Friday, August 31, 2012

Fabulous Photos of the Week!

A round-up of some of the best celeb shots on Twitter and Instagram. 


Dwyane Wade

Eric Benet and Tamia

LaLa Anthony

Tracee Ellis Ross and family

Ricky Smiley and Trey Songz

Vivica Fox and publicist BJ Coleman
All photos via Twitter/Instagram

What's your fave photo this week? Are you on Instagram?

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Flashback Post: Pucker Up in Purplish Hues!

**This post was originally published on September 30, 2009.

Everything old is new again and makeup is no exception! During my high school and early college days, dark, muted lips were all the rage and it looks like it's making a strong comeback this season.

Me back in college circa 1998. Try to overlook the Aaliyah-esque swoop 'do! 

Celebrities such as Chanel Iman, Rihanna and Kelly Rowland have all been seen out and about sporting dark plum and berry-colored lips. The perfect alternative to classic red, purples add a bit of unexpected pizazz to puckers.

And if you're afraid to try this trend, remember lip color is a fun and easy way to switch up your look without the commitment. I've been taking a trip down memory lane and revisiting this lovely look with Maybelline's Color Sensational's incredibly pigmented purplish hue, Madison Mauve. Not only does it provide a rich color, it moisturizers lips too!

Maybelline's Color Sensational lip colors in Plum-Perfect,Madison MauvePlum-tastic, and Yummy Plummy (not pictured) available at drugstores nationwide, $7.49

Did you used to wear this lip color back in the day? If so, would you rock it again this fall for a vampy look?

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Sneak Peek: Jennifer Hudson to Talk with Oprah

Jennifer Hudson is one busy woman! Between filming guest appearances on NBC's Smash and preparing for her debut clothing line launch, the Oscar winner found the time to sit down with the queen of talk — Oprah. 

On an upcoming episode of Oprah's Next Chapter, she talks about her bourgeoning brand, motherhood, and wedding bells. Also in the interview, she's joined by her sister, Julia, who will for the first time discuss the horrific family murders that claimed the life of her son four years ago.

The interview is scheduled to air Sunday, September 9th 9PM EST.

Check out a sneak peek below:

Will you tune in to see J.Hud chatting with Oprah?

Monday, August 27, 2012

Tracee Ellis Ross Reveals Her Hair 'Miracle!'

Last week, Soft-Sheen Carson Optimum Salon Haircare invited me and fellow beauty bloggers and editors to an event introducing their newest product launch — the Miracle Oil Collection, here in New York City.

Hosted by one of our fave "curlfriends," actress Tracee Ellis Ross, shared her personal experiences using the products (6-in-1 Miracle Oil, Miracle Oil Hair Moisturizer, Miracle Oil Hair Crème) on her coveted curls with the audience.

Tracee Ellis Ross sporting a summery ensemble paired with killer YSL shoes at the event. 

"I love that the 6-in-1 hair oil really goes into the hair and penetrates the cuticles," she said. "I put it (oil) in a spray bottle and I put it in my hair in the shower when it's soaking wet. I move my hair around my shoulders,  flip it over and squish it around with the water in my hair, and I don't need any other products," she continued.

Attendees were also treated to a funny video clip featuring Ross coming to the realization that she could eliminate several products with just one product — the 6-in-1 Miracle Oil.

Miracle Oil Collection available here ($5.99-$8.99).

After the event, I was most excited to try it to see if the multi-purposed  6-in-1 product would really live up to its claims of being a hot oil treatment, daily leave-in conditioner, scalp oil, heat protector, frizz controller, and dry skin hydrator. Luckily, I was pleasantly surprised! I put a few drops of the apricot, argan, avocado, coconut, jojoba, and sunflower-infused oil in my hair and on my daughter's hair to see if it would provide sheen without feeling weighed down and it did! I then rubbed a little on my arms to see if it would absorb quickly without feeling greasy and it did!

I haven't tried the other two products, but the Miracle Oil seems to be a great buy. Plus, it doesn't have an overwhelming scent, which is always good for me. I used it all weekend and so far, it's well on its way to becoming one of my bathroom staples!

Have you tried any of these products? Are you a fan of Tracee Ellis Ross' curls? 

Friday, August 24, 2012

Fabulous Photos of the Week Returns!

Back when I first started BGG five years ago, I thought it would be fun to round up the best red carpet pics from our fave BGs and guys from the week. But now, since they're all on Twitter and Instagram, why not post the best shots from the always camera-ready showbiz shutterbugs? Enjoy!

Tyra Banks striking a bedtime-inspired pose.

Christina Milian and Lil Wayne getting cutesy in a corridor.

Swizz Beatz and his dad channeling champs with Mike Tyson's heavyweight belt.

Julissa Bermudez, Mashonda and BET's Stephen Hill at Trey Songz's album release party in NYC.

Laz Alonso ready to take flight.

Besties Sanaa Lathan, AJ Johnson, and Gabrielle Union hanging out with friends.

Tamar Braxton and her hubby, Vince enjoying a date-night. 
All photos via Twitter/Instagram

What's your fave photo from the bunch?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Take Note with Chic Stationery!

With back-to-school season in full swing, we post-collegiate BGs can still get in on the school spirit with cool stationery.

From pretty patterned papers to personalized notecards, skip technology and jot down your thoughts or send sentiments with these super chic journals and stationery sets!

Moleskine Volant Notebooks available here, $12.99 (2-pack)

Marimekko Mummolan Marjat Pink & Green Notebook available here, $11

Wood Grain Thank You Cards available here, $15.95

Lime Saffiano Medium Journal available here, $30

Layered Bird Squared Note Cards available here, $30

Watercolor Ranunculus Letter Sheets available here, $17.95

Blue Wrap-Tie Italian Leather Journal available here, $65

Do you write hand-written notes or stick to technology to get your point across?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Gabrielle Union Speaks on Skin Cancer Prevention

Although summer is coming to a close, that doesn't mean that we should ditch our sunscreen. In fact, we BGs need to make our sunscreen usage a year-round routine. Far too often we think that once temps start to dip, it's ok to skip the SPF.

According to a recent survey conducted by Neutrogena, only 46% of African-American women use sunscreen in comparison to 76% White and 63% of Hispanic women.  That's why actress and Neutrogena spokeswoman, Gabrielle Union, urges us to take our skin's health more seriously.

Photo Courtesy: Neutrogena

"Just because summer is ending, sun-safe behavior should not," says Union. "Skin cancer is the one cancer that's preventable, yet it's still on the rise. I'm glad that I can help Neutrogena educate people by spotlighting common sun protection myths and spreading the word that it doesn't matter the color of your skin; everyone can get skin cancer."

Watch Gabrielle Union speak on sun-safe behavior.

Here are a few facts according to Neutrogena and Dr. Darrell Rigel:

Cases of skin cancer in people with darker skin are often not detected until later stages, when it is more dangerous. The overall melanoma survival rate for African Americans is only 77 percent, versus 91 percent for Caucasians.

Sun's harmful rays are as deadly during the colder seasons as they are during summer. In fact, even under cloud cover, it is possible for the sun to harm your skin and eyes, so it is important to protect yourself with sunscreen, sunglasses and protective clothing even in cloudy weather.

Melanoma is the most common form of cancer in young adults aged 25 to 29. It is also increasing faster in women ages 15 to 29 than in men of the same age group.

Do you forget to wear sunscreen during the cooler seasons?

Thursday, August 16, 2012

7 Look-At-Me Loafers

When I think of loafers, my mind immediately goes to Michael Jackson. The King of Pop put penny loafers on the map back in the 80s and to me, remains the poster child for this particular style. Since then, loafers have come a long way. They no longer have a place for pennies and are far more fashionable than the ones MJ moonwalked in.

A fun alternative to basic ballet flats, loafers look great with cropped pants, flirty skirts or classic jeans and tees. From tassels to studs, loafers are loaded with fashion-forward embellishments and designs for fall.

Check out these eye-catching loafers:
Elizabeth and James Cutout Loafer available here, $125

Steve Madden Pewter Embellished Flats available here, $100

BDG Suede Loafers available here, $40

Steve Madden 'Studly' Loafers available here, $99

Sam Edelman Aster Tip Loafers available here, $150

Charlotte Olympia Bisoux Loafers available here, $600

J. Crew Toni Tassel Loafers available here, $238

What do you think of this trend? Yay or nay? 

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Get Elle Varner's 'Perfectly' Pretty Look

R&B newcomer, Elle Varner is burning up the charts with her debut album, "Perfectly Imperfect." The "Refill," singer has claimed the #2 spot on the Billboard R&B charts with her new release.

While we're excited for her musical success, we're also in love with her quirky, playful look!

"Perfectly Imperfect" is available on iTunes and in stores now.

Her big curly hair, fab frames and bold makeup choices prove that she's well on her way to becoming one of our fave BG style-setters.

Photo courtesy of

Get her look here:

Slouchy Ralph Lauren Polo Beret available here, $35

Corrine McCormack Women's Stephanie Cat Eye Glasses available here, $58

nOir Hacienda Dangle Enamel Triangle Earrings available here, $45 

Paul & Joe Lipstick available here, $20

Blank Jeans Junk Trunk Jacket available here, $50

Have you purchased Elle Varner's debut album? Do you like her fun, quirky style?

Still Loving 'Seventeen'

Even though I'm nearly double the age of 17, it doesn't mean that I can't learn a thing or two from the quintessential teen title, Seventeen.

In fact, the editors behind the mag have written, "Seventeen Ultimate Guide to Beauty," a new book chock full of tips for hair, skin, and makeup that's still applicable to me.

Available here, for $12

For those of us well beyond teenage territory, this beauty guide remains an excellent resource. From how to properly apply lashes to fun ways to style curly hair to DIY manis, this book boasts a bevy of beauty tips for BGs of all ages. Plus, the vibrant photos and splashy celebrity references add a cool appeal to the read.

Images reprinted with permission from Seventeen Ultimate Guide to Beauty © 2012 by Ann Shoket and the editors of Seventeen, Running Press, a member of the Perseus Book Group. 

However, if you've mastered your beauty by now, it makes a cool back-to-school gift for the teen girl in your life. 

Did you read Seventeen growing up?

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Beauty News: Janelle Monáe Named Newest CoverGirl!

Our fave BG with the chic black and white style — Janelle Monáe, has been named the newest face of CoverGirl! The singer, 26, joins the ranks of fellow BGs who have worked with the coveted cosmetics brand: Rihanna, Queen Latifah, Tyra Banks, and Brandy.

Known for her eclectic semi-formal fashions, the Kansas native hopes to encourage women to embrace their individuality and inner beauty.  “I believe it’s time that women truly owned their superpowers and used their beauty and strength to change the world around them,” Monáe said in a statement.

Photo Courtesy: CoverGirl 
Janelle Monáe striking during her CoverGirl shoot.  

"Becoming a CoverGirl is truly an honor and a gift: it opens up a new platform for me to inspire women to feel stronger, braver and more beautiful inside and out,” she continued.

First shots of Monáe as a CoverGirl will debut in a 10-page ad in the September issue of Vogue.

Do you like Janelle Monáe's classic black-tie style? 

Monday, August 13, 2012

Cynthia Rowley Makes Mishaps Stylish!

If you're packing your bags for a end-of-summer getaway, be sure to toss in a pack of Cynthia Rowley's for Band-Aid Beach Sport Kit bandages for those unexpected nicks. Perfect for water activities, these designer bandages aren't intended to blend in with skin.

In fact, these bad boys boast a variety of bold, eye-catching colors and patterns that won't peel off in the pool. 100% waterproof, they come in a clear plastic pouch that will also protect most cell phones from water-involved mishaps. Plus, there's single-use Neosporin packets in each kit to prevent infections.

Available at here, for $7

During my recent trip to D.C., these limited-edition bandages came in handy when my daughter fell and scraped her knee. I've also used them to cover up mosquito bites to prevent infection from excessive scratching. Whether you're heading to a water park, beach or pool these cool bandages are a must-have for your bag because you never know when you'll get a boo-boo!

Are you planning any end-of-summer getaways?

Friday, August 10, 2012

MUSIC: BGG's Top 5 Cover Art Designs

Growing up, I always admired the artwork of album and CD covers. However, thanks to the digital age, I either don't see the cover artwork or simply don't pay attention anymore. That was until last week, when I saw the eye-catching cover design for Kanye West's upcoming release, "Cruel Summer."

In fact, it got me thinking about some of my fave covers from back in the day. From iconic to colorful, there have been many visually captivating covers throughout the years.

Dust off your CD tower and take a walk down memory lane!

 Janet Jackson's "Control," 1986

Kelis' "Kaleidoscope," 1999

Kanye West's "The College Dropout," 2004

Lauryn Hill's "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill," 1998

Michael Jackson's "Dangerous," 1991

What are some of your fave cover art designs?

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Fall Fashion Preview: 5 Trends to Try

Although we're still in the heat of summer, the reality is that fall is right around the corner. By far my fave season, fall provides fashionistas with fresh opportunities to rock cool-weather staples and show off new off-the-runway trends.

From mixed prints to luxe leather, these five eye-catching styles will be must-haves for your fall closet.

Check them out:

Bold, varying patterns will make any ensemble a standout! Tory Burch 'Angelique' Mixed Print Blouse, $103, available here.


Pair a leather mini with a silk blouse for a feminine yet tough-girl look. Milly Leather Delphine Swirl Skirt, $484, available here


Skip fitted jackets for a more relaxed feel that's perfect for layering. Gap 1969 Oversized Pocket Jacket, $69.96, available here.


Although cute critters have been creeping into our closets for a couple of seasons now, expect to see even more adorable motifs making their way onto sweaters and knits. Paul & Joe Sister Animal Leopard Cashmere Mix Jumper, $233, available here.


For a full-on glam look, rich brocade designs are nice touch. Mauro Grifoni Short Dress, $298, available here

Which of these trends do you plan on rocking this fall?