AUGUST 2015 OBSESSION

This Product did it for me in August! I’ve been rocking Senegalese Twists for past month and a half. Girl + Hair Underneath haircare made life easy. I came across this lifesaver at the grand opening of Vivrant Beauty in Harlem. I instantly fell in love and so will you!

Girl and Hair (G+H) is the premier destination for modern women to find luxury hair extensions and products.”
UNDER HAIR CARE is the first natural hair product line formulated for nourishing your natural or relaxed hair while wearing protective styles.

It helped! It’s EVERYTHING! Try it and let me know!

xo IKA

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A REAL WOMAN: FASHION/LIFESTYLE BLOGGER PAULINA VIRGEN

Ever click with someone instantly? That’s what happened when I ran into this fierce Latina in the office. Actually what really happened was I looked at her and thought, “I have that same Phillip Lim dress, WHO IS THIS GIRL???”
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Paulina Virgen is not only fashionable but a strong minded woman making life happen in New York with her husband and fab cat Schiaparelli. What a name! Even her cat is working it! Her blog, North 7th & Bedford speaks volumes for women. What’s your preference? English or Spanish…because each post gives you the language option. SCORE! It’s one thing to give us fashion lovers great content to read and vivrant photos; and another thing to represent exactly who you are while doing it. She does it in Her Own Skin. I’d say we have a winner here.

1. What made you decide to become a fashion/lifestyle blogger?
I was working at Ralph Lauren Collection and Spencer, my then boyfriend, now husband, was away the whole summer for work. I wanted to do a little soul searching while he was gone since I really hadn’t lived by myself in a long time. I’ve always been very independent but not having him around gave me all this free time and I was excited to do something creative with it. I was sitting at my desk at work one day when my co-worker ran up to me with a copy of British Vogue and said “Did you see this?!” – Somehow Vogue had gotten their hands on a picture of me during NYFW and included me in a spread with Miroslava Duma and Kate Foley. Next to being photographed by Bill Cunningham, it was probably my proudest fashion moment. I thought ‘You know…maybe I could do this for the summer. Play dress up, take pictures and see what I can do with it’. My posts started as private because I was very self-conscious of sharing my thoughts and pictures publicly but when Spencer got back from his work tour we started taking pictures together and it was fun! It was like our little thing that we did together. He’s an awesome photographer and super encouraging of everything I do so I feel my most comfortable taking pictures with him.

2. Where do you get your inspiration from?
There is always inspiration to be found in the women of New York City – they are SO cool! I may walk by someone and think ‘wow, that’s amazing…I need a pair of shoes like that’. I also like to see the shows when they come out.
I often see movies, old & new, and may find something eye catching there. There was a brief point in my life when I wanted to do costume design so I always pay attention to what people wear in movies.
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3. What are your top 3 fashion pieces that you think every woman should own?
1) A great bag – Everyone needs a bag they can wear to work, bring to dinner and out to a bar. My personal favorite is the Proenza Schouler PS1. It is easy to bring from day to night.

2) A little black dress – It’s important to have something you can just throw on in your closet for those last minute dinner parties.

3) A comfortable pair of heels – I’ve found that an uncomfortable pair of shoes can really ruin your day so if you want to look good you have to FEEL good.

4. What advice would you give another woman who is thinking about pursuing her passion (fashion, beauty, lifestyle, etc.) and taking it to another level? How would you advise her to stay motivated?
I would say you have to remember everyone started somewhere and it wasn’t easy at first. You just have to do what works for you because the path someone else took may not always be your path.
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5. How do you find time to get it all done? Working full time and giving your followers what they love!?
It’s definitely not easy. I have to give priority to my job (because it pays the bills!) but any chance I get I dedicate to my blog. I’ve learned to manage my time and work on the things that are most important first and take note of what can wait. Everything is important but there are only so many hours in the day. I do believe that as women we sometimes doubt that we can have everything – the career, husband, children, friends – but there’s really no reason you can’t have it all. You just have to learn to prioritize.

Well there you have it ladies; straight from Paulina’s mouth. What a great example of a woman making it happen! You can have it all. GET IT! Socialize with Paulina at the links below….. Tell her I sent you!

xo IKA

Website: http://northseventhandbedford.com
Instagram: @northseventhandbedford
Twitter: @north7thbedford
Pinterest: @north7thbedford
BlogLovin’: North 7th & Bedford

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NIGHTIME SKINCARE ROUTINE – OIL CLEANSING METHOD

Hey Friends! I thought I’d come to you with one of my newly found obsessions. Everyone knows I make a big deal about having a regular nightime skincare routine. It’s important! But lately, I’ve been going the all natural route. Wait for it…THE OIL CLEANSING METHOD!

Let me start by giving a little education for the nay sayers. Some (oily people) may say, why would I put oil on my already oily skin? Here’s why: Oil dissolves oil! It helps to balance the oil production in your skin. You’d be suprized. In fact, using a natural oil on your skin may actually reverse the problem areas that you may have been suffering with. By cleansing with a natural oil, you’re pulling all of the toxins and impurities out of your skin leaving your face and neck feeling soft and completely radiant!

Step 1: On dry skin apply the oil of your choice to your face and neck, rubbing in a circular motion throughout. Anywhere from a nickel size to a quarter size will do. I use Sweet Almond Oil. You want to make sure that you’re not applying an oil that causes your pores to clog. Click Here for Comedogenic Ratings and oils that can cause acne. You obviously want to stay away from the highly rated oils.

Step 2: Rinse the oil off with warm to hot water. Some people use a warm washcloth to open up the pores. I like to keep it short and sweet. Splash the warm water until you feel like you’re completely rinsed the oil off of your face and neck. This process opens the pores up.

Step 3: Close the pores back up with cold water. Once you get all of those toxins out with warm water, you need to close those precious pores up. Cold water does the trick. Tip: When you find your skin drying up and you don’t have your favorite cleanser around, splash cold water to bring back some of the moisture you lost!

Step 4: Dry! I personally use a clean paper towel on my face when drying it. My preference is to pat it thoroughly until my face looks matte. If my face looks shiny, I still have work to do.

Step 5: Moisturize. This step is optional because for some, the oil cleansing method leaves the skin already feeling hydrated. For others the warm/hot water rinse brings back some dryness. Since my skin is on the dryer side, I re-apply a light coat of the same sweet almond oil I used for cleansing as a last step to lock in moisture.

One of the things I love to do the most is research different ways to keep my skin healthy and glowing. This method has been great so far. I encourage you to try it. You may find that bringing out your BEST skin can be accomplished with the simplist work. If you have your own personal experience with the oil cleansing method, I’d love to hear about! Give me a shout!

xo IKA

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MAKEUP FIXING TOOLS, TIPS & MUST HAVES

If I had a nickel for every time I messed up my eyeliner I’d be rich! Here’s a few items that MUST stay close by when applying my daily makeup, otherwise, you just might think it’s Halloween every time you see me!

Q-Tips: This might be the most important of the “fixers”. Not only do they keep inside my lobes squeaky clean but when I mess up my winged liquid eyeliner a q-tip basically erases the error without taking off the whole eye. It’s small so it easily gets to corners that are hard to reach with any other tool.

Face Powder Overkill: Ever look in the mirror and realize you have too much powder on? I’m guilty! When this happens don’t move to quickly in removing it. Wait about 10 minutes and take a second look. Sometimes our natural oils blend nicely with the product after a few mins. If it still looks like too much, take a tissue, place it over your face and spray a mist like Evian Mineral Water Spray. It rehydrates your skin leaving it less cakey.

Eyeshadow Messiness: Ok, I know I’m not the only one. This happens to everyone! Sometimes when you’re creating a smokey eye or even just applying a light eyeshadow, if falls to the area right underneath the eye. ANNOYING! Here’s a little tip, apply translucent powder under the eye (just a little bit!). By doing this, it makes it easier to wipe the excess shadow off without smudging. Also, start with your eye make up before getting to the the rest of the face. This switch in order, saves you time!

Lipstick On Your Teeth, YUCK!: What’s worst than smiling from ear to ear with red gook on your teeth? Embarassing. Here’s a trick I learned many years ago. After applying your lipstick, take your finger, put it in your mouth and pull it out with your lips closed around it. It sounds like much but trust me, by doing this, you get rid of the excess lipstick sitting on the inside rim of your lips. That’s the exact part where your teeth get involved. 😉

Hey I’m no expert, but these work for me. Applying makeup doesn’t have to be a big production, but it’s nice if it looks like it was! What are some of your tricks?

xo IKA

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