January 2017 Favorites

The start of the New Year is traditionally marked with New Year’s Resolutions and attempting to stick to an either small or significant change in habits. Whether it’s the widely shared goal of “going on a diet for a healthier new me” or simply writing an affirmation a day, there is a phenomenal attraction to the notion of starting over with the turn of the new year.

As for me, I wanted to think of my goal setting as something that would benefit me in my overall future, not just something to think about for 365 days. I want to create more. I want to produce more creative content and explore different medium and techniques, from digital, fine art, crafts, audio, video, photography, and writing. Obviously this is a huge, vague task that seems overwhelming. However, breaking this down into smaller manageable tasks makes this daunting “resolution” more feasible.

Whether it is choosing a healthier lifestyle, practicing self-love with daily affirmations, or working harder towards your professional career, forgive yourself if you seem to hit a bump in the road towards your goal. Break down your goal into smaller, more manageable tasks. Write it out to visually see your plan. We’ll achieve our goals together. For this first month of 2017, I discovered a few favorites that have come into my life that will surely transfer into the rest of the year.

Sweet, Sexy, Savage album – Kehlani (listen here)

My heart never realized it needed an album as much as it needed this one. Every song was a window into different facets of Kehlani’s vulnerabilities and experiences, which made it that much more relatable and meaningful. A lovely mix of moods from upbeat and uplifting, to contemplative and heartbreaking. “Sweet Sexy Savage” is the perfect love letter for a broken and healing heart.

LUSH Herbalism Cleanser (cleanse here)

This past year my middle school acne came back to haunt me, so I’ve been experimenting with different products I prayed would be “the one”. I’ve found it in LUSH’s Herbalism cleanser. I was just about to give up and accept that nothing was going to work until I read reviews and got a sample of this gentle cleanser. The natural ingredients, such as the ground almonds, kaolin, and rice vinegar extract, has kept my acne at bay, especially when my period would come along (when my acne would be at its worst). Aside from this new holy grail skincare product, I also had to watch what I eat to prevent acne (oily/fried foods and sugar triggers my acne). I highly suggest going to your LUSH shop and ask for a free sample to test it on your own skin.

Luxie 522 Tapered Highlighting Brush (found here)

I was looking for a bigger brush (I was using a flat top large eyeshadow brush) to softly sweep on my highlighter. I debated between a thin fan brush and this fluffy tapered highlighter brush and love that this covers more surface area and thus helps me give a soft overall glow on my cheekbones. It also makes me want to keep sweeping on my highlight forever because of its incredibly soft and airy bristles.

Hidden Figures

When I first saw this in theaters, I was immersed in the intensity of the story and strength of these real characters in the face of adversity. I saw news about this film months before it was getting attention and was excited to see Janelle Monae was part of the main cast (as I’ve been a fan of her as a singer). The movie was a story showcasing black womxn exuding grace, strength, and persistence despite the hate and prejudice they faced in the white male dominated space at NASA. This is incredibly important especially for young black girls growing up, letting them know they can succeed in the STEM field and that they should be encouraged to pursue anything they want. Katherine G. Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson portrayed by Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, and Janelle Monae respectively, are hidden no more.

Blanket Scarf (found here)

This past Christmas I received a blanket scarf (the same one by two different friends!) and it’s been my go-to scarf these past couple of months. I have two other blanket scarves, but they are a bit chunkier so this latest addition to my growing collection is a perfect middle between my heavier blanket scarves and my thinner scarves.

Gold Hoop Earrings

Ever since got all my hair cut off, I’ve been drawn to earrings as a way to highlight my face. Gold hoops are such a classic look and adds a fun touch on any outfit, from casual to dressy (and in all honesty, I just feel so darn cute with them! A perfectly good reason to wear anything – wear what feels good to you!)

Lime Town (listen here)

If you need something to listen to while doing mindless work (like hours of graphic design), this is a great fictional mystery crime story podcast to get immersed in. Thanks to the recommendation from a fellow creative friend, I got to experience this gripping mystery all in one day. It follows a reporter and her investigation on the mysterious disappearance of the inhabitants of Lime Town. After many years, survivors start to surface and we follow her on this dangerous, life-threatening investigation, interviewing these survivors and getting one step closer to getting all the answers.

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