It’s beach time guys! If you haven’t made the trip yet, I’m sure it’s coming soon. I’m all about preparation and the Beach is no exception. The Blazing hot sun, sand in between my toes and the potential for dehydration will not get me! I’ve got plenty for it all!

SUNSCREEN: Did you think I was going to start with something else? Well you thought wrong. This is my number one, always. I make countless mention of using sunscreen all year round, but at the BEACH you better come correct! You can use one of my favorites from Aveeno. Anything less than SPF 30 doesn’t count in my opinion. Protected skin stays healthy. Do yourself a favor and keep it in the beach bag, the handbag, the weekend bag; EVERY BAG!

SPECS: Sunglasses provide protection to your eyes. The eyes are sensitive. Not only do they keep your eyes safe but you also look bad ass. The bigger the better. Sometimes it’s all about the look too, let’s be honest.

LIP CARE: Last months obsession was the Aquaphor Lip Therapy Treatment. Guess what, there’s a version with SPF. Hello! Enough said.

AGUA: A cooler filled with bottles of water is a must. Staying hydrated while you’re out in the sun is crucial! The sun rays will get you dehydrated so quickly. Always remember to replenish. The way I keep the water flowing is to infuse it with strawberries, cucumber, lemon or my favorite, mint!

FRUITS: At the beach I like to have my Summer favorites like, grapes, watermelon, pineapple. Washing and pre-cutting in advance makes life easy and helps keep the day low-hassle.

SUMMER READING: A few hours at the beach make for great reading time. If a novel doesn’t interest you, try short stories or write in a journal. My new must have and awesome gift for friends is Kiss The Sky: Reflections of Becoming your Best Self by Carline Dumerlin-Folks. It’s a journal as well as a reference point that is sure to keep you motivated.

There it is. No big deal. You don’t need many things but you DO need a few essentials to make your trip to the sand fun and worthwhile. These are just to name a few; all in addition to your flip flops, beach chair, towel and bucket of fried chicken lol. What things do you feel you can’t go to the beach without?

xo IKA



Vacationing is one of the luxuries of life. If you can’t go for 2 weeks or even 7 days, a long weekend is a great way to take a moment and unwind, visit friends, get some sun, or sightsee. Whatever the reason might be, how you pack for your trip is a super important step. Even if your trip is extensive, your skincare doesn’t have to be. Here are 4 beauty must-haves for the long weekend that keep your skincare on point without lugging everything you own. Yes! Just 4!
SUNSCREEN: I should start by mentioning that sunscreen is a 365 day commitment. Not all vacations consist of rays, but regardless of the destination, protecting your skin from the ultra violet rays is essential. You should protect yourself even when you walk to the mailbox. If most of your body will be exposed while vacationing, sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher is best. For cooler destinations you’ll want to make sure that your makeup consists of SPF 30 or apply sunscreen before your makeup application. A great full body sunscreen is The Aveeno Protect and Hydrate Lotion. An amazing sunscreen for the face is my personal favorite: Murad Invisiblur Perfecting Shield. It’s a great investment for your skin and it’s super lightweight.

MAKEUP PALETTES: What’s nice about makeup palettes is that everything you need can be in a compact case. Easy breezy and on the go. Who really wants to carry 10 different eye shadows and a ton of lippies? Vacationing is about being carefree and relaxed. Go for an eye shadow palette that gives you your nudes and one or two smokey options. A palette like Urban Decay’s Naked 2 does just that! Your lips can get easily covered too. The Lip Artist Palette from Sephora collection will have those puckers looking on point for days!

To me, a travel size version of your favorite fragrance is not only smart but so cute! It’s the little things. Most fragrances come with a travel sized roll on version. Your signature fragrance can go with you wherever you travel and you don’t have to check it in at the airport. Take a look at this Chloe Eau de Parfum roller ball. Adorable!

LIGHTWEIGHT FACE POWDER: A lightweight powder is perfect when you’re enjoying a period of relaxation. It gives you just enough coverage so that you don’t look like you just rolled out of bed but it also doesn’t feel heavy and over done. If you’re poolside and the sun is blazing hot, do you really want to have a pound of foundation on? I don’t! A lightweight powder that gives amazing results and can be used for every occasion is the Bobbi Brown Sheer Finish Pressed Powder. It’s perfect! Goes and easy and lasts all day. Approved for beauty while traveling!

Do you feel like you need more? You don’t! Having these 4 essentials will make you look like you haven’t skipped a beat, I promise. Beauty is what you make it. We don’t need to be completely made up and contoured all the time. Small tweaks win too. When traveling, taking in the experience is what’s most important. Just think, sunscreen, makeup palettes, fragrance and your favorite powder. Done! Make your Memorial Day weekend beauty the best one!

xo IKA



Angelique Miles is a Fitness Enthusiast and native New Yorker who brings all that she’s got to Harlem. I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Angelique for about 9 years and truth be told, it is because of her I ventured out into forms of fitness that I didn’t think I would ever do, such as CrossFit and Bikram Yoga. It wouldn’t be right if I didn’t start the year off with’s Real Women Series without a killer in the gym. She is the meaning of the quote: “You can’t help getting older, but you don’t have to get old.” – George Burns. Read on and find out why…
1. Why is fitness important to you?
Fitness is important to me because when I look good I feel good, and what is life if you don’t feel good? Also, as a mature woman, if you don’t work out, you are out of shape. Fitness is the fountain of youth.

2. What are your top 3 favorite workouts and why?
My top three favorite workouts are (all are subject to change from time to time except for Barre):

Barre classes (Exhale, Physique 57, PureBarre, The Bar Method, etc)
I have loved barre classes since first discovering The Lotte Berk Method, the mother of all barre classes back in the 90s. I love it because you get a full body strengthening and stretching workout in one hour. When I am taking barre consistently, my whole body is lean and tight, not bulky – and I am more flexible to boot!

Bikram Yoga
Bikram Yoga – a system of yoga classes that runs for 90 minutes and consists of the same series of 26 postures, including two breathing exercises. It is ideally practiced in a room heated to 104 degrees and 40% humidity. I am currently at the tail end of a 30 day challenge (Bikram every day for 30 days). My first 22 days were really rough, but now I feel like I have had somewhat of a breakthrough. It is in no way easy, but I’m finally getting into a sort of groove. Benefits include increased flexibility in muscles, connective tissues and tendons, it helps prevent injuries, and detoxifies systems of the body. Even after I complete the challenge, I plan to practice 4 times a week.

Strength Training
Weights, resistance training, calisthenics. Nothing sculpts my body like strength training. Over age 40, muscle mass declines. Over 50, muscle loss really begins to outpace the rate of muscle gain. The way to prevent this is strength training. Because let’s face it, lack of muscle mass means flab. Sad face.

Honorable mention – Running
Running is not my favorite thing to do, but when it comes to shedding pounds, there is no competition. Whenever I commit to running several days a week, the pounds come off. I am not a long distance runner – the most I have ever run is a little over 4 miles, but I plan to do more in the future.
Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
3. The best part of my fitness journey is…trying new things, meeting a whole new community of people – and looking good!

4. What advice would you give another woman who is thinking about taking her fitness to another level and how would you advise her to stay motivated?
My only advice would be that a fitness journey starts in the mind, so really put your mind on fitness. That may mean different things for different people. For me, it is the first thing I do in the morning. I also know what kind of workout I’m doing the night before. Basically, schedule and plan your workouts and stick to it. What keeps me motivated is seeing the changes in my body.
5. What is your ultimate fitness goal and how do you plan on achieving it?
My goals change from time to time. Right now it’s a 30 Day Bikram Yoga challenge. Later this year I plan to run a half marathon (if my shins let me). I have considered entering a bodybuilding competition, but I love food too much. I will be 50 this year, so I guess I would say my ultimate fitness goal is to be fit throughout my 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, and beyond. My ultimate fitness goal is to look great in bikini until they put me in the ground!

Well there you have it! Angelique Miles has shown us that fitness is a lifestyle and we all can conquer it if we put our minds to it. How will you conquer your fitness goals this year?

You can find Angelique Miles on many Social Media Platforms. Drop her a line and tell her Her Own Skin sent you!

Twitter: Angelique Miles
Pinterest: Angelique Miles
Instagram: Angelique Miles

xo IKA



Guys, I literally don’t need a thing when it comes to beauty, fashion and all materialistic items! I get overwhelmed by my own thoughts sometimes because I love every package, print, color, shape, texture of so many different things all year round. But when does it become too much? I think there is definetly a point when you need to seperate your wants and your needs. It’s about having balance in life.
WANT: Something you would like to have
NEED: Something you have to have

Here’s the truth. In actuality, you only need a few things to survive in this life right?

-Enough food and water to maintain your health
-Health care and hygiene products (just the basics, i.e. soap, toothpaste, shampoo etc.)
-Clothing (not the way we may often think, but just the things that keep you comfortable and appropriate)

Everything outside of the above i.e., name brands, expensive cuisine and drinks, a big house, and new car, is a WANT!

So what does this mean? Should we only buy the things that we need and nothing else? NO! We’re not here to just survive, we’re here to live! While keeping life in perspective, every now and then it’s rewarding to ourselves to get a treat; something that makes us smile. Don’t get me wrong, some of my treats are probably more than just a treat, but you should know me by now! I can’t help it! lol

The point I’m trying to make is, regardless of what you have or what you want to have; life is about PERSPECTIVE. I have a loving family and amazing friends who make life worth living. That’s a blessing! Every now and then I take a moment to figure out what it is I want and what it is I need. At the end of it all, I’m happy. Before you realize that time has passed you by, make the best of your situation. Ask someone how they’re doing. Take a friend out for a drink. Buy your mom a present. Be kind. Life is too short. Live it the way you WANT!

xo IKA