectioned it into layers and even tried out bangs for the first time since the curls are so tight and I am seeing consistent coils!” – Amazon user.

Remington Detangle Brush for Curly Hair

Curly Hair

According to reviews, this electric styling tool really lives up to its name. The brush’s description says the brush’s teeth rock back and forth to loosen knots and tangles from hair without snagging or breaking your hair, working to cause less shedding. Users say that while it takes longer, the process is worth it.

“Love this detangler. I’ve been natural on and off for almost 40 years and this is the best detangler I’ve come across. It takes me longer to detangle with the vs a wide tooth comb. However, there is less shedding and breakage. I used my on wet hair with conditioner in it. My hair is more elongated after styling using this brush. I will be buying 2 as gifts,” wrote on Amazon user.

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