January Favorites

Hi Passionista!

As we say good bye to January and Hello February, I want to share some of the products I have been obsessed with this month.

Kinga Facial Steamer

I was blessed with this amazing facial steamer as a Christmas gift. I was watching a favorites video from the Glam Twinz on youtube and they recommended this facial steamers. I put it on my Amazon wishlist and one of my besties bought it for me. I ABSOLUTELY love it. I use it about once a week when I do a clay or detoxifying mask. It’s simple to use and works wonders on your face. It truly gives me an at home spa experience. The steamer has a small water tank. It only take a few seconds to start steaming once you turn it on and it run strong for at least 15-20 minutes.

Juvia’s Nubian 2 Eye Palette

For New Year’s I was looking for a new eye shadow palette to attempt to do my own make up for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. I discovered the Juvia brand in ULTA when I went in for my lash appointment. I was shocked at how pigmented the color are for such a low price. This palette was only $20. I’m normally not big on bold eye colors, especially when I;m doing my make up myself. But… New Year, New Me! I thought I’d try something new and I loved it.

Yes To Cucumber Cooling Roller

I discovered this new to market Yes To product in Target. It has a metal cooling rolling ball that allows you to roll the product on your face cool and calm sensitive skin. I have been using this product daily. It a great way to end the day and get rid of all the grit and grime from everyday activity. I appreciate hands -free/ mess -free beauty products. With this product I don’t have to use my hands to put the product on my face. I love that because I try to keep my hand off my face as must as possible. 

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel Cream

This is my new favorite lotion. I normally use body oil to moisturize my skin daily. But I am loving how lightweight and hydrating this gel cream lotion is. It it packed with hyaluronic acid which is basically water- and nourishing for your skin. Keep the Skin hydrated!

Michael Kors Wonderlust Perfume

I received a the sample size (.34 fl oz )perfume as a christmas gift. I am impressed with the scent and how strong and long lasting it is. Before receiving this as a gift, I’d never used it before or knew what it smelled like. But I was looking for a new mature perfume to use. I normally don’t buy expensive perfumes or designer perfumes. I’m more of a Victoria Secret/ Bath and Body works girl. But I will add this full size bottle to my “need to purchase” list. I love how the scent lingers and last all day.

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Year 3

Hello Passionista!

Today is a very special day… It’s my blogaversary !!!!

Three years ago, I stopped talking about my desires to be a blogger and actually became one. This journey has not always been easy but I am grateful for every moment. There has been some moments when I felt like blogging was not for me. I felt like my blog was not getting the response it needed in order for me to consider myself a blogger. But I continue to push through my mini anxiety attacks and focused on my desire to use this as a creative space to share with others.

Why did I start Passion Locked?

I have always been an opinionated and talkative girl. Sometime its a blessing, sometimes its a curse. For years I followed different blogs like Lauren Conrad and A Belle in Brooklyn and they gave me the desire to one day start my own blog. But I felt like I needed to be older and more established before I could start a blog. At the top of 2016, I made a goal to stop talking about what I want and go after each and every thing I want for myself. So, Passion Locked was created… I have always been a creative person, full of opinions, and big ideas. I wanted to create a space where I can share all of my creativity with the world. Passion Locked is my vault of creativity- everything from skincare and beauty (product) reviews, tips and routines to the DIY projects I share. It is my desire to use my creative space to connect with others just like me and build a community of ” Passionistas”

5 tips to starting a Blog

Now that I have been working on this passion project of mine for a few years, I’d like to offer some tips to anyone thinking about starting a blog.

  1. Don’t Second Guest Yourself. Just Do It!
  2. Set Content Calendars to follow each month
  3. Stay true to why you started
  4. Collaboration over Competition
  5. Keep it FUN!

What’s in store for Passion Locked?

I am just getting warmed up y’all. So, I hope you keep tuning in every week for new content. I want to grow Passion Locked into a creative brand as an offset to other business ventures I wish to pursue in Marketing, Brand Management and Event Planning. I’d also like to collaborate with more blogger and Passionista’s for passion projects, features and guest posts.

Thank you to all my subscribers and supporters for being apart of this journey with me!!!

Skincare | The Unprepared Pimple

Hi Passionista!

This past weekend I took some time off to spend time with my girls on a Cabin Trip. The weather was just right for a cozy cabin affair. But just when I thought I was about to have a stress free weekend of fun with my girls, a PIMPLE came trying to ruin my fun. I rarely get pimples. So…. Of course, the 1 blue moon I get a pimple I am away from home and all my skincare products. But I was not about to let a lil red dot pimple stress me out or ruin my fun.

WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU HAVE A PIMPLE AND NO SKINCARE PRODUCTS?

Honestly, the only skin care products I packed was my Honest Beauty Gel Cleanser and O’Lay Daily Moisturizer. My skin has been clean and clear for the most part of the season. I haven’t experienced any harsh breakouts or anything. So, only packed the basics for skincare. I had to raid my friends cosmetic bags for products I could use to really deep clean my face and treat this pimple.

I was able to borrow a face scrub (Aveeno Positively Radiant daily Scrub), a facial cleanser (Cetaphil Daily Face Cleanser) and toothpaste was baking soda.

I used the Cetaphil to clean my face. The Honest Beauty Gel Cleanser I packed is gentle and mild, I don’t think it was enough to get the job of removing excess (Natural) oils and sweat from face. The Cetaphil formula is a bit stronger and is meant to cleanse your skin of oils without drying your skin out. Next, I used the Aveeno scrub to gentle scrub all the dirty out of my pores to prevent more pimples from surfacing. Finally, I placed a dot of toothpaste with baking soda on the pimple and left my face alone for the rest of the day.

The best thing you can do to your face when you have a pimple is keep it clean and keep your hands off you face. By the end of the weekend the pimple was all dried out and disappeared leaving no dark spot.

Hair | Rice Water for Natural Hair Update

Hi Passionista-

Okay, so! I have another rice water update. I’ve used rice water about 3 times now and I can say I have seen results.

3 Weeks of dirty hair with product build up


All the shedding from washing & detangling

How I make my Rice Water

I use regular store brand white rice. I pour about 2 cups of rice into a strainer and rinse the rice with water, to get off the factory dust off of it. Then, I use a Mason Jar (pint size) and fill the bottom with rice. Next, I fill the jar with water. To mask the horrible smell rice water can produce, I use essential oil. This time I used Jojoba & Sweet Almond Oil. Lastly, seal the lid on the jar tightly, letting it soak for at least 24 hours.

One thing I hate about washing my hair is the shedding. Normally, I will have large clumps of hair all over my shower, shrink and stuck in my brush after washing and detangle my hair. It gives me anxiety, thinking about how much of my hair is falling out and my drains getting clogged with clumps of hair, etc. But the instant result of using rice water is LESS SHEDDING.

After washing, this is what my hair looks like with no product in it …

I have not been tracking my hair length to see if it is growing. But I want to start so here are my first length check photos

For this wash day, I used the OGX Nourishing coconut milk shampoo and condition, and the Hask Keratin Protein Smoothing Deep Conditioner

If you have tired Rice Water before share your thoughts and opinions with me. If you are think about trying rice water, ask me questions.

DIY| Baby Shower Decor

Hi Passionista

Today is all about baby shower DIY projects from my last event. If you did not see Wednesday’s post STOP NOW and go read it, then come back here.

Baby Shower Onesie Centerpiece/ Table Decor

When putting together a decor table, it all about the details. I wanted to keep everything simple and cute but I wanted to give the table some variety. So I designed this cute little decor piece. It was so easy to make.

What you need:

Poster Board, Pen(cil), and Scissors

Hot Glue Gun and Craft Stick

Glass vases, Decor flowers, and fillers

Step 1: Trace or Draw (2) Onsies on poster board and cut them out

Step 2: Using hot glue gun, glue craft stick to the back of one of the once cut out and then glue the other onesies to the back side to cover up the stick

Step 3: Fill you vases with your fillers go choice and stick the Onsies stick in the center. Decorate the rim with flower (optional).

Mommy 2 Be Pin

I didn’t have time to order a cute mommy to be pin so I decided to make one. This was my first time making it and it came out so cute. I think I might start making more of them.

What you need:

Button with straight pin ( or any base will work)

Hot Glue Gun

5-6 different ribbons (you can get creative with the colors and patterns)

To start I used my Cricut to cut out Mommy 2 Be letter for the button and used scrapbook paper inside the clear craft button. Once I secured the back on the button, I cut and folded strips of ribbon to glue to the back of the button. I alternated the ribbons all the ways around and went back to fill in gaps in the end to make it full.

The ribbon used for this project all purchased from Hobby Lobby on sale for buy one get on 50%, priced between $1.99- $2.99 each.

DIY Cupcake Stand

Everything from Dollar Tree (minus the E6000 glue). I have found that E6000 glue works best on glass and ceramics. You can use super glue or a hot glue gun but in my experience they don’t hold well.

What you need(to make 1 stand):

E6000 glue

Dinner charger and Dinner Plate

2 Candle stick holders

Step1: Glue the bottom of one candle stick to the cent of the dinner charger, using E6000.

Step 2: Glue the dinner plate to the top of the candle stick and apply pleasure for 30 seconds.

Step 3: Glue the top of the (2nd) candle holder to the middle of the dinner plate (you want to flip this candle stick upside down for detail purposes- optional)

Step 4: glue the dessert plate to the bottom of the candle stick and apply pleasure for 30 secs.

Be sure to let these sit for at least 24 hours to completely dry before using.

THE FINISHED PRODUCTS

ALL PUT TOGETHER FOR THE GRAND EVENT

The pillows I put together last minute, but I will be doing a DIY throw pillow blog post soon…STAY TUNED!

If you try any of these DIYs be sure to tag me in your post or share pictures in the comment box. I’d love to see what you put together.

Tutu & Pearls Themed Baby Shower

Happy Hump Day!!!!

So, this weekend I had the pleasure of putting together a “Tutus & Pearls” theme baby shower for a client. I love doing baby showers because there are so many creative things you can put together to make the most special and memorable occasion no matter how small or large the event.

This was my 1st booked event for the year and I’m extremely happy with the end results and so was my client. It was small but filled with so much love. I was able to put together some cool DIY decor for the candle table, gift table and pin for the mommy to be. I was nervous about the final look of the decor being gold and yellow (but my clients get what they want), it turns out better than expected. I’m glad I could make my clients vision come to life. I will share all DIY (How to’s) in Friday’s blog… Stay tuned! For now, here are pictures from the event.

And, just to let you know Dollar Tree, Amazon, and Etsy are my best resources for any event that I put together.

Mini Candle bar with gold back drop and tutu table skirt from Amazon

I love keepsakes and craft projects, So I put together a scrapbooking station on the entry table. Instead of a guest book, guest were asked to make a scrapbook page for Mommy and Baby.

I made the mommy 2 be pin and managed to craft up some cute pillows for the mommy to be chair. This was something she got to keep for the babies room.

Onesie cake and cupcakes by Christal’s Cakes n’ Bakes

(IG: @christalscakenbakes)

I’m thinking about putting together an event page on this website to show photos from all my events, what y’all think?

Networking in Atlanta

Hi Passionista-

I have been attending some really dope networking events and mixers lately. So I thought it would be a great idea to share recaps and key takeaways from each event on my blog. If you don’t already know, I currently live in Atlanta, GA. And as I take this journey to grow my side hustle into a business I NEED to networking. Last year, networking and going to events were a struggle for me. I would scroll through Eventbrite or Facebook and see so many events that I wanted to attend but failed to actually go because I had no one to go with me. Now, I am putting that fear behind me and getting out of the house more. I must say, I have connected with some really DOPE young moguls who are making things happen.

It’s always good to connect with like minded people for inspiration and business connections. This weekend I met at least 5 people I want to stay in contact with to work with on either a event or business collaboration. So if you are in the Atlanta area, I want to encourage you to GET OUT AND NETWORK. Follow me on IG for upcoming events (on my IG story).

January 5th: LEVEL UP: Caught Between A Dream and A Job

This event was hosted by Young Entrepreneurs of Atlanta, featuring some dope panelist that shared their business startup stories and advice for living in your purpose.

Some of the panelist were:

Pinky Cole -Owner of Atlanta’s NEWEST restaurant, Slutty Vegan (Plant-based, Black- Owned Burger Joint) | IG: @pinky907

Tiara Johnson,The Dream Coach and Owner of TLJ Agency for Brand Management and Public Relations | IG: @tljagency

Erica Dias, Owner of The B Firm PR and Creator of Table of 20 | IG: @fashion101ed

A few of the key life hacks and gems I took from the panel discussions:

#1 Stay FOCUSED; Focus on what YOU really want and keep you focus on making it happen | Just do it!

#2 Be a good person! Stay mindful of who you are and how you treat others. You will not be successful when you are trying to break others downs. Treat people how you want to be treated.

#3 Your character is important. When you’re starting a business, networking and working with other people, you need to be likable and a pleasure to work with to keep a steady flow of business and partnerships. If you are a negative and nasty person, people are not going to want to continue to work with you. You can be the result of your own failure.

Young Entrepreneurs of Atlanta Foundation

http://www.yeafoundationinc.org

IG: @ye_atlfoundation

January 11th: Ask me what I do Networking Event

I love a turn up after work happy hour/ open bar event. The Ask me what I do Networking Event hosted by My Networking Appeal ( IG: @mynetworkingappeal) was not you ordinary networking event. Of course there was food, a DJ and free drinks, but this event also featured a DOPE Photo Booth from Moment in time rentals and a cool networking game throughout the event. Upon arrival everyone received a email for the “Networking Game”. Everyone was challenged to meet 5 people working a 9-5 and have a business, 3 people that’s ready to quit their job for their business and 3 people with a dope elevator pitch, etc. To keep the game going there was about 2 to 3 rounds of this game.

I thought the networking game was a really good idea to encourage people to talk to someone that they didn’t know. Because I will be honest, when I arrived I scanned the room and jetted over to the people I knew as soon as I spotted them. That’s not really NETWORKING. But I was thinking if stick with them, I might be introduced to someone else they may know that I don’t- or I could introduce them to someone I knew that they may not of known before the event. That’s how I tend to make connections. But the networking game encouraged people to go up to one another and just start talking. My shyness got the best of me until a Real Estate Agent just walked up to me handing me her card and asking me my name and what do I do? Of course that sparked a healthy conversation that lead to meeting a bartender and stylist. That’s what networking is all about.

January 12th: Glitter and Goals Vision Board Party

Last year, I connected with TLJ Little League (IG: @tljlittleleague) as a mentor for young girls in the Atlanta area. We meet once a quarter to mentor girls from 4th grade to 12th grade. ” Girls with dreams, become Women with Vision”. As I am walking in my purpose and living my dreams I want to always be able to reach back and instill that into our young, brilliant, beautiful females. Back in October, I got the chance to host a self care session with the girls- teaching them how to make DIY face mask and body scrubs. I think I enjoyed playing “beauty” just as much as the girls did. It warmed my heart to see them participating and engaging in the session. This weekend we had the 1st event of the year that was had a major turn out. This time we had more girls (all ages) attend and we even have more mentors now. The program is rapidly growing and I cannot wait to see what’s in store next.

January 12th is National Vision Board Day, so you know exactly what we did… MADE VISION BOARDS. We started by giving each girl a paper butterfly and asking them to write down their DREAM. “What do you want to be when you grow up?” With their DREAM in mind the girls started on their vision boards and setting goals for what they need to do to make their dreams come true. Kids are so creative and innovative, I was surprised by the level on context some of the girls gave when explaining the finished project. Everyone made such creative vision boards with great ideas and goals to put behind their dreams. I love listening to youth speak passionately about their future.

DIY | Cucumber Face Mask

Hello Passionista,

I brought the new year in with a cold and STILL when out for NYE. Which did not help my cold situation. A week later, I finally feel like myself again. My nose is no longer red and stressed out. I’m no longer coughing with a runny nose. I FEEL BETTER, thank God!

While I was sick, I went without washing my hair or applying any mask to my face. I wasn’t in the mood to and I didn’t think it was a good idea to do while sick. So, now that I am better it is time to show my skin and hair some tender, love and care. Today, I am going to share with you how to make a refreshing sheet mask for stressed skin.

You will need:

Compressed Facial Mask (from Amazon)

1 Cucumber (sliced)

Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar

Lemon Juice

Water

Using a pint sized mason jar (or gals jar), fill the jar half way with water. Add in the sliced cucumbers, apple cider vinegar and lemon juice. Sometimes, I measure out a tablespoon of each (apple cider vinegar and lemon juice) or sometimes I just pour whatever in. Only thing left to do is, LET IT SIT. You can put it in the refrigerator or leave it out on the counter. I like to let mine sit for half a day before using.

When you’re ready to make the mask, drain the cucumber slices from the solution. Leave the solution in the glass jar. You can store any excessive solution for up to 5-7 days.

The perfect thing about the compressed facial mask is all you have to do is open it and drop it into the solution. It expands on its own.

Influenster Vox Box Review

Hello Passionista,

Today, I have a special #curltreat to share with you. I received another Vox Box from Influenster,that is all about CURLS and treating yourself to healthy styles.

What’s in the box?

This Vox Box includes Garnier Fructis Curl Treat Leave- in stylers: Hydrating Butter and Defining Soothie.

Y’all know I love a good hair product and these styler came just in time for the holidays. I decided to do a flexi rod set using both the Hydrating butter and Defining smoothie. I normally don’t purchase Garnier Fructis products for my hair because honestly I didn’t think it was a brand for ethnic natural hair. Now that I’ve tried these curl treats I will be purchasing these products and exploring what other good styling products Garnier Fructis has to offer my thick natural curls.

Both the Hydrating Butter and Defining Soothie formulas are thick and feels very rich. You only need to apply a little bit to each section of hair.

When styling my hair with the flexi rods, I wet my hair with a spray bottle of warm water, them added the Hydrating Butter from root to ends. Before starting to roll each section of hair with the flexi rod, I used my finger to rub the Defining smoothie and a small amount of curl gel to the ends. Once my entire head was rolled and twisted in the flexi rod, I let it air dry over night then sat under the hair drier the next morning for 20 mins (just to make sure my roots were completely dry)

Natural Hair Tip: Make sure your hair is COMPLETELY dry when doing twist out, rod or roller set before untwist or unrolling. It makes a huge different in the final look and how long it will last.

I am amazed at the finished look of this flexi rod protective style. Like I said, I never thought Garnier Frutis products were for my type of hair. There advertisements always have white women with straight hair, I don’t fit that audience so I over look the brand. I would like to see more women of color with different types and styles of hair in their advertisements.

ENTIRE LOOK FOR THE EVENING

Disclaimer: I received these products complimentary from Influenster for review purposes.

For PR and brand partnership or sponsoring, please email passionlockedblog@gmail.com

PinchMe Review

Hello Passionista,

So I’ve received yet another PINCHme Box. I think this may be my last PINCHMe box. Don’t get me wrong, I like getting free stuff to try and I love sharing my reviews with you guys. But ….. PINCHMe is too much. When I first joined PINCHMe, it was simple you complete surveys for points and you get free samples to review. Recently they’ve switched something up. You have to take more surveys to get a box now. For some reason, I don’t qualify for most of the surveys anymore. I’ll spend hours on the website filling out the same basic information just to get rejected from completing the entire survey and getting all my points. I don’t event get a box every month any more. When I do get a box it takes it forever to arrive and when it does the box is all beat up.

Sample #1: Native Deodorant

The sample size packaging is great for trial. I have it in my work bag, just in case I need a refresh during the day or if I need to freshen up after work to head straight to happy hour.

There is nothing special about this product to me. It’s just like any other deodorant minus the parabens, aluminum and phthalates. You put this deodorant on the same way you would any other deodorant. I’ve used this deodorant for the past week and had no issues of being musty. I don’t really do any hard labor activity throughout the day anyways. I think it’s slightly impressive that the formula still seems to work without the aluminum, parabens and phthalates. It makes me questions why those ingredients were ever added to hygiene and body care products in the first place. A question consumers will probably never know the truth about.

This deodorant is made without aluminum, parabens, phthalates, and talc. Honestly, I don’t know what none of these ingredients are. But I do know that “Free From” parabens and phthalates, etc. has become a industry trend for skincare and cosmetic products. Just about everything new to market have these “Free From” call outs on the packaging and all over social media.

I did find this product in Target. The regular size product is 2.65oz and costs $11.99. I don’t see myself purchasing deodorant for $11.99 when I’ve used to paying $3-$4. There is also a mini size 0.35oz for $2.99, which is the same size as the sample from PINCHme. I don’t know how long the 0.35oz will last but I like how compact it is for on the go purposes. I will continue to use my sample and I may purchase the mini in store, but I know I will not be purchasing the $11.99 product. Toms brand is not even that much.

Samples #2: Shea Moisture African Black Soap Clarifying Facial Wash & Scrub with Tamarind Extract & Tea Tree Oil

This sample came in the form of a packet for a one time use. But the regular in store product is a 1.5oz tube for $4.49 on sheamoisture.com. The sample contained enough product for a good one time use of the product.

The product is meant to be a smoothing exfoliator to help cleanses any impurities of the skin. I used a facial spatular to apply the product all over my face and neck. Then used my hands to massage in my skin in a circular and upward motion. The scent is very mild, but PLEASE do not get the product in your eye. I did and it was horrible.

I felt like my skin was softer and cleanser after use. I didn’t really need to do anything else to my face. So I used my Little Barn Coconut + Mint facial mist to set my face and start my day.

This is a product I see myself purchasing and using more that I have tried the sample. It reasonable priced and works well.

Sample #3 Sugru Moldable Glue

This is not really a product that I need or would see myself in need of. I honestly had to find something to use it on to write this review. For a handy person, this product will come in handy for around the house quick fixes. I have a white board that fell of the wall and cracked recently. I wasn’t going to throw it away but the way it broke, I could not rehang it on the wall without repairing it. I was going to just use my hot glue gun, but after I received this sample I decided to use this. The package states it take 48 hours to fully dry. I used half of the samples to repair this white board and the other half went to waist because it harden in the slightly opened samples package.

Disclaimer: I received this product from PINCHme for reviewing purposes. All of my reviews are my honest opinion whether I bought the product(s) to it was sent to me. 

For PR and brand collaborations opportunities, please email passionlockedblog@gmail.com. Be sure to follow me on instagram