Beauty…and the Male: The Flip Flop Revolution

Part of the reason for my column on COM, is that several ladies commented that they want to know more about what men really like. Many times, men are too embarrassed or frightened to tell you what we really find attractive. So we just go along, to get along. However, I feel compelled to use my voice to speak out for all men (well, the ones that care about fashion).

I’m not sure exactly what is happening in the culture of women’s fashion in this country, but the flip flop has seriously taken over. And as a man, I have to say, I am NOT happy about it! First, let me say that I am all for comfort in today’s stressful society. If you are out and about on a weekend, running errands, or taking your kids to soccer practice, then by all means, enjoy yourself and the comfort of having your feet exposed to the sun (pedicure–mandatory).

Yet, while I believe in comfort, I also believe in appropriateness and the envelope has been pushed way too far! Recently, I did an informal survey and just began to pay more attention to women’s footwear in professional and more formal settings. I observed flip flops at work, at school, in airports, in business meetings, and even at funerals! Is it too much to ask for a little black pump during a FUNERAL!?!?!? The sexiest image is and continue to be a woman walking down the street in a nice skirt and a nice pair of heels!

Call me a bad person, but I firmly believe that this is the difference between our current generation and the ones in the past. Take a look at the adults in the 20s and 30s. If someone came out in public wearing flannel nightclothes, they would have been stoned in the public square. Yet, we allow it under the guise of it being more comfortable.

Very slowly, our society is corroding. The “rules” are being relaxed. Even in those instances when they should not be. Well, I, for one am ready to stand against it!! Get a grip and hold on to your soles, ladies…here’s a newsflash…the Flip Flop Revolution is OVER!

Until next time,
KP

More about Kenneth:

Kenneth D. Pratt Esq. is a graduate of Morehouse College and the Florida State University College of Law. A native of Tallahassee, Florida, he began his career there, as a certified legal intern at the Office of the State Attorney and progressed to the Office of the Attorney General where he served for three years. Pratt has published several short stories, poems, and op eds in National as well as local publications. In his spare time he enjoys reading, travel, and sports.

Mascara Monday: L’Oreal Telescopic Explosion mascara

Oh yeah….another mascara review! This baby has been highly anticipated in the mascara world. I have gotten so many emails about L’Oreal Explosion. With a name like “Explosion” you would think this ish is like…amaziiiiiing. Is it though?

Check the review!

L’Oreal Telescopic Explosion mascara


Price: 5 out of 5 (around $9.00 )

Packaging (Brush Wand): 5 out of 5
Overall: 3.5 out of 5

What it claims: “…the first mascara at mass with a spherical brush and smooth formula to lengthen and separate every lash. Creamy formula works with the unique patened brush to build quickly, leaving a flexible deposit of color.”

The truth:
It has some of the same issues that Givenchy’s Phenomen’Eyes had. Buuuut, I like this one better.

What I loved about it: Its affordability. And I love the wand. I can’t deny…whoever came up with this idea of making a mascara wand a little ball is a genius. I find that this design works great for any and everyone. It REALLY gets in those corner lashes.

What I didn’t like: Like Givenchy’s Phenomen ‘Eyes, I was sent to Clumps City around the second coat. Third coat was a nightmare!

Overall: I’m not saying I’m a Know-It-All but I knew this mascara was a comin’. No I didn’t have any insider secrets but it only makes sense. We saw the same thing with Lancome Oscillation. Soon after Maybelline Pulse Perfection hit the scene. Givenchy Phenomen ‘Eyes blew us away and now we’ve got L’Oreal Telescopic Explosion. If you are one of those ladies that don’t want to shell out close to $30 on a specialty mascara, wait a few months. No doubt a drugstore brand will come out with a similar mascara.

If you have already tried Phenomen ‘Eyes, you can’t help but compare L’Oreal’s Explosion to it. It’s pretty automatic considering they both have what I like to call the dagger-like wand.

Not sure if I’ve said it enough so I’ll say it again, THE WAND IS AWESOME!! It is perfect perfect perfecttttt for ladies of all lash-types. Especially for those who struggle with separation issues. This, in my opinion, is the BEST brush for ladies with those issues.

Is it great for lengthening? Yes.
What about volumizing? It’s just “eh”. Not bad but not spectacular either.

Now let’s talk about a few of the mascara’s downfalls….like Phenomen ‘Eyes, L’Oreal Explosion clumps pretty badly. I really don’t understand why. Is is the formula? Or maybe it’s the way that wand is shaped….I really haven’t figured it out but it’s frustrating to say the least. The wand does such a dynamic job at separating that you really want to go for 2-3 coats. But the attempt will have you lookin’ in the mirror and uttering “WTF”. So sad, I know….

One coat is more than enough! Get those inner corners, separate the lashes and you are good to go. No need to push a second coat. It really will clump you up somethin’ seriously.

NOTE: I also found that this mascara works best with something like a mascara shield. I don’t know if it’s just me and my clumsiness but I ended up with a lot of the mascara being on the skin behind my lashes. This is crazy frustrating. Especially if you have applied eye make-up. This can be prevented by simply blocking that skin–use a mascara shield or even an index card.

Now let’s see the mascara in action…



Lashes without mascara
(did NOT curl lashes)


Lashes with 1 coat of mascara


One coat isn’t bad…but check out the disaster that is two coats:


Yikes! See what I mean about only needing one coat?

More shots of L’O Explo in action….

Would I recommend it?: I do. Every mascara lovin’ gal needs to give it a whirl. I think everyone will be impressed with the separation on this baby. And who knows? You can probably do one coat for separation and then follow up with your favorite mascara for optimum results. Heyyy!!!

Video Review!


So whatcha think? Are you ready for it? It won’t be available until November 2009 (don’t be askin’ me how I got it…y’all know I’m cool with the Mascara Fairy. *wink*) but are you anxious for it now?

Tell me!

A crazed mascara reviewer,

FOTD Friday: Purples Lips, part III


Yesss, purples again. I know, I know…they are the source of my beauty inspiration these days. Last week I did purples on the eyes and this time I took it back to the lips. Now I’m no stranger to lavender lips. Y’all have seen me in them here and here. To say I’m a fan of purple lips is an understatement. I flippin’ love them!

MAC Violetta is not a newbie to MAC Pro. It’s been awhile for a minute and every time I stop by the store it is staring me in the face and calling my name. I’m not kidding. This color is fierce.

See….


Violetta is all kinds of dopeness. I knew it would create a bangin’ purple lip. MAC defining it as a bright clean violet purple is so right on.

I even decided to add another lip liner to the 4 or so I have. I love my Nightmoth but it can be a little too dark. Even with a light hand, it can dramatically change the look of your lipstick.

Vino is a lot more forgiving.


Vino is the bottom line. HUGE difference, right? So..I went ahead and got to work.


And here’s what I ended up with…

Eh. I mean, I like it but I needed some thing else. Something that would really kick the purple up a notch.

And I found it.

Ta dahhhh!!


Now that’s what I’m talkin’ about. Make Up For Ever’s Glossy Full Couleur is perfect for topping off a purple look. By itself it isn’t too pigmented but when layering…oh wowsers!


And I should mention that this gloss is pretty minty and uh…tasty.

Purple-y glossy goodness!


Purple lips make me so happy!

I so don’t need any more purple lipsticks. I’m done.

I think.

Have an awesome weekend!!!


Stay beautiful,

Wednesday’s Sales & Spotlights!-9/10/09

Hi my lovelies. This is an altered re-post from this past Sunday. Had to share some other awesome things with my fam.

*hugs*

Check out my post on AOL’s
Black Voices


Yes y’all…that is a very young B. Around 6th grade or so. It’s okay to laugh….we all had to start somewhere. HAAA!!! Check out THIS POST to see the article I wrote about my hair journey. Show me some love and leave some comments over there. I wanna know what the Clumps fam thinks!

____________________________

The Fairest.com has Tarte Cosmetics
50% off!

*click the photo to
head to the site*

Boom boom pow! That’s an awesome sale, y’all. But it only lasts for 2 days. And if you have to join TheFairest.com. And when you do join tell ‘em I referred you. *wink* The Party Girl’s Essential set is only $32! And it comes with a cheek stain, mascara, eyelash curler, lipstick, powder AND liquid eyeliner!!!

____________________________

Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk contest!

Lookie lookie! Carol’s Daughter is having a weekly contests! Tell them why Hair Milk is so totally wonderful for you and you can win a $100 gift card to Carol’s Daughter. Fabulous! Click HERE to enter. And when you when you can hook your girl up with some of that Almond Cookie scrub. Holla!
_______________________________________

September is Thyroid Cancer
Awareness Month

Did you know? I didn’t but y’all know I love awareness—especially those dealing with health and wellness. Thyroid cancer is the 6th most common cancer among women. Early detection is the key. Betsy from A Few Good GumDrops tells us all about it here.

_______________________________________

This Week’s Sales at Walgreens
Prices effective from September 6th-September 12th

  • Buy 1, Get 1 50% off Neutrogena Cosmetics Hair or Skincare.
  • 25% off L’Oreal Cosmetics, Skincare or Hair color
  • 33% off Borghese nail lacquer
  • 50% off of Kiss or Broadway nails kits or accessories

(yawn… not many sales here this week)

_______________________________________

This Week’s Sales at CVS
Prices effective from September 6th-September 12th

  • (with card) Buy 1 Get 1 Free on ALL Neutrogena Cosmetics.
  • (with card) Buy 1, Get 1 50% off Maybelline Cosmetics foundationblush, powder, concealer or lip
  • (with card) Buy 1, Get 1 Free L’Oreal Color Riche or Infalliable Lip color
  • (with card) Buy 1, Get 1 Free Revlon Nail color
  • (with card) Buy 1, Get 1 Free Revlon Moon drops or Super Luscious Lips
  • (with card) Dark & Lovely Hair color $4.99! <---loves this stuff!

_______________________________________

Giveaway at Just Kiss ‘N Makeup

Jamie over at JustkissnMakeup is hosting a giveaway this MONTH to celebrate her 22nd birthday. Look at the goodies!

Of course you can get all the info and answers to all of your questions from Jamie herself here and here.

_______________________________________

This Week’s Sales at Rite-Aid
Prices effective from September 6th-September 12th

  • Buy 1, Get 1 Free at L’Oreal HIP, eye, and lip products <---WOO HOO!!
  • Buy 1, Get 1 Free Revlon face and eye products only!

Happy shoppin’!



Wednesday’s Sales & Spotlights!-9/10/09

Hi my lovelies. This is an altered re-post from this past Sunday. Had to share some other awesome things with my fam.

*hugs*

Check out my post on AOL’s
Black Voices


Yes y’all…that is a very young B. Around 6th grade or so. It’s okay to laugh….we all had to start somewhere. HAAA!!! Check out THIS POST to see the article I wrote about my hair journey. Show me some love and leave some comments over there. I wanna know what the Clumps fam thinks!

____________________________

The Fairest.com has Tarte Cosmetics
50% off!

*click the photo to
head to the site*

Boom boom pow! That’s an awesome sale, y’all. But it only lasts for 2 days. And if you have to join TheFairest.com. And when you do join tell ‘em I referred you. *wink* The Party Girl’s Essential set is only $32! And it comes with a cheek stain, mascara, eyelash curler, lipstick, powder AND liquid eyeliner!!!

____________________________

Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk contest!

Lookie lookie! Carol’s Daughter is having a weekly contests! Tell them why Hair Milk is so totally wonderful for you and you can win a $100 gift card to Carol’s Daughter. Fabulous! Click HERE to enter. And when you when you can hook your girl up with some of that Almond Cookie scrub. Holla!
_______________________________________

September is Thyroid Cancer
Awareness Month

Did you know? I didn’t but y’all know I love awareness—especially those dealing with health and wellness. Thyroid cancer is the 6th most common cancer among women. Early detection is the key. Betsy from A Few Good GumDrops tells us all about it here.

_______________________________________

This Week’s Sales at Walgreens
Prices effective from September 6th-September 12th

  • Buy 1, Get 1 50% off Neutrogena Cosmetics Hair or Skincare.
  • 25% off L’Oreal Cosmetics, Skincare or Hair color
  • 33% off Borghese nail lacquer
  • 50% off of Kiss or Broadway nails kits or accessories

(yawn… not many sales here this week)

_______________________________________

This Week’s Sales at CVS
Prices effective from September 6th-September 12th

  • (with card) Buy 1 Get 1 Free on ALL Neutrogena Cosmetics.
  • (with card) Buy 1, Get 1 50% off Maybelline Cosmetics foundationblush, powder, concealer or lip
  • (with card) Buy 1, Get 1 Free L’Oreal Color Riche or Infalliable Lip color
  • (with card) Buy 1, Get 1 Free Revlon Nail color
  • (with card) Buy 1, Get 1 Free Revlon Moon drops or Super Luscious Lips
  • (with card) Dark & Lovely Hair color $4.99! <---loves this stuff!

_______________________________________

Giveaway at Just Kiss ‘N Makeup

Jamie over at JustkissnMakeup is hosting a giveaway this MONTH to celebrate her 22nd birthday. Look at the goodies!

Of course you can get all the info and answers to all of your questions from Jamie herself here and here.

_______________________________________

This Week’s Sales at Rite-Aid
Prices effective from September 6th-September 12th

  • Buy 1, Get 1 Free at L’Oreal HIP, eye, and lip products <---WOO HOO!!
  • Buy 1, Get 1 Free Revlon face and eye products only!

Happy shoppin’!



Amor de Lacquer: MAC Nail Trend FW09 by Jin Soon


Welcome to another post of Amor de Lacquer….the series all about nail polish and nail care! Send me your requests, suggestions and ideas to Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com.

Hey peeps! So I did an impromptu poll of nail polishes collections I should review next. And guess who won?

Mickity mickity MAC!

I’m so lame….lol.

But really…it’s been awhile since I’ve played around with MAC Cosmetics. It’s not that I don’t love them anymore. I just enjoy exploring other brands. Namely the cheaper *cough* brands. Jin Soon for MAC had me swooning when I first saw the swatches at All Lacquered Up (hey Michelle!). She gave the collection some serious justice. But I felt compelled to only snag three polishes. For Fun, Dance All Around and Dark, Rich, Delicious seemed to be pretty dupe-able.

Check out my trio!

Cool Reserve is described as a dirty grey lavender. It is quite reminiscent of Zoya’s Malia. Malia is a little darker though. I have a weak spot for purples…especially lilacs.

Beyond Jealous is described as a blackened blue green. Ohhh weee, it does my heart content. I wish it was more green than black though. In the bottle in daylight it looks dark green.


And even on the nails it looks green-y.


But without a flash….


Black! It’s fiyah nonethless.

Dry Martini is described as a khaki olive green. I knew right off the bat that I wasn’t really going to like it on my nails. But I wanted to get it anyway. I love funky colors like this–even if I don’t think they compliment my nails well. Dry Martini kinda looks like mud on my nails but somehow…I like it.


But then the weekend hit and I had to top it off with yellow polka dots.


I only have two other MAC nail polishes. And I don’t remember them being this impeccable. They dry REALLY quickly. I applied two coats with each and by the time I was done with each hand, the other was already dry. One time for MAC!

Buy these and more for $12/bottle at MACCosmetics.com.

Diggin’ em? Passin’ em on by? Whatcha think?

Your fellow nail polish junkie,

Acne Sucks, Part II: The Stages


Welcome back to another Acne Sucks post! Since the inaugural post I have gotten SO many emails regarding acne in general. Many of you shared your stories with me and I must say….it’s quite comforting knowing that I’m not the only one frustrated by adult acne.

In the midst of wallowing in my acne woes, I got to thinking how dealing with acne is such a chore. It’s more than just popping a pimple. I feel like I should put my pimples on payroll because I am CONSTANTLY working with them.

I came up with the four stages that I find myself dealing with.
Stage Uno (Spanish)

Prevention-In this stage I am doing all I can to stop acne before it even becomes a problem. This includes drinking water, keeping a balanced diet, making sure I’m not touching my face with dirty hands, etc. I drink a gallon of water a day and make sure that I am getting in fresh greens and fruits daily. Can’t forget my vitamins either! Of course I don’t do this solely to prevent acne but I know it doesn’t hurt.

Stage Deux (French)


Tackling-This is toughest stage because one wrong move can make the next two stages a nightmare. The tackling approach, as dramatic as it sounds, determines if your pimple will disappear like a thief in the night (robbing you of self-confidence) or if remnants of it will hang around for the next year or two or ten. I am currently using Differin, an acne gel that my dermatologist has prescribed me. Is it working? The inflammation in my skin is definitely down but I’m still tackling brand new pimples every morn. Boo.

Stage Drei (German)


Repairing-This is stage that can be the most frustrating. So you’re drinking more water and taking vitamins. You even manage to keep some of the pimples at bay. But what about those old battle wounds? You know….the pimples that left dark and red spots all over your face. They are like unwanted tattoos. And getting rid of them can seem impossible. I swear by cocoa butter. I have been using it for years and it has always been great at fading those dark spots. Lately, however, I’ve been dabbling around with skin tone correctors. I am still testing Origins but I LOVE Clinique’s. It is amazing. It works. It’s pricey but it really does work.

And lastly,

Stage apat (Tagalog)

Concealing-Ahhh yesss, where would I be without my trusty concealer? Concealing is a must for me. I choose not to wear foundation simply because of fear from breaking out all over but dapping a bit of my MAC Studio Finish concealer in NW45 works. I usually only apply it on my cheeks to cover those spots that are struggling to get through the previous stage.

I go through these stages each and every day. And sometimes more than once a day. It’s a mess, y’all….a hot mess.

But what choice do I have? Must.Have.Clear.Skin.

What stages do you go through? And even if you have crystal clear skin, feel free to chime in!

Until next time….

Sista Show-Off: Funlayo from AseIre.com


Welcome to another post from the Sista Show Off series! In this series I like to show some love to other companies, blogs, businesses, organizations or just regular ladies like myself who are paving the way for women everywhere! Let me feature you! Shoot me an email at Brittany@ClumpsOfMascara.com

Greetings CoM sistas!

I’m ‘Funlayo (pronounced “Foon-lah-yo,” it means, “She was given to me to cherish” in Yoruba) and I’m elated that Brittany has given me a chance to share with you all just a little of what I have learned – and am still learning – on my journey. One of my favorite organizations, DeAlmas Women’s Collective (check them out!) uses the slogan “The Feminine Spirit: Empowerment from the Inside/Out” and I believe that beauty, like empowerment is something that has to come from the inside and shine out. You can be as pretty, made up, smelling good, hair looking tight as you want but if you don’t work on your inner beauty too, you’re only doing half the job.

I want to use “Inside Out” to share nuggets of wisdom to help develop INNER beauty and to recommend products that I like to help enhance OUTER beauty. I’m a low maintenance lady but there are some products I absolutely love and I’m looking forward to sharing those with you! This is gonna be fun!

Since we’re talking about beauty, it seems fitting to open with this quote by Sally Field who said: “It took me a long time to not judge myself, through someone else’s eyes.” Seeing ourselves through our own eyes is a struggle for many of us – particularly us brown girls who have been told that our hair is too nappy, noses and lips too big, hips to wide and skin too dark to be considered beautiful. But ladies: we ARE beautiful in all of our glory! We don’t have to adhere to anyone’s standards but our own; we don’t need anyone to validate our beauty. All we need is confidence in the fact that we are perfect and beautiful just the way we are.

Affirmation:
I am beautiful because I say so! I see myself through my own eyes, not anyone else’s.

Now that we’ve worked on the inside, you know what I like to use to enhance my outer beauty? Bronzer! Brittany loves bronzers and so do I – they give your skin such a lovely, natural-looking glow that’s especially great for summer and that will help you keep that lovely sun-kissed summer look through the fall.”. My choice is Wet n’ Wild MegaPump Bronzzer in Brazilian Bronze #989 . It goes on smooth and gives me the perfect glow with just a touch of shimmer. It’s available at most drug stores and, at around $3, the price is definitely right.

‘Til next time, ladies! Peace, blessings and beauty – inside and out!

‘Funlayo is a priestess, historian and professional writer. Visit her new site www.AseIre.com for positive vibes and a chance to win a $50 Amazon gift certificate! Contact her at Funlayo@AseIre.com.